Early Tuesday morning, Jan. 7, 2014, Dr. Malcolm Rector went to be with the Lord. He was born to Norman and Leslie Pitts Rector in Woden, Texas on Aug. 26, 1933. After graduating from Beaumont High School in 1951, he then received his undergraduate degree in agriculture from Stephen F. Austin State College in 1955. There he met LaWanda Bowlin from Port Neches, Texas, and on May 29, 1954, they were married. Within a few years, the addition of three sons completed their family. Malcolm entered the U.S. Army
in 1955 and was stationed at The Presidio in San Francisco, Calif. until 1957. Upon his return to Texas, he soon earned his Master of Education from Stephen F. Austin State University, and over the following decade, he worked diligently to complete his Ph.D. through a distance learning program at Walden University in Naples, Fla. He became Dr. Malcolm Rector in 1973. Education was one of Malcolm's life-long passions. He began his education career in Little Cypress ISD teaching agriculture. While living in Beaumont, he coached and taught 6th grade, was an assistant junior high principal, and before long, he was named principal of Dick Dowling School where he had attended as a boy. Over the next few years, Malcolm also served as principal of Stephen F. Austin Jr. High and French High School. During this time he spent two summers in Europe as principal for a large group of students with the Foreign Study League; it was through this experience that Malcolm developed his love for international travel, which he enjoyed with his wife during the greater part of their retirement years. After serving as assistant superintendent of BISD, Dr. Malcolm Rector became superintendent in 1975. Then in 1979, his career path took him back to East Texas where Malcolm was appointed superintendent of Nacogdoches ISD. Upon his retirement in 1989, he served as adjunct professor of advanced education classes at Stephen F. Austin State University for the following decade. Altogether, Malcolm gave 42 years to his career in education. Malcolm was a long-time rotarian
and republican, served on the Stephen F. Austin Alumni Board for 25 years, refereed basketball, traveled the world with his wife, visiting China, Peru, Egypt, and most of Europe, taught Sunday school classes and even preached on occasion, and served as a church elder at Ridgewood Church of Christ in Beaumont and later at North Street Church of Christ in Nacogdoches. Malcolm enjoyed the outdoors and could often be found hunting and fishing with his sons and grandsons on the weekends. Those left to cherish his memory are his wife of almost 60 years, LaWanda Rector of Nacogdoches; sons, Jeff Rector and wife, Tammy, of Abilene, Randy Rector and wife, Becky, of Lumberton, and Dr. Tony Rector and wife, Dana, of Southlake; brother, Gilber Rector of Orange; seven grandchildren, Calli Birch (Ivan), Aaron Rector (Caroline), Whitney Rector, Brady Rector (McKenna), Mandee Chrane (Evan), Hunter Rector and Nick Rector; and two great-granddaughters, Elizabeth and Evelyn Birch. Visitation with family and friends is from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 10, at Laird Funeral Home in Nacogdoches. His service will be held at North Street Church of Christ in Nacogdoches at 10 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 11, with Bill Sherrill officiating. Burial will follow at Sunset Memorial Park. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the James and Juanita Bowlin or the Malcolm and LaWanda Rector Educational Scholarships, administered through the Stephen F. Austin State University. Laird Funeral Home.