In memory of
Sam Nix Ovalo - Samuel Bacon (Sam) Nix died on November 18, 2020, at a nursing facility in Abilene after a long battle with Parkinson's Disease and dementia. He was born on August 14, 1936, in Abilene to A. J. (Jack) and Juanita (Bacon) Nix. He graduated from South Taylor High School in 1954 and Abilene Christian University with a B.S. in 1958. He married Emma L. Shaffer on September 7, 1956 in Moro, Texas. Of their marriage two children were born, a son, Clinton, and a daughter, Lisa. In February 1959, Sam started his professional career with the Soil Conservation Service (SCS) now known as Natural Conservation Resource Service (NCRS). During his career with SCS Sam and Emma lived in Littlefield, Crosbyton, Levelland, Jayton, Stamford, Lamesa and moved to Temple in 1969 to the state SCS office. There he served as the recruitment and training officer and subsequently Personnel Officer for the State of Texas at the time of his retirement in 1986. After his retirement he served as a consultant for several years and investigated EEOC complaints. At all times during his service with SCS he was also involved in family ranching operations including cattle, sheep, and goats. He ran sheep until coyotes and other predators ended raising sheep in the early 1990's. He was particularly involved in the livestock shows with his children and their lambs and hogs. In 1992 he and Emma moved back to South Taylor County and lived at the Shaffer-Nix Ranch where Emma grew up. This was his permanent residence until his death. Sam also served as a director for the Taylor County Farm Bureau for many years. He was recognized as ACU Outstanding Aggie of the Year in 1985. Sam and Emma were named Outstanding Conservation Rancher from Middle Clear Fork Soil & Water Conservation District in 1999. He was the initial Fire Chief for Moro Volunteer Fire Department in 1994 and served for 15 years. Sam became a Christian at 13 years of age. He served as an elder at Western Hills Church of Christ in Temple for 21 years. Later he served many years as an elder at North Main Church of Christ in Winters until his resignation due to his health. Sam was a Bible class teacher for over 50 years. Sam served as a Trustee of Sherwood & Myrtie Foster's Home for Children in Stephenville from 1981 to 1987. Sam was a board member for Samaritan House in Winters for several years. Sam is proceeded in death by his parents and his sister Jackie Graham. Sam is survived by his wife of 64 years, Emma; his son, Clinton and wife Janet of Abilene, Texas; his daughter, Lisa and husband Lance Powers of Winter Park, Florida; four grandchildren, Anna Staton of Saigon, Vietnam; Emily Simpson and husband Adam of Malden, Massachusetts; Charles Nix of Las Cruces, New Mexico; and James Nix of Canberra, Australia. He is survived by one great-grandson, Eaoin Simpson and another great-grandson due in late December, Evander Simpson; two aunts, Jane Verett of California and Judy Walker of Lubbock, Texas; one uncle, Don Bacon of Spring Branch, Texas; a nephew, Sam Graham of Cedar Park, Texas; a niece, Charla Kaye Hart of Austin, Texas; and several first cousins and other extended family members. The family will have a private graveside service at the Bluff Creek Cemetery on Friday, November 20, 2020 with longtime friend Dr. Gerald R. Freeman of Florence, Alabama officiating, funeral arrangements directed by Fry~Smith Funeral Home, Tuscola. The family requests that any memorial gifts be made to Sherwood & Myrtie Foster's Home for Children, P.O. Box 978, Stephenville, Texas 76401.
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