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Carl Wood '62 July 9, 2020 11:44 AM updated: July 9, 2020 11:45 AM

Carl Eugene Wood
August 28, 1940 - June 23, 2020

Carl Wood, age 79, passed away at home early Tuesday morning, June 23, 2020.

He was born on August 28, 1940 in Alice, Texas to Hazel and J.W. Wood, Sr. For most of his life, Carl lived in Texas but his passion was traveling. And did he travel. Carl has been to 35+ countries on every continent with exception of Antarctica, saw both Cape Hope and Cape Horn and passed through the Panama Canal twice. He enjoyed all of his travels with his favorite trips being safaris in Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Kenya and Botswana.

Carl is survived by his beloved wife of 47 years, Judith (Judy) as well as his son, Dan, daughter-in-law Roxanne, daughter Alison, son-in-law Felipe and daughter Lauren, as well as four grandchildren Jordan, Taylor, Chelsea and Addison (Addie) and two great-grandchildren Jorryn and Jasper. He is also survived by his sister Joann Laney, brothers-in-law Jim Laney, Rayburn Gibson, Charles Kreuz and sisters-in-law LeeAnn Davis, Cecilia (Cissy) Lopez and Elizabeth Gibson as well as twelve nieces and nephews. Carl was preceded in death by his father, J.W. Wood, Sr and mother Hazel P. Wood, spouse Joann Gibson Wood, sister Martha Williams and brothers Robert (Bob) Wood and J.W. (Dub) Wood, Jr.

The youngest of five children, Carl was small in stature, but his sense of adventure was larger than life as was his tendency towards mischief. He was friends with several larger Alice High School football players and often instigated “adventures” of a grand nature for them until his graduation in 1958. While initially not a dedicated student (and even had a school principal tell his mother that as a poor student he would not succeed), Carl attended Tarleton State University from 1958 -1960 majoring in Biology and then attended Texas A&M University in College Station where he received his bachelor’s (1962), master’s (1965) and doctoral (1969) degrees in Wildlife Science and Fisheries.

In 1967, he was employed by the Tennessee Valley Authority as a limnologist working on the effects of coal mining on the aquatic environment. In 1969, he was employed in the Biology Department at Texas A&I University (now TAMU-Kingsville) in Kingsville, Texas. He started as an assistant professor and became a professor of Biology in 1978. During his tenure at TAMUK he was department chair for twelve years and assistant Dean of Arts and Sciences for four years before retiring in 1999. In 2000, he received the rank of Emeritus Professor of Biology by the Texas A&M System. In addition to teaching, he conducted research in the areas of marine ecology and mariculture. During his later career, he did extensive research on the riparian forests of the Tamaulipan Biotic Province (South Texas). He was instrumental in helping establish the supplemental instruction program now in place at several universities within the TAMUS.

Dr. Wood presented his work at state and national meetings, as well as many presentations to public schools and civic clubs. He published twenty professionally refereed papers. He did environmental consulting for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and was an expert witness for the State of Texas Department of Health on in situ uranium mining on numerous occasions.

During his academic tenure, Dr. Wood was the chairperson for 20 graduate student’s theses and served on 25 other graduate student committees. He chaired the TAMUK strategic planning committee for six years, chaired the university’s animal care committee for 12 years, served on presidential, provost and dean selection committees for the College of Arts and Sciences and was actively involved in the SACS accreditation of the university.

In his community, he was active in the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts and CampFire councils. He was on the administrative board of his church. He served on numerous advisory boards for the City of Kingsville. He also served on the John C. Conner museum board of directors and was active in the TAMUK Javelina Booster Club.

Carl met Judy in Kingsville and married May 26, 1973 and enjoyed 47 years of blessings and travels in their marriage. Carl was an avid and experienced camper; he led several university field trips throughout Mexico, Big Bend National Park and Padre Island National Seashore. Carl and Judy truck-camped up to British Columbia from Texas (while conveniently leaving the children with grandparents). One memorable camping site with the family was along the natural springs of Leakey, Texas. Carl loved Leakey Springs and built a wonderful cabin by hand with his father-in-law (washed away in the 1992 flood) and oversaw the replacement with a beautiful (and substantially elevated) log cabin. Following retiring to Leakey, Carl was a member of Leakey United Methodist Church and Real County Public Library Friends of the Library (FOL) where he served as FOL treasurer and board member for many years. He led the FOL Cowboy Breakfast fundraiser for ten years, and was able to tell you how to make 550-650 biscuits over a campfire.

Carl was a wonderful father, husband and friend; we will miss him, but we know he is in a beautiful place taking side travels to Africa.

A Memorial service will be held 10 a.m. Monday, June 29, 2020 at Tinkum Hall (Outside) Leakey United Methodist Church, Leakey, Texas. Officiant Rev. Richard Zander.

Arrangements are under the personal care of Nelson Funeral Home of Leakey, Texas.

Leakey Methodist Church
Monday, June 29, 2020 at 10:00 AM
419 Market Street
Leakey, Texas 78873
Service will be held outside at Tinkum Hall

© 2007 - 20 Nelson Funeral Homes

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