A fond farewell to a Texas icon

Photo submitted to Big Tex’s Guest Book

An October 19th fire brought an end to Big Tex’s reign as the most recognizable icon of the State Fair of Texas.  When the story broke, Dallas Morning News created an online obituary and Guest Book for him. Condolences and memories started pouring in from fans across the country.

What’s special about this story? Big Tex was a fictional character – a 52-foot tall statue.  And I have to say, that’s a first for Legacy.com.  Our team of screeners got busy reviewing condolence messages, and quickly discovered this was no ordinary Guest Book.  

We think Big Tex would give a hearty laugh at some of the condolences he received. While we normally wouldn’t post such messages, we decided some amount of humor was acceptable in this particular Guest Book. For example:

I’ll always remember his last words: “Howdy, y’all! Is it hot today, or is it just me?” Sadly, it was just him.

I remember the time Big Tex pointed me in the right direction when I was looking for the restrooms.

Looks like you had to leave the fair early

Alas, poor Big Tex; I knew him. How will I ever find my way from the livestock buildings to the Midway without him to point the way? How will I catch the pig races without him announcing their schedule? I just don’t know.

Gives a whole new meaning to this years fair theme…”Big & Bright”

But Big Tex’s Guest Book isn’t all laughs and jokes. Many people viewed him as a central figure in their fair-going experiences, and shared sweet memories of visits to see him:

I’ve always been the odd man out when it came to a lot of things. But, when I went to the fair and saw big tex when I was little it always had a way of making me feel like I wasn’t alone and proud to be TEXAN. I’ll miss you big guy shame I couldn’t see you one last time before passed.

When i first moved to Texas, i was 13, it was in 1958..he was the first thing i saw, and i remember thinking “wow everything is so big in Texas”. They might rebuild him, but he will never be the same.

Tex, when I was little and we went to the Fair…I knew if I got lost I was supposed to go to you and sit at your feet. When I got older and had kids of my own, my kids knew to do the same thing. There was only one time I had to go to your feet to retrieve someone. Thanks for always being there for us. You were always our rock.

Farewell, Big Tex. Your fans look forward to the day when they can once again hear your friendly greeting of “Howdy, folks!”

About Katie

I joined Legacy.com in 2002 as a part-time content screener and now serve as Director of Operations, overseeing Legacy’s day-to-day operations (Guest Book screening, obituary processing, customer service, and client service). I grew up in California, the daughter of a psychologist and a minister. My parents instilled in me the importance of listening to and caring about others. One of the things I appreciate most about working at Legacy.com is that I am able to have a small part in easing people's pain during one of the most difficult times in their lives. In my life outside of Legacy, I enjoy baking treats (and bringing them to the office to share), playing the piano, reading, taking pictures, tending to our vegetable & herb gardens, trying out new restaurants and foods, spending time with my husband, Chuck (whom I met at Legacy) and our kids, Brett Jr. & Josie.
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