This Edition is Dedicated to Anne Ashford

April 15, 2010



Almost Graduation Time


          Brandon will graduate High School this June.  He is only 17 but he started school at an early age so he is ahead of the game.  The Graduation ceremony will be held at 12:00 Noon on June 6th at the Tarrant County Convention Center, 1201 Houston St. Fort Worth, Texas.  Brandon will work for awhile after graduation and during that time he will decide what he wants to take in college.  Then he will attend a technical school, or the community college for a couple of years, taking requisite classes.  Brandon has been taking computer classes and in the last couple of years he is focusing on Internet Applications such as Adobe Flash, Java, PHP, CSS and HTML.  He hasn't decided what he wants to major in but it is obvious he enjoys working with graphics and animations.


Find his Web Site at


It's a work in progress!


          Brandon is now driving, getting his license just a couple of weeks ago, (see story below).  It is amazing how fast our kids grow up.  As the kids get older we get older, and it doesn't matter how young you look, if your kids are in their 30's you must be up there.  Shawn will be 30 in just a few more years.  I didn't realize it until I started writing this.  Brandon is graduating at 17 which will give him an early boost into manhood.  We don't expect for him to be moving out of the house anytime soon, and if his mother has anything to say about it, he will live at home for many years to come.





It's That Time Again!

The Annual McCann Family Reunion


          Last year we didn't have a family reunion.  Our cousin Sharen who so wonderfully puts things together for us every year, tried to bring the annual event to the Great State of Texas just for once.  She had an area in mind here in Northern Texas, up around Lake Lewisville I believe.  This year, in order to make sure it happens, she has scheduled it to be at the same location that it has been for the last several years.  The reunion information is as follows;

  • The annual McCann Family Reunion

  • Buckhorn State Park -

  • Starting Friday May 21st 2010 and ending sometime after that date.

  • The Group Lunch will be on Saturday May 22nd around lunch time

  • Camping is allowed, however you will want to reserve a spot now

  • Contact Sharen at she can give you information not included in this newsletter.

          Sharen says there are only a few camp sites left so you need to hurry if you want to reserve one.  We will be attending the reunion on Saturday, we should be there before lunch starts.


          If you have never been to the camp grounds before, contact me at and I will send you directions.  It's easy to find, and not too far from the Texas State line.  Or click below for a Google map of the campgrounds and roads to get there.


          We are so busy during the year, we need a reunion to get back into focus that we have all these family members.  It is so good to see everyone each year, and sad to hear of those who have past, but if we don't attend our reunions, it is even more sad when someone passes.  Keep coming to the reunion, and if you haven't to one in a few years, get off that couch and go.


See ya'll there!


Lake of the Arbuckles

Buckhorn Campgrounds off Buckhorn Road


Click Here for a Google Map to Buckhorn Campgrounds


Hope to see you there this year Dale, Lisa and family!




Submit Your Own Story


          If you know of some family news, either on the Bennett side or the McCann side, or Malone, Taylor, Castleberry, Gibson, friends, etc., etc., or some guy you ran into on the street, and want it included in the next newsletter, send it to me.  You can submit it using the feedback form Here, or Email me the information.  Include some pictures if you have some.  Get the word out, inform the masses...


The more news I have, the more often I will send these out...



If you don't see any pictures, Click Here





Brandon McCann

Class of 2010







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          Pictures on my Web Site are low res so they load in your browser faster but they are not good for printing.  So remember that any picture you like in any news letter or on the Web Site, you can have (in full resolution) for free.  All you have to do is Email me explaining which picture it is you want.  Let me know what type of internet connection you have, and any Email file size limits.  There is no limit to the number of pictures you can have.  Email me at;





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A Tribute to a Great Person


Anne Ashford - a Wife, a Mother and a Friend


          I said before that I don't like to use the newsletter to bring you sad news, but sometimes I just have to. Like the time our mother passed away, I had to dedicate the newsletter to her, a kind of "last word".


          A couple of months ago we lost a very dear friend.  Most of you did not know her but I wish you had met her because even though she was going through something so terrifying, she was bubbly and happy.  Anne Ashford passed away on February 12th after a decade long battle with breast cancer, she was only 53.  One of the reasons I am including Anne's story in the newsletter today is to bring to everyone's attention who reads this, the need for more donations for a cure to this devastating disease.


          Anne was the mother of one of Brandon's best friends and I played music with Chris Ashford, Anne's husband, a very good guitarist and friend.  Chris and Anne and the kids were involved in the Susan G. Komen - "Race for the Cure" and each year would raise a large amount of money for the cause.  Even though Anne has passed, Chris is still working hard towards a cure.  If you can give anything at all, please check out Chris' Web Site "Anne's Aces" and donate something in her name.  Click Here!


          Race for the Cure is scheduled for April 24th in Fort Worth.  Last year Anne and Chris raised over $9,000 and in 2008 they raised more than $11,000.  He says they have already raised $2,000 from the memorial fund that was setup in Anne's honor this year and I know he would like to beat both last year and 2008's totals, please find it in your heart to help!


This is for you and the kids, Chris!





A New Driver


          Time really flies, and it doesn't matter if you're having fun or not.  Just the other day, our son Brandon was just a little tyke.  At least it seems like a few days ago.  In reality, it was several years ago.  In just a few months Brandon will be graduating High School and a couple of weeks ago he got his driver's license for the first time.  He is starting to drive in a time where there are a lot of people on the road and many of them don't know how to drive.  When I was young and got my license for the first time, I was told to drive defensively.  Back then there weren't as many cars on the road.  Today is the time when driving defensively is the key term and really means what it says.  On a quick trip to the store I usually see 2 or 3 things that could cause an accident if done at the right moment; i.e., turning left in an "no left turn" lane, (that happens a lot here in Texas), and many other minor infractions that can cause an accident if done in front of someone who isn't ready for it.  One that happens several times a day is when there is an intersection with 2 left turn lanes, when the turn is complete, you are supposed to be in the correct lane, however often times, the person in the far left lane ends up in the middle or right lane at the end of the turn, forcing the person in the left turn lane to the right off the road.  We have one of these intersections on the way to the store, and i can say it happens at every change of the light.


          Brandon is a good driver.  He keeps his eyes on the road and watches for those drivers who don't respect others or the laws.  He has spent many hours on the road driving with his mother and myself.  He drives the truck some, but he prefers to drive the Beamer, especially to school.  He will get a job soon and then we will help him get his own car.


How fast they grow up!




Officer of the Year!

Cpl. McCann wins award


          Marisa was awarded by her peers, the award for "Officer of the Year" in Pantego Texas.  She received the award at a Pantego Town meeting in front of the Town Council members and the Mayor, and it was presented by the Chief of Police, Joel McKenney.  We went to an awards banquet a few weeks later, thinking she was only going to receive the award again in front of the department. She ended up receiving 2 additional awards that night, receiving the most awards in the department.


          Marisa is very humble and would prefer to just do her job and give the awards to someone else.  She hates getting in front of others, especially people she works with and be given an award for doing her job.  The manager over the Dispatchers told Marisa that seeing her up there getting an award is the best part because she knows how much Marisa hates it.


          The "Officer of the Year" award was decided by a vote of all department employees from the Chief on down.  It was based on professionalism, team work, and several other factors.  I was not surprised that she won that award because she is the type of person who thinks more of others than she does of herself.


          Of the other 2 awards she received at the banquet, one was for a Police Commendation for assisting in the capture of several criminals who broke into a drug store.  Marisa was the senior officer and took charge of the situation.  Her efforts allowed surrounding departments to capture the remaining culprits.  The other award was for Community Service for her organizational skills for organizing the National Night Out event which turned out to be a very successful event.  And she was given the responsibility with only about 6 weeks to get it done.  It normally takes about 4 months to put something like that together.  In fact she has started working on this years event, and it is not scheduled until October.


Way to go Marisa!  I'm proud of you.


Oh, she hates that...




Click The Picture below

Anne's Aces



Driving the Beamer

Award Night in Pantego Texas



  The Many Faces of a Computer Virus  





          I am always getting Emails stating that a new virus has been created, it is delivered by a post card and it will burn your hard drive's zero sector, and Microsoft has classified it as the worst virus of the decade.  It is actually kind of funny how much non-sense is in one of these Emails, like;


If you receive a mail called' POSTCARD,' even though sent to you by a friend, do not open it! Shut down your computer immediately. This is the worst virus announced by CNN.


I doubt very much that CNN announced the virus, and if it was announced by CNN, how would someone know that it is the worst one?  And why shut down your computer if you haven't clicked on anything?


"I checked with Norton Anti-Virus, and they are gearing up for this virus!"

And you called them on the phone and they told you this?  Can I get that number from you?  They never listen to me...


"I checked Snopes, and it is for real. Get this E-mail message sent around to your contacts ASAP."

I checked and and both of them said the same thing, the Email is a hoax.


The last Email I received even had this little insert;


"Dave's brother is a very advanced programmer who does computer work for a
living and has a high up status with Microsoft. He doesn't send these if they aren't real. If he says this is for real, it for sure is. Be aware."


          I don't know who Dave is or who his brother is, but if this did come from Dave's brother who has a high up status with Microsoft, (whatever that means), then it just proves that Dave's brother is no expert.  That comment was just added to enhance the fear factor and add some additional believability.  If you receive these warnings, even if they are from Dave's brother, and they say they have been verified on, which is a Web Site that looks at Emails like the one I am referring to here, just delete it, it does not contain useful information.  Don't forward it thinking you are saving someone's computer from a virus.


"It has been classified by Microsoft as the most destructive virus ever.  This virus was discovered by McAfee yesterday, and there is no repair yet for this kind of virus. This virus simply destroys the Zero Sector of the Hard Disc, where the vital information is kept."


          Just remember, viruses today seldom come in a file attachment.  It will be more likely a link.  Also, viruses don't destroy files anymore, they now look for files containing personal information and capture it, then upload to a Web Server somewhere.  They also try to make your computer a robot that becomes part of a large BotNet system, used to send spam and more virus Emails.  Also they are more scams than viruses these days, trying to get you to install some phony Anti-Virus program because the Web Site you landed on scanned your computer for you and found several viruses.  Hello?  No Web Site should be able to scan your computer without your knowledge, if it can, you don't have ANY protection.


You need protection from several different methods of infection these days;


Anti-Virus - No matter what you are told, a free Anti-Virus program is not as good as a paid one.  If it were, no one would pay for the protection.  Most viruses today are worm viruses, and they are known to change as they infect more and more computers, making them harder to detect by your Anti-Virus software.


Anti-Malware - Malware is usually installed when you install some free program, only download programs from legitimate Sites, and read carefully as you install them.


Anti Spyware - Spyware is like Malware but may not be as bad, spyware mostly monitors your Web activities, however some can actually monitor your key strokes capturing personal data like passwords.


Poisoned Web Sites - Some Web Sites have viruses that will attempt to install just by you visiting the page, you don't have to click on anything.


          Know who is sending you Emails and don't click on a link unless you know for sure the person who sent you the Email is aware what is at the end of the link.  Be Internet Safe, otherwise you will become part of a BotNet, and you will be sending virus Emails to everyone on the planet.  If you suspect you are part of a BotNet or you have a virus, go online and use a free scanner;


          Housecall by TREND Micro - Click Here


          McAfee free scan - Click Here


          Kaspersky free Scan - Click Here


          If you find that you cannot get to any of these sites, then most likely you are infected.  You should remove the computer from the Internet, your network and then either contact a computer technician or go online from another computer and download a bootable scanner.  You can download it to a CDR and then boot to it from the infected computer.


Don't become part of a BotNet!



Macro Virus



Worm Virus









BotNet Master



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          Sign someone up to receive this newsletter.  If you find a family member or friend is not on our mailing list and you know they would enjoy receiving it, sign them up.  Go Here to send a request.  Or if you are sick and tired of getting this newsletter, use the same form to cancel and remove your name from the list.


          Don't forget about my Downloads Page on the Web Site.  I will try to place links to important programs and utilities from time to time for you to download.  I know some of you still have dial-up access so I will try to make things smaller to download faster to your machine.


          I have added some links that I think some of you will enjoy, if you haven't checked them out before, check them out now.  Especially check out Google Earth.  If you haven't seen what it is, download it and install it, you can zoom in on anyplace on earth.  It also includes Google Sky, which shows the night sky and all of the stars.  You can see what the sky looks like from your house, right on your screen.  My Links Page...  I found out recently that it also has a flight simulator which is hidden like an "Easter egg" (a small program or movie hidden in a program or utility).


          Missed a past edition of the newsletter?  You can view past issues on our Web Site.  Some are actually printable, you'll need Adobe Reader to download and print them.  Go Here to view past issues of our newsletters.



Gary McCann



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