PHS mascot: Phillips Blackhawks

Phillips High School
Alumni Association
P.O. Box 1710, Borger TX 79008

PHS mascot: Phillips Blackhawks


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Joed Forbus Obituary


Joed Forbus of Kerrville and formerly of Borger, died May 20, 2013 at home in Kerrville after a 3-year battle with spinal stenosis, arthritis and finally kidney cancer. Following cremation a memorial service will be June 3, 4:00pm, at First United Methodist Church in Kerrville, with Rev. Bob Allen officiating. Interment will be in Garden of Memories.

Joed was born in Norton, Texas, on June 11, 1921, the last of four children to George and Ethel Forbus. The family moved to Happy to farm when Joed was small. Growing up he rode steers and broncs in rodeos, played most brass instruments for his brother, the band director, and marched in a parade featuring Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt in Amarillo. He was in the first band to play in the Texas Hall of Fame in Dallas in 1936, and he marched in the 1936 Cotton Bowl under the direction of Tommy Dorsey. He also played basketball, football, and ran track in high school, winning district in football and shot-put and regional in javelin. He went on to play football at West Texas State, lettering from his sophomore year. He was a co-captain, on the All-Conference team, and won the Kleinschmidt Award as Most Valuable Player. As an alternate All-American, he had offers from 5 professional football teams. Instead of accepting an offer, he quit college to join the Marines. After a few weeks he was sent home because of a physical abnormality in his throat, so he went to work. Later he commuted back to college and graduated from WTSU when he was 43. He was inducted into the Panhandle Sports Hall of Fame in 1992.

  In 1943 he married his college girlfriend, Maurine Boswell, and brought her to live with him in Borger. She taught high school math in Phillips. They had one daughter, Mary Cole Forbus.

Joed Forbus could and had done just about everything, and he had stories about it all. He loved to tell football stories. He had golf stories and fishing stories. He had built a two-story cabin in Red River, NM, digging the piers by hand and said, "They don’t call them the ROCKY Mountains for no reason." He had to become a certified electrician in NM to obtain permits to do the wiring. He spent all of his holidays and vacations for years working on that cabin and loved every minute of it. He was the kindest, most compassionate man who would lend a hand to anyone who needed it.

Joed served on boards at both Phillips Methodist Church and First UMC in Borger, served in every office of Phillips Lions Club, and on boards of Phillips Country Club, WTSU Alumni Association, and Pantex Federal Credit Union. At the time of his death, he was a member of First United Methodist Church of Kerrville and the 21st Century Sunday School Class.

His professional career was with Phillips Petroleum Company in Phillips and Borger. The first three years he worked, his boss let him off early to go to the Phillips High School and help coach football. All three of those years the team won regional, which was as far as an AA school could advance in those days. He had many job titles from draftsman to Rock Creek plant manager to Field Superintendent, and he was a company man through and through. He retired from Phillips Petroleum Company in 1986 and Maurine retired from teaching. They moved to Kerrville in 1992 to be nearer to his brother, Doug Forbus, in Kerrville and to their daughter and her family in Houston.

In 2003 Joed lost Maurine to cancer, and in 2006 he sold their beloved cabin and also downsized his Kerrville home. For the last ten years, he and his best friend, Betty Whigham, have enjoyed keeping each other company, traveling and playing bridge until Joed’s neuropathy put an end to his mobility. He had fought valiantly for three years and was able to enjoy his 90th and 91st birthdays before losing the battle but gaining the victory of eternal life.

Joed was preceded in death by his wife of nearly 60 years, Maurine, his brother, two sisters, and a nephew. He is survived by his sweetheart, Betty Whigham, his daughter, Mary Cole Kerlick and husband Steve of Houston, grandchildren, Joe and Clara Peden of Houston, Zachary and Erin Peden of Houston, Will Kerlick of Burbank, CA, and Erin and Barry Brauchi of Midland, 6 great-grandchildren, his great-nephew David Forbus of Kerrville, nephews Bob Forbus and wife Elizabeth of Plano, Dave Whitman and wife Ronda of Laramie, WY, and Butch Whitman and wife Ceily of Billings, MT, nieces Jo Sharp of Bullard and Nancy Shoaf of Dallas, his nephew’s widow Elin Forbus, and many other extended family members and friends. The family is so grateful for the support of Joed’s friends in the ten years since Maurine’s death and for the devotion of his caretakers, Raymond Kimbrell, Brittany Smith, and Barbara London for the last fifteen months.

Memorials may be made to First United Methodist Church in Kerrville or your favorite charity.


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