Wayne Harvey Bacon, Jr., 88, of Killeen passed away December 22, 2019.Visitation will be held from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, December 29, 2019, at Harper-Talasek Funeral Home in Killeen. A graveside service will be held at 11a.m. Monday, December 30, 2019, at Killeen Memorial Parkwith First Baptist Church Associate Pastor Tim McKeown officiating.
Harvey was born in Killeen, Texas, on August 31, 1931, to Harvey and Eula Bacon. Until the age of five, he lived on a ranch, three miles from Palo Alto, which became part of the Fort Hood reservation. Then, his family settled on the Bacon Ranch located northeast of Killeen. His great-grandfather had established the ranch in 1875, and it was in the family for four generations.
Through the second grade, Harvey attended the old Hay Branch School, which was located across the road from the Bacon home. At the age of 16, he graduated from Killeen High School where he played football for the Kangaroos. Upon graduation, Harvey bought some cattle and began ranching with his father. He never wanted to be anything other than a cowboy. Harvey’s love of the land, horses, and rodeo prompted him to learn to rope calves. He trained his roping horses and, at the age of 17, began competing in RCA rodeos and winning the calf roping events. Harvey had cowboy friends from all over the country.
On Christmas Eve of 1950, Harvey married Barbara Horton. He continued ranching until the drought of the mid-fifties forced him to sell his cattle. He then worked as an electrician and eventually went into business with his father-in-law managing the Gold Rocket Trailer Court. After several years, Harvey acquired the Evergreen Arms Apartment Complex and ran it until it was sold upon his retirement. He was always available to his tenants when they needed a helping hand.
Harvey was a member of the First Baptist Church of Killeen where his great-grandfather was the first pastor. He was an officer of the Exchange Club and a charter member of the Old Timers Rodeo Association. Harvey was inducted into the Cowboys and Cowgirls Ring of Honor in 2004. He also served on the 439 Water Board and was a member of Killeen’s Board of Electricians.
Harvey was devoted to his children and, then, his grandchildren. He stayed busy attending their activities. Harvey especially liked meeting his friends for coffee at local cafes. He loved Western swing music and taught himself to play the fiddle, strictly for his own enjoyment. He accumulated quite a collection of artifacts, most of which were found on the Bacon Ranch. Because of his strong morals, upstanding character, and love of family and community, Harvey was named the 2002 Comanche Gap Medicine Man.
Survivors include his wife of 69 years, Barbara of Killeen; children Connie Gilliam and her husband Steve of Salado, Jan Watts and her husband Charlie of Austin, Wayne Bacon and his wife Kellie of Killeen, and Rocky Bacon of Killeen. He is also survived by his grandchildren Jeremy Watts of Montgomery, Kimberly Partain of Killeen, Zachary Watts of Boerne, Melodie Ramirez of Belton, R.J. Bacon of Killeen, Holly Love of Driftwood, Rory Bacon of Florence, Boone Bacon of Dallas, Dakota Bacon of Muleshoe, Maura Wiginton of Portland, and spouses; and 15 great-grandchildren.
Harvey was preceded in death by his parents, granddaughter Mandy Gilliam, sister Nettie Faye Ray, and half-brother Gerald Knight.
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