Weldon Oran Day

September 14, 1941February 13, 2007


Weldon was born September 14, 1941 at Shannon Hospital in San Angelo, TX to Jewel Clarence Day and Lola May Sims Day.  His parents divorced in May 1942.  Weldon, along with his sister, Beverley, and their mother made their home with his maternal grandparents.  They settled in Ozona, TX close to his aunt and uncle, Lottie Lee Sims Baker and Hubert Weldon Baker.


His maternal great-grandparents, James Thomas Sims and Molly Wade Keeton Sims, came from Llano, TX and began ranching near San Angelo, TX in 1884.  Their son, Otis Lee Sims married Lula Mary Scott from Henderson County, TX.  Her parents, Elbert Patterson Scott and America Lea Scott, were from McNairy County, TN.


His paternal great-grandparents, Rufus M. Day and Louisa Eliza Jane Daugherty Day, came from Arkansas and settled in Rockwall, TX.  Their ancestors can be traced back to Ireland.  Their son, Clarence Monroe Day, married Florence Odella Weatherford from Limestone County, AL.  Her parents, Harris Martin Weatherford and Mary Virginia Harvey moved the family from Limestone County, AL to Rockwall County, TX.


While growing up in Ozona, Weldon had a lot of friends, including his three cousins, Jean Ann, Carol Lee and Betty Lou Baker.  He enjoyed spelunking with his high school buddies and going fishing with his granddad, Otis Sims and his cousin, Clay Adams.  At 14 he developed an interest in ham radios which continued throughout his life.  As an adult he attained from the FCC the highest license level possible for Amateur Radio Operator of which he was extremely proud.  He was a member of various amateur radio clubs including the Port Lavaca Amateur Radio Club.  His call sign number was KC5KQN.


Weldon graduated in the Class of 1960 from Ozona High School, after which he joined the United States Navy going to boot camp at the Navy Training Base, now Camp Pendleton, San Diego, CA.  He was assigned to the U.S.S. Summit, a Landing-Ship-Tank (LST #1146).  Their primary work was to provide amphibious training for U.S. Marines and Army troops.  His LST took him to Hawaii, Seattle and Johnston Island, where he participated in 3 atomic bomb    air-bursts.  Weldon made Electrician Mate 3rd Class Petty Officer.  His active duty service lasted from July 30, 1960 through July 29, 1964.  He was relieved of duty only 5 days before the U.S.S. Summit went to Vietnam.  Weldon maintained his ties to his Navy days as a member of the United States LST Association the rest of his life and was very proud of his Navy service.  He was a member of the American Legion for the past 23 years.


After the Navy, Weldon attended Sul Ross State University in Alpine, TX, then went on to join the Texas Department of Public Safety as a Communications Officer for the Texas Highway Patrol.  He worked in El Paso and Lampasas, TX, retiring after 25 years of service at the age of 55 to the Gulf shores of Indianola, TX.


Weldon enjoyed sailing on his 37 foot sailboat, kayaking, and scuba diving all in lake and open water, flying glider planes, archery, freelance photography, and always enjoyed reminiscing and telling a good tale.  The last several years, using his ham radio, he was a spotter at Sea Drift for the 260 mile Texas Safari Canoe Race held each June.  He also enjoyed working on family genealogy with his nephew, Clay Hooper.  Together they transcribed the 1880 through 1930 Federal Census records for Crocket County, TX.


For the last two years he courageously fought malignant melanoma, returning to the hill country of Llano County for his final days.  Weldon passed away February 13, 2007 in the family home of his cousin, Pris Baker Pakkila-Gage, attended by his family, Beverley, Clay and Jean.  Graveside services Saturday, February 17, 2007, 2 p.m., at the family plot in Cedar Hill Cemetery, Ozona, TX.


Weldon is survived by his sister, Beverley Hooper of Tulsa, OK; nephew, Clay Hooper of San Francisco, CA; three nieces and their husbands: Leslie and Dan Wright of Tulsa, OK, Terri and Brian Lowther of Alexander, AR, Sydney and Jim Aldag of Tulsa, OK; three grand-nieces: Sara and Amanda Brown, Jenny Aldag; two grand-nephews: Luke and Max Aldag; great-grandniece, K’Leigh Barrett; great-grandnephew, Aiden Barrett all of Tulsa, OK; first cousins and their families: Jean and Ollie Sudduth of Bluffton, TX, Carol and Kirby Bryant of Denham Springs, LA, Lou and Bob Bixby of Acworth, GA; Mary Lou and Chris Holley of Burleson, TX, Ronnie and Brenda West, Gerald and Diane West of Ft.Worth, TX, Linda Hunter of Weatherford, TX, Larry and Grace Day, Sandra and Larry Fenn of Ft. Worth, TX, Denise and Gayle Lacy of Haslet, TX, Angela and Cliff Larison of Ft.Worth, TX; Bonus/Step family: sister, Lucille Cribbet of Scottsdale, AZ, nieces and their families: Mary Ferrill of Oakdale, CA, Emilie and Milt Krieger of Hobart, OK, Irene and Ken Edward of Carmel, CA, nephew, Steve Cribbet of Scottsdale, AZ; and numerous friends and e-mail buddies.


In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: Hope Harbor Children’s Home, Claremore, OK, Medina Children’s Home, Medina, TX, or Cherokee Children’s Home, Cherokee, TX.




Submitted by Clay Hooper on May 28, 2007.