Charles Haskell ‘Koontz’ Woodward
A teacher, a champion, an architect, a provider, a warrior, a builder and most importantly a husband and a father. On April 10, 1942, Charles Haskell Woodward was born in Mertens, Texas to Haskell and Mildred Woodward at home, with his older twin brother and sister James and Carolyn. So his journey began. In 1945 the family moved to Albany, Texas and added another brother, Johnny Woodward. They moved to the Cookfield Camp where the foundations of hard work, life long friendships, and Baptist up-bringing were instilled. My grandparents worked hard to provide for their family. My great-grandaddy, Jim, and Mama Goodman and his brother Miller and his wife Vesta all lived at Cookfield Camp, and helped teach the children the lessons of life. Daddy played, learned and became lifelong friends with the Cookfield kids.
Daddy participated in many sports programs and was a warrior on the field. He excelled in academics, made many friends and worked. He entered school as Charles and before he graduated he became Koontz. His buddies started teasing him and calling him Koontz, which he didn't like. He was talking about it to his dad and his dad told him to just ignore them and it would go away. It never did and after awhile, Koontz was all he preferred.
After graduating high school, Koontz received a scholarship to Texas A&M. He attended very briefly, then moved to Crane, Texas to work in the oilfield. He married and fathered two children, Kristi and Don. Daddy worked for ARCO, Block 31 until 1972 when he opened Koontz's Gulf.
He employed the high school boys and offered great service. He never accepted less than perfect. He ripped the sleeves out of his uniform and bore a resemblance to Burt Reynolds. He taught the boys how to do the job and always got right in there with them. He believed in hard work and expected the same from his hands. In 1979, he opened Koontz's Muffler Shop and again offered great service. In 1986 he closed down the service station and went to work at several businesses. In the mid 1990s, Dad went to work for Pradon Dirt Construction as a pusher.
Koontz and Judy moved and retired to Breckenridge, but it didn't take. In 1997 they would travel to Breckenridge every weekend and remodel their home on the lake. They changed the A-frame into a country palace, remodeling it from the ground to the roof. They took care of both of their mothers, who were living in Breckenridge. Daddy went back to work for Pradon and would come home to Breckenridge every weekend. In 2005, he retired again to spend all his time with Judy.
Daddy and Judy had a love for each other that ran deeply. They worked hard and played hard. Daddy loved and adored Judy and the feeling was mutual. On the lake there were always projects, jigsaw puzzles, free-cell solitaire games, building bird houses and tending to the cats. Coffee on the back porch was and is still a common theme.
My dad was my hero, he could fix anything, build almost anything, give advice and tell a story. He was an avid reader with most of the material being Louis L’Amour, war history, sports and the oilfield. He was a great fan of John Wayne movies and Merle Haggard music. He hunted, fished, loved Bear Bryant and the New England Patriots, and worked.
Some people have to work, some people put up with work, others don't give it their all. As I reflect on my dad, he loved to work. When he worked he accomplished the best in him. He strove to do his best in everything he touched. I am grateful and honored to call him my dad. He taught me when he didn't know he was teaching me, he loved me when I didn't know if he did. He was a great man, a great and loving husband, a force that will flow through me until we meet again. Through the last year of his ordeal, he never complained, he never got down; as always, he powered through and worked it out his way. His shoes were big, his shadow long, his legacy will endure and though physically he is not here, he will always be with me.
I thank God for choosing me to be his son. I imagine my dad in heaven, telling stories of games won on the football field, remodeling his new house, catching up with friends that went before him and when God needs a worker, my dad stepping up to get the job done.
From Koontz's wife, Judy Woodward; children, Kristi Percifull, Don Woodward, Brandy Candelaria, Barrett Bloomer; grandkids, Dayce Shull, Zac Woodward, Hayli Bloomer, Brittany Farrow, Shayli Shull, Casity Shull, Marlee Woodward; and great-grandkids, Bailey Woodward, Casey Woodward, Liam Farrow, Derek Woodward and Levi Farrow. Work on, work often and work hard.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations in Koontz Woodward's name to the Albany Education Foundation in Albany, Texas.