Russell Dean Pettit, 78, died Feb. 15, 2019, in Lubbock, TX. He was born on Feb. 17, 1941 to Irvin and Ellis (Lentfer) Pettit on a farm near Burr Oak in Jewell County, Kan. He attended the one-roomed Oak Creek School in Harrison Township, also in Jewell County, graduating from Burr Oak High School in 1959.
Pettit attended Fort Hays State University and Texas Tech University, ultimately earning his PhD in range management science at Oregon State University. Following graduation, he taught for a short time in Kingsville before joining the Range and Wildlife Management faculty at Texas Tech University in the fall of 1969, where he specialized in arid grasslands and coached Texas Tech University’s range plant identification team at annual meetings of the International Society for Range Management. He retired in 1989 as an Associate Professor of Range Management, Emeritus.
Pettit was united in marriage to Mary Gutierrez on Nov. 7, 1969. He is survived by his son Scott, wife Debbie, and grandson Dane Pettit of Austin; Scott’s mother, Mary Pettit of Garland; a sister Dixie (Ron) West of Manhattan, Kan.; brothers-in-law Bill Brown of Montgomery, Minn., Ray Schutte of Hastings, Neb., Jorge (Deanna) Gutierrez of Austin; and sisters-in-law Judy Pettit of Superior, Neb., Virginia Pettit of Kansas City, Miss., Perla Galvan of Harlingen, Yolanda Cervantes of Arlington, Cristina (Alvaro) Hernandez of Lewisville, Lourdes Gutierrez of Garland, Ester Gutierrez of Las Vegas, Nev., and their families. He was preceded in death by his parents, sisters Faye Brown and Phyllis Schutte, and brothers Paul, Alan, and David.
Published in the June 2019 Issue of The Cattleman Magazine