u_2003_alexandersTed Alexander, 91, of Amarillo died Saturday, March 20, 2004.

Services will be at 2 p.m. Thursday in Westminster Presbyterian Church with the Rev. Jeff Conway and the Rev. Marty Lohberg, both of the church, and Dr. David Jones of United Methodist Church of Floydada officiating. Burial with military honors will be in Llano Cemetery by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors, 2800 Paramount Blvd.

Mr. Alexander was born in Canadian into a pioneer ranching family. He was the grandson of Mary Jane Alexander (the founder of the Alexander Ranch) and the Rev. C.W. Alexander, the first Presbyterian minister in the Panhandle, a graduate of Princeton University, who was sent to Mobeetie and Fort Elliot in 1884. His parents were Mae Palmer Alexander and R.T. Alexander.


The Rev. Alexander died of pneumonia in returning by horseback from his circuit riding visitations when he was trapped in freezing rain near a swollen river. Instead of returning to her home, Mary Jane Alexander moved her young family to a section of land on the Washita. Among the children, R.T. Alexander Sr. became the rancher of the family. He and his mother filed on additional sections and he established the registered Hereford cattle herd in 1909.

Ted gradually bought into the family business and managed the ranch from 1946. The Alexander show cattle won many awards in stock shows in Denver, Kansas City and Fort Worth. Ranches throughout the country purchased breeding stock, including the Milky Way Ranch, owned by the candy manufacturing family.

Ted served two terms as president of the Texas Hereford Association. During his tenure he originated the first World Conference of Hereford Breeders. Cattle were flown in from Argentina and other countries to the Fort Worth event. Amon Carter and the governors of three states made up his committee. He and his wife, Doris, established a permanent art collection through their gifts and others for the THA's Fort Worth Headquarters. Ted was named Honorary Life Member in 1986, 30 years to the date from his father receiving the same honor.

He graduated in 1934 from Texas A&M with a degree in animal husbandry. He was a member of "F" Company in the Cadet Corps and held an Army reserve commission.

He was called into service as a first lieutenant immediatly following Pearl Harbor, where he was assigned to the 818th Tank Destroyer Battalion. The battalion became a component of Patton's Third Army. At the time of the D-Day Invasion, June 6, 1944, he was operations officer and held the rank of major.

He and his battalion of 36 tank destroyers (a tank except higher velocity 90mm guns) landed on Utah Beach, fought across France into Germany, and wheeled with the crack 4th Armored to rescue Bastogne at the Battle of the Bulge. He won five battle stars, Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes (Battle of the Bulge) and Central Europe. The battalion met the Russians attacking from the east in Czechoslovakia. The Alexanders hosted the annual reunion of the 818th in Amarillo in 1999.

Ted enjoyed working with the arts. He served two terms on the board of Amarillo Museum of Art, with his wife as co-chair of the first Masked Opera Ball, co-hosted the Texas Commission of the Art meeting in Amarillo in 1997, of which his wife was a commissioner, contributed and helped with the recently dedicated Rick Husband Memorial and served several terms on the board of "TEXAS." They were co-chairs of the Golden Nail Awards in 1987 and recipients in 1991.

He married Doris Johnson on May 22, 1981, in First Presbyterian Church in Santa Fe, N.M.

Survivors include his children, R.T. Alexander III of Canadian, Homer Alexander of Richardson, Sharon Alexander Hughes of Plano and Cindy Atkins of San Antonio; two stepchildren, Laura Johnson Farris of Floydada and Grant Johnson of Victoria; eight grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.

The family suggests memorials be to Texas A&M University, Association of Former Students, Class of 1934, 505 George Bush Drive, College Station, TX 77840; or Texas Panhandle Heritage Foundation, 1514 Fourth St., Canyon, TX 79015, with notation for Ted Alexander Memorial Fund.

Friends are invited to visit at his home following the service.

The body will be available for viewing at the funeral home.

Amarillo Globe-News, March 24, 2004