Arp School Board President Hit By Train - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


Arp School Board President Hit By Train

The community of Arp mourns the loss of its long-time school board president. Officials say Wayne Roberts, 71, was hit by a train this afternoon. It happened just after 2:00 on Highway 64 near Highway 135. That is inside the city limits of the Smith County town of Arp.

Authorities say Roberts was walking along the railroad tracks when he was hit by the train. Officials say he was on his way to the post office and was just a couple of blocks away from his house. The 30-year-board veteran had reportedly undergone cataract surgery, which authorities say may have affected his vision.

Roberts was well-known by everyone in the community. The high school auditorium in Arp was even named after him. School board member Montza Williams, who had known Roberts all of his life says, whenever and wherever there was a school function, Mr. Roberts was there. "He was a fixture for all of the events, always in a seat close to the activity and everyone knew he was there. And his leadership on the board is going to be missed," said Williams.

"He was in love with Arp and its school system. He attended just about every function, I mean from a play to the junior high athletics," said Arp High School Principal Dr. Ron Sterling.

"He was a very well-balanced board member and so no one really opposed him because he was so awesome as a person and as a board member," said Arp High School Curriculum Director Joy Rousseau.

Everyone we spoke with says Arp will not be the same without Mr. Roberts. We're told Mr. Roberts leaves behind a wife and three grown children.

Oralia Ortega, reporting.


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