I’ve been to Texas twice in the last two weeks; one for a work meeting, and unfortunately, one for the funeral of Ronny’s grandpa, L.S. “Bill” Pope. Grandpa Pope truly was quite the man!
Not only was he a Second Lieutenant in the Army Air Corps during World War II, he served as as a B-24 Bomber pilot that flew 23 missions over Germany.
I also think he’s quite the man because he was so involved in agriculture. After coming back from service, Grandpa Pope finished his B.S. degree (1947) in Animal Science from Michigan State University and completed M.S. (1949) and Ph.D. (1952) degrees from Oklahoma State University. He joined the faculty at Oklahoma State University as a Beef Cattle Professor and served as Department Head. In 1968, he accepted the position of Associate Dean of Agriculture at Texas A&M University. From 1976 to 1986, he was Dean of Agriculture at New Mexico State University. After retiring from NMSU, he and Grandma Pope moved back to College Station and he began the TALL (Texas Agricultural Lifetime Leadership) Program. He was Executive Secretary in the IAPAL (International Association for Programs of Agricultural Leadership) organization until his death. Grandpa did international programs with Argentina, Ethiopia, Egypt, Iraq and Israel. He also received numerous awards during his career. He was a member of the Alpha Gamma Rho Hall of Fame and was a Fellow in the American Society of Animal Science. He was admitted to the International Hall of Fame for Adult and Continuing Education at the University of Oklahoma and served as a Director for the Central Bank for Cooperatives. He was nationally recognized as “Agriculture’s Ambassador of Goodwill”.
He has a plaque at the Animal Science building at Texas A&M for him as well for his service to agriculture, the University, as an instructor and for his efforts in the TALL program.