Austin was home about 10 of the 13 years I was away from Victoria.
When I returned in May to work for The Victoria Advocate, I became Calhoun County ranging reporter in addition to covering the health beat and a variety of weekend assignments.
One of my first ranging assignments was Poco Bueno, the fishing tournament in Port O’Connor. It had been a long time since I had traveled that stretch of road.
I made the trip many times during my high school years with the Allens, and I had attended the after-party associated with the fishing tournament (then at Alligator Head) more than once.
It was a nostalgic drive.
My cousin, Debbie, arranged for me to stay at her mother’s house, so I didn’t have to drive back and forth to cover the weekend event.
Her mother, Barbara, who had grown up vacationing in Port O’Connor, knew many longtime residents. She introduced me to Agnes Valigura.
Agnes, who was 90 when I met her, shared memories of her Port O’Connor past.
I stopped at her house on the corner of Adams Street every trip I made to Port O’Connor. She was a vibrant, optimistic woman with a wealth of information about the old days. During one visit, we even realized that her older brother had graduated from St. Joseph High School with my grandfather.
Agnes, 91, passed away Feb. 7. And I will miss seeing her when I'm in Port O’Connor.
Trips past her house on Adams Street will likely feel a bit nostalgic, like that first drive to Port O’Connor after many years away.
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