Longtime neighbor offers fond remembrance of Rosa Hereford

To the Editor:

The community lost a dear friend and leader recently and much has been said about her accomplishments and well-deserved accolades.

Rosa and James Hereford were our neighbors for the last 37 years and I’ve had a unique perspective into this special lady.

Rosa and James were the first to greet and welcome us into the neighborhood when we moved into our first home across the street from them in December of 1982. They were both educators and my wife and I were both alumni of Killeen High, so I believe they were pleased to see the products of the local ISD as their new neighbors.

It wasn’t long after we moved into our new house that the referendum for the Special Events Center came up and Rosa was an ardent supporter. Being a young new taxpayer, I did not appreciate the value of the proposed center and was against it. We had our opposing signs up during that period and despite our differences, we remained friends.

I can say years later that I’m glad my side lost that vote. The only time Rosa got a little “miffed” with me was when I put up a sign for a longtime friend who just happened to be running against her for a city council seat. After she shared her “displeasure” with my sign, I thought it would be better to keep peace in the neighborhood and removed the sign.

I congratulated her on her victory and wished her the best through her years on the city council. I asked her once or twice when she was going to run for mayor and she always shrugged me off.

We continued to remain friends through the years despite our differing political viewpoints and the opposing signs in our front yards. I must confess that I was secretly thrilled in recent years when her younger brother, Dennis, expressed his support in the “other political party.”

I really wished I could have been the fly on the wall when those discussions erupted in their household.

Rosa had a heart for her community, her city, her schools and her friends and loved ones and will be sorely missed.

One particular memory stands out for my wife and I. We made a decision in the mid-90s to home school our children and approached Rosa and James with our decision and wanted their feedback.

Even though many had scoffed at the idea during that time, we were stunned and pleasantly surprised when they both heartily endorsed the idea. They both rejoiced when our daughters graduated with their degrees from Texas A&M and Mary Hardin-Baylor and later graduate school.

After our children blessed us with grandchildren, Rosa was always quick to provide our new blessings with gifts.

Rosa will be missed by many but not forgotten because of the many lives she touched.You can count our family as one of the families who were blessed to know her.

God bless her.

Ron and Noemi Harris



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