Dr. Anthony Lee "Tony" Ash
1931 - 2017
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Dr. Anthony Lee "Tony" Ash

Abilene, TX

Dr. Anthony Lee "Tony" Ash, 86, of Abilene, passed Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2017 in a local hospital after a short illness.

Born Oct. 29, 1931, in Lincoln, Nebraska to Jesse and Virginia Ash, Tony moved with his family to Eugene, Oregon as an infant and resided there with his parents and five sisters until he graduated from high school in 1949. He earned an Associate in Arts degree at Florida Christian College in 1954, and married Barbara Bailey, of Huntsville, Alabama, a year later. He continued his education at Florida State University, graduating with a B.A. degree in speech in 1956, an M.A. in Bible from Abilene Christian University in 1959, and a Ph.D. degree in church history from the University of Southern California in 1966.

For nearly 50 years, Ash researched, read, studied, lectured and wrote about noted theologian C.S. "Jack" Lewis and his essays, lectures and books. A professor of Bible, missions and ministry for more than 40 years at ACU, Ash also was the author of more than a dozen books. He recently completed the development and narration of Walking With C.S. Lewis, a new 10-part video series about 12 of the best-known, most beloved works of the renowned author and theologian. The series was introduced in September 2017 at ACU.

Ash was a professor at ACU from 1962-72 before his appointment as a professor at Pepperdine University and chair of its Religion Division from 1972-75. He taught at the Austin Graduate School of Theology in Austin, Texas from 1975-85 before returning to ACU in 1985. After teaching, writing, lecturing and preaching for more than 60 years around the world, he retired in 2015.

Aside from his lifelong commitment to students and higher education, Ash was an avid outdoorsman. He ran 13 marathons, including the New York City Marathon, and hiked the Appalachian Trail, as well as trails in Oregon, England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland.

Preceded in death by his parents, he is survived by his wife, Barbara, following 62 years of marriage, as well as sisters Jane Byrd, Judy Barr, Susan Anderson, Lynn Ash, and Cathy Hannaford, and their children and grandchildren. He was a resident of Abilene for more than 40 years and an active member of the University Church of Christ. Earlier, he was a pulpit minister in Abilene at Minter Lane Church of Christ, at the 11th and Willis Church of Christ, and more recently was interim minister at Highway 36 Church of Christ.

A short memorial service will be held at noon on Monday, Dec. 11, 2017 in ACU's Chapel on the Hill, 1850 Teague Blvd. located in the College of Biblical Studies Bldg. near the Judge Ely campus entrance. In lieu of flowers, the family prefers contributions to the Siburt Institute at ACU (online at acu.edu/giveonline or mailed to Gift Records, ACU Box 29132, Abilene, Texas 79699-9132.

Services are under the direction of Elmwood Funeral Home, 5750 Hwy 277 South and Inurnment will be at Elmwood Memorial Park. Online condolences may be shared with the family through the obituary link at www.elmwoodfuneral.com.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in Abilene Reporter-News on Dec. 10, 2017.
Memorial service
12:00 PM
ACU's Chapel on the Hill
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9 entries
December 14, 2019
John Mark Martin of Red Springs, Texas.
John Mark Martin
December 14, 2019
Merry Chistmas grandson Brixton.
John Mark Martin
December 14, 2019
M y daughter with her son Brixton.
John Mark Martin
December 14, 2019
My grandson Brixton now 2 and 1/2 years of age.
John Mark Martin
December 12, 2019
John Martin
December 15, 2017
Tony was my best friend in high school. He introduced me to his sister whom I later married. I thought of him often and learned at Pepperdine speaking to a professor that he was a "legend."
My most sincere condolences.
Bill Crow
December 12, 2017
Barbara and family, I'm so sorry about your loss. He was such a wonderful speaker and writer and the knowledge he takes with him will be sorely missed. His sermons were not to be missed. You had many good years to remember. Take comfort in knowing he cared for you and we all hope to see each other again, maybe soon!
Mary Anne Ray
December 11, 2017
My prayers go out to Barbara and all the family. I remember so much the hospitality, spiritual support and inspiration I received from Tony and Barbara while at ACC and at Lake Geneva Encampment in Wisconsin summer after summer.

Tony's sermons at Minter Lane church, his talks at Lake Geneva and his conversations of encouragement will never be forgotten.
Bruce Kilmer
December 11, 2017
My sincerest condolences to the family for your loss. I pray that you have the peace of God that surpasses all understanding (Phillipians 4:6,7)
Kelvin White
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