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June 17, 2014

Gene Houston Aldridge

Aug. 8, 1933-June 14, 2014

DUNCAN — Gene Houston Aldridge, 80, of Duncan passed away Saturday June 14, 2014 at his home surrounded by his family. Memorial service for Gene will be at 10 a.m. Wednesday June 18, 2014 at the First Christian Church in Duncan with Rev. Arnold Nelson officiating under the direction of Don Grantham Funeral Home. No visitation is scheduled at this time.  

Gene Houston Aldridge was born on Aug. 8, 1933 to Joe and Lula (Scott) Aldridge on the family farm near Velma. On Aug. 8, 1956 he married the love of his life, Janie Ruth Gray, in Wichita Falls. Gene graduated High School in 1951 where he played halfback in football and participated in track where he won the state championship in the hurdles and set a record that held for several decades. He attended Oklahoma A&M on a football scholarship and remained an avid supporter of OSU.

Gene was employed as a Mud Engineer where his career took him and his family to various parts of the country, before finally settling back in his and his wife’s beloved city of Duncan. He retired as the owner of his individually owned Apache Mud Company in his early 60s. Throughout his life Gene enjoyed golf, fishing, hard work, cooking, his family and friends and especially following and being an active part of his grandchildren Allie and Duncan and his great granddaughter Bianca’s lives.

Gene loved his wife Janie dearly and considered himself to be the luckiest man in the world to be her husband. Gene’s personal passion of tennis developed when he took an interest in helping his six-year-old granddaughter Allie Horton at the time learn the game. He was the girl’s middle school head coach from 1999 to 2014 and four of his teams finished second in state. He was appreciative of his special friend Phil Barnes, who gave him the opportunity to help with the Duncan Tennis Program. His life was especially enriched by the young girls that considered it a privilege for him to have coached them.

A special thank you to MD Anderson who helped lengthen and give quality to Gene’s life as he battled Leukemia.

Gene was preceded in death by his parents and by five brothers: Herman, Billy Joe, Hubert, Bennie and Stanley and by his sister Laura. He survived by his wife of 57 years Janie; a son, Ben Michael Aldridge; daughter, Vicki Jane Aldridge; two grandchildren, Allie Elizabeth Horton and her husband Kevin Horton, Duncan Durham Aldridge; and one great-granddaughter, Bianca Nicole Horton. Gene is also survived by many loved nieces, nephews and other relatives and friends.

The family requests that memorial donations be made in honor of Gene’s memory to the Duncan Tennis Program by contacting Phil Barnes at 580-251-5299.

Honorary pallbearers are Clarence Kimberly, Phil Barnes, Carl Slifer, Charles Whitfield.

Online condolences can be made to the family at www.granthamfuneralhomes.com.

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