Dave Rhone and Michael Lam inducted Into Housing Hall of Honor


Rhone, Lam

Chuck Dennis led the ceremony, describing the accomplishments of both men.

Dave Rhone pioneered development of northern Wichita Falls with Expressway Village, Patriot Place, Rhone Village Shopping Center, and North Park Village. He also developed Canyon Trails and Trophy Park. Dennis noted that Dave Rhone said “Yes” when others said “No Way!” He was a housing industry risk taker.

Rhone and his six brothers were part of the “Greatest Generation.”  All six served n the armed forces during World War II. Rhone served in both the European and Pacific theaters and in both the infantry and the Army Air Corps.

At 26, he was elected County Clerk in Montague County — the youngest county clerk in Texas. In 1955 he entered the real estate business, working for Solon R. Featherston and then Robert Seabury. IN 1959, during the housing boom, Rhone sold 43 homes in ONE DAY!

The next year he started his own company which led to his successful career as a developer and home builder.

He also gave his time to his community. He served the North Texas Home Builders Association as a director and for two terms as president. He was a director of the BCI and for the Wichita County MHMR Association.  He was a commander for VFW Post 8789.

Rhone loved his country, his family, and his community. He helped everyone from veterans to crippled children. He was also a true salesman, always telling builders, city staff, legislators, and customers “You bet, it can be done!”

Michael Lam entered the real estate business after graduating from Midwestern State University and then earning a master’s of business degree from the University of North Texas. As a partner in Skyline Developers he developed Fountain Park, Greentree, Eagle Ridge, and the Kell and McNiel commercial corridor.

His approach to government actions that impacted housing was to balance it with sound, realistic economic reasons. He was instrumental in the progressive direction of Wichita Falls during the 1990s.

Lam served this community as a District 1 Councilor in 1989 and three terms as mayor from 1990 to 1996. He worked for establishing Allred Prison Unit, MPEC, and the smoking ban for most public buildings.

He served the housing industry as a developer and builder, on the city planning board, the North Texas Housing Finance Corporation, and the Wichita County Appraisal District. He also served multiple terms on the North Texas Home Builders Association board of directors and was president of NTHBA in 1975.

His business advice was sought out by the leaders in industry, government, and banking. He was a director of First Bank and First National Bank of Burkburnett.

Lam had a gift of using his wonderful smile and engaging laugh and humor to keep people talking and issues moving toward a productive solution. He was a leader not only in the housing industry, but also in Wichita Falls. The proof is in the enormous progress each made as he led the way.

Editor’s Note: To lead into the NTHBA’s Housing Hall of Honor presentation this story was presented by Chuck Dennis.

The ‘Butterfly Effect’

By Andy Andrews

In 1963, Edward Lorenz presented a doctoral thesis concerning the “Butterfly Effect” to New Your Academy of Sciences and was laughed out of the place. It was a crazy idea!

The Butterfly Effect said that a Butterfly could flap its wings on one side of the world and set molecules of air in motion — that could set molecules of air in motion — that could set molecules of air in motion that could EVENTUALLY create a hurricane on the other side of the planet.

The Butterfly Effect was nuts!  BUT it was interesting — because it was interesting it hung around in urban legend and movies and books until FINALLY physic professors in the mid-1990s proved that the butterfly effect was accurate, viable, and it worked every time.

And not just with butterflies either.  It worked with any form of MOVING MATTER — including people.  That gave it the status of a law.  Just like the law of Gravity.  This Butterfly Effect is known as THE LAW OF SENSITIVE DEPENDENCE UPON INITIAL CONDITIONS & IT WORKS EVERYTIME.

Everything you do matters.  Every MOVE you make every ACTION you take matters not just for you or your family or your hometown.  EVERYTHING YOU DO MATTERS TO ALL OF US AND FOREVER.

ABC NEWS did a segment for years — Person Of The Week & Peter Jennings one week featured NORMAN BORLAUG.  NORMAN BORLAUG was featured for his work on HYBRIDIZATION OF CORN AND WHEAT FOR ARID CLIMATES.

His work they had calculated that from the plains of Siberia, Asia, Dust Bowl Of Western Africa, Our Own Desert Southwest, Europe, South and Central America — that his work Hybridization Of Corn And Wheat Had Saved From Famine The Lives Of Over two Billion People.

He saved two billion lives!  And for that he was PERSON OF THE WEEK!

BUT IT WASN’T NORMAN BORLAUG THAT DID IT.  It was a guy named HENRY WALLACE.  Henry Wallace was V.P. of the U.S. under Roosevelt.  I know a lot of you are thinking that’s not right – Truman was V.P. — That’s right but remember Roosevelt served four terms.  He had three different vice presidents and the MIDDLE ONE was the Former Secretary of Agriculture — a man named Henry Wallace.

Who, while he was V.P. used the power of that office, to create a station in MEXICO whose sole purpose was HYBRIDISATION OF CORN AND WHEAT FOR ARID CLIMATES — AND he hired a young man named NORMAN BORLAUG to run it.

AND it was NORMAN BORLAUG who won the Nobel Prize and it was NORMAN BORLAUG that got PERSON OF THE WEEK.  BUT — when you think about it — it was Henry Wallace who saved the two billion people — wasn’t it really?

UNLESS…it was George Washington Carver.  You remember Carver don’t you — the PEANUT STUFF.  Carver when he was 19 YEARS OLD & A STUDENT at Iowa State Univ – had A DAIRY SCIENCES PROFESSOR who on Saturday and Sunday would allow his 6 year old little boy to go on Botanical Expeditions w/this brilliant student.

AND it was George Washington Carver that took this six year-old boy AND POINTED HIS LIFE IN A DIRECTION.  It was Carver that took this 6 year old Henry Wallace and PUT A VISION IN HIS LIFE ABOUT PLANTS AND WHAT THEY COULD DO FOR HUMANITY.

It is amazing to think about Carver flapping those Butterfly Wings with the PEANUT STUFF.  266 THINGS that he developed from the peanut that we still have today.  He FLAPPED his wings with the SWEET POTATO — 88 THINGS he developed that we use today.

And while no one was looking, he just Flapped his Butterfly Wings a couple of times with a 6 Year Old Boy AND just happens to save the lives of 2 BILLION PEOPLE AND COUNTING!  THINK ABOUT IT — maybe it was Carver that should have Been Person Of The Week.

UNLESS…it would have been the farmer from Diamond, MO.  A man Named MOSES had a wife named SUSAN.  They lived in a SLAVE STATE BUT didn’t believe in slavery.  Well that was a problem for these PSYCHOPATHS LIKE QUANTRILL’S RAIDERS.  Who came through farms and villages at night destroying and killing. And one JANUARY NIGHT QUANTRILL’S RAIDERS came through Moses and Susan’s farm.  BURNED THE BARN, shot several people and they drug off a lady named Mary Washington who refused to let go of her infant boy named George.

NOW Mary Washington was Susan’s best friend.  And because of that relationship Moses sent word out through neighbors trying to create a meeting with QUANTRILL’S RAIDERS and two days later he had it.

He took a BLACK HORSE in the evening time and went several hours north to a crossroads in Kansas to be there at the appointed time.  Meeting 4 of QUANTRILL’S RAIDERS who showed up on horseback carrying TORCHES with FLOUR SACKS over their heads with the eye holes cut out.

AND there Moses traded the LAST HORSE HE HAD LEFT ON HIS FARM for what they threw him in a BURLAP BAG.  And he caught it and they rode off.  He went to the GROUND, and there in the DARKNESS AND COLD HE PULLED out of that burlap bag a COLD NAKED ALMOST DEAD INFANT BOY.

He JERKED OPEN his jacket and his shirt and he put the baby against his skin and covered him up.  AND HE WALKED THAT BABY OUT — back to Missouri.  TALKING to him, PROMISING him that he would RAISE HIM AS HIS OWN.

Telling him he would EDUCATE HIM TO HONOR HIS MOTHER WHO THEY KNEW WAS ALREADY DEAD.  And that was the night that he told that baby that he would GIVE HIM HIS NAME.  AND THAT IS HOW MOSES AND SUSAN CARVER CAME TO RAISE THAT BABY BOY GEORGE WASHINGTON CARVER.  So when you think about it maybe it was the farmer from Diamond, MO that saved the two billion people.

UNLESS…We could do this all day.  How far back could we go?

Really — how far back could we go to show WHOSE MOVE AT WHAT POINT IN TIME OF HISTORY to show who it was that really saved the 2 billion people – A number that continues to increase while we sit here.

And how far FORWARD COULD WE GO IN YOUR LIFE.  How far forward could we go to show the lives that you will touch.  THERE ARE GENERATIONS YET UNBORN whose very lives will be shaped and influenced by what you do tomorrow and the next day and the next.

Because everything we do matters — We today are here to honor two from this industry who flapped their Butterfly Wings, that continues to have a Butterfly Effect today and beyond.

Editor’s Note: This story was presented by Chuck Dennis at the NTHBA’s Housing Hall of Honor presentation.