Pete was born on January 27, 1928, in Brownfield, Texas, Terry County, to Joseph Haden Garmon and Birdie Etta Tate Garmon. He was a graduate of Clarksville High School and a veteran of the United States Air Force and the Texas National Guard. He graduated from Paris Junior College, where he was President of his graduating class. On July 8, 1951, he married Billie Ruth Slaton, his “Rosebud,” with whom he raised two sons, Jim and Jeff, and two daughters, Joanie and Judy. He received his Juris Doctorate from Baylor University Law School where he was a member of Phi Alpha Delta Legal Fraternity. He was employed by The Farm Bureau Insurance Companies in Texas, Arkansas and Louisiana for 39 years and retired as Vice President-Legal for the company in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
He was a member of the Texas Bar Association for over 60 years, the American Bar Association, the Federation of Insurance and Corporate Counsel, and past president of the Southeastern Claims Executives Association. He was also a member of the American Legion and the Sons of the Republic of Texas.
Pete, lovingly referred to as “PawPaw Pete,” was an avid golfer and enjoyed woodworking, gardening, hunting, fishing, traveling and camping with his family. He visited all 50 states and a number of countries. He was a volunteer at Trinity Mother Frances Hospital, Habitat for Humanity, and Camp Gilmont. He was a member of Marvin United Methodist Church of Tyler, Texas, and the Pairs and Parents Sunday School Class. Pete was known for his joking sense of humor, infectious smile, his kind and compassionate spirit, and his trademark – quick wit.
Pete was preceded in death by his infant daughter Janet Caron Garmon, parents Joseph and Birdie Garmon, great-grandson Luke Jamison Garmon, and four siblings, Paul Loyd Garmon, William Morris “Buddy” Garmon, Margaret Charlene Garmon McCarver, and Mary Louise Garmon Barham.
He is survived by his wife of almost 69 years, Billie Ruth Slaton Garmon; four children, James Haden “Jim” Garmon, Jr. and wife Sally, Joanie Garmon Wren and husband Stewart, Jeffrey Thomas Garmon, and Judith Lynne Garmon Sistrunk and husband Shawn; eight grandchildren, Justin Stewart Wren and wife Misty, Lindsey Wren Roussel and husband Blake, James Benjamin Garmon and wife Lori, Steven Shawn Sistrunk, Jr. and wife Stephanie, Lauren Elizabeth Ellen Wren and fiancé Dany Daniel, Jordan Matthew Haden Wren and wife Kaitlin, Chad Terry Sistrunk and wife Lisseth, and Joshua Haden Garmon and wife Anna; eleven great-grandchildren, Grace Camille Roussel, Dean Blake Sistrunk, Grant Benjamin Garmon, Landry Caroline Wren, Laynie Campbell Wren, Hayden Phillip Sistrunk, Lillie Frances Roussel, Lilah Katherine Garmon, Navy Paige Wren, Ruby Jane Garmon, and Laura Towns Garmon; and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews.
A private family memorial service will be held to celebrate his life at the Chapel of Marvin United Methodist Church with Reverend Gerry Giles presiding. Realizing God’s grace in His gift of Jesus Christ, he donated his body to the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas, Texas, so that others may continue to learn from him, even after his earthly life ended. Interment of his ashes will be at Fairview Cemetery in Clarksville, Texas. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Luke’s Lighthouse for Children, c/o Norris Ferry Community Church, 10509 Norris Ferry Road, Shreveport, LA 71106, in memory of Pete and his great-grandson Luke Garmon.