Dr. Neal McBryde died April 3, 2022. He was 91 years old.
A viewing will commence at noon on Tuesday, April 12, with funeral services following at 1 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church in Beeville. Interment will follow in Glenwood Cemetery, Beeville.
Neal was born September 16, 1930 in Austin to Oliver C. McBryde, Sr. and Cleo (Leigh) McBryde. He grew up in Premont and graduated from Premont HS as Salutatorian in 1947.
Neal was a veteran of the Korean War Era having served four years in the Army at Fort Bliss and Foch Kaserne in Worms, Germany. He was honorably discharged March 14, 1955 with the rank of Sergeant. In 1955, he enrolled at Texas A&I (now Texas A&M Kingsville) and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Physics (Magna Cum Laude) in May 1958.
After graduation, Neal worked for Boeing Airplane Company (1958-59) on the BOMARC missile electronic equipment. In 1959, he started working for Collins Radio Company. His first assignment was at Biggs Air Force base in El Paso where he advised and instructed Air Force personnel in the operation, installation, and maintenance of airborne and ground single sideband radio equipment.
From 1960-64, Neal worked with Headquarters 16th Air Force in Madrid Spain as Technical Representative for radio equipment in their inventories in Spain, the Azores Islands, Majorca, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Pakistan. He also served at Rammstein airbase in Germany (1964) as Tech Rep for single sideband radio equipment.
Upon his return to the States, Neal was assigned to Griffis AFB in Rome, New York as Liaison Engineer for Collins equipment at the Depot Repair Facility (1964-65). He transferred to their home office in Cedar Rapids, Iowa and worked on project SECT, a classified U.S. Navy project, while also serving as the Maintainability Project Engineer. While working on project SECT, he traveled to Charleston, South Carolina and felt privileged to go aboard and work on the USS George Washington and USS Simon Bolivar nuclear submarines (1965-67).
In 1967, when Bee County College (now Coastal Bend College) opened, Neal started to work as Technical Division Chairman in charge of the Electronics Program. In addition to electronics courses, he also taught Fortran programming, math and physics. While working at BCC, he enrolled at Texas A&I University in Kingsville and received an MS in Electrical Engineering in May 1970.
In 1971, Neal enrolled at Texas A&M University in College Station and received a PhD in Education (Vocational) in 1973. He then worked at Angelina College in Lufkin as Director of Vocational Education for one year before returning to Bee County College in 1974. He retired in 1993 as Vice President of Occupational Programs.
While in the Army, Neal met Wilhelmine “Wilma” Bayer in Worms, Germany. They married on July 14, 1954.
Dr. McBryde is survived by his son, Doak (Bernadette) McBryde of Houston; a grandson, CDR JD (Allison) McBryde, USN retired, of Tomball; a granddaughter, Marisa Ann Ortiz of Brownsville; and great-grandchildren, Ashley Chammas, Connor and Maddox McBryde, Miranda Luz, Manuel, Janelle and Armani Ortiz. He is also survived by his older brother, Oliver C. (Betty) McBryde, Jr. of San Antonio; and his son-in-law, Richard Ortiz of Brownsville.
Dr. McBryde was preceded in death by his parents; his granddaughter, Meredith McBryde; his brother, Ross; his daughter, Martina Ortiz; and Wilma, his wife of 66 years.
Dr. McBryde was a lifelong Methodist and a member of the First United Methodist Church of Beeville. Over many years, he served the church as Chairman of the Administrative Board, Sunday School Superintendent, Chairman of Trustees, Lay Leader, Delegate to the Annual Conference, Chairman of the Staff Parish Relations Committee and Chairman of the Finance Committee. He was also a member of the Windmill Emmaus Community and was editor of their newsletter for eight years.
Dr. McBryde has served as Vice President of the South Texas Health System Agency, President of the Texas Association of Post Secondary Occupational Education Administrators, Board Member of the Chamber of Commerce, Member of the Governor’s Task Force for Vocational Education, the Rural Coastal Bend Private Industry Council, Texas A&M Criminal Justice Advisory Committee, the National Tech Prep Network, the Lufkin and Beeville Lions Clubs, the Republican Club of Bee County and the Do-Nothing Social Group.
In lieu of flowers Dr. McBryde requested that Memorials be made to the First United Methodist Church of Beeville.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Neal Maddox McBryde, please visit our floral store.