Going to Oklahoma tomorrow.......our dear, old friend, Bill Shipman, passed away Thursday. Alzheimer's had taken him from his wife,Beth over the past 8 to 10 years so he's in a much better place today....but still a loss for her. What a dreadful, mercy less disease. I hate it!
We met Bill and Beth when they were our neighbors in Mena, Ark. back in 1956.....a long time ago. He was the local high school football coach there and went on to coach in Irving, Texas and Andrews, Texas. Even thou they remained in Texas for the last 50 some odd years and we relocated to California and Illinois we stayed in touch and after we moved back to Texas in 1988 we were able to spend some time with them during the last 20 years.
For a number of years it was our custom to spend New Years weekend with them at their home in Oklahoma...enjoying driving around the countryside, reminiscing about old times and watching football, of course!
Bill was an easy-going and solf spoken fellow, (unusual for a successful football coach)...loved animals, football, Oklahoma, Beth, his booze, ice cream, and coffee. Even after he reached the stage in his illness where he could not speak he would smile when Beth brought him ice cream. The last time I saw him he smiled...don't know if he knew who I was but he was still smiling...
Bob bless you Bill...rest in peace.