Billy Ray “Pinto” Pendley passed away on December 26, 2017 in Mineola, Texas.
Pinto was born June 30, 1930 in Tulia, Texas to Urie Carson Pendley and Willie Pearl Austin Pendley, who preceded him in death.
Pinto spent much of his youth in Forreston, Texas and attended Forreston schools. He accepted Jesus Christ as his savior at the age of 12 while attending Forreston Baptist Church. At a young age, Pinto performed many typical jobs of the era including picking and chopping cotton, delivering 50 lb. blocks of ice, operating a horse-drawn hay baler, and working at the cotton gin. By age 15, he was working at a service station and grocery store. By age 16, he was a crew manager for the Dallas Outdoor Sign Company, installing auto dealership signs in Texas and Oklahoma. Pinto enjoyed sports and played basketball, fast pitch softball and baseball.
When he was 18, Pinto enlisted in the U.S. Army and served a year. Not quite a year later, the Army recalled him from inactive duty for the Korean War. His decorations include the Korean Campaign Ribbon with one Bronze Star.
At one time, Pinto was a carpenter for a construction company and made forms for concrete bridges on roads from Forreston to Howard, Waxahachie to Maypearl, and Waxahachie to Palmer. Many of those bridges are still in use today. Later, with another company, he came to build bridges around Mineola and Hawkins. While working in Mineola, he met the love of his life, Clarice Jean Barnett. They were married October 12, 1951 and spent 62 years together before she preceded him in death.
Pinto and Clarice lived in Dallas and Duncanville for 48 years before moving to Mineola for retirement. They both loved to travel and completed their lifelong dream of seeing all 50 states. They also enjoyed trips to Canada, Germany, England, Austria, Mexico, Japan, and Korea. For some years, Pinto operated an Exxon service station in Cedar Hill. Later he worked for Chance Vought (LTV) as a supervisor in Material Handling and Blue Print Control.
Although Pinto and Clarice had no children, they had plenty of nieces, nephews and cousins who remember well how generous, kind and thoughtful they were. Pinto was an avid outdoorsman who loved to hunt, fish, and waterski. He was a patient instructor and relished introducing the next generation to the pleasures of the outdoors. Over the many years and countless outings on his boat, Pinto remembered saving a total of 19 people from drowning during storms or accidents on Lakes Whitney, Fork, Lewisville, Tawakoni, and Chambers Creek.
Pinto is survived by one sister, Mary Ruth Pendley Melrose, three sisters-in-law; Donna Seifert Pendley, Wanda Hutchins Pendley, and Kay Butler Pendley, and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, January 6, 2018 at 2:00pm at the Beaty Funeral Home 5396 South State Hwy 37 Mineola, Texas 75773. A graveside service at Sand Springs Cemetery in Mineola will follow.