Billy Dean (Bill) Gardner, age 80, of College Station, Texas passed away peacefully August 2, 2017. In death, as in life, he was surrounded by the love of his family and friends. Bill will be remembered for his determination and “never say can’t” attitude, his passion for excellence, his storytelling and his love and devotion for family and friends. He is survived by the love of his life and wife of almost 63 years, Carline; daughter, Kathy (Bill) Dugat; son, Jeff; grandchildren Will (Susan) Dugat, Josh (Nicole) Dugat, Chelsea Gardner and Travis (Josie) Gardner; great-grandchildren Liam Dugat and Hudson Dean Gardner; and sister, Helen Ellis. Bill lovingly answered to “Little Granddaddy,” “LG” or “G.” During their life together, Bill and Carline moved across Texas as they followed Bill’s career and grandchildren’s lives.
Bill was born in Wellington, Texas in the midst of a legendary dust storm. He spent his childhood on a farm where he learned the importance of hard work and ingenuity. Bill loved to tell stories about his days at Wellington High School where he was president of the senior class, played football, boxed and established lifelong friendships. Bill’s college years were spent at West Texas State University (WT) where he studied geology, accounting and “life.” During his lifetime, Bill worked as a grocery store clerk, diesel locomotive mechanic, manager and cook in a café, night bookkeeper and account analyst for a bank, and CPA. The majority of his professional career was devoted to serving as the chief financial officer of both WT and Texas A & M-Corpus Christi. Bill was a firm believer in the importance of education and worked diligently during his career to champion higher education in the Texas legislature. He served on the board of TASSCUBO for many years and received numerous awards for his work in higher education.
Bill believed in teamwork and serving others. His volunteer efforts included church work, little league baseball, professional golf tournaments and the USS Lexington Museum. He was an avid football fan and loved to be outdoors. Bill and Carline’s hospitality was legendary. He was a wonderful storyteller, an encourager, a problem solver and reader. Nothing was more important to him than family, friends and his faith.
A memorial celebration of Bill’s life will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, August 26th at Christ United Methodist Church in College Station, TX. Memorial contributions can be made to Cal Farley’s Boys’ Ranch or the Music Department at Christ UMC College Station, TX.