Monday, July 23, 2012

A Courthouse for Gov. Mechem?

I just got back from a news conference at the Toney Anaya Building, which is right near the Garrey Carruthers Building, but I wanted to let you know about a building that might get named for another former New Mexico governor.

The U.S. House today passed legislation to name a federal courthouse in  Las Cruces after former Gov. Edwin Mechem, who also served as a federal judge and briefly as U.S. senator.

Here's the news release from Congressman Steve Pearce:

Today, the House of Representatives passed legislation introduced by Congressman Pearce to name the federal courthouse located at 100 North Church Street in Las Cruces, New Mexico, as the Edwin L. Mechem United States Courthouse.

“I am very pleased that this legislation honoring the legacy of one of New Mexico’s most distinguished public servants has cleared this important hurdle,” said Pearce. “I hope the Senate will act quickly to ensure Governor Mechem receives the recognition he has long deserved.”

“This year marks the 100th anniversary of New Mexico’s statehood and July 2, 2012, would be Governor Mechem 100th birthday. Naming the courthouse the Edwin L. Mechem United States Courthouse during 2012 is an honor befitting his life of service to New Mexico and New Mexico’s long history of dedicated public servants,” added Pearce.

Josephine Mechem, the wife of the late Governor, United States Senator and Judge, issued the following statement:

“I would like to thank Congressman Pearce for his leadership on this legislation honoring my husband’s service to our state and country. Our family appreciates Edwin’s legacy being recognized. I hope the Senate will pass this soon as it would be fitting to have this honor bestowed on my husband during New Mexico’s Centennial celebration.”

Governor Mechem was a community leader who dedicated his life to public service. He was a four term Governor of New Mexico and the first born in New Mexico post-statehood. Governor Mechem also served New Mexico in the New Mexico House of Representatives, in the United States Senate and as United States District Judge for the District of New Mexico. He presided as a United States District Judge from 1970 until his death in 2002.

Here's a story in the Alamogordo Daily News by Milan Simonich talking about Mechem, the courthouse and the Cricket Coogler murder case.

But even funnier is this blog that has a version of Simonich's story, but for some reason has a picture of Laura Palmer of Twin Peaks instead of Cricket Coogler. (I'm pretty sure Milan had nothing to do with that.)