CONATSER, WALES CLOVIS Died Wednesday at age 87 after a series of strokes. He was born Dec. 22, 1920, in Cleburne and grew up in Celina, where he graduated from high school and played on the football team. He served in the Army Air Forces as an airplane mechanic from 1942 to 1945. In June 1945, he married Beulah Lane, who grew up in the neighboring town of Prosper. In 1950, they bought a house in Oak Cliff and never left. A bookcase in the hallway held trophies they won at the Bronco Bowl. They ate several times a week at Stan's Country Kitchen, where a fellow patron jokingly referred to Wales as "the mayor of Oak Cliff." Their grandsons grew up in Lakewood, and Wales often told them, "You make sure you put a tie on before you cross that Trinity. We don't want any riffraff over here." Wales worked as a butcher and mechanic, but he spent the bulk of his career with General Electric, where he retired as a warehouse foreman in 1984. In his retirement, he sold porch swings that he built from scratch, as well as bicycles that he salvaged and repaired. For a few semesters in the 1990s, he worked with Beulah in the bookstore at Mountain View College. Wales was also a longtime deacon at Hampton Place Baptist Church and Grace Temple Baptist Church. He was preceded in death by his parents, J.E. and Esthel Conatser of Gunter; brothers J.E. Conatser of Canton, Lyman Conatser of Arlington and Bob Conatser of Mount Vernon; and daughter Darlene Conatser. Besides his wife of 63 years, survivors include daughter and son-in-law Donna and Carl O'Dell of Dallas; daughter and son-in-law Diane and Robin Heindel of Tyler; son and daughter-in-law Randy and Diane Conatser of Frankfort, Ill.; sisters Helen O'Dell of Irving and Evelyn Day of Sherman; brother Gene Conatser of California; grandson and granddaughter-in-law Dan and Jessica Koller of Dallas; grandson Steve Koller of New York; grandson and granddaughter-in-law Mark and Natalie Koller of Cedar Park; grandson John Heindel of Dallas; granddaughter Katy Conatser of Frankfort, Ill.; and two great-grandchildren, with a third due in September. Visitation: Friday 6-8pm, Services Saturday at 4:00pm
Published in Dallas Morning News from May 30 to Jun. 6, 2008.