In Memoriam

Dr. Dan Spivey
January 22, 1924 - October 26, 2022

Dan Spivey peacefully drifted into the arms of his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, in the early morning of October 26, 2022. Dan was a deeply committed Christian all his life. He was a lifelong member and elder of the First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) of Lufkin. Dan never missed a Sunday, but believed and demonstrated that being a good Christian was a seven day a week practice that greatly influenced every facet of his life. The manner in which he lived his life was a transcendent model for Christian life.

Dan attended Lufkin public schools and graduated from Lufkin High School as a member of the National Honor Society in 1941. He attended the University of Texas from 1941 to 1943 and Stephen F. Austin State University from 1943 to 1944 finishing his college career in 1944. Dan had always wanted to be a doctor even from a very early age. His grandfather, Thomas Sherwood Spivey, had been an early day physician in Angelina County from 1884 to 1907 which had a strong influence on his career decision. Therefore, he subsequently attended medical school at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston graduating in 1947.

While in medical school and doing his internship, he was enlisted in the Army Specialized Training Program (ASTP), a military training program instituted by the United States Army during World War II. The program was designed to meet wartime demands both for junior officers and soldiers and technical skills. Following an internship at Brooke Army Hospital at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas, he began his medical practice as the physician for the Southern Pines Lumber Company in Diboll, Texas. As his practice grew, he relocated his practice to Lufkin in 1949 so that when delivering babies, he would be closer to the Lufkin hospitals. As he was in the Army Reserve during this time, he was called up for military service at the outbreak of the Korean War in 1951. When entering service, he was made a captain as most physicians were at that time. Serving initially as a member of the Army of Fort Jackson in Columbia, South Carolina, he was transferred to the newly created U.S. Air Force and was stationed at Langley Air Force Base in Hampton Roads, Virginia. He spent the remainder of his military service at Langley. At the close of the Korean War, he and his wife, Josie, returned to Lufkin in 1953.

He returned to Lufkin to practice family medicine for the remainder of his career, retiring in 1991. Dan was very fortunate to partner in family practice with a treasured and longtime friend, Dr. W.D. Thames. The two physicians jointly built an office at 818 Frank Avenue in Lufkin in 1955. Dr. Spivey served annual terms as Chief of Staff at both Woodland Heights and Memorial Hospital (now CHI St. Luke’s) at different times during his career. He was a charter member of the Memorial Hospital medical staff when the hospital opened in 1949. Also, he was elected president of the Angelina Medical Society for the year 1957. Dan served as the Lufkin High School football team physician for 19 years (1953-1972). As Dan had played football on the Lufkin High Panther football team in 1939 and 1940, he was highly interested in this area of medicine, both as a player and physician. He realized there was a need for both research and advancement in treatment of athletic injuries. He was primarily responsible for creating a group of likeminded physicians from across the state of Texas interested in the then very early developing field of Sports Medicine in the 1960s. He also was fortunate to serve as the medical representative on the Board of Directors of the newly formed Angelina College from 1966 to 1978. His guidance was helpful in establishing the highly regarded Nursing Program at Angelina College which was and is instrumental in developing a greatly needed source of highly trained LVNs and RNs for Angelina County hospitals and medical offices. During Dan’s long career, he witnessed many changes and developments in the field of medicine. This extended from the medical use of penicillin shortly after World War II and frequently performing house calls to the development and use of CT and MRI in the 1980s and 1990s. He was fascinated with the continual advances in medical care and studied their developments even up to an advanced age. He was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Lufkin/Angelina County Chamber of Commerce in 2009 and also received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Memorial Hospital System in 2011.

Even though Dan began playing golf at a relatively late age, he became an avid and accomplished golfer. He greatly enjoyed golfing outings with family and friends at the Lufkin and Crown Colony golf courses. He also enjoyed fishing and hunting outings, especially those at Pine Island, being especially fond of the time spent with family and friends.

As children and grandchildren, we can never express the high degree of love and admiration of our Dad and Grandy. He very much modeled the kind of character for which we can only hope to attain in our own lives. He taught us many things for which we will always be indebted. Some of the life lessons we learned from him were:

  Unconditional love by the way he diligently cared for mother through the very challenging and long-lasting health issues she encountered.
  Compassion by the way he was constantly concerned about the well-being of both his patients and those less fortunate.
  Unwavering perseverance by the way he never compromised his ideals, regardless of the current world trends or fashions.
  Kindness and neighborliness by the way he would extend assistance and understanding to friends in need.
  Responsibility by the way he would spend endless hours at night and on weekends reading and studying medical journals in order to ensure he was practicing the most up-to-date medicine.
  Humility by the way he could laugh at himself and never take himself too seriously.
  Loyalty by the way he would stand by friends and family in both good times and bad.
  Value of friendship by seeing how his friends so enriched his life.
  Respect by the way he respected all those around him, regardless of their background.
  The importance of a good sense of humor because he knew that itwas important to enjoy life.
  The importance of having a positive attitude and hope because hefelt it helped make all things possible.
  Forgiveness because he never harbored resentment of bitterness.
  Modesty because he was never arrogant or pretentious.
  Generosity by watching him contribute to so many charities both near and far.
  That to have friends, one needs to be a friend, and, perhaps, that may be why he was blessed with so many.

We will miss him greatly but also feel highly privileged and honored to have been able to call him our Dad, Grandy or friend and hope and pray for the day that we see him again "on the other side".

Dan Spivey (1924-2022) was born to Maddin Callender Spivey and Lillie (Henington) Spivey January 22, 1924. Dan was preceded in death by his wife, Josephine (Treadwell) Bartlett Spivey (1926-2018), who was a high school acquaintance with whom he fell deeply in love and subsequently married in 1947; his parents; 3 older siblings, Christine Spivey Birge, James Sherwood Spivey and Marshall Spivey and his great-grandson, Noah Spivey.

They had 3 surviving children: David Maddin Spivey of Houston, Texas, Mark Alan Spivey of Plano, Texas and Janet Spivey Bemenderfer of Plano, Texas. Surviving family members also include: daughter-in-law, Judy Connelly Spivey of Plano; son-in-law, Fred Bemenderfer of Plano; granddaughter, Sarah Spivey Little (and husband Travis Little) of Farmers Branch, Texas; grandsons, John Spivey and wife Christine) of Raleigh, North Carolina, Daniel Bemenderfer of Plano, Texas, Brian Spivey (and wife Michelle) of Irvine, California, John Bemenderfer (and wife Emily) of Farmers Branch, Texas and Alan Bemenderfer (and wife Melissa) of Murphy, Texas. Great-grandchildren include: Lisa, Brooke and Tim Spivey, all of Raleigh, North Carolina, Evelyn Bemenderfer of Farmers Branch, Texas, Lauryn and Lucas Bemenderfer of Murphy, Texas and Anne Little of Farmers Branch, Texas.

A reception with the family and friends will be held at the First Christian Church in Lufkin Saturday, October 29, 2022 at 10:00 a.m. immediately followed by the funeral service in the sanctuary at 11:00 a.m. Honorary pallbearers will be Sharon Spivey Hendricks, Marsha Spivey Jordan, Susan Spivey Ellington, Peter Spivey, Bill Bartlett, Sally Bartlett Reasor, Ben Bartlett, Ernest (Rusty) Sinclair, Steve Sinclair and Dr. Bart Sinclair.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to First Christian Church, 1300 S 1st Street, Lufkin, Texas 75901.

Memories and condolences may be added at Carroway Funeral Home, Lufkin

Saturday, October 29, 2022, 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
First Christian Church Lufkin
1300 S 1st Street
Lufkin, Texas 75901

Funeral Service
Saturday, October 29, 2022, 11:00 AM
First Christian Church Lufkin
1300 S 1st Street
Lufkin, Texas 75901

return to