|GILILLAND FAMILY STORIES
|ROY EUGENE TUCKER JR.
September 8, 1935/March 17, 2000
by Kathy Danley
Roy Jr. war born in Tularosa, New Mexico on September 8, 1935, to Roy and Dixie Tucker.
After he was born, Dixie and Jr. returned to Grapevine, out on the San Andres Mountains
where they lived until 1941, and the government made them leave so that they could form
the White Sands Missile Range. In 1941 they moved to Tularosa. When they moved to
Three Rivers later, Jr. worked on the ranch doing yard work, cleaning the pool, etc.
Jr. went to school and graduated at Tularosa in 1954. He was a good calf roper, and
competed in local rodeos. He won the All Around at Three Rivers one year, and Tom Ryan
paid his way to El Paso to a bigger Kids rodeo. In the summer, between his Junior and
Senior year of High School, he went with F.C. and Bill Stover on the Rodeo Circuit to Canada.
On November 23, 1953, Jr. Married Clarence Ila Hall. He was a senior in high school and
drove the school bus from Three Rivers to Tularosa. On that day, Jr. drove the bus in the
morning, at school, Marlin Virden picked him up and they went to Ruidoso and picked up Ila
and went to Carrizozo and got married. They went back that afternoon to drive the bus
again. Jr.'s family didn't know they were getting married. Jr. was 18 years old and Ila
was 16 years old.
They lived in Three Rivers until he graduated. After graduating, he worked at the New
Market for Uncle Hansel and Uncle Tom Tucker. In 1955, Kathrine (Kathy) Nora was born
while he was working at the New Market. In 1956, he worked for Mountain Bell, and Jimmie
Leon was born. Then he went to work for the State Highway Department. In 1958, he
went to work for the cattle sanitary board. He was stationed in Clovis. While he was
moving the family to Clovis, Debra Sue was born in Ruidoso. In 1960 in Clovis, Linda Louise
was born, and in 1961 he got transferred to Socorro for his job. In December 1961, Ila
woke Jr. at 5:30am and told him that she was in labor and so the family started out in a
1959 Chevy pickup from Socorro to Ruidoso. They got just past Bingham, and the pickup quit
on them. Jr. got out, stuck his thumb up, and a major from Stallion Site stopped and picked
up all of them in his army car. He then took them to Carrizozo where Arel Posey Jr.'s wife,
Katherine, drove Ila and the kids to Nogal where Ila's sister, Annie, lived, and she took her
on to Ruidoso. They got to Ila's parents at 2:00pm to drop off the kids. Annie took Ila to
the hospital and Janet Ilean was born at 2:30pm. Jr., G.L., and Victor Ritch were busy
getting the pickup fixed. Everyone was very busy that day.
In 1963, Roy asked Jr. if he would like to take over the ranch at Three Rivers. Roy said
he wanted to retire, and Jr. and Roy worked out the details. Jr. said "yes" because it was
what he had always wanted to do. So on October 5, 1963 he moved his family to Three
Rivers. In 1964 Nancy Cloma was born. In 1973, Kathy graduated from High School, and in
1974 Jimmie graduated from High School just one week before Leann was born in May. Jr.
ran the ranch for 32 years before it was sold in 1995, and he had to sell his cattle. Jr.'s
daughters bought a video store in 1995 in Tularosa, and he helped them there, and also
shelled pecans and sold them. He enjoyed going to the video store, he liked visiting with all
Throughout the years of his children and grandchildren growing up, starting with Jimmie, the
kids showed animals at the fair and Jr. was very involved with helping them with their animal
projects. Jr. not only helped his kids, he also helped any youth that wanted his help. Jr.
was involved in helping with the rodeo association also. Jr. served as county commissioner for
two terms. While he was county commissioner, he got to go to Hawaii for a conference. Ila
wouldn't go with him on the trip, so Jr. took his mom, Dixie. Jr. was also on the OCSCS
Board for almost twenty years.
Jr. died on March 17, 2000 in Three Rivers, his wife Ila died April 6, 2000, three weeks
later. They were buried in Tularosa. They were married for 46 years, and both of them
had a lot of love to give to each other, and their family.