William Roy Page Sr.
May 19, 1926 – January 4, 2019
Odessa, TX – William Roy Page, Sr., 92, died of respiratory failure 4 January 2019, at Medical Center Hospital, Odessa, TX. He was born 19 May 1926 in Big Spring, TX, son of George and Zela Page. Bill, Sr. attended Abilene High School. Following the attack on Pearl Harbor, at the age of 17, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy. His first deployment was on the lend-lease aircraft carrier HMS The Tracker. After his duty with the British Navy, he returned to duty with the U.S. Navy and skippered landing craft, bringing troops into the battles for Guam, Saipan, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa. After the war was over, he was assigned to take medical and life-support supplies into the US POWs in Japan. In 1947, after WWII, he married Birdie Louise Daniel from Hamlin, TX; they have been married for 71 ½ years. Bill served five years as a flight instructor for the U.S. Air Force at Hondo, TX during the Korean War. Following his time with the Air Force, the family moved to Sweetwater, TX and Bill, Sr. worked for DS&R Construction as a pilot and construction supervisor in Alaska while DS&R built drill sites for Humble Oil. Then the family moved to El Paso where Bill flew corporate air craft for El Paso Natural Gas. During this time, he earned his airline transport rating which became mandatory for all El Paso Natural Gas pilots. In 1964, he helped set up the corporate aviation department for El Paso Products in Odessa, TX, becoming the first pilot to become certified on jet aircraft. The family has been in Odessa since then. Bill, Sr. loved aviation from his earliest days. He soloed on his sixteenth birthday, had is private pilot’s license by 16 ½, and his commercial, multi-engine, and instructor pilot’s licenses by age 17. After returning from the South Pacific in 1946, he went to work for Abilene Aviation as an instructor and charter pilot. One day he was called to the airport to check out a pilot on a new airplane he had just purchased. When Bill, Sr. arrived at the airplane, the pilot he was checking out was the original singing cowboy Gene Autry. In 1947, Bill, Sr. worked as a charter pilot flying Lyndon B. Johnson around Texas on his senatorial campaign. Bill, Sr. was a 32nd Degree Mason, a Member of First Baptist Church, co-owner of the Oil Patch Restaurant, and co-owner with Louise and his son Bill, Jr. of ReCon Oil Filtration and Environmental Company. Bill, Sr. was predeceased by his parents George W. and Zela K. Page, of Abilene, TX, and his sister, JoNell Rumsch of Chula Vista, CA. He is survived by his wife of 71 ½ years, Louise D. Page, his two sons: William R. Page, Jr. (U.S. Army MAJ Ret) and Daniel B. Page. Also, he is survived by Bill, Jr.’s wife Maureen Forsythe Page, and their three sons, U.S. Army CPT Jason Boudreau, William R. Page, III, and Adam J. Page, and Dan’s wife Kimberly Kelly Page, and their two sons, Benjamin D. Page and Samuel K. Page. In addition to his five grandsons, Bill, Sr. is survived by his five great-grandchildren. A service of remembrance will be held at 2 p.m. Tuesday, 8 January at Wilson Funeral Home, 4635 Oakwood Dr., Odessa, TX 79761. Interment will be Wednesday, 9 January at 2 p.m. at Hamlin Memorial Cemetery, Hamlin, TX. Those who wish to remember Bill, Sr. may make gifts in his memory to the First Baptist Church, Odessa, TX.
- Visitation Tuesday, January 8, 2019
- Funeral Service Tuesday, January 8, 2019
- Burial Wednesday, January 9, 2019