This obituary was written in Russell’s own words….
“When you have a terminal illness, you have a lot of time to think. Hopefully, this is not too far over the top.”
Russell was born January 14, 1962 in Huntsville, Texas to parents, John Jerald Reynolds and Nancy Jan (Wallin) Reynolds. He passed away February 16, 2019 at his home in Marquez, Texas after a battle with cancer.
He was raised by his beloved grandparents, Bob and Ethel Mae Reynolds at the O.B. Reynolds Drug and Variety Store in Midway, Texas.
He grew up working in the store and helping with the cattle operation. He did a lot of fishing, hunting and camping growing up.
He loved competing in Rodeos riding bareback broncs and bulls. This habit continued into his thirties. He attended Madison County schools. Russell was baptized to the Lord at the age of eleven by Bro. Bruce Woods during a revival at Elwood Baptist Church. While attending another revival with Bro. Lanier Stevens a week later, Lanier got him again! I guess he saw something and figured it would be needed. While he wasn’t always the perfect servant, he always had his beliefs and always tried to do unto others.
He proudly served his country as a 91B Combat Medic (medical specialist) in the U.S. Army. He was awarded the expert qualification for MIG Rifle, 1911 Pistol, Grenade & M203 Grenade Launcher.
He also received the Expert Field Medical Badge, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, Army Commendation Medal and Army Achievement Medal.
While serving in Germany, Russ attended Dutch Army Airborne Training and was awarded his jumpwings for jumping out of perfectly good airplanes.
After the military and a short stint working at T.D.C.J. Ferguson Unit, he was hired by the Plano Fire Department serving as a firefighter/paramedic for six years. After leaving the fire service due to a back injury sustained at a firefighter’s rodeo, he started a new career path in the Farm Equipment field and later adding construction equipment to the mix while employed at W.C. Tractor.
Russ always said he got to live every boy’s dream, a cowboy, a soldier, a firefighter/paramedic and getting to play with Big Tonka Toys.
In 1992, he met his blessing; his beautiful wife, Karen. “I may not be rich, but I won the marriage lottery….superwoman, my world, the last face I want to see.” Russ and his wife, Karen, spent many years dealing in western memorabilia as a side business with many antique spurs, western history books, matted and barnwood western art that he built himself. They traveled across many states and attended the Amarillo Bit and Spur Show for over twenty years straight.
Every year, Russell patiently waited for deer season in south Texas, hunting twelve years on the Ramirez Ranch near Laredo, most of them with the Waller clan—Donnie, Ronnie and Scotty. “Thanks for the laughs, adventures and memories, guys! It sure was fun and at times, could be dangerous. Build that wall. It will help. We must take care of our own poor first.”
Russell spent many Sunday afternoons completely frustrated by the Houston Texans, but wants to be cremated in his J.J. Watt jersey, anyway. “Keep trying, guys. Ya’ll will get there.”
“I want to tell everyone. You may not like the idea of colonoscopies, but don’t think it can’t happen to you. Colorectal cancer kills over fifty thousand people per year. It happened to me. In no way was I a perfect man. I loved my wife absolutely, my children and grandchildren unconditionally, but made tremendous mistakes, like all men, along the way.”
Russell is preceded in death by parents, John J. Reynolds & Nancy J. Reynolds Williams; grandparents, O.B. & Ethel Mae Reynolds; grandparents, John Thomas “J.T.” Wallin & Eleanor Yvonne “Bonnie” Flanigan.
He is survived by wife, Karen Marie Reynolds of Marquez, Texas; son, Richard William Reynolds of New Castle, Colorado; son, Robert Lee Reynolds & wife, Telicia of Colorado; daughter, Robin Renee Reynolds & husband, Barry Mote of New Castle, Colorado; son, Dalton Michael Reynolds & Alexandria Hines of Marquez, Texas; four fine grandsons; two sisters, Robin Wakefield and husband, John Wakefield of Centerville, Texas and Regina Possiot and husband, Brian of Cypress, Texas; his favorite ex-wife, Tammy Reynolds of New Castle, Colorado (well, only ex-wife) and many other relatives and friends.
“A special thanks goes to Dr. Erin Fleener, Dr. Joyce Hnatek and the staff of St. Joseph Cancer Center. Ya’ll have been great. In particular, a special thanks to Chris Wackman and our W.C. Tractor Family who have been wonderful and a godsend during this trying time.”
“I hope this came across as hopeful and not as a lecture.” During the service, one of the songs played will be Desparados “Waiting for a Train,” and while it doesn’t fit line for line on many, it’s like it was lifted from the relationship with his grandmother. His grandmother loved him like her own and many times he took full advantage of that and have her the fits, but he loved her with all his heart. But his true hero was his grandfather, O.B. and he didn’t get to tell him until O.B. was almost gone.
During his last job interview for the fire department at a table with the fire chief and about half a dozen assistant chiefs, one asked who is your hero? I immediately answered, “my grandpa.” He said, “that’s strange. Most everybody said John Wayne.” So I said, “and John Wayne. I then explained how much he meant to me. I just told them about them taking a little boy nobody wanted and giving him a wonderful home.”
“Lastly, remember there is only one way. It’s thru our Father and His son, Jesus Christ. Don’t wait until it’s too late.”
Memorial services for Russell Reynolds, age 57, of Marquez, Texas, were held Saturday, February 23, 2019 at Walters Funeral Home in Centerville, Texas.
Arrangements are under the direction of Walters Funeral Home in Centerville, Texas. www.waltersfuneralhome.com.
This obituary was written in Russell’s own words….