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W. Garland Button

Button, W. Garland William Garland Button died peacefully December 7, 2011 after a brief illness. He is survived by a daughter, Betty Button, of Austin; twin sons, William L. (Bill) Button of Dallas and Robert G. (Bob) Button and his wife, Nancy, and two very special grandchildren, Jeff and Amy of Murphy, Texas. He was preceded in death by his precious wife of 62 years, Margaret Miller Button. Garland is also survived by his sister-in-law Alma Ruth Sissel and her husband, Charles, of Eunice, New Mexico. He was preceded in death by his parents A.G. and Verba Jessee Button, and by a sister, Jean Rae Cantrell. Garland was born December 1, 1918 in McKinney, Texas. He graduated with a bachelor's degree from East Texas State Teachers College in Commerce, Texas (now Texas A&M University-Commerce) in 1938. Upon graduation, he taught briefly in high schools at Lindale and Gladewater. In 1945 he joined Texas Power & Light Company (a predecessor of TXU) in Dallas. After working many years as a district and division manager, he was elected Vice President in charge of Operations in 1966. In 1970, he became Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, and was appointed to the TP&L Board of Directors. For many years Garland worked tirelessly as a volunteer in support of his alma mater. Garland was appointed by Governor Preston Smith to the first separate Board of Regents of East Texas State University in 1969 and was elected its first Chairman. He served on the board for 16 years receiving appointments from three governors. Upon his retirement from the board he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree and named a Distinguished Alumnus of the University. Garland was a loyal, faithful member of The Episcopal Church for more than 50 years. He was a long time member of St. Matthew's Episcopal Cathedral in Dallas, serving in many capacities including Vestryman, Senior Warden, Chairman of the Endowment Committee, and Diocesan Convention delegate. He also served a 3 year term on the Board of Trustees of St. John's Episcopal School of Dallas. Garland has been described as "Everybody's Friend" who touched untold numbers of lives. He had an abiding love for his Church, his family, and his alma mater. We will miss his amazing intellect, his wonderful sense of humor, and his love for us all. A Requiem Eucharist will be celebrated at 11:00 am on December 17, 2011 at The Episcopal Church of The Transfiguration, 14115 Hillcrest Road, Dallas, Texas with a reception immediately following. All are welcome. Garland will be privately interred in the Columbarium at the Texas State Cemetery in Austin, Texas. In lieu of flowers, those desiring to do so should please send memorial contributions to The Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration or to the Garland & Margaret Button Scholarship Endowment, Texas A&M- Commerce Foundation, P.O. Box 3011, Commerce, TX, 75429.

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Published in Dallas Morning News from Dec. 11 to Dec. 15, 2011
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