Billy Ray Darnell March 20, 1926 – August 2, 2015

Billy Darnell

Billy Ray Darnell, 89, of Greenville, died Sunday, August 2, 2015 at Royse City Health and Rehab Center. Funeral services will be 10:00 AM Thursday, August 6, 2015 at Coker-Mathews Funeral Home Chapel with Randy Daw and Frank Morgan officiating. Interment will follow at Memoryland Memorial Park. Visitation will be Wednesday, 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM at the funeral home.


Mr. Darnell was born in Greenville on March 20, 1926. He was the son of James
Rayburn Darnell and Ouida Money Darnell. He married Imogene Key on January 5, 1952 in Huntsville, Alabama. He was a member of Johnson Street Church of Christ and the Disabled American Veterans.


He started school in Greenville, but moved to Tyler in second grade and graduated from Tyler High School. He attended Southwest State University and Oklahoma University. Mr. Darnell earned his B. S. and M. S. Degrees from North Texas and taught there for three years. He also taught for Paris Junior College for several years. He taught public school in Irann, Chandler and Tyler, Texas and Hederick, Oklahoma, working as elementary and high school principal as well as coaching. He was Dean of Boys at Tipton Home in Tipton, Oklahoma.


Mr. Darnell was a U. S. Army veteran working on the rocket program with the Germans during the early 1950’s. While working in all his jobs, he was also a preacher for the Church of Christ. During his career, he worked and preached in Oklahoma, Texas, Alabama, Arkansas and Pennsylvania.


Survivors include daughters, Beverly Jean Darnell of Greenville and Linda Gay Geer of Chanbersburn, Pennsylvania; grandchildren, Kenneth Ray Geer, Betty Jean Travers and Kevin Richard Geer; great-grandchildren, Rhyanne Lacost Geer and Cayson Michael Geer. He was preceded in death by his wife and parents.

Coker-Mathews Funeral Home

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