Bertram Hansford Mayes was born in Columbia, Missouri on April 14, 1940. He died in Merkel, Texas on July 16, 2019. He was the third of four children born to Bessie Hansford and Austin Carroll “Slim” Mayes. He is preceded in death by his parents, his sister, Mary Edgar, his brother John Mayes, his wife Tillie, stepdaughter Susan Shaw, stepson Warren Shaw, and nephew Tim Mayes.
Bert went to work at the age of 15, upon the unexpected death of his dad in 1955. Bert graduated from Abilene High School in 1958. He was always a diligent and honest worker. His civilian work life was interrupted by service with the 8th U.S. Marine Corps Recruitment District out of Abilene from 1959-1961. After his honorable discharge, Bert worked his way through McMurry College (now University) in Abilene towards a BBA in Marketing.
In 1969, Bert married Otilla Doan Shaw of Merkel. They were married for 43 years. Their life together took them all over Texas and Oklahoma. Tillie often worked alongside Bert in various jobs that included (but weren’t limited to) finance, insurance, and Motel 6 auditing. They drew even closer after the murder of 16 year old Susan Shaw in October of 1971 in Mesquite, TX.
Bert was a deacon or elder in many churches over the years. He was faithful to the Lord and his family. Bert was honest in his work, whether on the job or as a volunteer in the community. He was loyal to his friends, and kind to everyone. He lived his life according the epitaph on his dad’s headstone.
Psalm 46:10 says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted amongst the nations, I will be exalted in the Earth.”
Bert is survived by his stepdaughter Shela Wilson and her husband Rick; sister-in-law Lora "Carole" Doan and his sister Barbara Baker and her husband John; nieces Shawna Taylor (husband John); nephew Russell Neptune, Sheryl Doan, Beth Edgar, and Shawn Baker (husband David Maddox); nephews Eric Mayes and Matt Mayes (wife Christina) and Johnny Baker Jr., and a host of other friends and family throughout Taylor County, and beyond.
Open visitation will be at Starbuck Funeral Home in Merkel on Thursday from 10AM to 6:00PM. Interment with military honors will be Friday at 1:00 PM at Rose Hill Cemetery, also in Merkel.
In lieu of flowers the family requests that donations be made to Abundant Life Church in Merkel where Bert served as a Deacon for many years.
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