Louise “Lou” Dowdell Parker, 87, of Byers, died Monday, Dec. 10, 2012 in Wichita Falls.
Following a private burial service, a memorial service will be held at First Christian Church of Wichita Falls, 3701 Taft Ave., at 1 p.m., Wednesday, Dec. 12, with Dr. David B. Hartman, Jr., pastor, officiating. Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Davis Funeral Home of Henrietta.
Mrs. Parker was born Sept. 16, 1925 in Houston to Joshua Render and Ruby Dowdell. Her family later moved to Dallas, where She graduated from Highland Park High School. She attended Texas State College for Women, now Texas Women’s University, for two years then transferred to the University of Texas where she met Joe Parker, an All American defensive end, who became her husband in June, l947. The newlyweds moved to Chicago where Joe played football for the Chicago Cardinals. After his team won the National Championship a year later, Joe retired from football and the two set up housekeeping in l948 on ranchland Joe bought in Byers, Texas.
Lou became bookkeeper in Joe’s various business endeavors, and she continued to work for him after their sons, Joe and Jim, were born. She was also active in the Byers community as well as in Henrietta. She served as Byers PTA president and was instrumental in starting the Pioneer Reunion and Rodeo program as a fundraiser for area schools. She later served as vice president of the Clay County Pioneer Association, spent years on the float committee, was Treasurer of the centennial committee, and a participant in the Rawhide and Ruffles pageant. Outgoing and full of ideas, Lou is credited with enhancing the parade in several ways. She was elected Pioneer Queen in 2001. She served on the Edwards Public Library board from 1956-1997, and was voted Outstanding Woman of Clay County in l986. She enjoyed taking part in the Byers Women’s Club and Unity III Club in Wichita Falls. A Sunday School teacher, Lou also was active in First Christian Church of Wichita Falls, where she became an elder and later a lifetime elder. She and Joe were chosen outstanding couple of the church in l994.
She is preceded in death by husband Joe Parker in l998; and a brother, Josh Dowdell.
Survivors include two sons, Joe Parker and wife Marjorie of Byers, and Jim Parker and wife Kim of Byers; a sister, Doris Moore of Dallas; Five grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
Family visitation will be at Davis Funeral Home on Tuesday, Dec. 11, from 6-7 p.m.
Memorials can be made to Hospice of Wichita Falls, P.O. Box 4804, Wichita Falls, Texas 76308 the North Texas Rehabilitation Center, 10050 Midwestern Pkwy., Wichita Falls, Texas 76302; or Edwards Public Library, 210 W. Gilbert St., Henrietta, Texas 76365.