Billy F. Kidd (1921-2009), 88, passed away Friday, June 19, 2009 after a long battle with Alzheimer's disease to be with the Lord and his beloved wife Rosalyn of 63 years.
Billy was born in Mason County on June 7, 1921, to William Francis and Georgia Jarvis Kidd. He was the oldest of three siblings, survived by his brother Robert J. "Pop" Kidd of Snyder; and sister Aleen Powell of Menard, Texas.
Graveside services were held on Monday, June 22, at the Menard Rest Haven Cemetery under the direction of Heritage Funeral Home.
Billy had a tremendous influence on the lives of 4-H members he worked with. He worked with everyone the way he thought a person should live - give it your best! He inspired them to do their best and achieve as much as they could, and encouraged them to be winners. If they couldn't be winners, to be secure in the knowledge they had done their best.
A third generation rancher raised on the family ranch in the southeastern portion of Menard county, Billy's early experiences in livestock production expanded into a life long career in agriculture and 4-H youth programs that gained recognition throughout the state and nation. During the 30's, he showed numerous champion steers, including the Reserve Grand Champion steer at the 1935 San Angelo Fat Stock Show. Twice he won national 4-H trips and represented Texas as the state winner in livestock judging and with his beef production record book at the National 4-H Congress in Chicago, Illinois. At the International 4-H livestock judging contest in 1938, he was a member of the first Texas team to win the prestigious 4-H international judging contest.
Following graduation from Menard High in 1939, he studied animal husbandry at Texas A&M. Graduating in December of 1943, he entered the U.S. Army as a Second Lieutenant during World War II in the China Burma India theater. Assigned as the executive officer of the 253rd Quartermaster Pack Troop, he became attached to the famed 475th Infantry Regiment in 1944. Known as the Merrill Marauders, the unit was reorganized following the battle for Myitkyina into the Mars Task Force - a long range penetration outfit that remained behind the Japanese lines attacking supply lines until the end of the war. Following the war, he remained in the army reserves until 1954, when he was honorably discharged with the rank of captain.
From 1947 to 1954, he taught the Veterans Vocational School in Menard, and worked for Angelo State College, coaching their livestock college team to a national title in 1954. From 1954 to 1957, he was employed with the Agricultural Extension Service sheep and goat improvement program; assisting ranchers upgrade of their flocks throughout Central West Texas. In 1958, he became the San Saba County Extension Agent, a position he maintained until his retirement in 1984.
During his 27 years as San Saba County Agent, Billy was very involved in working with Ag producers in pecans, turkeys, cattle, sheep, goats, grain sorghum, hunting, and fishing. He also had numerous state winning 4-H judging teams in livestock, wool, mohair, soils, horse, and range. Under his leadership, San Saba wool judging teams won 8 nationals titles, and soils once. In the show ring, San Saba County 4-H program had 41 steer and 17 heifer breed champions at Ft. Worth, San Antonio, Houston, Waco, and San Angelo. In 1986, Billy and Rosalyn returned to their Menard ranching operations where Billy remained active as a 4-H adult leader, assisting the Menard County 4-H wool teams to three national titles.
Because of his involvement in agriculture, he was often asked to judge and classify numerous county and area livestock shows, including numerous major breeding sheep and goat shows at Ft. Worth, Austin, Dallas, San Antonio, Houston, and Albuquerque, New Mexico, Billy was also very involved in numerous other youth athletic groups and civic groups, serving as president of the Lions Club and receiving the Athletic Booster Award in 1964, Sheep and Goat Raiser's Outstanding County Agent in 1964, and Extension Service Distinguished Service Award in 1969.
Billy is survived by his daughter Nancy Williamson and husband John; son Jerry Kidd and wife Lisa; all of Menard; Grandchildren Kami Williamson, Menard; James Williamson and wife Lyndsey of Abilene; Casey Kidd and wife Cindy of Big Spring; and Katie Bird Kidd of College Station; in-laws John A. Powell of Menard; Katharine Kidd of Snyder; and Howard W. (Jack) Green of San Angelo; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Memorials may be made to Menard County 4-H Clubs - PO Box 485, Menard, TX., 76859; Hospice of San Angelo - PO Box 471, San Angelo, TX., 76902; Menard Manor - PO Box 608, Menard, Tx., 76859.