David Clayton “Red” Garner, 84, passed away peacefully at Harbor House in Lake Charles, Louisiana. “Red” as he was affectionately called, was born on May 20, 1937, in …
David Clayton “Red” Garner, 84, passed away peacefully at Harbor House in Lake Charles, Louisiana. “Red” as he was affectionately called, was born on May 20, 1937, in Tuscaloosa, Alabama to John Henry Garner and Mattie Mae (Hayes) Garner. Red spent his childhood in Brookwood, Alabama in a small house near little hurricane creek with his parents and seven brothers and five sisters. Red attended Brookwood Schools until 10th grade. At 15, he falsified his age and enlisted in the National Guard and served 5 years. He loved his time serving in the National Guard and always shared stories with his family and friends. Red also helped out with the local wrecker service where he fell in love with working on cars. As a young man, Red made the move with his two brothers to Texas.
In his lifetime, he co-owned Tietze (A & B Motors-15 years) in Houston until he got an opportunity in 1975 to move his family to Katy, Texas to work at Miller Motor Company, 9 years, where he was a top winning Service Manager in the Only the Best Club various times. Red also worked for A.J. Foyt Chevrolet/TexStar Chevrolet-6 years, Courtesy Chevrolet-1 year; Helfman Ford- 4 years and ended his dealership career at Southwest Pontiac GMC (2 years). While working at these establishments, he conducted various automotive schools and presented at the MENSA Convention in Dallas. He also spearheaded the automotive program for students attending San Jacinto College which is what brought him to his final job placement: Stafford Municipal School District. While at Stafford High School, he started the Automotive Program from the ground up. For 20 years, Red taught his students the importance of being a good steward for the Automotive Industry. Red loved his students and loved teaching. He would still be teaching today if it weren’t for the cancer diagnosis.
Red met the love of his life on September 14, 1956. Shortly thereafter, they began their long, loving life together and were married at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Houston, Texas on April 26, 1957. Together, they enjoyed a wonderful marriage of 65 years. Together, they raised two amazing children: David Wayne Garner & Wendy Gail Garner Hankins.
Red was very talented and had an art for designing Modified and Super modified race cars. Along with his family, he built and raced these cars at Meyer, Jackson, Mobile, Pensacola, Baton Rouge, Corpus and several other tracks in Florida from 1961-1977. According to David: “Dad was a master at finding speed from a bone yard as he built almost every part that went on these cars.”
Throughout his life, Red truly enjoyed working with the youth. He was the head coach for all of David’s football/baseball teams-Little League all the way up to coaching the State Championship Thoroughbred baseball Team. He also enjoyed coaching KWF football and won the Championship title twice. He coached Wendy in softball and golf and truly enjoyed watching her show animals and dance at Katy Tigers, Southwest Texas State and the University of Houston football games. His family meant more to him than anything else in the world and he was unendingly proud of his two children.
He was not only a member of the Katy Go Texan, but also a Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo bar-b-q member for 39 years. He was honored to receive the Honorary Chapter Farmer degree from the Katy FFA as well as his high school diploma from Milby High School. He was an active member of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church and loved his church family.
Red was a dedicated husband and father first and foremost. His favorite time of the year were the holidays-he loved to decorate! He also loved singing his favorite country songs and Elvis, watching Westerns; especially John Wayne, dancing at the Knights of Columbus and Elks dances, gardening, bar-b-qing and going gambling at Casinos. Red had a zest for life and never met a stranger. You could always hear him whistling from a mile away. He never lost his childlike spirit and love for life. Anyone who knew Red knew that he was the most loving father a family could ask for and the friend you could always count on.
Red is preceded in death by his wife, Phyllis Garner; his parents, John Henry Garner and Mattie Mae (Hayes) Garner; his brothers, John, Cotton, Buddy and Donnie; and by his sisters: Ila Mae, Johnnie Fae, and Betty Ruth.
Red is survived by his son, David Wayne Garner and Sharon of Lake Charles, Louisiana; daughter, Wendy Gail Garner Hankins and husband Kurt of Sweeny, Texas.; he was the best Pop Pop to Kendy Hope Hankins and Cindy Garner Fullerton and two great grandchildren; his brothers, Gene and wife Barbara, Billy Wayne and wife Amy and Roy Lee and wife Pam; sisters, Sarah and husband, Dean and Peggy Jo and husband David; as well as various nieces and nephews.
Family and friends are invited to attend Red’s visitation from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Monday, December 13, 2021 at Schmidt Funeral Home Grand Parkway Chapel, in Katy. Red’s funeral will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, December 14, 2021 at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 5373 Franz Road, in Katy, where a reception will follow at 11:00 a.m. in the parish hall. Following the reception, we will travel to South Park Cemetery, in Pearland, where a graveside service will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday.
Pallbearers will be Johnny Gaidosek, David Garner, Kurt Hankins, Michael Pilcik, Don Stodder and Kurt Snell.