Idas Glenn Petty, 82, of Abilene, TX, passed away at home on February 2, 2023, surrounded by four generations of family who loved him deeply and will forever remember him as a man of unparalleled character, unquestionable loyalty, and unfailing faith.
He was a man who after 60 years of marriage, still kissed his wife anytime he left the house. A man who never hesitated to give more than he received and was happier for it. He never met a stranger and had a love of people that made everyone feel welcome around him. He had an insatiable thirst for knowledge and could carry a conversation on any topic. Anyone who sat and talked with him will remember him as a man with an incredible ability to recall, in great detail, the many adventures of his life. One could sit for hours and listen to him tell stories, and if you let him, he would talk even longer.
Glenn was born on January 14, 1941, one of five boys, to Warren and Bessie Petty in Vanderbilt, TX. After Glenn graduated from high school in 1959, he went on to study at Howard Payne University in Brownwood, TX, where he ran track and would later be called back to coach. He was inducted into the HPU Hall of Fame in 1988. During his time at HPU, he experienced several momentous changes. He met a group of lifelong friends who still meet every year. It was also during this time that he joined a group of friends in going to church, where he was saved and baptized, a profession of faith that he allowed to guide him every day of his life. One of the most notable events was when he fell in love with his wife and best friend of 60 years, Sandie. They married on June 15, 1962, and went on to have three children, Glenda, Glenn, Jr., and Christi.
After graduating with a Bachelor of Science in 1963, he started his first job as a teacher in El Paso, TX, kickstarting an incredible 42-year career while also earning his Master’s degree in Education from Sul Ross University. It was his love of people, his dedication to students, and his passion for coaching that made him a much respected member of the teaching and coaching community and earning him ‘Texas Regional Middle School Principal of the Year’ in both 1991 and 1992 while at Mann Middle School. Glenn spent the majority of his career in Abilene ISD, from 1974 to his retirement as Athletic Director in 2006.
Glenn’s hobbies included playing golf, woodworking, reading, and spending time with his family. Some of his family’s most fond memories are summer vacations at the lake with Glenn, fishing and swimming. He spoke often of his love and his pride in his family, and there was always room for them at his table. He considered himself blessed, and he was a blessing to those who knew him.
Glenn was preceded in death by his father Warren Petty, his mother Bessie Spangler-McKelroy, and his brother Jack Petty.
Glenn is survived by his wife Sandie, his three children, Glenda James and husband Phillip, Glenn Petty, Jr., and wife Mildred, and Christi Harville and husband Lee, his four grandchildren, Justin Russell and wife Alex, Jordan Ronalder and husband Nick, Sydnee Lee and husband Michael, and Brayden James, his four great grandchildren, Doss Russell, Navy and Henley Ronalder, and Landon Lee, and his three brothers, Robert Petty, Sr., Steve McKelroy, and David McKelroy.
Services will be held at Elmwood Funeral Home on Thursday, February 9, 2023, at 2:00 PM, preceded by visitation at 1:00 PM.
In leiu of flowers, please send donations to The American Heart Association, St. Jude, or the charity of your choice.