And when at last our strength has failed we make our last long ride.
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We leave this world and take the trail across the great divide.
So when it's time to make the change we'll go where they have gone.
We'll meet them on another range somewhere in the beyond. Bruce Kiskaddon, Union Stockyards Calendar poem
On December 9, 1928, in Concho County, near Duck Creek, a cowboy was born. Some say he was born to the saddle, and stories were told that he was seen riding horseback as a toddler in diapers rounding up the family’s small herd. Born to Ann E and Charles Everett Pope, Tom David Pope (T.D.) passed from this life on June 7, 2019.
T.D. fulfilled many roles in his long, experience-rich life; the hardest being that of a retired cowboy, of which he said would surely kill him. He was a bronc buster, a ranch hand, a sheepherder, a sheepdog trainer, a truck driver, a skilled horseman, a husband, a daddy, a Papa, a brother, an uncle, a cousin, a loyal friend and a pretty good windmill man. T.D. brought true meaning to the words “a good work-ethic” and instilled that in all his children. His idea of a day’s work started truly before sunrise and lasted way past dark-thirty.
Those left to cherish his memory are his wife of 71 years, Jimmie Sue Pope of Veribest, TX; oldest son James Pope and wife Earlene of Dell City, TX; daughter Rebecca Bilyeu and husband Denver of Odessa, TX; youngest son B.J. Pope and wife Terri of Gardendale, TX; two grandsons, Denver Ryan Bilyeu and wife Rachel; Dustin Bilyeu and wife Monique; and granddaughters Dior Bilyeu and Robin Bowden. He is also affectionately remembered by three great-grandchildren who brought him much joy in his later years. He is preceded in death by his sister Barbara Reeves and brother August (Pete) Pope. He will be fondly remembered by numerous other family and friends.
Visitation will be all day Sunday, June 9, 2019 at Shaffer Funeral Home. A celebration-of-life service will be held at Harris Avenue Baptist Church, San Angelo, TX on June 10, 2019 at 11:00 AM. Burial will precede memorial services at 9:30 AM at Miles Cemetery. Services are under the direction of Shaffer Funeral Home/ Sherwood Way.
Memorial contributions may be made to West Texas Boys Ranch, 10223 Boys RD, San Angelo, TX 76904 or wtbr.org; or Harris Avenue Baptist Church, 1026 E. Harris Ave, San Angelo, TX 76903.