Obituaries for Canyon

Laura Graves Tankersley – August 23, 2014

Thursday, August 28th, 2014

Laura Graves Tankersley was born in Lubbock, TX on March 26, 1970 to Bill and Linda Graves.  She was the second of their four children.

In 1992, she graduated from Texas Tech University with a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education. Laura’s ability to reach out to small children and teach them in a loving way was her passion and her purpose.  Children who came into regular contact with Laura came away with the knowledge that they were sent to receive, and also received the understanding that they were loved, that they were important, and that they were somebody, not just “another kid”.

In 2000, Laura became a counselor after receiving her Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Texas Tech.  She worked as a Mental Health Coordinator with the Early Childhood Head Start Program.  Her emphasis did not change, but rather morphed into a whole scale structured support system for at risk children.  She worked with parents, teachers, and administrators to ensure that the children’s mental health needs were met.

Her strong sense of advocacy for the children she served was so apparent to anyone who worked with Laura.  She believed wholeheartedly in making the best possible decisions for the children.  Everyone around her knew this was her greatest priority in her life’s work with children.

In 2006, Laura began teaching her own children in a home school setting.  The basis of her system of teaching was “Thomas Jefferson” style, literature based teaching.  The children went at their own pace – exceedingly fast!  Following the State of Texas guidelines for scope and sequence, she enhanced the guidelines with required Bible reading, verse recitations, art lessons, field trips, hands-on activities, all tied into the lessons she was teaching at the time.

Laura was a devoted Christian and a prayer warrior.  She and Jeff were workers in their churches – teaching, volunteering, helping in any way they could, wherever they lived.  She and the kids loved to cook and take things to family and friends and even people they hardly knew, in the Name of the Lord.  She excelled at being a wife, mother, friend, confidant, listener, and supporter.  Nothing was too large or too small for her to assist with and no one was above or beneath her.

Laura passed away on August 23, 2014.

She is survived by her husband of 21 years, Jeff Tankersley, and their three children:  Jaren, Kathlyn, and Audrey, all of Canyon, TX.  She is also survived by her father Bill Graves of San Angelo, TX, her mother Linda Graves of Troup, TX, her grandmother Dorothy McClain, also of Troup, her sister Jana Graves Rueter and husband John Rueter of Georgetown, TX, brother Allan Graves and wife Krispin of Colleyville, TX, and brother Andrew Graves of San Angelo, TX.  She will be greatly missed by her five nieces and nephews, as well as the many aunts, uncles, and cousins who loved her dearly.  Those who knew her and loved her are deeply impacted by her untimely death.  She will be missed here, but welcomed into Heaven.

The family has established a scholarship fund for the children.  Contributions may be sent to: Tankersley Children Fund, in care of Andrew Graves, Atty., P.O. Box 1071, San Angelo, TX 76902.

Rudy Marrugo – June 4, 2014

Wednesday, June 4th, 2014

Marrugo Obit PicRudy Marrugo, 71, of Canyon, died Wednesday, June 4, 2014.

Rosary will be said at 6:00 p.m., Thursday, June 5, 2014, in Boxwell Brothers Ivy Chapel.  Memorial mass will be celebrated at 11:00 a.m., Friday, June 6, 2014, in St. Ann’s Catholic Church in Canyon with Father Phan as celebrant.  Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors, 2800 Paramount Blvd.

Born in Coleman County, he lived in Amarillo and worked at Asarco for 35 years until retiring in 2003.  Rudy was a loving husband, father, and friend.  He enjoyed hunting, tending to his land, spending time with family and throwing barbecues on holidays.

He is preceded in death by his parents, Rodie and Elvira Marrufa.

Survivors include his wife of 53 years, Mary Marrugo; five children, Carolyn Osborne and her husband of Hampton, VA, Patti Copelin of Groom, Rudy Joe Marrugo, Jimmy Marrugo and Benjamin Marrugo, all of Amarillo; 14 grandchildren; 22 great-grandchildren; and a great-great-grandchild.

Wayne Bagley – April 14, 2014

Monday, April 14th, 2014

Bagley Obit PicWayne Bagley, 88, of Canyon, died Monday, April 14, 2014.

Services will be at 10 a.m., Wednesday, April 16, 2014, in First United Methodist Church in Canyon with Rev. Rick Enns, pastor, officiating.  Burial will be in Dreamland Cemetery in Canyon.  Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors, 2800 Paramount Blvd.

Wayne was born March 5, 1926, in Roaring Springs to Winfield and Anne Bagley.  He proudly served his country in the Navy during World War II.  Wayne earned his law degree and was an attorney. He married Charlene Giesecke in January 1948.  Wayne had a pecan orchard which he loved and he really enjoyed working in it.  He was a member of American Legion for more than 60 years and served as their Judge Advocate for one year.

He was preceded in death by a brother, Bob Bagley; and a sister, Barbara Shaffer.

Survivors include his wife of 66 years, Charlene Bagley, of Canyon; three daughters, Joyce Bagley of Richardson, Dana Hatch and husband Larry of Lindale and Janet Braxton and husband Gary of Amarillo; a son, Bill Bagley and Susan of Amarillo; three brothers, Terry Bagley and Walton Bagley, both of Amarillo and Pat Bagley of Pampa; three sisters, Joyce Crooks of Spearman, Martha Mandell of Sacramento, CA and Aralene Downing of Spur; ten grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.

The family suggests memorials be made to Thomas E. Creek Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care System, 6010 W. Amarillo Blvd., Amarillo, TX 79106; or to Alzheimer’s Association, 1400 Wallace Blvd., Amarillo, TX 79106

Jerry Irwin – April 7, 2014

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014

Irwin Obit Pic 1Jerry Irwin, 70, of Canyon, died Monday, April 7, 2014, in Amarillo.

Graveside services will be at 2:00 p.m., Thursday, April 10, 2014, in Memory Gardens Cemetery with Dick Marcear officiating.  Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors, 2800 Paramount Blvd.

Jerry was born Sept. 2, 1943, in Okemah, Okla. to Leonard and Lola Irwin.  He graduated from Amarillo High School in 1961 and served in the National Guard.  He married Karen Irwin on Oct. 18, 1969, in Amarillo.  She preceded him in death on Jan. 26, 2013.  Jerry worked in banking and was a member of Church of Christ.

He also was preceded in death by a niece, Melissa Crowe.

Survivors include a son, Matt Irwin and wife Courtney of Amarillo; a sister, Vickie Crowe of Amarillo; a brother, Bill Irwin and wife Linda of Amarillo; three nieces, Shannon Jostes and husband Scott, Tiffany Michels and husband Ken and Heather Dunavin; two nephews, Shane Dunavin and Jamie Crowe and wife Patty.  He was known as “G-Dad” to his two granddaughters, Peyton and Piper.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials be made to Jack Duncan Rhodes Foundation at

The family will receive friends from 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., Wednesday, April 9, 2014, at the funeral home.

Earl Ray Wilson – April 5, 2014

Sunday, April 6th, 2014

Wilson Obit PhotoEarl Ray Wilson, 86, of Canyon died Saturday, April 5, 2014, in Amarillo.

Graveside services will be at 11 a.m. Tuesday, April 8, 2014, in Llano Cemetery East. Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors, 2800 Paramount Blvd.

Ray was born June 20, 1927, in Clarendon, Ark., the third of four children born to Lois Wesley Highfill. Ray served in the United States Marine Corps from September 1945 to September 1946 when he received an honorable discharge as a Private First Class.

Ray was a lifelong railroader.  He apprenticed and worked many years for the Southern Pacific.  On Feb. 26, 1962, the same day that he and Beenie were married, they moved to the Panama Canal Zone, where Ray was hired by the U.S. Civil Service to work for the Panama Railroad.  In 1965, they adopted their daughter Teresa, and they continued to live in the Canal Zone until 1979 when Ray retired from the Civil Service.  They moved to Clovis, N.M., where Ray worked for the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe until his retirement from the railroad.

Ray enjoyed working in his vegetable garden and building furniture, grandfather clocks, and other wood projects.  He was happiest when he could be busy and working with his hands.

He was preceded in death by his mother and two sisters, Margaret H. Taylor and Joyce Sue Vickery.

Survivors include his loving wife of 52 years, Walta Mae “Beenie” Wilson;  their daughter, Teresa Lynn Wilson of Amarillo; three sons from a previous marriage, David Ray Wilson of Houston, Dennis Charles Wilson of Ringgold, Ga., and Dean Allan Wilson of Broken Arrow, Okla; and a sister, Lillian Garrett of Little Rock, Ark.

Margaret “Beth” Watson – July 8, 2013

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

Watson 2, Margaret obit photo Watson, Margaret obit picture

Margaret “Beth” Watson, 85, of Canyon, died Monday, July 8, 2013.  Services will be at 3:00 P.M. on Wednesday, July 10th, 2013 at Boxwell Brothers Ivy Chapel, 2800 Paramount Blvd.  Burial will be at 11:00 A.M. on Thursday, July 11th, 2013 at the Aspermont Cemetery in Aspermont, Texas.  Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors.

Beth was born on November 13, 1927 in Edmond, Ok. to Oran and Geneva Davis.  She lived in Tulia from 1951 to 1981 and taught school in Odessa from 1981 to 1998.  She had been residing in Canyon with her family from 2008 to the present.  She was a Presbyterian.

She is survived by two sons, Oran Watson and wife Vickie of Tucumcari, NM and Lonny Watson and wife Faith of Canyon; a sister, Geneva Louise Medley of Spring, Tx.; seven grandchildren, Chelle, Casey, Kent, Anna, Desiree, Jamie, Andy; and ten great grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, family suggests memorials be made to your favorite charity.

Teresa Taylor – March 3, 2013

Monday, March 4th, 2013

Teresa Taylor, 61, of Canyon, died Sunday, March 3, 2013.

Services will be held at a later date.  Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors, 2800 Paramount Blvd.

Teresa was born June 13, 1951, in Salt Lake City, Utah to Mark and Joan Taylor.  She had graduated from high school in Lamar, Colorado.

Survivors include a brother, Mark Taylor of Canyon; and a sister, Victoria Taylor Gore of Amarillo.

Fletcher Sims, Jr. – January 28, 2013

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

Fletcher Sims, Jr., 95, of Canyon, died Monday, Jan. 28, 2013.

Services will be at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013, in Boxwell Brothers Ivy Chapel, 2800 Paramount Blvd. with the Rev. Damon Deaton officiating.  A private burial will be in the family cemetery at 3:00 p.m.  Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors.

Mr. Sims was born in Mexico, MO. He married his late wife Victoria W. Sims on Aug. 12, 1947, in Billings, Mont., they moved to Amarillo in 1949 and later to their Canyon homestead in 1960. Fletcher Sims was an entrepreneur, rancher, builder, inventor, author, WWII veteran and political activist. He held a B.A. in soil microbiology from the University of Missouri. He was a longstanding member of the John Birch Society.  He built the building for Paramount Community Church where he and his family also attended.  After the death of Victoria, he married Barbara Clifton in 2003. They had currently attended Faith Community Church in Canyon.

Survivors include his wife Barbara; three sons, Stephen Sims of Dallas, Kevin Sims and Brian Sims, M.D. of Amarillo; a sister Harrietta Randolph, of Mexico MO.; nine grandchildren, Daniel, David, Mitchell, Lauren, Miles, Jessica, Morgan, Victoria, and Chaney; and three great-grandchildren, Marley, Konrad, and Amya.

The family suggests memorials be made to Hidden Falls Ranch, P.O. Box

136, Wayside, Texas 79094.

The family will receive friends from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m., Friday, Feb. 1, 2013, at the funeral home.

Janet Evelyn Sells – October 28, 2012

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

Janet Evelyn Sells, 50, of Canyon, died Monday, Oct. 28, 2012, in Amarillo.

Services will be at 11:00 a.m., Thursday, Nov. 1, 2012, in First United Methodist Church in Canyon.  Burial will be private in Memory Gardens Cemetery.  Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors, 2800 Paramount Blvd.

Janet was born Jan. 31, 1962, in St. Louis, Missouri to Kenneth and Mary Louise Schlueter.  She married Kent Sells on July 14, 1987, in Canyon.  Janet loved animals, traveling, spending time with her family and friends, reading, and camping with her husband and in-laws.  She spent 14 years working at TDCJ Clements Unit and was very dedicated to her work.  She was a member of First United Methodist Church in Canyon.  Janet was looking forward to the birth of her first grandchild.

She was preceded in death by her father, Kenneth W. Schluester.

Survivors include her husband, Kent Sells of Canyon; a son, Kenneth Mikel Grabber of Amarillo; a daughter, Kristin Stefanie Singleton and husband Justin of Amarillo; two stepdaughters, Natalie Cene Wilson and husband Paul and Erica Rene Shelton and husband Scott, all of Borger; her mother, Mary Louise Schlueter of St. Louis, MO; a brother, Kenneth Schlueter and wife Reggie of Ferguson, MO; a sister Edith Altom and husband Rich of Hazelwood, MO; 7 step-grandchildren; and 1 step-great-granddaughter.

Pamela L. Brown – October 30, 2012

Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

Pamela L. Brown, 50, of Canyon, died Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2012, in Amarillo.

A memorial service will be at 2:00 p.m., Friday, Nov. 2, 2012, at the Palo Duro R.V. Park clubhouse, 5707 4th Ave. in Canyon.  Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors, 2800 Paramount Blvd.

Mrs. Brown was born June 12, 1962 in Bay Village, Ohio to William and Phyllis Gallorich.  She was a CNA at Canyon Healthcare for 12 years and worked as an assistant at Palo Duro R.V. Park.

Survivors include her husband, Chris Brown of Canyon; a son, Richard C. Brown of Canyon; a granddaughter, Khloe Brown of Woodward, Oklahoma; a sister, Terri of Ohio; and two brothers, William and Gregory, both of Ohio.