|Birth: ||Nov. 26, 1933|
|Death: ||Aug. 24, 2006|
"You fought the hard fight. You ran the race. Now, it's time to go home." Family and friends will gather and celebrate the life and cherish the memory of Milt Ardrey of Slaton on Monday, August 28th at 10 a.m. at First United Methodist Church in Slaton. Services will be performed by Rev. Steve Campbell. Graveside services will follow at Englewood Cemetery in Slaton. Services are under the direction of Englunds Funeral Service.
After 72 wonderful years, Milt passed away peacefully with his family at his side on Thursday, August 24th after a long, hard fought battle with diabetes and heart disease.
The oldest of six siblings, Milt was born to Myrl and Thelma Ardrey on November 26, 1933 at home in Cheyenne Wells, Colo. He moved from the eastern Colorado plains at age 14 with his family to the Rocky Mountain foothills at Elbert, Colo. In High School, he was active in basketball and baseball, graduating at age 17. He then went to Colorado State Teachers College (now Northern Colorado College) on a baseball scholarship, pitching for the Bears. In a life filled with accomplishments, one of his most treasured is to have pitched for the Bears in the 1952 College World Series semi-finals at the age of 18, striking out ten batters in their final game of the series. He was signed into professional baseball by the Pittsburgh Pirates, playing in their organizational minor leagues for three years. He played baseball for the great Branche Rickey and along side some of the best players in history, even pitching to the great Roberto Clemente early in his career. He came to Lubbock to play with the Lubbock Hubbers for two seasons. Milt's baseball career was shortened by a draft notice from the United States Army. He served as a medic in Germany for almost two years and traveled Europe on his military leave time. Milt returned to Lubbock after his military service, working for The Union Compress, which later became the Trinity Company. He worked at the Lubbock Cotton Compress for three years before being promoted to plant superintendent for the Slaton Compress. He moved his family to Slaton in 1963 and ran the compress for 25 years until it closed in 1988. He then worked for Nabisco as a route delivery driver until his retirement in 1996.
In 1959, Milt married MARY ELLEN (PRICE) ARDREY at her home in Canadian. Milt and Mary Ellen were avid hunters, fishermen, and cattle ranchers throughout their married life. Milt was a member of The Lubbock Bass Club for five years, serving as president for one year and was named Fisherman of the Year in 1978. He extended his love for the outdoors by becoming a taxidermist and preserving the natural wildlife he loved so much in his beautiful mounts. In his later years, he gave up the taxidermy in order to expand their land and cattle business, eventually growing their herd to over 300 head spread over eight ranches and farms throughout West Texas.
But evident throughout his life, was his love of baseball. He coached Babe Ruth and American Legion Baseball in Slaton for over ten years, having a lasting influence on many of the young boys' lives he coached. He served on the Slaton Little League Board of Directors for six years and was instrumental in the development of that program. He loved watching, coaching and teaching the sport, especially when his grandsons became involved in playing. Slaton Little League honored Milt for his lifetime accomplishments with a ceremony and award in 2004.
He is survived by his loving wife; three children, LONNIE ARDREY and his wife,CATHY ARDREY and their three children, Milton and twins, Colby and Claire of Buda; DANNY ARDREY and his wife, TRACY ARDREY and their two children, Hunter and Tanner of Elbert, Colo.; andDARLA (ARDREY) ADAMS and her husband, STEVE ADAMS and their two children, Stetson and Dillon of Slaton; three brothers, Bill and wife, Barbara of San Jose, Calif.; DON ARDREY and wife, ANNA MAE ARDREY of Warsaw, Mo.; and Gerald and wife, Cathy of Elbert, Colo.; two sisters, Kay Dunlop and husband, Bob of Denver, Colo.; and Wanda Arfsten and husband, Dewey of Colorado Springs, Colo.; numerous nieces and nephews; and a host of friends, colleagues, and an extended family of nurses and caregivers. All survivors grieve their loss, but are comforted by the belief shared by Milt in his last weeks. He believed in heaven there is no blindness, no amput ations, no need for oxygen tanks or wheelchairs, and that his mind would return to the brilliant state of his earlier years.
Pallbearers will be Stetson and Dillon Adams, Mike Gaskins, John Craig Davidson, Ed Wilson, Brian Patterson, Oris Bald win and Stuart Swanner.
In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested to Slaton Senior Citizens Center or Meals on Wheels, 230 W Lynn, Slaton, TX 79364 or the American Diabetes Association, 8008 Slide Road, Suite 25 Lubbock, TX 79425
The family will have visitation at the funeral home today from 4 until 6 p.m.
Myrl Ardrey (1906 - 1991)
Thelma Romhild Ardrey (1911 - 1994)
Mary Ellen Price Ardrey (1938 - 2010)*
Milton Myrl Ardrey (1933 - 2006)
Wanda Ardrey Arfsten (1935 - 2011)*
Donald Dean Ardrey (1939 - 2014)*
Created by: Joe W. Fields
Record added: Jul 08, 2007
Find A Grave Memorial# 20351728