George Carrol Tamplen

October 3, 1941January 4, 2019

George Carrol Tamplen of Wickett, Texas, passed away in the early morning hours of Friday, Jan. 4, 2019. He was 77 years of age on Oct. 3, 2018. He lived a life that embodied the Texan virtues of independence, self-sufficiency, and helping those in need. He could make you laugh even if you were determined not to.

George was born in Lamesa, Texas, to Leon and Lucille Tamplen, while the family was living in Wilson. In the early 1950s they moved to Denison, where he graduated from high school in 1960. He earned his B.A. from Texas Tech in Lubbock, where he met and married Carolyn Garrett in 1963. In 1968, George moved his young family to Grand Prairie.

His passion for history made George an engaging storyteller, especially touching on World War II. When he wasn’t absorbed by one of the many history books or films in his library, George could be found attending historical re-enactments by the 4th Regulars U.S. Cavalry, the Commemorative (formerly Confederate) Air Force, or the Texas Army.

His interests were wide enough that he stayed current with the world of politics; appreciated vintage films and vehicles; and was an inventive cook. George particularly enjoyed baking different breads and experimenting with Cajun cuisine, a fascination that grew through many excursions to Cajun music festivals. With wife Carolyn in his arms, he took up dancing: swing, line, country & western—and the boots and cowboy hats that went with them.

George was a traveler and loved being out-of-doors—hunting and fishing with his dad, water skiing, hiking the Colorado San Juans and the Guadalupe Mountains, motorcycling, camping. His middle name was “Go.” When he was growing up, those trips were with his parents. As an adult, many of those travels were on motorcycles; he received his 200,000-mile award from BMW 20 years before he had to give up riding. Other memorable adventures included whitewater rafting on the Colorado River, jetboating on Idaho’s Snake River, flying in a bi-plane above the San Juan Islands, and taking to the skies in a legendary Ford tri-motor.

Photography went hand in glove with his travels. He wanted to capture the beauty of what he saw—not only in sunrises and sunsets but also rain storms, clouds, a splash of color in a winter desert, the grain pattern in a rock or a piece of wood. He kept a special place in his heart for all the places he visited—always with Carolyn at his side—but he spoke most often of memories created exploring Sitka, Alaska, via the Alaska Ferry; snorkeling the clear waters of the Florida Keys; and walking the time-worn streets of Trujillo, Honduras. Of all the places he went, George loved the annual trips to the Big Bend region best. Above all these things, he loved his family and his Savior Jesus.

George will always live in the hearts of his wife Carolyn of Wickett; their daughter Laurie Hasty and husband Rick of Fort Worth; his nephew Brian Boyd and wife Lynne of Dallas; his nieces Deanna Boyd of Chicago; Stephanie Pham and husband Donnie of Burleson; and Jennifer Springman and husband Chuck of Rowlette; his sisters-in-law Toni Salama of Lubbock and Margie Tamplen of Gainesville; three grand-nephews Harrison Boyd, Tyler Pham and Daniel Springman; and one grand-niece Olivia Pham.

He was preceded in passing by his parents, his sister Marlene Boyd Howard, and his brother Waymon Tamplen.

Because George experienced so many health problems in the last five years of his life, he donated his body for medical research to benefit others.

A Celebration of Life for George will be held on Saturday, March 2, 2019 at 3:00 pm at Christian Fellowship in Monahans.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Christian Motorcycle Association (P.O. Box 9, Hatfield, Arkansas 71954), Hillsdale College (P.O. Box 96607, Washington, D.C. 20090-6607), the Salvation Army, the National Rifle Association, or your favorite charity.


  • Christian Motorcycle Association
  • Hillsdale College
  • National Rifle Association
  • Salvation Army


  • Celebration of Life Saturday, March 2, 2019

George Carrol Tamplen

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February 10, 2019

I was really impressed by his determination when he try to find my house and couldn't. I ended up finding him. Then he was also very willing to help out with a problem that I have with my carburetors. That show the kind of person that he was. I wish I could know him better. Rest in peace and my condolences for the family.