Dee Hester, 95, of San Antonio and formerly of Pampa, passed from this life on Monday, March 20, 2023 in San Antonio.
Services will be 10:00 AM Saturday, March 25, 2023 at Carmichael-Whatley Colonial Chapel with Rodney Tedford, minister at Gustine Church of Christ, officiating. Burial will follow in Memory Gardens Cemetery under the direction of Carmichael-Whatley Funeral Directors and Crematory.
Albert Dee Hester was born to Mancil Otis Hester and Vena Mae Hester on November 29, 1927 on his parents’ ranch in Beaver County, Oklahoma. As a product of this nations “Greatest Generation”, he learned early on the necessity and value of hard work, innovation to work through hard times, seeing a task through to completion for a job well done, and “laying by in store” to provide for a family. As a young boy in a family of 6, he vividly remembered the year his mother grew a bountiful garden, plus having an orchard, and canned 1,000 jars of food.
Born into a musically talented family, as they grew and expanded, the large family gatherings filled with music at the end of the day brought him a joy beyond description. Needless to say, Johnny Cash was his favorite singer!
Ethics of honesty, honor and integrity were learned through the instruction and example of his parents – two Christians who revered God, honored His Word, and strived daily to follow the teachings of Jesus their Savior.
As an adult working in Lubbock, he met and married Melba Joy Ballard on August 12, 1950. They raised 2 daughters, Kenda and Karan. Dee and Melba sacrificed much to give their children a Christian college education. When Melba passed on March 24, 2022, they had been married 71 years. A new job at the Pampa Celanese plant for the general contractor brought the family to Pampa from Dumas in 1966, being active members at Mary Ellen and Harvester Church of Christ until Dee moved to San Antonio last year. Both were involved in many areas of the church. Dee didn’t view his activity as a tedious job to be done, but as an act of service to God and his fellow man. He served as an elder for over 45 years.
When retirement arrived, it was received with great enthusiasm and excitement for the journeys that laid ahead. Trips in their RV took Dee and Melba many times to Colorado and throughout the mountain states, Alaska, Canada, and down the East coast to Florida. Of all the skills he possessed, woodworking was his favorite. He turned that talent into acts of love by making rocking chairs, toy boxes, and rocking horses for his great grandchildren.
Dee was known for his smile, sense of humor, and his faith. He was respected by all who knew him; having a kind word for all and never met a stranger.
He was preceded in death by his wife Melba, parents Mancil and Vena Hester, and a sister, Sandra Kaye Hester.
Dee is survived by his daughters, Kenda Coffee and husband Sam and Karan Clark and husband Brad all of San Antonio; grandchildren, Brandon Coffee, Brent Coffee, Jared Clark and wife Jayme, Chris Clark and wife Kelsey; great grandchildren, Grayson, Anna, Luke, Caleb and Ally; brothers, Richard Hester and wife Kathleen of Blacktown, Australia and Dale Hester and wife Merlene of Beaver County, Oklahoma.
Memorials can be made to High Plains Children’s Home, PO Box 7448, Amarillo, Texas 79114.