Ernest Wesley McCoy, a teacher to thousands, a mentor to many, a loving husband and father, and a friend to all, died on April 18, 2020 at his home in Smyrna, Tennessee. He was 97.
He was a lifetime member of the First United Methodist Church in Monticello.
Born June 3rd, 1922 in Richland, Indiana to Ernest McCoy and Blanche Johnson McCoy.
Mr. McCoy served in the United States Navy during World War II and was an instructor of Fleet School welding from 1943 to 1947. It was during that time that he met the love of his life, Monteene. They were married on July 4, 1943 in Evansville, Indiana.
Mr. McCoy received a Bachelor of Science degree in Forestry in 1950 and a Master of Science Degree in Forestry in 1951 from Purdue University. He was a master educator, a professional forester, and a professional land surveyor.
Professor McCoy spent three different tenures on the faculty of the forestry department at the University of Arkansas at Monticello. In 1953, he joined what was then Arkansas A&M College. He left in 1955 for a three-year stint with the U.S. Forest Service in Carbondale, Illinois as a project leader in research. He returned to A&M in 1958, retiring in as an associate professor in 1992. He immediately returned to the program for another two-year stint as a research associate. He retired again in 1994 and went to work as a surveying and project manager. In 1999, he returned to the UAM School of Forest Resources as a visiting professor charged with curriculum development and writing a substantial number of new courses for the new Spatial Information Systems Surveying Program.
In May 2002, McCoy received the UAM School of Forestry Lifetime Achievement Award. The E. Wesley McCoy Natural Resources Trail at UAM was dedicated to McCoy. The trail holds many fond memories for McCoy and his family.
In 2005, McCoy was inducted into the Arkansas Foresters Hall of Fame.
He was wise beyond his education, and numerous people benefited from his counsel. He was exceptionally kind, tolerant, trustworthy, and loved by all. Wesley McCoy was a true gentleman.
He is survived by his loving wife if 76 years, Monteene McCoy; his children, Pat McCoy Kissinger and her husband, Walt Kissinger of Smyrna, Tennessee and Ronnie McCoy and his wife, Lori McCoy of Monticello; grandchildren, Candace Redwine, and her husband Jeff, Shaun Oliver, and his wife Stephenie, Jadah McCoy, Will McCoy, and Zach Kissinger; and great grandchildren, Valerie Andrews, Ethan Jones, Olivia Robinson, Jaden Oliver, Landon Oliver, and Jace Oliver.
He was preceded in death by his daughter, Pamela Monteene McCoy; his brother, Dr. Melvin McCoy; his sister, Martha McCoy; his parents, Ernest and Blanche McCoy; and his granddaughter Jennifer Lynn Curry Rathel.
A private family graveside service will be held on April 25 at 1 p.m. at Oakland Cemetery in Monticello under the direction of Stephenson-Dearman Funeral Home. Pastor Hammett Evans of the First United Methodist Church will perform the services.
There will be a Celebration of Life Service at First United Methodist Church in Monticello at a later date, once all bans have been lifted.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the E. Wesley McCoy Scholarship fund at UAM.