Beloved Jurist, Ardent Baylor Fan Judge Bill Logue Dies

Oct. 13, 2005

by Julie Carlson

Beloved Baylor alumnus and ardent Baylor sports fan Judge Bill Logue passed away Wednesday night at Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center in Waco. He was 81. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 15, at Seventh and James Baptist Church.

"Judge Logue was everything that a judge should be. He was honest, he was fair, and he was wise," said Baylor Interim President William D. Underwood. Through the years he touched the lives of thousands of Central Texans. He was as loyal a friend as Baylor University has ever had. He will be greatly missed by all of us."

Logue was born in 1924, the youngest of six surviving children, and graduated from Waco High School. He entered Baylor shortly before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. He enlisted in a military reserve unit and was later captured by German forces while fighting in the Battle of the Bulge in 1944. He spent five months as a prisoner of war.

On completion of his military service, he returned to Waco and Baylor, earning his bachelor's degree in 1947 and his law degree in 1949.

He began his legal career as a justice of the peace and served as a county judge before being elected 19th District Court Judge in 1960, a post he held for nearly four decades. When he retired in 1999, he was the longest-tenured state judge in Texas, and in fact, since 1954 had never had an opponent in any race for a judgeship.

"Judge Logue, and his life, are describable only in superlatives. His mark and impact as a husband to Gloria (of 54 years), as a father, as a judge, as a friend of youth and families, and as a leader in our community and in the state judiciary is inestimable and without peer," said Bradley J. B. Toben, dean of Baylor's School of Law.

"He leaves a great void and an indelible mark not only in these roles, but so very importantly, as a person of such deep compassion and understanding, and uncanny wisdom and insight. Indeed, a man of such deep and abiding faith and of such a loving spirit has seldom come our way to bless us all as did Judge Logue."

Throughout the years, Logue was the recipient of many honors. McLennan County's Juvenile Justice Facility was named in his honor in 1992, and in 1999, he was named Distinguished Alumnus of Waco Public Schools. He was named Baylor Lawyer of the Year in 1993. In 1996, the Logue family was named First Family of Baylor, and in 1997, Logue received the Price Daniel Distinguished Service Award from the Baylor Alumni Association. He was named a Distinguished Baylor Alumni in 1994.

"Judge Bill Logue was not only a personal and family friend, but also a longtime friend of the Baylor Alumni Association, passionately supporting the activities and mission of the association and setting a great example of Baylor pride in the community," said David Malone, president of the association for 2005.

"In fact, Judge Logue gave the alumni association staff so many wonderful treats over the years that the staff affectionately named the lunch room at the Hughes-Dillard Alumni Center after him. We recognized Judge Logue with the Distinguished Alumni Award in 1994. There hasn't been a more deserving recipient of this award over the years. His professional achievements as the county's juvenile and family court judge brought great honor to the Baylor family. Judge Logue was deeply loved by all that knew him, and his passing leaves a real void in the Baylor family."

But through all his career, Logue might be best remembered as one of the most passionate fans of Baylor athletics. Football, basketball, baseball, he loved them all.

Former Baylor coach Grant Teaff, now director of the American Football Coaches Association, recalled the day in 1989 when Logue stood next to him on the sidelines in Austin as Baylor ended a 38-year streak of losing to Texas in Austin.

Logue had suffered an attack of esophageal cancer that year and had undergone chemotherapy and a nine-hour surgery in Houston. Teaff, predicting his friend would beat the cancer, had asked him to serve as assistant coach at the Baylor game against Texas. Baylor won that game 50-7.

"There was not a happier person in that stadium than the man who made a difference in the Texas game - Bill Logue," Teaff wrote in a tribute to Logue that appeared in "Waco Today" magazine in January 1999. "I love Bill's positive attitude, his sincere support for his school, for being the great husband and father that he is, and of course, for being an inspiration to all who know him.."

In the spring of 2005, the Judge suffered massive heart problems that kept him in Houston through the Lady Bears basketball team's capture of the national title. Two broken hips kept him from baseball games. But, he was well enough to attend the Meet the Bears fish fry in August and in the week before his death, expressed his eagerness for basketball season to begin.

"There probably has never been or will ever be a bigger fan of Baylor sports than Bill Logue. He was a great man, a great asset to this city and this state, and I have been blessed to be able to call him friend," said Dave Campbell, retired sports editor of the Waco Tribune-Herald and editor of the "Baylor Bear Insider."

Logue was active in the Waco community for many years, serving as past president of the Waco Rotary Club, past director of the McLennan County Bar Association, past vice-president of the Baylor Alumni Association, director of the Baylor Bear Club, past trustee of Buckner Baptist Benevolences, past trustee of Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center and past community adviser for the Junior League of Waco. He was a member of Fidelis Lodge No. 1127, AF & AM, Waco Consistory of Scottish Rite and Karem Shrine Temple. In 2004, he was named Humanitarian of the Year by the Greater Waco Interfaith Conference. He was a member and trustee of Seventh and James Baptist Church and served as past chairman of the board of deacons.

He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Gloria, and his four daughters: Linda and husband Al Picazo; Sharon and husband Rex Boyland; Katherine and husband Jack Hill; and Margaret and husband Mark Sudderth. He also had seven grandchildren: Mark, Claire and Laura Boyland; Bert and Tom Picazo; and Anna and Martha Sudderth.

Memorials can be made to the Seventh and James Baptist Church Building Fund, Hillcrest Baptist Hospital or a charity of choice.

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