Tana Brooke Simpson, BA ’05, of Blanket, TX, passed away on Friday, May 10 at Brownwood Regional Medical Center surrounded by family and many friends. She was 36. Tana was born on July 1, 1982; her parents are Terrie Tabor and Steve Simpson. She graduated in the top ten of her class at Brownwood High School in May of 2000. While in high school she was an honor student, president of her senior class, and active in Drama. She was friendly with all of her classmates and teachers and wore a smile and had fun most of the time. She found her niche in drama class and bonded with her classmate in those classes. When Tana was 10, she was diagnosed with a very debilitating disease, Friedreich’s Ataxia, which was progressive and seemed to get worse very quickly. When she was in 8th Grade she had to go into a wheelchair. After Christmas break she did not want to go back to school because of the wheelchair, but friends from school came to her house and begged her to please come back to school. They quickly made “Tana’s Push Book” and wrote their names in it so she would be sure to have someone push her from class to class. She made many close friends. In the fall of 2000 she entered Baylor University in Waco, along with several of her friends knowing that she would have a difficult time. In spite of all the hardships, she graduated from Baylor in August, 2005, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business. Following graduation she went to Europe with other business students and spent a semester studying. That trip was one of the highlights of her life. Tana came back to live in Blanket so she would have her mom and family to care for her. But she was bored and wanted to be on her own so she moved to Austin. In Austin she had lots of fun going to South by Southwest and rubbing noses with stars who came to support their movies. When her heart doctor told her that she was in congestive heart failure and should not try to stay by herself, she returned to Blanket. She lived there until she left this life on Friday, May 10. Tana is survived by her mother Terrie; her father Steve and wife Melissa; her sister Taylor and fiancé Johscott Dyer; and her brother Austin and wife Shaunna Kay. She is also survived by her maternal grandmother, Oneale Tabor; paternal grandmother, Patricia Janice Simpson and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins whom she loved dearly. She was preceded in death by her maternal grandfather, Waymon Joe Tabor; paternal grandfather, Don Simpson; stepfather, Shannon Brincefield; and uncle Joe Randall Tabor. Unselfishly, Tana’s wish was to donate her body to the Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Foundation so that doctors could further study her disease to hopefully help others. The family wants to honor that wish by requesting memorials be made to the same in lieu of flowers.
William Grant Carroll, ’09, was born on August 24, 1986 to parents’ Cynthia Celeste Carroll and Alvin “Buck” Gene Wade. He passed away on May 30, 2019 at his home in Italy, Texas. Grant attended and graduated school from Italy High School in 2004. Then was accepted and attended Baylor University in Waco, Texas. He joined the Armed Forces in 2006 as a field artillery specialist. He was a Veteran of the Gulf War era and served one tour in Iraq. In 2010, Grant was honorably, medically discharged following that deployment. For his bravery and courageous service to our country Grant was awarded several commendations and medals for his heroism. He then continued his service at Fort Polk. He will be deeply missed and forever remembered by his family and friends. Grant is survived by his wife, Amber Dawn (Birkert) Carroll; daughter, Elaynna Rose Carroll; two step-sons, Waco and Nash Johnson; parents, Cynthia Celeste Carroll and Alvin “Buck” Gene Wade; brother, Dalton Jake Carroll and wife Tiffany; grandparents, Vivian Brooks, Ron and Janis Pekarski and numerous other family, friends and loved ones. He is preceded in death by his grandparents, Candler Brooks, Betty Pekarski and Bobby and Audrey Wade. Visitation for family and friends will be held from 6-8 PM, Tuesday, June 4, 2019 in the chapel of the Boze-Mitchell-McKibbin Funeral Home in Waxahachie, Texas. Funeral services are scheduled for 2 PM, Wednesday, June 5, 2019 at Boze-Mitchell-McKibbin Funeral Home in Waxahachie, Texas. Interment will be at 9 AM on Thursday, June 6, 2019 at the Dallas-Fort Worth National Cemetery. In Lieu of flowers the family would like donations to be made to the funeral home to help with services by contacting Boze-Mitchell-McKibbin Funeral Home 972-937-2211.
Ryan Christopher Kuehl, BA ’09, passed away unexpectedly on July 2nd in Austin, TX; he was 33. Ryan was born in San Antonio, TX and attended TMI Episcopal School in San Antonio. He attended Baylor University, where he studied abroad in the Netherlands and Spain before graduating with a Professional Writing degree. Later, Ryan received his MBA in Digital Media Management from St. Edward’s University, which enabled him to pursue his creative passions. Early in his career, Ryan worked as the Market Research Specialist for Texas Monthly Magazine and later as the Customer Portal Project Manager for Dun and Bradstreet Co. Over the past three years, Ryan found his true calling working as a freelance production contractor, working in production of a variety of TV commercials, series, and short films, finding fulfillment in the creative and technical skills commonly found in this field. Additionally, Ryan assisted others by channeling his talents into independent side projects in his free time. He poured his heart and soul into every aspect of his craft, from writing and production to the camera work required to bring these projects to fruition. While these achievements are defining in their own right, they do not fully encompass the man he was. What defined Ryan’s spirit most was his love for learning, his friends & family, and the outdoors. Ryan was an adventurous daredevil that embraced the outdoors with passion. When he wasn’t mountain biking, rock climbing, or hiking with friends and family, he was planning his next cross-country camping trip to locales such a Big Bend National Park, the Moab Desert and Yosemite. Ryan could often be seen traveling or playing disc golf with his one-eyed cocker spaniel companion, Bana, whom he rescued as a puppy. He was an excellent tennis player and loved to play in family competitions and with friends. Ryan resided in Austin and is survived by his parents, Mark and Libby Kuehl of Horseshoe Bay, TX, his sister, Katie Kuehl Rooney of Dallas, TX and many other family members and close friends with whom he remained close from every stage of his life. His untimely passing will never change the way he lived. On Saturday, July 13th the family would like to invite Ryan's friends to attend a casual, outdoor Memorial Service in his honor at 9:30 AM at UMLAUF Sculpture Garden in Zilker Park, located at 605 Azie Morton Rd., Austin TX, 78704. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made in Ryan’s name to Austin Pets Alive!, the animal shelter from which he adopted Bana, Austin Ridge Riders, an organization that helps develop and maintain bike trails, the US National Park Service, or just go outside and enjoy the day.
Braylon Bartlett, ’17, of Waco passed away July 5. He was born May 22, 1994 in Waco to Twila Prowell and Bill Bartlett. Throughout his life he achieved and accomplished many things. He graduated from Midway High School in 2012 and attended Baylor University on a Presidential Academic Scholarship. Braylon was a brilliant person and succeeded at everything he put his mind and heart into. Braylon was a prolific writer and poured his heart out in his poetry. People also described him as funny, adventurous, dedicated, charismatic, and a hard-working human being. He was preceded in death by his grandmother, Mary Stafford; and mother, Twila Prowell. Survivors include his father, Bill Bartlett and wife, Michelle of Valley Mills; brothers, Brannon Bartlett and wife, Kelly of Cheyenne WY, Ryan Robertson of Beaumont and Tyler Hudgens of Valley Mills; sisters, Chelsey Brinson and husband, Dustin of Caldwell and Kaycee Reeves of Valley Mills; and grandparents, Dennis Bartlett, Rhonda Bartlett both of Chandler, Dianna King of Caldwell and Jenell Hudgens of Valley Mills. He is also survived by nieces and nephews, Kaydence, Brenson, Kaiden, Maddison and Ethan; and numerous aunts, uncles, family and friends.