Shatter the Silence: Martin House’s Bags, Boots and Bingo


    Local celebrity fashion models smashed the runway with moves that have never been seen before. The ladies who attended the event, “Bags, Boots and Bingo” were amazed to see an all male runway models giving it their best as they strutted and showed-off haute fashion handbags and boots. Kevin Brownlee, a Longview Police Department detective with Cyber Crimes, was the first one to step into the runway. He modeled a burgundy Carrera Italian handbag worth $700 donated by infinitieplus magazine. Brownlee was enthusiastic about his modeling.

    “This is a worthy cause that will help bring awareness and raise needed funds for Martin House and the children they serve,” he said. He described the board as “very exciting and active; the executive director Roxanne Stevenson is incredibly engaged and taking the organization to the next level.”

    Furthermore, Sam Smead of Sam Smead Photocreative did justice to Colorful Consuella, “Live an endless summer” bag donated by Judge Donna Blalock. To boot, Reid McCain, Gregg County assistant district attorney, modeled tan and cream Corral boots donated by Cavendars valued at $180.

    Dr. Chris Kirby of Vaca and Kirby Dental Group took on the miniature black signature straw Kate Spade Little Number worth $248 and Jeff Ramsey of Ramsey Realty stole the show with Ultra-Marine patent leather COACH tote valued at $328.

    In addition, Ryan Howard, a Longview Firefighter and former calendar boy, brought sunshine and style with a Sunflower large COACH valued at $348. Into the bargain, Taylor Hemness, KLTV news anchor, certainly sashayed black and chocolate vintage Corral boots valued at $270.

    There is more. Doug Morgan with Gregg County Sherriff ’s department investigator flaunted a Michael Kors vanilla large Cynthia satchel retailed at $348. In fact, David Thacker with Longview Firefighter blazed the runway with a brown Hamilton tote by Michael Kors valued at $358. Besides, Dr. David Vaca of Vaca and Kirby Dental Group, and his dog AXE, were an extraordinary two-some. They paraded an aqua Dooney and Burke satchel valued at $368.

    What’s more, the event drew elected officials. Yes, there was an elected official in the runway – City Councilman District 5, Richard Manley. He swept the audience with a Marc Jacobs Italian fuchsia leather handbag valued at $438. Also, there were gifts certificates and other prizes not listed in this story. Jack Barkley of Barkley Creative emceed the event The Martin House Children Advocacy is grateful to all the sponsors, donors, models and ladies who made the event a fabulous success.

    Just in case anyone missed this year, do not worry, it will become an annual mainstay. According to Roxanne Stevenson, Martin House gives children a voice. People often ask her “how can you listen to such horrid stories?” and her answer is, “I love my work and I love the children.” She is thankful and grateful for all the support given to The Martin House Child Advocacy Center. Moreover, she is encouraging people to be the voice for a child and shatter the silence that surrounds child abuse. Learn the signs and symptoms of abuse and what can be done to prevent it. Also, teach children to tell if someone makes them feel uncomfortable and asks them to keep it a secret. Better

    yet, report suspected abuse or neglect at 1-800-252- 5400 or go to , or call the local law enforcement agency or 911.

    Stevenson stated their mission: “The mission of The Martin House Children’s Advocacy Center is to ensure that every child who is suffering from abuse and comes to our Center has an opportunity to be heard, feel protected, and receive services that are vital to his or her continued safety and future wellbeing.”

    For more information on The Martin House Child Advocacy Center, call 903.807.0189 or visit

    Story and photos by Joycelyne Fadojutimi


    [nggallery id=12]