10 years ago

SPEARMAN — Wesley Newton Daniel, 86, of Spearman died Friday, June 22, 2012.

Memorial services will be at 2 p.m. Monday in First United Methodist Church in Spearman with the Rev. Toni Bailey, pastor, officiating. Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Home of Spearman.

Wesley was born Feb. 14, 1926, in Plainview to the Rev. Newton S. Daniel and Thelma Linkenhoger Daniel. He had three younger brothers, Hugh B., a retired Methodist minister, now residing in Bushland; Sam of Seward, Alaska, and Philip of Friday Harbor, Wash.

Wesley graduated from Lefors High School in May 1944. Two days later, he shipped out to boot camp. During World War II, he served his country in the Seabees, the construction battalion force of the Navy, in Guam and with the occupation forces in Japan. It was during this time he made the decision to enter the ministry.

In San Diego, before he received his orders, he ran into a friend. Wesley remembered, “The moment I saw him in the chow line, the Lord told me to talk to him about Christ.” However, circumstances did not permit a private moment even though they spent the evening together, and then his friend shipped out before they got together again. Sometime later, Wesley received the news this friend had been killed in a kamikaze attack. “That afternoon I laid on my bunk, so sorry I hadn’t followed God’s nudging. And this is when I made a deal with God. ‘Lord, get me out of this mess and I’ll be that preacher you want me to be.’ I didn’t tell anyone of my decision until I made it home and could tell the folks. Since then, I tried to fulfill my part of the bargain I made with God.”

Upon returning to the U.S., Wesley entered McMurry University in Abilene. From there he attended and graduated from Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University in Dallas. It was at McMurry he met the love of his life, Mary Beth McCollough. They were married on Dec. 23, 1949, in Panhandle. Together they gave a lifetime of ministry to the United Methodist Church in the Northwest Texas Conference, serving in Becton-Lakeview, Union Bower, Quitaque, Lefors, Seagraves, Spearman, Littlefield and Plainview.

He was preceded in death by his parents and an infant son, Jay Newton, who died Dec. 15, 1952.

Survivors include his wife, Beth; three brothers; six daughters, Thel Lemons and husband James of Freeburg, Ill., Debi Bryant and husband Craig of Houston, Lyn Woolley and husband Joey of Spearman, Beckee Baker of Spearman, Kim Messamore and husband Haldon of Sudan, and Buzz Williamson and husband Donnie of Lubbock; 11 grandchildren and their spouses; and 14 great-grandchildren.

The family suggests memorials be to Faith Promise Fund of First United Methodist Church, 407 S. Haney St., Spearman, TX 79081.