Edward W Westbrook
May 9, 2015 ~ August 16, 2008
Edward W. Westbrook, 93, of Linden, Texas passed away peacefully Saturday, August 16 after a brief illness. He was born May 9, 1915 on the family farm which his ancestors from Georgia homesteaded in 1838. He loved this land with all his heart and took great joy in raising cattle, timber, farming, and hay production, all of which he was able to do until a few years ago. Mr. Westbrook attended Cass County schools through the 11th grade, and then rode his horse to Naples, Texas, his senior year as Marietta did not have a 12th grade. He then graduated from East Texas State University in 1937 with a degree in social studies. He taught school and coached at Laney and Bivins, and then attended Sam Houston State University to obtain a Master of Agriculture degree under the Smith-Hughes Act. While in college, he joined the National Guard and later enlisted in the U.S. Army where he was a soldier in the 36th Division. He was selected for officer training school at Fort Benning, Georgia and Gainesville, Florida and ultimately rose to the rank of Captain. He was stationed at Camp Brownwood and was at a movie with some of his fellow soldiers when they got the call to return to base immediately as Pearl Harbor had been bombed by the Japanese. One week later, his division was split, and he was assigned to the 84th Infantry, also known as the Railsplitter Division. He was sent to Albuquerque, New Mexico to guard the Norden bombsight. After D-Day on June 6, he was shipped out of Brooklyn, New York with 6000 soldiers to land in Liverpool, England. He was then shipped across the English Channel, landed on Omaha Beach and went through Paris to the front lines in the Ardennes Forest for six months. He was wounded by German fire at a battle in the Hurricane Forest during the Battle of the Bulge. His comrades took him back to company headquarters, and when the medics pulled his shoes off, his feet were frozen. He then came home on an army hospital ship and recalls the joy of seeing the Statue of Liberty as they entered New York Harbor. After a long recovery, he was honorably discharged and received the Purple Heart as well as numerous other awards for his service to the county he so dearly loved. He married Dale Law of Huffines on March 5, 1943 in Texarkana, and they were married for 58 years, until her death in 2001. Mr. Westbrook happily returned to ranching and teaching after World War II. He taught at several Cass Country Schools and was principal at Linden Elementary School. He later served as Cass Country Superintendent of Schools until his retirement. He was a member of the First Baptist Church of Linden, the American Legion, the Lions Club, and the Masonic Lodge of Marietta. He was preceded in death by his wife Dale, his parents Edgar and Minnie Westbrook, and his sister, Mary Lou Westbrook. He is survived by his two daughters, Marsha Lindsey of Atlanta, and Sandra Skoog of Longview; his son-in-law, Eric Skoog; his grandchildren, Hunter Skoog of Longview, Cecily Lindsey of Dallas, and Amber Lindsey Raymond and her husband, Joshua Raymond, of Little Rock, Arkansas. Services will be held at the First Baptist Church of Linden at 2 pm on Tuesday, August 19. Burial will follow at Linden Cemetery with military honors. Visitation will be at Reeder-Davis-Schindler Funeral Home in Linden on Monday from 6 8 p.m. Memorials may be made to First Baptist Church Linden, Linden Cemetery Association or Good Shepherd Medical Center Linden. The family wishes to extend special thanks to Terry Elders and Dr. Kathleen Sharp of Good Shepherd Medical CenterLinden, his church family at First Baptist Church Linden, and his wonderful Linden neighbors.