Francis Dale King, of Willis, Texas, passed away at the age of 86 on Monday, Dec. 17, 2018.
Born in Hunter, Ohio, and raised in nearby Bethesda, he was a gifted athlete whose 6-foot-4½-inch frame earned him the nickname “Big Dale” and whose honors included being named to the 1950 All-Eastern Ohio Class B basketball team. Upon graduation from high school, he played basketball and football for Miami University (Ohio).
After earning his bachelor’s degree, he returned to his hometown to teach and coach at Bethesda High School. He went on to serve in the Army at Ft. Chaffee, Arkansas, and later earned his master’s degree and Ph.D. in education administration from West Virginia University.
He held teaching and administrative positions in northeastern Ohio public schools before becoming superintendent of Bryan City Schools in northwestern Ohio. He also spent several years as an associate professor of education at Defiance College before retiring and moving to Texas. In his spare time, Dale was active in his church and enjoyed fishing, crossword puzzles and genealogy.
Left to remember his wit, intelligence, kindness and strength are his wife of 64 years, Barbara Ellen (Harris); daughters, April (Tim) Holmes of Solon, Ohio, Julie King of West Palm Beach, Florida, and Rachel King Wright of The Woodlands, Texas; grandchildren, Kristen, Matt, Adam, Laura and Brandon; great-grandchildren, Nora and Abby; and niece and nephew Linda and Dan Phillips of Bethesda, Ohio. He was predeceased by his parents, Cecil and Virgia Mae King, and his sister, Helen Phillips.
At his request, there will be no funeral services; interment will be at South Florida National Cemetery in Lake Worth, Florida. Memorial contributions may be made to Montgomery County Food Bank, 1 Food for Life Way, Conroe, TX 77385, or to the charity of the donor’s choice.
The family would like to express deepest appreciation to the staff of Unlimited Care Cottages in Willis, where he spent his final months, as well as to all the other caregivers, neighbors and friends who supported us over the years.
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