Faculty, Friends and Family
Phyllis Bowles of Dallas died Oct. 1, 2019. She was born on July 19, 1931 in Willisville, Illinois to Morris and Helen Uhles. Following graduation from high school, she attended Barnes School of Nursing in St. Louis, Missouri. While attending a social at Westview Baptist Church in Belleville, Illinois, she met the love of her life, Bruce Bowles, a U.S. Air Force airman stationed at Scott Air Force Base. They married November 14, 1952 and enjoyed a honeymoon on a three-day pass. She worked as a registered nurse in both pediatrics and private practice while Bruce was on military assignments in Arizona and Illinois. In 1959, they moved to Texas for Bruce to complete a Finance degree at Baylor University and to begin a career in banking and finance. As a loving mother to Cindy and Jeff and a supportive wife to Bruce, she actively engaged in their many diverse activities, especially in her love of Baylor as an alumna by choice. Wherever the family called home, Phyllis filled it with love – through daily family meals, home-sewn gifts, countless cards and affirming words. As examples to all, Phyllis and Bruce always placed deep roots in their faith, church home, community, and friends. Phyllis’ life was one of unfailing love for her family, and commitment and faith in Christ who called her home to heaven after a brief illness. The family will receive visitors at Restland Funeral Home on Thursday evening, October 3, from 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. A memorial service will be held at 2:00 p.m. Friday, October 4, at Gaston Oaks Baptist Church, 8515 Greenville Ave in Dallas, Rev. Gary Anthony presiding. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to the Texas Health Resources Foundation or to a charity of your choosing in her honor. Phyllis was preceded in death by her beloved husband of 65 years, Bruce, and by her parents, Morris and Helen Uhles. She is survived by her daughter Cindy Emory, son and daughter-in-law Jeff and Dawn Bowles; grandchildren Brad and Meag Bowles, Courtney and Jared Milligan, and Andrew and Braden Bowles; great grandchildren, Nora and Emma Bowles, and Madelyn Milligan. She is also survived by her sister, Jane and Don Tucker and their daughters Stacy Tucker, and Kathryn and Nick Brill, and her brother, Morris Uhles. Phyllis leaves a legacy of abiding and sacrificial love to her family and friends. The family expresses great appreciation to her caregivers and medical staff at Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas and Seasons Hospice & Palliative Care for their attentive and loving care to Mom in her last days.
Donnie Audrey Kite Cooper of Waco, TX, six days shy of 102, passed peacefully in her sleep into the arms of Jesus early Saturday, October 19, 2019. She will be buried alongside her husband in Oakwood Cemetery in a family ceremony on November 2. A celebration of her life will be held in the Chapel of First Baptist Church Waco on November 2 at 11 a.m. with Pastors Matt Snowden and Randall Perry officiating. Donnie was born on October 25, 1917 in Harmon County near Hollis, OK to Cora Edes and Alvin A. Kite. The oldest of eight children, she graduated from Westview Consolidated High School in 1935. Donnie was very active in the local 4-H Club where competition and teamwork developed the Head, Heart, Hands, & Health. She said it would be hard to overstate the significant role this organization played in her life. It was there that she competed in vocal music, dramatic reading, art, & sewing and even attended the State 4H Roundup in Stillwater, and the national convention in Chicago. When she was 13, an itinerate pastor came to speak at her church, and in an emotional response to the invitation, she accepted Jesus Christ as her Lord. She was baptized later in the First Baptist Church of Hollis. This decision shaped her life and her family forever. Donnie graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Oklahoma A&M (now OK. St. Univ.) in May 1941 with a B.S. degree in Home Economics. As a student, she was active in the Baptist Student Union and it was there that she met and fell in love with Victor K. Cooper, from Hobart, OK. They were married on October 4, 1942, two weeks after Victor was drafted into the U.S. Army. He was later deployed to France & Germany during WW II. Upon his return from the war in 1945, Victor earned a Master’s Degree in Religious Education from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Ft. Worth. Over the next 30 years, Donnie & Victor lived in Springfield, MO, Miami, OK, Waco, Austin, and Dallas where he served as Minister of Education in various churches. Donnie was his faithful and dedicated partner. A talented artist, she enjoyed presenting “chalk talks” where she would tell a Bible story and illustrate it with colorful chalk drawings. During these years her 4 children were born; Marilyn, Randy, Kenny and Sarah. Upon retirement, they returned to Waco where they worked in the library at First Baptist Church documenting the church’s historic relationship with Baylor University and the city of Waco. Donnie’s beautiful handwriting was on display in the notes she wrote to contributors. In 1999, Donnie and Victor were honored by First Baptist as Senior Adult Couple of the Year. Family, art, and creativity were Donnie’s passions. She shared her talents with her church family and passed on her artistic flair to her children while always providing healthy meals for them. She blossomed as a member of the Central Texas Watercolor Society, and her family is grateful for the legacy of her paintings. They serve as reminders that she loved the beauty she observed in nature. Donnie was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Victor, in 2013; son, Randall (Randy); daughter-in-law, Carla Francis Cooper; and five brothers, Edes, Hardy, Kelsey, Garland and Dale Kite. Survivors include three children and spouses, Marilyn and husband, Roland Eichelberger of Waco; Sarah and husband Ray Campbell of Arlington; and son, Ken Cooper and wife, Debbie of Waco; 13 grandchildren and 20 great grandchildren; two sisters, Oneta Smith of Grand Junction, CO and Gale Wright of Claremont, CA; sisters-in-law, Peggy Kite and Hollis, Oklahoma and Floydene Kite of Borger, TX and a large extended family. Pallbearers are Donnie’s seven grandsons; Jason, Weston, Cameron, and Collin Cooper; Ben, Logan and Cullen Reavis. We are all thankful to have shared life with Donnie. She had a lively sense of humor and always greeted friends and family with a smile and an encouraging word. She was the definition of grace, class, and kindness, and she lived her faith in word and deed. Her family is grateful to Providence Place, the staff and residents of St. Elizabeth’s Assisted Living and St. Catherine nursing center for their care. Memorials may be made to First Baptist Church Waco Foundation, 500 Webster, Waco, Texas 76706.
Geneva Gamble, age 92, of Waco passed away Friday, October 11, 2019. Services will be 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, October 15, 2019 at First Presbyterian Church, 1100 Austin Avenue, Waco, Texas. A visitation will be 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, October 15, at the church. Geneva was a graduate of Milwaukee County School of Nursing, Class of 1952. On April 4, 1953 she married Dr. Charles Edward Gamble and they eventually moved to Waco where they raised three children, Jane Ellen, Mary Alice, and Charles E. Gamble, II. Geneva was active in the Waco community. As her children were growing up, she was on the St. Paul School Board, Waco PTA, Waco Safety Council, Family Counseling and Children’s Services, St. Louis Mother’s Club and the Reicher Catholic High School Parent Teacher’s Organization. She was a devoted member of First Presbyterian Church, Waco, Texas. She and Charles were Senior High School sponsors in the 1960’s and chaperoned a Mission trip to Mexico. Geneva taught Sunday School, was President of The Women of the Church, and was chair of the Pulpit Nominating Committee. She was also active in The Guild and Women’s Bible Circle. Geneva served as President of the McLennan County Medical Auxiliary, Texas Medical Association Auxiliary Northern Regional Vice President, President of Waco Planned Parenthood, Executive Vice President of Waco Society for Historic Preservation, Junior League Charity Ball Chair, Junior League Corresponding Secretary, Founding Director, and Waco Cotton Palace Pageant. She was also President of Central Texas Rehabilitation Center for Children and Adults, President of the Thursday Study Club, President of Waco Women’s Symphony Council, Cotton Palace Reception Committee Chair, Pageant Program Committee Chair, and Pageant Production Committee Chair. Geneva (MeMaw) had three granddaughters who adored her. Alice, Anna, and Meagan loved to hear stories about MeMaw’s childhood in Wisconsin and about her travels around the world with her soulmate, Charles. Favorite stories she shared were about her time working as a Public Health Nurse in Wisconsin, her trips to Russia and East Asia, and the infamous snake in the pool fiasco. Geneva was preceded in death by her parents, Iva Schoonover Waldsmith and Buford Waldsmith, her brothers Gerald, Arnold, and Marvin Waldsmith, and her daughter, Jane Ellen Bower. Geneva is survived by her husband of 66 years, Dr. Charles Edward Gamble; daughter, Mary Alice Lyman; and son, Charles E. Gamble, II. She is also survived by granddaughters, Alice Lane Lyman, Anna Elizabeth Ousley, and Meagan Rozette Bower. Honorary pallbearers are Gloria Young, Zoe Ann Sheehy, Betty Slade, Betty Porter, and Pat Nielsen.
Evelyn Mae Gor of Longview, TX, died Sept. 11, 2019. Evelyn Mae Gor passed away peacefully in the comfort of her home on September 11, 2019, after a valiant 15-year battle with cancer. She fought the good fight and is now resting in the arms of our Lord and Savior. Evelyn was born on January 7, 1950, in Houston, Texas. Growing up among a large family, she often helped look after her younger siblings and worked at the family grocery store. She graduated from Jesse H. Jones High School and continued her education at University of Houston. It was during those years that she met the love of her life, Henry Gor, and they married on July 30, 1972 at Willow Meadow Baptist Church in Houston. Evelyn enjoyed sharing her passion of learning and her patience and love for children as an elementary school teacher in HISD and then in Galveston ISD at Parker Elementary School. After the birth of their two sons, Evelyn and Henry then moved to Longview in 1979 and have been involved in the community ever since. With a servant’s heart, Evelyn held many PTA leadership positions throughout her children’s schooling and was also a Sunday school teacher for several years at First Baptist Church of Longview. She was an active Board member of Because I Care and of The Junior League of Longview, and she served on the Women’s Advisory Board of Longview Regional Hospital, as well as on the Parent Advisory Board of LeTourneau University. It was her desire to find meaningful ways to use her time, talent and resources to serve others. In 2008, Evelyn was honored to be selected and recognized as one of the first Stars Over Longview. But her community involvement didn’t stop there. Those who have been blessed to know Evelyn know she embraced time with family and friends and she loved celebrating momentous occasions with them. Her life revolved around her faith, family and friendships. Her thoughtful disposition and nurturing nature lent itself naturally to opening up her home and hosting numerous wedding showers, baby showers and parties over the years. She will be remembered for her generosity, her kindness, her hospitality and her compassion. To her family, she leaves a legacy of love, of leadership, of strength and of grace. She is survived by her husband, Dr. Henry Gor of Longview; son and daughter-in-law, Trevor and Miranda Gor of Pearland, TX; son and daughter-in-law, Dr. Troy and Kirby Gor of Brenham, TX; and daughter and son-in-law, Kimberly and John Rice of Kingwood, TX. She is also survived by her six grandchildren (and one on the way) who love her dearly and whom she deeply adored, Marian Gor, Marguerite Gor, John Henry Rice, Morgan Rice, Olivia Gor and Natalie Gor; her 4 siblings and their spouses, Mamie & Ronald Lew of Los Angeles, CA; Steven and Suzanne Gee of Houston, TX; Alvin and Janice Gee of Houston, TX; and Wesley and Helen Gee of Stafford, TX; her mother, Nora Gee; and 11 nieces and nephews and their spouses. Evelyn was preceded in death by her father, Y. Parker Gee. The family cannot express enough how appreciative they are of the continual prayers and the outpouring of love and support many of you have provided. Thank you to friends, Evelyn’s Sunday school group, Bible study group, Bunko group, Rendezvous, coffee group, her oncologist - Larry Frase, HeartsWay Hospice, her caretaker - Aaliyah Jones, and a special thanks to Jane Guillory, Millicent Stafford and Diane Smith for their countless hours of care and encouragement. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to First Baptist Church of Longview, Texas, to The Henry & Evelyn Gor Endowed Scholarship Fund at Baylor University or to the charity of your choice in memory of Evelyn. First Baptist Church 209 E. South St. Longview, TX 75601. Baylor University One Bear Place #97050 – 478SDSW Waco, TX 76798-705
Peggy Gene Kinard of Hillsboro, TX, peacefully passed away Monday, September 9, 2019, surrounded by her family and six furbabies. Celebration of Life: 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., Saturday, September 28, 2019, at Czech Inn, in West, TX. Peggy was born September 28, 1934, in Montgomery County, Tennessee, to Eugene and Lois (Oliver) Payne. In 1954, she married Ray Zerwin. After his passing in 1980, she met Jerry Kinard, and they married in 1984. Peggy worked many years as a legal secretary before joining the Baylor University Oral History Department. She retired in 1999. She was preceded in death by husbands, Ray Zerwin and Jerry Kinard; siblings, Billy Payne and Brenda Tyrell. Peggy is survived by her children, David Zerwin, Susan Raines and husband, Gary, Thomas Czerwinski, and Julie Dean and husband, Dale; grandchildren that she loved dearly, Tiffany Colson and husband, James, Aubrey Bradley and husband, Jesse, Sara Raines, Robert Zerwin and wife, Ashley, Tim Zerwin, Jackson Dean and wife, Natasha, William Dean, Sam Dean, and Daphney Kinard; four great-grandchildren; sister, Sue Bradshaw; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Hill County Paw Pals, hcpawpals.org.
Dr. Jasper Lewis McPhail of Plano, TX, died Sept. 10, 2019. Jasper was born on December 30, 1930 in Slate Spring, Mississippi to James and Alberta Windham McPhail. Jasper grew up on the family farm where he developed a thirst for learning and the dream of becoming a physician. He received a bachelor of science from Mississippi College in Clinton, Mississippi and a doctor of medicine degree from Baylor University College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. He also attended Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas.Jasper became a renowned cardiovascular pulmonary surgeon. He had the unique opportunity to train under the pioneers of cardiovascular/cardiothoracic surgery, Michael DeBakey, MD and Denton Cooley, MD. He maintained lifelong friendships with both of his mentors. Jasper married the love of his life, Dorothy Binford McPhail, in Memphis, Tennessee on June 30, 1957. Dorothy was a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) so she and Jasper made the perfect team. Jasper and Dorothy were called to be missionaries to Nigeria, but they were reassigned when an opportunity came to enter India. Jasper and Dorothy became the first missionaries of the Southern Baptist Foreign Mission Board to serve in India where they lived for five years. Jasper’s priorities in life were his faith, his family, and his passion to heal through his skills as a surgeon. He used his God given gift to help thousands of patients during his 40-year career as a surgeon. Despite the demands of his career, he rarely missed a family dinner. Jasper loved to read, watch basketball and tennis, and spend time with his family. Jasper is survived by his wife, Dorothy; children, Mark, Gary, and Keith McPhail and 5 grandchildren, Geoffrey, Gillian, Collin, Margot, and Audrey McPhail. A Memorial Service will be held at 10:00 AM on Saturday, September 28, 2019, at Allen Family Funeral Options, 2112 W. Spring Creek Parkway, Plano, Texas 75023.
Chester Posey of Clifton, TX, died Sept. 7, 2019. Funeral services will be held at 1:00 P.M. Saturday, September 14, 2019 at First United Methodist Church. Burial will follow at Clifton Memorial Park. Visitation will be held one hour prior to the service at the church. Chester Nelson Posey was born in Birmingham, Alabama August 24, 1922, to Lottie Lawson Posey and Earl V. Posey. He spent his childhood in Birmingham and later served 4 years in the Air Force during World War II with ratings of aerial navigator and aerial gunner. On May 18, 1943, he married Sue Hooton. They were married 73 years and had two sons, Thomas Lawson Posey and Robert Nelson Posey. After the war, Chester attended Centenary College of Louisiana earning a business degree and went on to Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, receiving his law degree. His education was funded by the GI Bill and by Sue Posey working as a secretary. After law school, he was recalled to serve 17 months during the Korean War as a navigator. He went to work for TuboScope as an accountant and worked up the ranks, being promoted to Chief Accountant, Controller, Division Manager, Executive Vice President and onto President of the company. Always wanting to have his own business, he had the opportunity to purchase Homco International and did so in the late 1960's. Later selling the company to W.R. Grace about 1975, he purchased Gearench in October 1978. He continued to be in the office regularly until early 2019. Chester is survived by son, Tom Posey and wife, Sarka; son, Bob Posey and wife, Estrella; grandchildren, Kristine, Andrew, Chester and Henry. Chester was an active supporter of:
Bosque Arts Center, Bosque Museum, Cherokee Home for Children, First United Methodist Church – Clifton, Goodall-Witcher Hospital, Lutheran Sunset Home, Police Departments of
Clifton, Meridian and Valley Mills, and Volunteer Fire Departments of Clifton and Valley Mills.
In lieu of flowers, Chester requests a donation to one of the above charities.
James W. Rutledge was born February 22, 1937 in Dallas and died early Friday evening, October 11, 2019 at Methodist Medical Center, where he had been in hospice care briefly. He is survived by Mary Holland Rutledge, whom he married August 31, 1957 at Calvary Baptist Church in Oak Cliff. Also, survived by one brother, Thomas Wayne Rutledge (wife Nancy) of Desoto and one son, Thomas Webb Rutledge (wife Susan) of Irving, along with 4 grandsons Kevin James Rutledge (wife Amanda) of Fort Worth, Blake Edwin Rutledge (wife Hailey) of Brooklyn, NY, Kyle Spencer Rutledge of Chicago, IL, and Chad Holland Rutledge of Irving, TX. He was predeceased by an infant daughter and his parents, T.W. and Verna Rutledge. A 3rd generation Dallas native and the oldest grandson of Dallas Police Chief James Welch (one of the longest tenured chiefs in the city), he attended Lida Hooe Elementary, Greiner Jr. High, and Sunset High School, where he excelled in both baseball and basketball. He was Senior Class President and Student Body President, a great student and a well-respected teammate and classmate. He played baseball at TCU, after transferring from Baylor, and went on to receive a bachelor's degree in mathematics (cum laude) in 1959. After working in the home office of United Fidelity Life Insurance Company, he went into the field and joined Wilson Welch & Company, a family owned property & casualty firm, where he ran the Life Dept. That started a successful career in the life insurance business that spanned 50 years. He obtained the CLU and ChFC designations, was a member of the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting (AALU), the Society of Financial Service Professionals, and NAIFA- Dallas (formerly known as Dallas Association of Life Underwriters). He served as President of that organization and was recognized as Life Underwriter of the Year in 1981 and then received the Hall of Fame Award in 1998. He distinguished himself as a member of the Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT), including Top of the Table and numerous Court of the Table sales records. He was active on the legislative front in the industry, serving as a key contact for Texas legislative members and several members of Congress in Washington, DC. James was active on a civic basis, serving in the Oak Cliff Chamber of Commerce, the Oak Cliff YMCA Board, the TCU Letterman and Alumni Association, and as a founding member of The Sunset Foundation. Since 1971, he was a faithful member of Cliff Temple Baptist Church, where he was an ordained deacon, served as Deacon Chair, as well as being a member/chair of the Personnel, Finance, Stewardship committees. His faith was a key aspect of his life and he was known for his honesty, generosity, and focus on family. He was often asked to lead a prayer, moderate a discussion on ethics, or simply provide wisdom on any subject. He was a trusted advisor and great friend who enjoyed fishing, watching his grandsons play any sport & was a regular at the Downtown YMCA for many years. He will be missed as a husband, father, G-daddy, brother, uncle, and friend. A memorial service will be held Saturday, October 19th, 2019 at Cliff Temple Baptist Church, 125 Sunset Avenue, Dallas, TX, beginning at 3 pm. In lieu of flowers, the family has asked that donations be made to either The Sunset Foundation or to the Building Fund at Cliff Temple Baptist Church. While we will miss him and are thankful that he is no longer in pain, we rejoice that he is now in heaven. Well done, good and faithful servant.
Thomas H. Seltzer Jr. of Southlake, TX, died Oct. 6, 2019. Tom and his twin sister Betty Mae were born on June 26, 1931 in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania to Thomas and Edith Oehme Seltzer. Edith passed away in 1944 in Pennsylvania. In 1946, his father married Margaret Blystone and the family moved to Dallas, Texas where the twins graduated from Highland Park High School. After high school, Tom attended Southern Methodist University. While in college, he was a member of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity and served in the ROTC program. He graduated in 1955 with a degree in Civil Engineering. Following graduation, Tom began what would ultimately be a thirty-eight year career with Southwestern Bell Telephone. Tom and Wilma Grace Carlock Seltzer were married on December 27, 1954 immediately after she graduated from the Baylor University Nursing School. In 1956, Tom was called to active duty as a 1st Lieutenant in the United States Air Force. He was stationed in Okinawa as an intercept controller before returning to complete his active service in Duncanville, TX. Following completion of his time in active duty, Tom served in the United States Air Force reserves until 1961. While working as a network engineer for Southwestern Bell, Tom and Wilma lived in Dallas and in various West Texas cities before settling in San Antonio in 1968. Their two sons, their parents pride and joy, grew up in San Antonio. They lived in San Antonio for more than fifty years until deteriorating health resulted in their relocation to Southlake, leaving behind many close friends and the church they had attended for decades. Throughout his life, Tom was an avid investor and loved following the markets. In retirement, he enjoyed spending time with his Sunday School class at Trinity Baptist Church and visiting his children and grandchildren. He was a selfless individual who cared deeply for others, would regularly and quietly help others in need, and made many sacrifices in support of his two sons. He had a wonderful sense of humor and always had a joke to brighten the day. In his later years, he fought courageously in the face of a series of debilitating illnesses and ailments. Tom is survived by Wilma, the love of his life and wife of 64 years; son Robert and wife Lisamarie of Gilbert Arizona; son David and wife M’Liss of Southlake, Texas; grandchildren Ryan, Savannah, Hutton, and Lauren. He is also survived by cousins, Bill Rexrode, Wayne Seltzer, Edith Taylor, and Donna Robey and nephews Tom and Ken Powell. He is preceded in death by his parents Tom and Edith, his stepmother Margaret, and twin sister Betty Powell.
Robert Marvin Senter III, of Cranfills Gap, TX, died Aug. 8, 2019. He was born on September 2, 1932, in Lubbock, Texas to parents Robert Marvin Senter, Jr. and Edith Irene Meier Senter. Robert graduated from Teague High School in 1950. He earned his Bachelor and Masters degree in Agriculture from Sam Houston State University. Robert served as a First Lieutenant in the United States Army. In 1962, Robert and his wife Sarah Joy Senter, moved their family to Friendswood, Texas. Robert taught Industrial Arts and Texas History at Friendswood Junior High School for many years. He worked at NASA as an administrative officer for over 30 years. Robert married his second wife, Peggy Jo Senter, after retiring from NASA. He lived out his final years cattle ranching and traveling the world to archery competitions and hunting excursions. Robert developed an archery program for the Bosque County 4-H program and was honored for his contributions. Robert was preceded in death by his parents, wife Peggy, and daughter-in-law Paige Russell Senter. He is survived by his loving children Sheree Sanders of Farmersville, Texas; Carol Senter Kmiec of San Antonio, Texas; Stephen Senter and wife Susan of Friendswood, Texas; Aven Senter of Bulverde, Texas and close friends Mike Walker and wife Lisa of Friendswood, Texas. He is also survived by his brothers Donald Senter and wife Valerie of Corsicana, Texas, Steven Senter and wife Donna of Teague, Texas and sister Judy Senter Russert and husband Roger of Midland, Texas. He will be dearly missed by his five grandchildren, numerous nieces and nephews, and many great nieces and great nephews. Roberts funeral took place on Tuesday, August 13 at the First United Methodist Church in Teague, Texas. Rev. Richard Gillet officiated the service. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Paige Russell Senter Endowed Scholarship in Art History at Baylor University, One Bear Place #97026, Waco, TX 76798 or you can donate online at www.baylor.edu/giving/memorialfunds.
Thomas M. Stidham of Lawrence, KS, died Oct. 1, 2019. He was born December 31, 1940, in Sylva, North Carolina, the son of Joe and Lois Stidham. Tom grew up with brother Charles (DeeDee) and sister Sally Clair (Earl). He attended school in Lake Placid, Florida where grade cards often remarked that "Tommy ate a good lunch". After graduating from Lake Placid High School, Tom attended the University of Florida where he received a BFA in 1962 and a M.Ed in 1965. He returned to Lake Placid High School in 1962 where he began his band directing career and married the "preacher's daughter", Linda Spillman on June 14, 1963. They recently celebrated their 56th wedding anniversary. Tom was Director of Bands at Paxon Senior High School in Jacksonville, FL , Georgia Southern College in Statesboro, GA and Baylor University in Waco, TX. He arrived at the University of Kansas in 1975 to assist his friend, Robert E. Foster, in administering the KU Band and Midwestern Music Camp programs. Tom was involved in every aspect of the KU Band program until his retirement in 2012. For many years, he organized the KU Band Day and was also the longtime director of the men's basketball band. Trombone was his instrument and he played many professional gigs but was also in demand as a guest conductor and clinician. Tom believed in f-words – faith, family and food. He was a committed Christian and lived his faith everyday with everyone he met. He was a member of the First Southern Baptist Church and served many years as the Director of Music. One could not spend much time with Tom, without seeing how proud he was of his family. He bragged about them shamelessly! He worked into nearly any conversation that his wife Linda, was a dedicated and talented teacher; first born Mark had a wonderful natural musical talent; Tom shared a passion for football with Coach son Scott and if you darkened the doors of St. Luke's hospital in KC, you could be sure that he would have his favorite nurse, daughter Marci, drop by your room. When he arrived at KU, the KU Band instantly became part of his extended family. He maintained an open door policy and it was rare not to find a student, staff member or faculty member sitting in a chair by his desk, gaining his undivided attention. He always had time to listen and had a strong desire to solve other people's problems. It was not unusual to hear him say to both male and female band students, "You look like I need a hug"! His sense of humor framed everything that he did and he was one of those rare folks that enjoyed laughing even when he was the brunt of the joke. Storytelling was his forte and he practiced it often to the delight of his audience. Tom loved to cook and delighted in having a houseful of people to feed. He was accomplished with a grill and smoker and was proud to be a certified KCBS barbecue judge. Holidays will not be the same without a turkey and/or ham smoked by Tom. His home-made ice cream was unrivaled and favorites such as chocolate pecan, cinnamon, tutti fruitti, and peppermint were enjoyed after many a meal in his home. Tom held professional memberships in ABA, KBA, TBS, KKPsi, CBDNA, NBA and The Friday Night Club. Tom is survived by his soul mate Linda, sons Mark (Mary Cello) and Scott (Stacy) and daughter Marci (Dave) and grandchildren, Landry, Nolan, Nash, Chloe, Kennedy, Abigale and Caroline. The family suggests in lieu of flowers that memorial gifts be made to the Tom Stidham KU Band Scholarship fund sent in care of: KU Endowment, 1891 Constant Ave., Lawrence, KS 66047 and may be sent in care of Warren-McElwain Mortuary, 120 W. 13th Street, Lawrence, KS 66044. The family would like to express immense gratitude to the staff at Bridge Haven and Avalon Hospice for the professional and loving care that Tom received during his months there. He went there as "the new guy" and left as family. A Celebration of Life will be held at the First Southern Baptist Church, 4300 W 6th, on October 12, 2019. A Visitation will be held from 12:30 – 2:00 p.m. and service at 2:00 p.m. For more information or to post a condolence go to warrenmcelwain.com. Tom often expressed a desire to be buried at sea but as an avid Jayhawk, in the end donated his body to KU Medical Center. A life well lived.
Mildred Gee Taylor, 92, of Waco passed away, Thursday, August 1, 2019, at Arbor House. A Graveside Funeral service will be 10:00 am, Thursday, August 8, 2019, at Lorena Cemetery. A visitation with the family will be from 6:00 to 7:00 pm, Wednesday, August 7, 2019 at Grace Gardens Funeral Home. Mildred was born August 28, 1926, in Mexia, Texas. She was the middle child of Drury Whitaker Gee and Eleanor Tatum Gee. Her early years were spent in east Texas where her father was field supervisor of an oil company. Mildred graduated from White Oak High School in 1943. On September 19, 1943, she married her high school sweetheart, Lloyd Hughes Taylor, Jr. They met when he saw her playing tennis and decided that she was the girl for him. Their love flourished for sixty-five years. They were partners in every sense. He was the "big picture" person while she took care of the details. At the end of World War II they had their only child, Cris. In 1946 they came to Waco so that Lloyd, Jr. could attend Baylor University. They stayed long enough for him to earn two degrees. During those years Mildred worked as secretary to the Baylor registrar. As her husband followed his chosen career as a college professor, Mildred continued her path of keeping the wheels of academia running smoothly. When she was only 28, she became the first dormitory director at Lamar University. She advised the students on everything from study skills, to washing clothes, to mending a broken heart. Later, when her daughter went off to college, Mildred went to college herself. She had outstanding organizational and communication skills. If there were a better way of doing something or solving a problem, she figured it out. Eventually she used those skills at the Democratic National Committee in Washington, D.C. and at the White House during the Johnson administration. Although Mildred's main focus in life was family, she had many interests. She was a huge fan of the Baylor Lady Bear basketball team and rarely missed a game. She loved to read and enjoyed being a member of Garden Patch Garden Club. She liked to travel and sometimes joked that her middle initial "G" really stood for "go". Mildred loved her family and enjoyed her friends. All her life, people came to her for advice, probably because she listened so well and was so kind. Her family and friends loved her positive attitude and can-do spirit. If you needed help or someone to step up and work, she was there. She was a very special person: loving wife, doting parent, and delighted grandparent. She will be greatly missed. She was proceeded in death by her husband, Lloyd Hughes Taylor, Jr.; parents, DW. Gee, Sr. and Eleanor Tatum Gee; her sister, Doretha Taylor and her husband Buck Taylor; brother D.W Gee, Jr. and his wife Dera Gee. She is survived by her daughter, Cris Taylor Baldridge and husband, Bob of Waco; grandchildren, Robyn Foster and husband, Malcolm, Ryan Baldridge, all of Waco; brother in law, Ray Taylor of Lorena; nephews, Ross Taylor of Lorena, Doug Taylor and wife Bettie of Dallas, Ben Taylor and wife Susan of Midland, Stuart Gee and wife Stephanie of Irving; nieces, Gayle Purks of Knoxville, Maryland, Rebecca Gee of New York, Jennifer Smith and husband David, of Houston, Ruth Tilghman of Lorena, Beth Musgrave and husband Pat of Lorena; and many dear cousins. Her family is particularly grateful for the kind and gentle assistance provided by Mildred's caregivers from Visiting Angels, Interim Hospice, and at Arbor House. Memorials may be made to Baylor University or the charity of your choice.
Jon York, age 51, of Robinson, TX, formerly of Rockdale, passed away Tuesday, October 15, 2019 at his home in Robinson. Memorial services are scheduled for 2:00 p.m., with visitation at 1:00 p.m., Tuesday, October 22, at Phillips & Luckey Funeral Home in Rockdale. Jon was born March 1, 1968, in Austin, to Aliene Marie Bauer and G.C. "Pete" York. He was raised in Rockdale and lived the past 14 years in Robinson. He was an IT Specialist with Baylor University in Waco the past seven years. On September 27, 2001, he and Shannon Richardson were married in Waco. He was a member of Cross Roads Fellowship Church in Hewitt. Jon loved being with his children and was a die-hard Dallas Cowboy fan.He was preceded in death by his father, G.C. "Pete" York on April 27, 2010.Surviving are his wife, Shannon York, of Robinson; son, Stephen York of Robinson; daughter, Taylor York of Robinson; step-daughter, Madison Moss of Waco; mother, Aliene Bauer of Waco; step-mother, Judy York of Rockdale; sisters, Yvette McCoy and husband, John, of Rockdale, Rebecca Luckey and husband, Paul, of Rockdale; Terri York Sandoval of Rockdale; and a number of nieces and nephews.