|Title:||2012 Inductee (Football 1949-51/Basketball 1949-52/Baseball 1950-52)|
Wendell H. “Windy” Byler was born in Ballinger, Texas, and later was a standout high school athlete in Slaton, where he earned four letters in both football and basketball as well as two letters in baseball. He enjoyed similar success at UCC where he was a three-year letterman in baseball, football and basketball for the Tarpon teams from 1949-1952. Byler recorded 13 home runs and an amazing .436 batting average during the 1951 season which earned him a contract offer from the Chicago White Sox. In 1952 he was selected as the “Most Valuable Tarpon.”
Byler graduated from UCC with his degree in education in 1952. Like many young men in the early 1950s, he served his country with a two-year stint in the Army. While in the service he was a member of the 6th Armored Division All-Star teams in baseball and football. Upon discharge from the Army in 1954, he served eight years as a Registered Professional Sanitarian for the Texas Department of Health in Sinton, Texas.
In 1962, Byler entered the business world serving as a Licensed Administrator of a family-owned nursing home in Bangs, Texas, a position he served in for 30 years. That same year, he established the Byler Angus and Quarter Horse Farm and is a life member of the American Angus Association and the American Quarter Horse Association and has been a member of both associations since 1962. Byler has been a member of the Central Texas Angus Association and served as president for six years.
The Byler Angus Farm has won numerous awards in the show rings with its purebred Angus cattle including the Grand Champion Bull and female at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo, the Louisiana State Fair in Shreveport, and most recently the Grand Champion Bull at the West Texas Fair and Rodeo in 2011.
Byler has raised his family in Bangs, Texas, and has been an active member in his community serving 12 years on the School Board (three years as president) of the Bangs Independent School District as well as being a member of First Baptist Church of Bangs. In addition to his service on the School Board, he coached numerous youth sports teams and has been honored by the Bangs FFA with the “Honorary Chapter Farmer” award.
Today, Byler and his wife, Erma, are semi-retired and he continues an active role with the Byler Angus Farm. The couple has three children, four grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren, which bring them great joy.