Former Reagan County Judge and prominent Big Lake civic leader and businessman Frank Sandel, died on Thursday, March 21, 2013 in San Angelo, Texas.
There will be a Family Visitation on Saturday, March 23, 2013 at Johnson's Funeral Home from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Funeral Service will be 3:00 p.m. Sunday, March 24, 2013 at the First Baptist Church in Big Lake. JB Bitner will officiate. Burial will follow at Glen Rest Cemetery.
Pallbearers for the service will be Dale Fisher, Johnny Poyner, Cliff Miller, Mike Elkins, Johnny Agee and Pete Young. Honorary Pallbearers will be Norman Guess, Carl Baker, Bill Schneeman, Mark Noland, Tim Sellman, Joe Johnson and Lupe DeLa Rosa.
He was born December 10, 1927 in Woodson, Texas. After graduating high school at age 15, he went to work in the oilfield for JP "Bum" Gibbins and remained involved in the oilfield in various capacities for the remainder of his life. He started working on the floor of a pulling unit and worked his way up to rig operator then field supervisor. In 1963, with wife Bonnie, he started Globe Well Service and owned it until its sale in 1997. Frank was widely known and respected throughout the oil and gas industry, not only in West Texas but nationwide, and served as national president of what is now known as the Association of Energy Service Companies, the service industry's trade association.
A true entrepreneur, Frank owned and operated a series of businesses including an oil and gas production company, insurance company, restaurant, hardware store and others. He was involved in ranching and banking as well. He was an involved community leader. He served as a Big Lake city councilman, mayor, Reagan County judge, President of the Reagan County Hospital District, and President of the Chamber of Commerce. Frank served on the board of directors of West Texas Boy's Ranch and as a Director for the Permian Basin Oil Show.
His charity to those in need is well known in the Big Lake community. He never turned away a citizen or friend in need. He was the community "go to" person for city and county projects in need of funding assistance. Numerous projects in Big Lake, including the life flight helicopter pad at the Reagan County Hospital, county park entertainment pavilion, the volunteer fire department, First Baptist Church, of which he was an active member and other churches in the city, all benefited from his love of community.
The true love of his life was WORK. He also had a knack for politics and it is said he gave birth to the Republican Party in Reagan County. Frank was an accomplished pilot and loved flying. Many young people in the West Texas area had their first airplane rides in his plane. He was always available to ferry patients and their families to hospitals for treatment or to visit sick relatives. Another love was the Big Lake Masonic Lodge, of which he was a past master. He also was a member of the Scottish Rite and was a Shriner.
Frank was preceded in death by his parents Ben and Nora Sandel, brother, Wayne Sandel, sister Ruby Cole, spouse, Bonnie Sandel, daughter, Pat Soles, grandson, Clay Harris, granddaughter, Renee' Michelle Clayton and daughter-in-law Lauren Ritchi Sandel. He is survived by his daughter, Judy Clayton and husband Rusty of Christoval, son, Pete Sandel of Friendswood, Texas, four grandchildren, Jamie Clayton, Peter Sandel, Julie Carruthers and Carla Helms, eight great-grandchildren, six great-great-grandchildren, and sisters Gwen McBride, Dossie Harris and Wilma Clemmons.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the Big Lake Trail Blazers, First Baptist Church in Big Lake or Meals on Wheels.
"Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead, where there is no path and leave a trail." -Anonymous