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Houston Voice, June 25, 2004
File 011
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Houston Voice, June 25, 2004 - File 011. 2004-06-25. University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. December 14, 2017. http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/7279/show/7240.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

(2004-06-25). Houston Voice, June 25, 2004 - File 011. Montrose Voice. University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/7279/show/7240

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Houston Voice, June 25, 2004 - File 011, 2004-06-25, Montrose Voice, University of Houston Libraries, accessed December 14, 2017, http://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/7279/show/7240.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title Houston Voice, June 25, 2004
Contributor
  • Crain, Chris
  • Fisher, Binnie
Publisher Window Media
Date June 25, 2004
Language English
Subject
  • LGBTQ community
  • LGBTQ people
  • Gay liberation movement
Place
  • Houston, Texas
Genre
  • newspapers
Type
  • Text
Identifier OCLC: 31485329
Rights In Copyright: This item is protected by copyright. Copyright to this resource is held by the creator or current rights holder, and the resource is provided here for educational purposes. It may not be reproduced or distributed in any format without permission of the copyright owner. Users assume full responsibility for any infringement of copyright or related rights.
Note This item was digitized from materials loaned by the Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM).
Item Description
Title File 011
Transcript Local Life HOUSTON VOICE JUNE 25, 2004 PAGE 10 Sgt. Tommy Bennett will oversee his last Houston Pride Parade on Saturday. He's retiring from the Houston Police Department. (Photo by Dalton DeHart) Thank you, Sgt. Bennett The last Pride Parade passes by on Saturday for Sgt. Tommy Bennett, who will retire soon. By BINNIE FISHER As the last Houston Pride Parade float rounds the corner from Westheimer onto Whitney Saturday night, the organizers will say "Goodbye" an old friend and a parade fixture for the last 15 years. Sgt. Tommy Bennett, the Houston Police Department representative who has helped coordinate security for the 9 MORE INFO Houston Pride Parade Lower Westheimer between Woodhead and Whitney 8:45 pm. Saturday event since 1988, will turn in his badge and gun before next year's parade. He's retiring from the force. "We're definitely going to miss him," said Nick Brines, president of Pride Committee Houston. "He has been phenomenal." Bennett has been involved with Pride and other parades in the city since joining the Special Operations detail in 1988. "Probably since the early 1990s, I've been the one coordinating it," Bennett said. "It's one of the biggest parades in Houston." He said he appreciates the fact that the Pride Committee seems to know what it's doing when it comes to planning a parade. "It always seems to be well organized," he said. Bennett joined the Houston Police Force in 1966 and left for a few years to work with a friend who had started a business. But, police work was his passion. He decided his place was somewhere on Houston's blue line. "It's been a good place to work" he said. "I've enjoyed it." During his time on the force, he has watched Houston change. "It's grown by leaps and bounds," he said. Bennett said since joining Special Operations, he's enjoyed the variety of coordinating various events in the city. He may not have realized at first that it would mean becoming involved with the city's Gay Pride festivities, but he said he has grown to enjoy it. "It's been a lot of fun," he said. "I personally enjoy going out there." Brines said Bennett's involvement ft Sgt. Tommy Bennett Age: 60 Bom: Houston Texas Graduated: Milby High School in Houston Status: Married Kids: One son Tidbit Enjoys his rural property on weekends with Pride begins long before parade night. "He always does things like take mem bers of the Pride Committee driving around the neighborhood," Brines said. On those tours, he said, Bennett talks logistics with committee members. On parade day, Brines said, Bennett always shows up at brunch for committee members and volunteers. "He gives us a little pep talk," Brines said. Bennett goes over last-minute concerns with the group and lets them know that he can usually be found near the assembly area during the parade if he's needed. "He's done a great job reeling in the protestors and putting them in a little protest area," Brines said. "He helps us out with illegal vendors also." Bennett said he tries to keep protestors in one area, and he warns parade participants not to engage them. "We usually have some demonstrators, but nothing has really gotten out of hand," Bennett said. He warns parade participants, "Have your parade and don't get in a shouting match with them." His observation is that the demonstrators usually stick around for a few floats, then lose interest and drift away. Bennett said he appreciates the fact that the Houston Pride Committee runs a clean parade. While he said he wants participants to have fun, there are some dangers that he constantly works to point out. Throwing give-away items, like beads, from floats is more dangerous than it appears to be. He said his worst nightmare is that a child will run out to grab an item and get injured by a vehicle. With more than 150,000 people converging on Montrose on parade night, he said, "Our biggest challenge is traffic control." Bennett said he's found parade participants to be cooperative and Pride Committee members to be serious about helping him make the event safe for everyone involved. "The folks are super nice to me, and I treat them with respect," he said. Brines concurred. "He's comfortable and cool with us," he said. When he leaves the force, Bennett said, he looks forward to spending time on rural property he owns. "I've got a few cows out there." he said. "If I get the chance, I might do a little hunting."
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