John Williams Wilde
John attended Angelo State University for two years and transferred to Texas A&M, where in 1970, he attained a degree in agricultural education. Upon graduation, he moved back to Wall where he farmed with his family raising cotton, wheat and milo. While in college, his sister, Melanie, introduced to him to the love of his life, Betty Jo Book. They were married at Sacred Heart Cathedral in San Angelo in 1975. John continued his career in farming, along with his wife, two sons and two daughters. They raised pigs, cotton, milo, wheat and corn at their farms in Concho, Tom Green, Reagan, Pecos and Glasscock counties. During his farming career he was named Conservation Farmer in 2004, by the Tom Green County Soil and Conservation District. Along with assistance from the Natural Resources Conservation Service and Texas Farm Credit, the Wilde family was able to install 850 acres of subsurface drip irrigation boosting cotton yields to four bales per acre. John received numerous awards from Fiber Max Cotton Seed for his top yielding cotton crops, winning multiple One Ton Club awards. Through his work with Texas Agricultural Extension Service, John played a vital roll in finding an effective fungicide that controls cotton root rot by allowing researchers to test fungicides on an irrigated test plot on his farm. John was selected as the Southwest Region Winner of the 2013 Farm Press High Cotton Award. This prestigious award is given to four cotton growers nation-wide that have achieved high cotton yields and farmed profitably while using environmentally sound production practices. Following his recovery from thyroid cancer surgery in 2007, John was selected to participate in the Western Producer Information Exchange Tour. He, along with a group of farmers, toured facilities and farms in Arizona and California. John and Betty Jo were also privileged to participate in a sponsored tour of the National Cotton Council facility in Raleigh, N.C. John valued his faith and family above all else. He was baptized a Catholic at St. Ambrose Catholic Church in Wall and he continued practicing his faith there until his death. He was a member of the Knights of Columbus and served many years as an usher during Masses. His favorite all-time job was ushering for the parish festival because of the many different people he was able to visit in one day! John also served on the parish council. Meeting and visiting with people was always his favorite pastime. He was the unofficial welcoming committee at St. Ambrose. There was seldom a guest or new member not greeted by him as they left the church. He cherished attending all family reunions and discussing genealogy - his and everyone else's. During his many visits to M.D. Anderson, he made lifelong friends with not only the doctors and nurses, but the parking attendants and receptionists. Some of the happiest memories John had were those he spent hunting for deer and turkey and fishing on the family deer lease. A lifelong dream came true when he was able to tour Germany with his family. He was able to visit the church and town where his Wilde ancestors lived and worshipped. John adored his precious granddaughters and loved giving horsey rides on his legs to Caroline while singing, "Hoppe, Hoppe Reiter," a German verse that his dad taught him. John was preceded in death by his parents, Edwin and Cordula Wilde; and sister Melanie Franklin. John is survived by his loving wife, Betty Jo. Together they were blessed with four children, Douglas and his wife, Sarah, Matthew, Julia and husband Jerry Garcia and Joanna; and two granddaughters, Caroline and Anna Kate. He also leaves behind two brothers, Donald and his wife, Ruth, and Dale and his wife, Laura; brother-in-law Rusty Franklin; and numerous nieces and nephews. John is also survived by friends too numerous to mention and was described by a dear friend with the following words: " were an inspiration to us all. Your personality and character were a joy to be around. In plain country English, you were a real 'square shooter.'" John selected his dearest friends as pallbearers Keith Davis, Dennis Fuchs, Arnold Matthiesen, Rick Minzemeier, James Seidenberger, Ricky Strube and Harvey Wilde. His honorary pallbearers are Herbert Biederman, Lional Felts, Ernest Hildebrandt, Dr. Derrill Stuart and Walter (Pete) Wilde. He was privileged to have so many talented caretakers. The family would like to especially thank Dr. Derrill Stuart and Dr. Denver Marsh of San Angelo, Dr. Steve Sherman, Vicki Orin, RN, and the rest of his M.D. Anderson team, Odyssey Hospice and Diana Hernandez, Sandra Chappa and Annie Ornelas. A rosary will be held at 6 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 12, 2014, at St. Ambrose Catholic Church in Wall, Texas, with visitation to follow in the parish hall. His funeral Mass will be at 10 a.m. Monday, Jan. 13, 2014, at the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in San Angelo, Texas with burial to follow in St. Ambrose Cemetery in Wall, Texas. Memorials in John's honor may be directed to St. Ambrose CCD Building Fund, P.O. Box 228, Wall, TX 76957; or West Texas Rehabilitation Center. Family and friends may sign our online guestbook at

I always tell people that I am Johnny Wilde, not John Wilde. Sometimes they kind of laugh at me as if it's not important. I tell them it is important because my real name is Johnny and there is a real John Wilde that lives here. I found out the hard way that we also used the same bank. One time I was putting a lot of cash in my account from a stadium and I did not have one of my pre-printed deposit slips. The teller said she found my account and would deposit the cash. I went home and looked for the deposit but it never showed up. That's because it was in John Wilde's account and not in Johnny Wilde's account. No worries they fixed it right away. I bet a lot of you are wondering how were we related? The answer is simple. We were not. I am sure way back someway, somehow we were but not close enough for us to even know it. I did know him and he was a great guy.