Anthony Stephen “Tony” Purcell, 71, McKinney, Texas, died Feb. 19, 2018. He was born Aug. 1, 1946, in Grand Rapids, Mich., to Jayne (Keopke) and Joe Purcell. He graduated from Hutchinson High School in 1964 and joined the United States Army, proudly serving in Vietnam. Following his discharge from the Army, Purcell attended Hutchinson Junior College and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
He married Susan Griggs in 1971. To this union, three sons were born. The couple later divorced. He and Jeanie Williams married Dec. 27, 1991, in Newkirk, Okla.
Purcell discovered his passion for broadcasting early in life. His first broadcast job was in high school, producing newscasts and tending to the automation system at a local radio station. While in the Army, he became the commanding officer for a psychological warfare radio station. He held several TV positions as a reporter, photographer, news producer and news director in Kansas and Texas before joining the Texas State Networks in 1998. He came to define the network through his award-winning reporting, helping to garner the network a No. 1 ranking in the AMR ratings, four “Oscars in Agriculture,” six NAFB “Best Newscast” honors and seven in the latter’s “Best Market Cast” category. ‰
Purcell was preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by his wife, Jeanie, of McKinney; sons Todd Purcell, Winfield, Kris (Cheri) Purcell, Wichita, and William Purcell, Sheridan, Wyo.; a daughter, Dawn Warner of McKinney; a sister, Marji Purcell, Wheaton, Ill.; and four grandchildren, Annabell Purcell, Mari Purcell, Tori Purcell and Cannyon Ramos.
Memorials made be made in his name to Disabled American Veterans and Operation Kindness Animal Shelter in Carrollton, Texas.
Published in the May 2018 Issue of The Cattleman Magazine