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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Bulldozer damages more than homes


    Material possessions can be replaced, but you can’t put a price on a memory.

    The unmanned, runaway bulldozer that went through at least three fences, two trailer homes damaged a third house and displaced a family Saturday evening in the 1900 block ofSouth Westcliff Road, also destroyed something that can’t be replaced: a room to honor a dead son.

    Dominga Nevarez, the homeowner of the damaged house, said she and her family were building around the room that her son, Raul Nevarez, had been living in when he died in an oilfield accident in May 2008.

    “”We’re all lucky to be alive or we’d be with my son too,”” Nevarez said.

    Nevarez said the room her son lived in was full of trophies that he and his brother, Arnulfo Nevarez Jr., earned when they played soccer for Odessa High School. She said that the family had left the room untouched since his death.

    “”It had his backpack, his school books and a soccer ball signed by everyone who played with him,”” Arnulfo Nevarez Jr. said.

    Dominga Nearez said that while everything else was lost from the room, the family was able to save two soccer pictures of Raul Nevarez, one from 2004; the other from 2005.

    “”I’m just happy no one got hurt,”” Arnulfo Nevarez Jr. said. “”You can’t replace a life.””

    The family made homeless by the bulldozer was also happy they escaped unharmed, even if nothing else did.

    “”Everything was destroyed and damaged,”” homeowner Nancy Hernandez said.

    Hernandez said she, her husband and her three kids were at Hernandez’s mother’s house when she got a call from her niece saying someone had hit her trailer.

    “”My niece had called me to tell me someone had hit my home,”” she said. “”I feel like it was a miracle we weren’t there, and if we were, we’d be dead. It’s crazy something like that can happen.

    Hernandez said the Red Cross has put her family up in a hotel and has given her clothes for her kids. The company the bulldozer came from, Southwest Disposal Service, is helping pay for additional nights.

    The bulldozer was stopped after Eleuterio Sanchez, a neighbor who saw the construction vehicle, chased after it, then threw rocks and a brick at the back window, breaking it to get inside and stop it.

    “”I used to work with this type of equipment, so I knew what to do,”” Sanchez said.

    The manager of the facility at SDS, who wished to remain anonymous, did not give much information about the incident, but he did say the bulldozer was from their property located due west of the homes on Farm-to-Market Road 866. The manager said the company has since recovered the bulldozer.

    “”I don’t want to say too much and hinder the sheriff department’s investigation,”” the man said.

    The manager also said people taking equipment off the lot was rare and this was the first time he has ever seen anything like it.

    “”I hope they catch whoever did this, because it’s stupid and someone could have been killed,”” he said.

    In a news release from the sheriff’s office, the sheriff’s department is still investigating the incident. As of Monday, no arrests had been made. Anyone with information is asked to call the sheriff’s department at 335-3050 or Crime Stoppers at 333-TIPS.

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