E. Gene Gifford


E. Gene Gifford, age 80, of Amarillo, Texas, died on February 24, 2022.
A Memorial Service will be Saturday, March 5, 2022, at 11:00 a.m., at First Presbyterian Church, at 1100 S. Harrison, Amarillo, Texas 79101. Burial will be private. Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors, 2800 Paramount Blvd.
E. Gene Gifford was born in Amarillo, Texas, on “St. Gene’s Day”, March 17, 1941, to parents Mignon and Jim Gifford. Gene was active in San Jacinto Methodist Church, Kids Inc, and all school activities in his early years. He graduated from Tascosa High School in 1959. (The first graduating class of the new high school). Gene was the first football captain of the Tascosa Rebel football team and was recruited to play football for Darrel Royal at the University of Texas 1959-1963 where he graduated with a BS degree in Economics and as ROTC officer in the United States Air Force. He was also a member of the Phi Delta Theta fraternity and the Silver Spurs at UT.
After graduation, Gene married Liz Kendall of Wichita Falls in 1964. Their first five years of marriage were committed to the USAF; after the birth of their daughter, Kelly, Gene was assigned Vietnam in 1968 to fly over North Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia in the RF-101 VooDoo and the 02 Treetop Cessna FAC. He was IDASK Commander when not flying out of DaNang.
Gene returned, and his family, Liz, Kelly, and Justin, permanently settled in Amarillo where Gene worked for Merrill Lynch as a Financial Consultant for 43 years. He happily retired and took on more challenges life had to offer. All his years of life Gene worked hard with dedication in so many areas that touched the lives of kids to adults, of friends to strangers. Some called him “Coach”, some called him “Sir”, some called him “Dirty Giff” and the list goes on.
Those who preceded Gene were his parents, his sister, Gail; his niece, Susy; and his beloved son, Justin.
Gene is survived by his wife, Lizzie; his daughter and son-in-law, Kelly and Sam Field and granddaughters, Gifford Elizabeth and Emma Jane; his daughter-in-law, Holly Gifford and grandchildren, Gus, Joe T., Hattie Catherine, and Mary Elizabeth; and his nephews, Dustin and Gifford Montgomery.
Among Gene’s many accolades and achievements some included: coached Kids Inc football 17 years; Board member of Kids Inc, Maverick Club, Camp Alphie, Will Rogers Range Riders Club (Pres); National Cattlemen’s Assoc; Master Mason and Scottish Rite, Khiva Shrine, Tri-State Fair Board; Outfit Board; Arena Director for Coors Outfit Ranch Rodeo 17 years; Coor’s Cowboy Club; Tascosa High School Hall of Fame 2009; Grand Marshall of the 1959-2018 Tascosa High School 60 year Homecoming Parade; volunteer for Rodeo Team of Cal Farley’s Boys Ranch.
Gene loved the LORD and was a member with Liz at First Presbyterian Church. He loved his wife and his children. He loved his grandchildren. He loved his friends. He loved roping, his favorite horse, Blue Duck, and his constant roping companion dog, Newt.
The family is requesting that any memorials be given to Shriners Children’s Hospital in care of Khiva Temple, Amarillo; Kids Inc. new Multi-Sport Athletic Complex; Butterfly Wing Hospice of Baton Rouge Hospital (non-profit), 3600 Florida Blvd #1100, Baton Rouge, LA 70806; or one’s favorite charity.

22 Replies to “E. Gene Gifford”

  1. Liz and Family, my condolences go out to all of you for your loss. Gene was an amazing man that I am happy to have known. I will never forget getting to go ride his horse up at Range Riders whenever I wanted. His smile filled the room whenever you saw him. As a child you never realize the impact your parent’s friends can have on you and how special they can be.
    much love to you at this time.

  2. Loved Coach Gifford. He, and Mike Boxwell, coached my kids inc teams in the early seventies. (Coronado)Taught us well. Prayers to the family. Doug Douthit

  3. Sending our prayers for comfort and peace to you Liz and your family. Gene such a kind and wonderful man and loved by all who knew him. We feel so blessed to have known him.
    Todd and Jennifer Howard

  4. Liz, my sympathy and condolences to you and your family for the passing of Gene. He was a great Friend to me and always supportive. I will miss him. Love Freda Powell

  5. What a Great Man & Friend. He loved every person he knew and taught us all to be better. I am so grateful God chose to have our paths cross. My most sincere condolences to you Liz and family and thank you for sharing Gene with me.

  6. Lizzie, Kelly, Holly and grandkids, Im so very sorry to hear about Gene, a family friend for years . One thing about Gene, he was quite the horseman! He loved his family and friends.
    Hugs to all of you!

    Debi Stavenhagen (Swafford)

  7. Liz, Kelly and family,

    My love, thoughts and prayers are with you. Gene was truly one of a kind. Living across the street and growing up with Justin, my interactions with Gene were equal part respect, fear and admiration. I loved his rough Texas exterior, the work ethic that he instilled into anyone in his orbit, the rare flash of approval he’d give you when you least expected it, and the constant resetting of the bar on how one ought to live their life. Justin , in so many ways, was a reflection of Gene and I am comforted to know they are now reunited. I am thankful to have known him and the entire Gifford family who will always hold a very special place in my heart.

    God Bless

  8. Liz, we send our hugs and prayers to you and all the Gifford family. Gene was such a lovely man and many hearts are broken today after learning of his passing! Shirley and Mike

  9. I worked for Gene at Merrill Lynch 45 yrs ago! Liz and Gene attended my wedding. I remember Liz , Kelly and Justin stories and his love for them. I have such fond memories of the time I spent at ML with Gene and John Womack. He was such a good man in so many ways, an example to all. Prayers for Liz, Kelly and his family.

    Sheri Van White Van Bakel

  10. Anyone that had the opportunity to meet Gene could see right away what a good man he was. If you were lucky and got to know him a little better then it would become obvious that he was in fact a great man. He was a pleasant fellow and full of interesting stories. I barely knew him but thought of him often. I’m sure that he will be missed by many, many people. My condolences to all of his family and friends.
    Leonard Eastepp

  11. Our love and condolences to Liz and family.

    Gene, I knew you briefly when I was a kid because my mom worked for your family. I got to know you again when we were both grown and our boys wrestled for the Maverick Club. We became friends on all of the wrestling trips our boys had starting in elementary school. I am glad that we continued to be friends after high school and after I moved to Colorado. We will continue to miss you, my friend.

  12. Liz, Gene will be missed!! He was my buddy and friend while he was with us. Karrie and I send our prayers to you and your family!! Much Love!!

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