Connie Ruth Graham

Date Of Birth:  October 6, 1937

A Little History Of My Life:   I was born in Rotan, Texas to Walter Olen (Shorty) and Ruth Biggs Graham. I spent my first seven years in rural Jones County near where the Bumpass Hill School was located. I attended school in Lueders for all twelve years.

I married my childhood sweetheart Jimmy Lee (Buz) Wylie on May 18, 1956 (Graduation Day for the Class of 1956) at the Lueders Baptist Church. The wedding was immediately after graduation and was performed by Harry Garvin, also a member of the Class of 1956. I was salutatorian of the class.

After marrying, we lived for a short time in Anson, Texas. After that we moved to Snyder, Texas to live for ten years. While in Snyder, all three of our children were born. Jimmy worked in the oilfields, first as a roughneck and then trucking. He started as a driver and soon became a truck pusher.

I kept busy with the children and their activities - Room Mother, Cub Scout Leader, PTA President. While active in PTA, I was with the first group that went to Austin to lobby for approval of a Junior College for Snyder. In later years it became a reality. Little did I know that I would one day have a grandson attending the college, Western Texas College, on an art scholarship.

We have three children: James Michael Wylie (wife Katie), Patricia Ann Antonio, Ronald Lee Wylie (wife Rebecca) and nine grandchildren, one girl and eight boys. After Snyder, there were short stints in Midland, Texas - Big Springs and Nugent, Texas.

In 1967 the Wylies moved to Alaska. The first seven years were in Anchorage. Jimmy worked on the offshore drilling platforms as production superintendent. Connie worked for Sears as an office supervisor in the service department. Entertainment in Alaska was skiing, riding snowmachines, ice fishing, bear, caribou and moose hunting, salmon and halibut fishing and lots of camping.

From Anchorage the move was made to the Kenai Peninsula where we lived halfway between Kenai and Soldotna. Our final Alaska home was on the Kenai River at the world famous King Salmon fishing area.

While in Alaska we enjoyed sports with our sons - hockey, football and baseball. Our interest in sports lead us to become summer parents for college boys from all over the United States who came to Alaska to play semi-pro baseball. We had three summer sons for a total of four summers. Jimmy was on the Board of Directors for Kenai's ball team, The Peninsula Oilers.

While on the peninsula, Jimmy was still on the platform and I worked at the rural electric utility as an Operations and Engineering Coordinator.

In 1987, after twenty years in Alaska, the Wylie family came HOME to the Nugent, Texas and the Ft. Phantom Lake area. Jimmy did farming and ranching and custom farm work. In 1997, Jimmy was elected as County Commissioner for Jones County. I managed the family business, Big Country Bait, Grocery and Cafe, for 13 years. I retired in 2000 and Jimmy was elected to his second four-year term as commissioner. We still farm and raise a few cattle on a small basis.

Our favorite pastime is watching our grandchildren in all of their sporting activities and school events.

I do have some regrets in life, but I know you can't go back. My proudest accomplishments are my family and many friends. I'm proud to have been married to Jimmy for over forty-five years.

If you are ever in the Ft. Phantom Lake area, you are always welcome to stop and visit with Jimmy and myself.

Current Address:  Abilene, Texas

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