Honoring the late Betty Yezak

Each year the Texas Press Association accepts nominees to be inducted into the Texas Newspaper Hall of Fame.

The requirements for consideration for the prestigious honor are simple and well met by Mrs. Yezak who served the community of Bremond as a newspaper publisher for 57 years.

Last year, I submitted Mrs. Yezak as a nominee for induction, however she was not selected. As a publisher with a great amount of respect for anyone that accomplished for her community what Mrs. Yezak did I will continue to submit her each year until the Texas Press Association grants her admission into the Newspaper Hall of Fame.

This year, I want to take a different approach and I need your help. I need you to craft a 250-500 word essay and mail it to me here at the newspaper. A simple essay that describes the impact Mrs. Yezak made either for your life personally or the community at large. It can be personal, it can be business, it can be whatever you feel like sharing with the Texas Press Association (TPA).

This year the TPA is allowing “attachments” as part of the nomination process and I want to attach so many letters that Mrs. Yezak cannot but help be accepted. I want this to be a slam dunk for her family, the community of Bremond and the readers of the Bremond Press. After 57 years of service and her dedication to the community, she deserves this honor.

Please address your letter to:

Dennis Phillips

c/o Robertson County News

114 W. 4th Street

Hearne, Texas 77859

Base criteria for induction:

The purpose of the Texas Newspaper Hall of Fame is to honor those who:

• Have made an outstanding contribution to Texas newspaper journalism or, through Texas

journalism, to newspaper journalism generally, or

• Have made an extraordinary contribution to their communities, regions, the state of Texas

or the nation through newspaper journalism, or

• Have advanced the legacy of a free and responsible press, and

• Have inspired others to improve the quality of the profession of journalism.

• Honorees must be natives of the state of Texas or have established a significant portion of their professional reputations in Texas. They must have shown exemplary contributions to the newspaper industry during a period of at least 20 years prior to being nominated and may be living, retired or deceased.

Join me in honoring what I consider to be a leader in community newspapers. A copy of this article along with your letters will be submitted, but we have to hurry, the deadline in October 15, 2017.

According to the original obituary for Mrs. Yezak:

December 20, 1925 - July 24, 2016

Mrs. Yezak, 90, passed away in July of 2016.

On Wednesday, October 5, 1949, Betty married State Representative Herman Yezak at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Bremond. They had four children, Patricia, Robert, George and Jennifer.

Herman and Betty bought the Bremen Press in 1960 and ran it together until his death in 1986 when she took over and was still the publisher/ editor at the time of her death.

Mrs. Betty’s favorite hobby was attending Bremond High School athletic events, especially football. Ever since Mrs. Yezak’s oldest daughter was the twirling mascot for the Bremond Tigers in 1955, and was required to be at every football game, Mrs. Yezak made it a point to start being at every Bremond Tiger football game from then on. Her 42-year streak of perfect attendance ended on November 22, 1996, when instead of being in Jacksonville for the playoff game against Karnack, she was in Washington, D.C., for Jennifer’s Wedding Rehearsal Dinner. So she started a new streak of perfect attendance until missing the Bremond v. Tenaha game on December 6, 2013, which was the last game Bremond lost. In 61 years, she never missed attending a regular season Bremond football game and only missed four playoff games. She was so proud to have been at all three Bremond State Football Championship games and both Bremond State Baseball Championship games. Betty also greatly enjoyed attending Texas A&M football games and watching the Dallas Cowboys on TV.

Betty was active in her church and community. She was a CYO sponsor, CCD teacher, Bazaar volunteer and lector. As a member of the Bremond Chamber of Commerce she was on the committee that started the Polish Day festival in 1988. Betty served as the Democratic Party Precinct Chair and was an election worker for many years. She proudly voted for every Democratic presidential nominee from Truman to Obama and was looking forward to voting for Hillary Clinton.

Mrs. Betty passed away on Sunday, July 24, 2016 at Cornerstone Long Term Acute Care Hospital in Round Rock. She was born in Wheelock on December 20, 1925, the sixth of six children born to sharecroppers Thomas F. and Louise Teska Supak who were children of Czechoslovakian immigrants. Her family moved frequently when she was a child so she attended several country schools in the Brazos Valley including Kings Highway, Fickey, Woodville, Tabor and Henry Prairie. When she started school English was her second language. She graduated from Franklin High School in 1943 and from Texas State College for Women in 1947, the first member of her family to go to college and earn a degree. The degree was a bachelor’s in English. One summer during World War II she worked as a fork lift driver at a bomb plant in McGregor. Betty taught high school English for one year at Pleasanton.

Franklin Advocate

120 W. Third St.
Hearne, TX 77859
(979) 279-3411