Ronald Montgomery

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Ronald Montgomery

1937-2017

 

Services for “Red” Ronald Montgomery, 80, of Canton, were held Monday, Aug. 28, 2017, at the Eubank Funeral Chapel with the Rev. Mark Young, Rhita Koches and Kirby Montgomery officiating. 

Interment followed in High Cemetery. 

Mr. Montgomery passed away Thursday, Aug. 24, 2017, in Canton. 

He was born March 17, 1937, in Canton to Clarence and Ollie Lenor Whitton Montgomery. 

He was a deacon in local Baptist churches for 40 years, taught Sunday School and was a children’s pastor.  In his later years, he joined the Wallace United Methodist Church where he had attended as a child. In high school, he was a member of the 440-yard relay team that won the District Championship, Regional Championship and third place in the State Meet.  After graduating Canton High School in 1957, he served in the National Guard for four years and obtained the rank of staff sergeant with many commendations. 

He married Bennie Lide in 1959.  He retired from the Texas Highway Department after 35 ½ years as a heavy equipment operator and bridge inspector.  After retirement, he owned several businesses. He partnered with his brothers in a tree cutting business and Red’s Produce Stand for years.  After the deaths of his brothers, he partnered with his wife, Linda, and Rickey Baugh in the produce stand.  He partnered with Carl Harris in Rays Blood Bait.  He, Bennie and Mellony began and operated Timeless Treasures Antique Mall for 15 years.  He was instrumental in developing the Canton Farmer’s Market on Hwy 19.    

He was instrumental in initiating, planning, developing and creating the Van Zandt County Memorial which is now recognized as one of the best memorial sites in the State of Texas.  He first presented the idea to county officials in the summer of 2005.  By the end of the year, contracts had been made with state legislators and the Texas Department of Transportation and a steering committee had been formed.  In January 2009, his dream became a reality with a groundbreaking ceremony for the site at the intersection of Highways 19 and 243 in Canton. Throughout the planning, construction, and ongoing enhancement of the memorial, he always wanted to be a behind-the-scenes advocate and shied away from any credit directed toward him for the project. 

He was recognized as the Canton Man of the Year in 2007 and the Van Zandt County Man of the Year in 2012.

His hobbies included fast pitch softball, collecting Indian arrowheads, fishing and playing 42.   

He is preceded in death by his parents; wife of 53 years, Bennie; daughter and son-in-law, Carmen and Bruce Taylor; two brothers, Lewis and Gerald Montgomery; and two sisters, Marie McKinnon and Grace Coburn.

Survivors include his wife, Linda Montgomery; daughter, Mellony Montgomery; grandson, Ridge Taylor, all of Canton; two stepchildren, Karen Krailo of Grand Saline and Rodney Singleton of Apple Valley, Calif.; six step-grandchildren; and 10 step-great-grandchildren. 

He leaves behind a legacy of dedication to this community and a passion for life and love for his family and friends.  He was an ordinary man with extraordinary accomplishments. 

Memorials may be made to the Van Zandt County Veterans Memorial, 1200 S. Trade Days Blvd, Suite 600, Canton, TX 75103.