Michael Endl (UT Austin).

Michael Endl (UT Austin).

Monday Interview: KRTS Astronomy Series: Michael Endl on the Search For Other Earths

On this episode of our Astronomy Series, Ian Lewis speaks with Michael Endl, a research scientist at the McDonald Observatory and a lecturer at the University of Texas at Austin. Endl works to characterize planets found by the Kepler spacecraft that is in orbit around our Sun, and speaks about the search for other earth-like planets in our galaxy and the possibilities of other life in our galaxy.

West Texas Talk is broadcast at 6:30 pm each weekday.
A wildfire burns south of Fort Davis on the east side of SH 17 Sunday evening. (Travis Bubenik / KRTS)

A wildfire burns south of Fort Davis on the east side of SH 17 Sunday evening. (Travis Bubenik / KRTS)

Wildfire Burning in Mountains Southeast of Fort Davis

Sunday, March 29, 7 pm

A wildfire was burning in the mountains of private land southeast of Fort Davis Sunday evening.

Fire crews from Fort Davis, Marfa, Presidio and Jeff Davis Counties were among those responding to the fire burning on the east side of SH 17.

The fire was estimated to be about 100 to 150 acres and burning in high, mountainous terrain, according to responders stationed on both the north and south sides of the fire.

Presidio County Emergency Management Coordinator Gary Mitschke, speaking from the south side of the mountain range closer to Marfa, said the fire appeared to be traveling “pretty good,” and that his team was focused on keeping the fire from reaching lower elevations.

“We’re trying to formulate a plan right now,” Mitschke said Sunday evening. “It’s in some pretty good fuels.”

Speaking from the north side of the fire, about 10 miles south of Fort Davis, Jeff Davis County Sheriff Rick McIvor said the flames appeared to be spreading slowly from his vantage point.

“It’s still high up, it hasn’t been real fast,” he said.

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Following Multi-State Man Hunt, Suspect in Jeff Davis County Murder Turns Himself In

March 26, 10 am

Following a multi-state man hunt, Harlin A. Pierce has turned himself into authorities in King George County, Virginia. The 18-year-old was sought as a suspect in the murder of his father, Anton G. Pierce, near Fort Davis, Texas.

For KRTS News, Lorne Matalon spoke with Rod Ponton, 83rd District Attorney, who said Harlin Pierce turned himself in “on the suggestion of a friend.”

Ponton said Pierce had apparently been en route to his mother’s house in northeastern Virginia before turning himself in. Ponton revealed new details about the alleged killing.

“It does appear that Anton Pierce was killed with a single gunshot wound to the head, probably in his sleep,” he said.

Ponton said Thursday morning that the 18-year-old was in custody in Virginia, awaiting extradition procedures to be transferred to Jeff Davis County in Texas for prosecution for murder.

For days, law enforcement was actively searching for Harlin Pierce of Jeff Davis County in Texas, New Mexico and Colorado. An arrest warrant was issued for the 18-year-old on Thursday, March 19.

The killing allegedly occurred in the Davis Mountains Resort subdivision, northwest of Fort Davis, on or around that date.

The Jeff Davis County Sheriff’s Office said Harlin Pierce was seen in the area of Santa Fe and Denver in recent days, after having left the area driving a blue Volkswagen Jetta with New Mexico license plates.

In initial statements, authorities warned that Pierce should be considered armed and dangerous.

“This man will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law for the crime he’s alleged to have committed,” Ponton said.

The plane flipped over during an emergency landing in a wet, freshly-plowed field. (Brewster County Sheriff's Office)

The plane flipped over during an emergency landing in a wet, freshly-plowed field. (Brewster County Sheriff's Office)

Marathon Residents Recovering from Injuries after Plane Crash

Two Marathon residents are recovering from injuries they suffered when the plane they were flying in crashed during an emergency landing near Marathon Monday morning.

Guil Jones, the pilot, and his passenger Bobby Hornsby had just taken off when they began to experience engine trouble and had to attempt an emergency landing.

Brewster County Sheriff Ronny Dodson says when Jones attempted to land the plane in a freshly-plowed field wet from recent rains, the nose of the plane got caught in the mud, flipping the plane upside down onto the cockpit.

“When he hit it, it just stuck, like hitting a brick wall,” Dodson says.

Both suffered non-life-threatening injuries and were taken to Big Bend Regional Medical Center in Alpine. Jones has since been transferred to Medical Center Hospital in Odessa, while Hornsby was treated and released.

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American Patients Find Cheaper Dental Care in Ojinaga

For many west Texans, a dentist appointment means taking a trip to another country. Insufficient or nonexistent dental insurance in the United States has spawned a steady stream of American clients in Ojinaga, the Mexican city bordering Presidio, Texas. Ojinaga dentists have seen these numbers fluctuate over the years, and they say it’s because of American fears about the safety of Mexico.

On a Saturday morning, 22-year-old Jo Guillen is making the hour-long drive from Marfa, Texas to Ojinaga, Mexico. Today, she’s getting her braces tightened.

Guillen’s parents are Mexican. She says they hear about good dentists in Mexico all the time.

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Become a Community Correspondent, learn new skills and make new friends.

Become a Community Correspondent, learn new skills and make new friends.

Become a Marfa Public Radio Community Correspondent

Never miss a city council meeting? Always finding interesting stories in the Big Bend? Go to a lot of community events or concerts? If you’re interested in sharing your knowledge and experience with Marfa Public Radio listeners, become one of our volunteer Community Correspondents.

We’re looking for engaged citizens from across the Big Bend. A Community Correspondent assists Marfa Public Radio with news gathering and producing stories from the community you live in.
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Fri. Mar 27 Interview: Rainis Days, Latvians Come Together in West Texas to Celebrate a Literary Giant

Today’s West Texas Talk guest is the Latvian-born Marfa resident, Vilis Inde. Inde is the award-winning translator of the english-language version of the Latvian epic play, “The Golden Horse” by Rainis, a seminal literary figure in Latvia.

Currently, Inde is the lead organizer of an event on March 27-29 in Marfa which will commemorate the 150th birthday of Rainis. The event is set to attract many Latvians from all over North America. Among guests will be the former president of the American Latvian Cultural Association.

West Texas Talk is broadcast live at 6:30 pm each weekday.
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Lonn Taylor

Pedro Infante

Today on Rambling Boy, Lonn remembers the musical and cinematic legacy of Pedro Infante, an actor and singer from the golden age of Mexican cinema.

The Rambling Boy is broadcast Mondays after the 10 am newscast and again after the 7 pm newscast.
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Gary Nabhan, holding a milkweed plant at the Chihuahuan Desert Research Institute. (KRTS/Anna Rose MacArthur)

Thu. Mar 26 Interview: Gary Nabhan, Co-Founder of Make Way for Monarchs

Gary Nabhan talks with host Anna Rose MacArthur about his Make Way for Monarchs program.

The initiative works to reestablish and safeguard milkweed in the United States and Canada that are essential nectar and host plants for monarchs as they migrate across North America.

Nabhan is a nature writer, food and farming activist, and proponent of conserving the links between biodiversity and cultural diversity. He has written or edited 24 books and has received a MacArthur “genius” award, a Lannan Literary Fellowship, a Southwest Book Award, the John Burroughs Medal for nature writing, the Vavilov Medal, and several honorary degrees and lifetime achievement awards.


West Texas Talk is broadcast live at 6:30 pm each weekday.
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(Ara Gureghian and Spirit / Tom Michael KRTS)

Wed. Mar 25 Interview: Ara Gureghian

Today on West Texas Talk, host Mark Glover speaks with Ara Gureghian, author of Freedom on Both Ends of the Leash: A Dog, His Man, Their Journey.

Born in 1949, Ara Gureghian is a French-born Armenian chef who has worked all over the United States.

When Gureghian’s only son passed away from liver cancer at the age of 26, Gureghian gave up his culinary career and adopted a nomadic lifestyle. Accompanied only by his motorcycle and a pitbull companion, he began traveling across the country. His journey eventually brought him to West Texas.

West Texas Talk is broadcast live at 6:30 pm each weekday.
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Mike Doyal on the border, Hudspeth County (KRTS / Lorne Matalon)

Tue. Mar 24 Interview: Hudspeth County Judge Mike Doyal on the border

On this edition of West Texas Talk, we travel to the U.S.-Mexico border with Hudspeth County Judge Mike Doyal. He describes the current situation in Hudspeth County, a place with a storied border history.

Judge Doyal describes a documented confrontation with the Mexican military, the physical contour of the land and what that implies for both border security and immigration and his hopes for a stable Mexico.

West Texas Talk is broadcast live at 6:30 pm each weekday.
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