Billy Ray 'Bill' Thurman
By Cooper-Sorrells Funeral Home in Honey Grove
Apr 12, 2018
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Honey Grove, Texas -- Funeral services for Billy Ray "Bill" Thurman, 81, of Honey Grove, Texas, is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 14, 2018, at the Cooper-Sorrells Funeral Home Chapel in Honey Grove, Texas. Officiating will be Denny Tompkins. Interment will follow at the Oakwood Cemetery. Bill passed away Wednesday, April 11, 2018, at Medical City Plano.

Billy Ray Thurman was born on January 14, 1937, in Delta County, Texas, to William Raymond and Ollie Mae (West) Thurman. He was one of the 16 children born to the Thurman family. When he was six years old, the family moved to the Dial Community where his father farmed. That started his life-long love of the land and agriculture. He went to school at Dial until it consolidated with Honey Grove ISD in the late 1940s. Bill graduated from Honey Grove High School where he played football, basketball, and boxed being named honorable mention All-State in basketball. He was a four-year member of the FFA, winning the DeKalb Award.

Bill married Mary Anne Evans on June 21, 1956. He farmed in Dial, and then worked at Lone Star Gas Company. When General Cable opened a plant in Bonham, he joined the company and worked there for 28 years. After his tenure at General Cable he returned full-time to his first love of farming and ranching.

Bill served on the Honey Grove ISD Board of Trustees. He also served as the Webelos leader in the local Boy Scouts organization. When he was twelve, he became a member of Dial Baptist Church and served faithfully for several decades as a teacher, treasurer, deacon, and mentor to many young pastors.

Left to cherish his memories is wife of the home Mary Anne Thurman; sons, Steven Mark Thurman and wife Kelly of Lewisville, and Todd Thurman of Honey Grove; granddaughter Brook Thurman House and husband Trent of Port Lavaca; siblings, George Thurman of Honey Grove; Charles Thurman of Irving; Gene Thurman of Savoy. He is preceded in death by Dorothy Houston, Royce Thurman, Pauline Pecena, Juanita Wall, Robert Thurman, Thelma Jo Wheless, Annell Thurman, Sue Wishard, Johnny Thurman and Mack Thurman.

Serving as pallbearers are Marshal Joyce, Kyle Milford, Paul Pitcock, Milton Page, Jonny Morris, Roger Luttrell, Charles Lawhon, John Mahler and Mark Reece. Serving as honorary pallbearers will be Bob Milford, Gerald Wishard, Lloyd Cunningham, and Landy Freiley.

Memorials may be made to Dial Baptist Church, Oakwood Cemetery or The Honey Grove Public Library and Learning Center.