Rex Dale (Dale) Ethridge of Pipe Creek, Texas, went to be with the Lord on Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, at the age of 81.
Born in Hollis, Oklahoma, Dale spent his formative years in Samnorwood, Texas and graduated from Ropesville, Texas, where he was a letterman in football and basketball.
He attended Texas A & M on a basketball scholarship in 1957 before transferring to Southwest Texas State University where he was a member of the Letterman’s Club, member of the 1960 NAIA National Championship Team, and a member of the 1961 NAIA finalist team.
After graduating from SWT in 1961, Dale spent the next 35 years as a coach, teacher and administrator in East Bernard, Clear Creek, Sonora, Tomball, Junction and Rocksprings. He positively impacted the lives of players, students, and colleagues with his kindness, loyalty and big hugs.
After 25 years of retirement, Dale was still referred to as “Coach” or “Mr. E.” Facebook comments upon his passing reflected his impact on so many, as far back as 59 years ago.
Dale’s life was about serving as he was a lifelong member of the Methodist Church, serving as a Sunday School teacher, choir member, lay leader and board member.
He and his wife Jan enjoyed summers in Colorado and trips to California over the years. He was an avid reader and a favorite of their family dogs and cats.
Preceded in death by his parents Faye and Willard Ethridge, his bonus mother Frances “Fran” Ethridge, his brothers-in-law W.E. Leake and Jim Howze, and his nephew Tom Leake, he was the youngest of three children and is survived by his sisters Jean Howze of Lubbock and Patricia “Pat” Smith of Amarillo.
He is also survived by his college sweetheart and wife of 59 years, Jan, daughter Dana “Chrissie” Drysdale (Cory) and son Russ Ethridge. His six grandchildren Brock, Sophie and Hank Ethridge, Isaac, Bella and Connor Drysdale were the joys of his life.
He is loved and survived by sisters-in-law Debbie Braeuer and Cindy Gaylord and brothers-in-law Bill Eudy (Bic), Ike Smith, and A. J. Braeuer, along with numerous nephews and nieces he loved dearly.
If desired, friends may make memorial donations to the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center at gifts.mdanderson.org.
Dale beat cancer after an 18-year battle, and though he died of an aneurism, he was always grateful to M. D. Anderson for their help in his cancer battle.