Beverly Carter ~ Some’s Hot, Some’s Not ~
The “Star” invites its readers to share stories about Bev that will be placed on her “Burner” space as we begin to reach closure and deal with her passing. Please send your story (suitable for printing, of course) to email@example.com
It is with my deepest sympathy that I write this note regarding a pioneer and true journalist of our day.
The very first time Bev and I met each other was over the phone. She was asking me a poignant question regarding a political matter and I asked her who was she to ask me a question and boy did she weigh in on me and at the end, she said, welcome politics in Fort Bend. Albeit scorned, that started our wonderful relationship. Her candor and openness enabled me to become more politically astute person over the last 13 years. I have known her as a former neighbor and friend. I do believe, she mentioned me in a couple of her “Burners” but the burns she gave, healed rather than hurt.
“May God bless you Bev and your family and beautiful grandchildren. I knew from your readings, how much you loved and appreciated them. Now, I pray that you are enjoying the abundance of God’s love and appreciation in heaven. You will be sorely missed and always remain on the hearts of your readers and residents of Fort Bend County forever!”
~Noel A. Pinnock & Family
(Quail Valley, Missouri City, Texas)
Michael, your mom was GREAT… so sorry to hear
I was so shocked when I came across the news of your mom’s passing. I always thought she’d live forever. Now she will live forever, in our memories.
Bev Carter was special. She was unique. She made us laugh. And she fought against the big old boys running the local government – just like the pioneer news publisher she was. Even more so since Bev was a ‘she’ in a good ole boy world.
I laughed when she wrote about you being so different from her politically – joking about dropping you on your head. Rest assured Michael, moms love their kids regardless. I do hope some of her thinking did rub off on you and her children! (LOL)
I think I speak for many when I say we shall miss her. Whenever I got to Ft Bend (not often as I travel constantly and live on Clear lake), I always picked up a Star for two things: The Front Page and to read Bev’s Burner.
You are a lucky son to have had her in your life. We in Ft Bend were lucky to have her watching out for the public.
Good luck to you. RIP Bev. They broke the mold with you. It won’t be easy to match what you did for the citizens of our community.
I taught school with Beverly Carter Nitch Fredrickson Welch for several years in Alief.
I will always remember her larger than life presence. If she was on your team, she was your best ally, but if she was on the other team you better beware!
I will never forget when she casually announced in the teachers lounge that she was thinking about starting a newspaper! We all threw out the comments such as, “but you don’t know anything about running a newspaper”, “you don’t have any money”, “you already have a job”, “who would read it”, etc. She had no real concrete answers, but, armed with her usual determination and stubbornness, somehow it began to fall into place.
I was a business teacher, so she decided I should be the “accountant”. Our buddy Phyllis Pugh was sexy and pushy, so she was going to be a salesperson. Her cousin,Dianne, was dependable and wanted to be involved, so she came on board, too. I kept all the accounts receivable on cards in a recipe box, and whenever Beverly wanted to know how much somebody owed us, I would have to add up the ads they had placed with us and subtract the payments (if any!).
I recall the time when she disgustedly asked, “Sue, isn’t there a better way to do this?” I think I replied something like, Beverly, we don’t teach Accounting II in high school!” We often traded ad space for lunches, babysitters, car service, and back in the early days, and knowing Beverly, there is no telling what else!
We all rolled the papers and rubber-banded them. Then we would drive around in our cars and throw them in yards–most of the time with our kids in the car.
I never quit my teaching job and I don’t remember getting paid, but those first few years of “The Ft. Bend Star” were a leap of faith by a gifted woman who created something great with nothing more than a dream and a vision.
Rest in Peace, Bev, you will be remembered.
Sue Wyche (Mundy, Degenhart)
Bev was one of a kind and a real fireball.
I met her when she had just started the “Star”, which was located in a small office by the railroad track in Stafford. A poster on the wall gave a colorful description of her view of housework. Later, the office moved to the Cash building. In those locations, I got my start as a writer. I appreciate Bev’s generosity in taking on a greenhorn and mentoring me.
I also admire her grit in building up a fledgling newspaper and in holding public officials accountable and to a standard of integrity.
In 2007, she was a pit bull in pursuit of John Healey and his aggressive prosecution of my son and was instrumental in getting a dismissal of the case. In 2009, Healey wanted her endorsement for his 2010 reelection bid. He invited her for a meeting with the prosecutor to review the evidence in my son’s case. She would not attend unless I went. The meeting turned into a two-hour shouting match between Healey and her and the prosecutor and me. We walked out with a “that went well” attitude and a sense of how desperate Healey was. He did not get her endorsement.
Bev’s passion, integrity, and loyalty will be missed. May the Lord bless and keep her and her family.
I still read the Star every week on-line.
I am sad for you and Michael and those grandkids she loved so much. She made Fort Bend a better place. I can hear the bad guys sigh with relief…..it just will not be the same.
One of a kind and smart as hell! I will truly miss her and the Burner! She got a kick out of me telling her years ago that each night when I got on my knees beside the bed to pray that I started with “thank you Lord for all your blessings and please don’t let me be in Bev’s Burner this week”.
And then the time she was my guest on TV show on Fort Bend TV. I was IN CONTROL… I did my opening, then introduced her. she interrupted me and said first she had two questions for me…”is that your real hair? And do you wear makeup?” I didn’t have a chance. I never got the concentration or control back for that show. I will miss her, but enjoy remembering her. I think that’s the way it is supposed to be!
While I’ve got lots of memories of Beverly Carter, two stand out:
Not long after word spread that “some former school teacher” had started a rival newspaper (I was news editor of the Fort Bend Mirror at the time), Bev and I met at the press table during a Missouri City City Council meeting. She introduced herself and quickly clarified that she wasn’t a journalist, she was a publisher and a businesswoman and she intended to be successful. She certainly was.
Several years later, several of us from the Fort Bend Professional Women’s breakfast group spent a weekend at the Onstead Ranch between Brenham and College Station. When the wrangler didn’t seem to be available, Bev, proudly proclaiming her West Texas heritage, stepped up to saddle the horses we wanted to ride. And, just as I put a foot into the stirrup, I heard Bev mutter something about hoping she’d gotten the cinch tight enough. She had, but my heart didn’t stop pounding for quite a while.
My sympathies to all of Bev’s family (her “blood family” as well as her “Star family“). She played a major role in Fort Bend County business, politics and philanthropy, she achieved legend status and she has left a legacy for Michael and his family to enjoy. May she enjoy eternal and painless peace.
Julie B. Fix, APR,
My experience with Beverly
Michael & Lisa,
I am very sorry for your loss. I didn’t know Bev well but I thought I would share my experience with her through a story you may not know.
We had released the potential names of the team (down to three) and she was absolutely destroying us in the paper and in person. I knew it was important to reach out, but Matt didn’t want me getting involved. He believed it would just blow over. Knowing how involved she was in our community, and how influent, I disagreed, but did not reach out.
An opportunity came at Amici’s Restaurant in Town Square. I was eating with Steve Fuqua and talking about the team when Bev stopped over to say hello to Steve. He introduced the two of us and we begin to talk about the situation with the name. It was a spirited, but respectful discussion. At the end I think I made a positive impression as Bev said she would stop crushing the name ideas. She said she would remain quiet on the issue. And she did. She was true to her word and that was so helpful in our launch.
Most people do not know the chaos that was going on behind the scenes as interested parties were weighing in on the names privately. Having the local media feed into that frenzy would have made things more difficult. She was an unsung heroine in our success, and I always appreciated her help.
In this tough time, I thought I would share the story. I didn’t know her well but in my experience she was a woman of her word, and I have the utmost respect for her and what you all are doing.
She kept my Texas heritage feet on the ground
I visited Houston several times over the years, and your Mom visited me about three times in Metro Washington, D. C.
We talked frequently and Bev kept me up with you and your family’s life. I look forward to meeting Lisa, your daughter, and the boys. Bev would amuse me with the antics of the boys. She was so proud of you and your family.
I do have funny stories of Beverly. She kept my Texas heritage feet on the ground. She kept me up with the latest gossip in Ballinger, and would identify people’s pictures that I didn’t recognize. Without her, I would have drifted totally away.
I have lived in Metro Washington for 50 years, but Beverly never let me forget my roots. Our politics drifted over the years and Bev did her best to steer me into her philosophy, but my refusal to budge, would annoy her to no end. I stood my ground which, as you know, was not easy with Beverly.
In the first Obama campaign, we both got testy and in order to save our friendship, Bev finally agreed to not talk politics. Or, at least, I agreed! She interviewed me a couple of times before I realized what she was doing. She was a tough reporter! I had to get real smart to counter her.
The first time Bev came to visit me, I picked her up at the Baltimore Airport. On the way back to Washington, I decided to give her a car tour of the city. At the time, I had a Honda Prelude with a large sunroof. As we are driving by the Capitol, Beverly suddenly raises herself through the sunroof, shouting,
“I’m here! I’m here!” Then, at the top of her lungs she screamed, “What about the water?, What about the water? It took me by surprise. I shouted, “What about the water?” I got a lecture all the way to my apartment for the next hour.
On that same trip, we were driving down the George Washington Parkway and I decided to detour and show Beverly where the CIA was. Bad idea!
I thought I could drive around the circle in front of the gate, point down the road to the buildings. Wrong! The gate guards pulled us over. I explained why we were there, but we were not allowed to leave until a background check on the car and I guess, on me, was completed.
After about 15 minutes, Beverly looked over at me and said, “Do you think we’ve been stopped because you are a Republican?” I didn’t have an answer. You can bet I never showed the CIA entrance again.
I know I was not ready to lose your Mom. I’m sure none of us were ready.
See you next Saturday.
Lee Davis (Brookshier)
A sense of loss
It is with a great sense of loss that I write this about my friend and supporter.
I first contacted Bev back in early 1982 to see if she would consider running an article and a picture of a new venture I was going to try to begin – The Fort Bend Boys Choir, made up of treble boys in our local area. I remember expressing to her that I was unsure this would really happen and I distinctly remember her telling me that she felt the same way about the “Star“. She admonished me to go for it and promised me that I would always have her support but only if I behaved myself!
And support us she did . . . in so many ways and at so many times. We talked frequently and she attended many fundraisers for the boys, providing auction items and outstanding press coverage.
You will be missed by me, and by many. As I’m sure you were aware, you were instrumental in helping to get our organization off the ground and for that I and well over 5,200 boys from our local area will be eternally grateful.
I hope you have found your place in that heavenly choir and please . . . don’t give the director too much grief!
God bless you Bev Carter.
The Fort Bend Boys Choir of Texas
I graduated in 1963 from Ballinger High School. My brother Paul Price was in your mom’s class and remembers her excellent writing skills. He says she was very intelligent. After receiving his email, I went online and read some of your mom’s stories which were hilarious. I loved the one about the overabundance of Sugar Land Cops.
There is one thing of which you can be sure. Ballinger had outstanding teachers. Mr. Sweeney (who will be 93 this month)wanted to start a book about all the outstanding students who graduated from Ballinger High School. Your mom was certainly one of the successful ones! I wish I had known her, and I am sorry for your loss.
Here is the email Paul sent to me:
“I checked the Internet and Beverly apparently was still writing for her newspaper (Fort Bend Star) in June of this year. If you enter fortbendstar.com you can then click and read some of her writings on “Bev’s Burner“.
Beverly wrote just likes she talked and could always spin a good story. Beverly and Vance both had high IQ’s and could have made high grades in high school if they wanted to and applied themselves, but typically they were not motivated that way and just “cruised” and made average grades.
The one thing that I remember about Beverly in high school was that in English classes when you had to write a theme (which was a “struggle” for me), that was where Beverly could “shine” without trying very hard, writing seemed to be very easy and natural to her. I can remember Mrs. Stallings bragging on her theme writing, so naturally she worked on “Cat Tracks”.”
May God bless you and your family during this time.
Pam Price Murfee
An advocate of accountability
I send my most heartfelt condolences to both you and Michael as well as your precious children. Bev was a force to be reckoned with. Whether you agreed with her or not, she was always fair and you knew where she stood.
All of Fort Bend has lost a true advocate of accountability. I for one, will miss her wit, wisdom and sense of humor!
An asset to Fort Bend
Dear Michael and Family,
Ms. Beverly Carter was an asset to people of Fort Bend County. She brought news to people fair and square. Meena, my wife, and I knew her since we moved from Connecticut in 1976.
She was our friend until her last days. We grieve and going to miss her. Our heartfelt sympathy to you and your family.
Ray Patel, Architect
Loved her attitude
I just read about Bev. I will miss her. Loved her wicked writing style and her old-world “full steam ahead and damn the torpedoes” attitude. She was a good teacher.
A Fulshear resident
Your Mom – a great lady
Just to express my regards to your family on the loss of your wonderful mom. She and i were friends and I will miss her. She was a grand lady.
Sincerely, Gary Pearson
Unique and original
“When your cousin Lisa and I got together, Bev, Sally, Michael, Shar, all of y’all enfolded me into the family… It’s been one of the affirming experiences in my life. I’ve met many people in my life; few are unique to me. Bev Carter? Absolutely original and someone I shall miss. However, I shall always enjoy celebrating her life and spirit with those whose lives she touched.”
I think that in some “Texas-Corner” of Heaven Ms. Carter is trading stories with Molly Ivins, Cactus Pryor, and Ann Richards, along with a wide circle of other storied Texas social commentators – and having the time of her life!!
God bless you, Bev. We’ll miss you tremendously.
Bev was always MADD
No, not a typo. Bev Carter was indeed always MADD! Those of us at the S.E. Texas Regional Offices of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) are saddened and have a genuine loss in the passing of Bev. There was more than once that Bev would actually call me and “get onto me” because it had been a while since I had anything in the paper about MADD and the things we do in Ft. Bend County for the victims, and their families, of this violent crime. She would always ask, “Dave, are we still the “drunk driving capitol of the U.S.?” I still have to tell her “yes”.
Bev made sure that the “F.B. Southwest Star” always stood up for the victims of drunk driving, and was very instrumental in getting information and education to our Ft. Bend residents about the programs we have… especially to eliminate underage drinking. At our last staff meeting, the MADD staff shared a moment of silence as we reflected on the extreme appreciation we have for this lady that championed those who need it most.
On a personal note: Bev honored us when she attended a Jazz party at our home when we first moved to Sugar Land four years ago. We became instant friends. Laughing as we stood in my kitchen. I recall riding with her, quite the adventure in itself, to go look at homes that were empty that could hold foster children.
I recall conversations about God, and more specifically church, because she knew I attended First United Methodist in Missouri City. One of the nicest compliments she gave me was that I was not like a “regular” Christian. I recall her calling me late one evening when her daughter had died, and was honored to have designed and delivered the personal family flowers for Sherry’s memorial service.
I will miss my friend, my champion, my Southern “butt kicker”….my Bev.
Mothers Against Drunk
Driving S.E. Texas
A tribute to Bev
It’s hard to believe that Bev is gone on to her eternal rest. She would always have kind encouraging words for me. I don’t know how Fort Bend will replace such a maverick who would hold accountability to public servants without hesitation. She would check on me from time to time and often remind me to stop working so hard and try to join her as a guest at local events.
One who cared to share a gift,
Besides many wouldn’t consider it so,
However as a public servant, she was someone you’d have to get to know,
Why? Because she constantly reminded public servants, that “whom much is given, much is expected”,
She definitely left a legacy to Ft. Bend County,
Often, I’d be afraid for her and thought someone may hire a Bounty,
No, she wanted to awaken us and get everyone stirred up,
It was simply not to simmer but to brew and perk up the very best in us
Now we all have something that makes us unique,
Bev could not help that her treasure was not just for her to keep,
She was genuine and told you like it was,
One who never ran from controversy,
It was the message she wanted us to take seriously
Everyone can keep their letters of complaints,
And even stationaries as Bev has gone to her eternal rest,
She’s done the best she can do on this side,
Now Bev has gone on beyond life’s test
I have no idea who told me but when I moved to Sugar Land in 1996, I was informed that reading Bev Carter would keep me posted on the real politics of the area. I looked forward to it each week after.
I only saw her in person once but I knew she was an icon sitting in the first row of a school board candidate forum. When the movie with her opening in reference to Tom Delay played I rushed to see it. I remember my husband and friend choosing a different show in the same theater-Anjelica-but I knew I wanted to see this icon’s story of our Congressman.
Recently, the newspaper wasn’t thrown in Sugar Mill and I was quite disappointed. Then I was gone all summer traveling and it occurred to me there might be other reasons I hadn’t been receiving a paper.
I read this morning about her death. What will I do now to trust someone to tell me what is really going on in Ft. Bend?
Joyce Roberta “JR”
Short URL: http://www.fortbendstar.com/?p=32409