Mr. Loyd Finke, 72, of Navasota, passed away Thursday, April 20, at his home. Visitation with family and friends will be held Tuesday, April 25, from 5:00 – 7:00 PM at Nobles Funeral Chapel. Funeral services will be held Wednesday, April 26, at 2:00 PM at the Grimes County Expo Center with Rev. Tuffy Loftin officiating. Interment will follow in Friedens Church of Washington Cemetery. Arrangements are under the direction of Nobles Funeral Chapel.
Loyd Edward Finke was born to his parents, Alvina Abke Finke and Gus Henry Finke on August 31, 1950. He was the youngest of five children.
He grew up in the Whitehall area of Grimes County and attended Navasota schools. While at Navasota High School, he learned a lot about farming and ranching. He was an active member in the Future Farmers of America. He held the reporter position while helping the “Diamond Back Staff” in writing articles about Navasota FFA.
After graduating from Navasota High School, he attended Blinn College in Brenham, Texas. As the stories are told, we have learned he thoroughly enjoyed himself. Although college was not really his cup of tea, he made the best of it, meeting new people and making lifetime friends and memories.
Soon after college, Loyd was drafted by our country to serve in the U.S. Army. After basic training he was deployed to Vietnam where he served as Platoon Sergeant for the duration of his service in the military. Due to the U.S. Army discovering that Loyd had a rare blood type which they did not have supply for, he was honorably discharged for fear of something happening to him where they could not save him. Just as in all his life endeavors, Loyd was a dedicated officer.
After returning home to Navasota, Loyd found true love with Gail Armatys. They were married June 9, 1973. She was the perfect wife for him as they enjoyed the same interests in cattle, horses, rodeos, country living, and most of all dancing. Loyd and Gail could be found dancing the night away at any given time at the local VFW, county fairs, or anywhere else there was dancing.
He and Gail were both active with horse shows, rodeos, and livestock shows. Loyd was a member of the National Cutting Horse Association, competing in the NCHA Futurity in the early 80’s. Primarily training horses for Bob McFarland in Millican, Loyd also had the opportunity to ride horses for the King Ranch, Curtis Burlin, Floyd Moore, Roy Davis, and numerous others. Cutting horses were his second true love.
Loyd spent much of his life working in agriculture, specifically the livestock auction business and ranching. Learning the ins and outs of the livestock auction business at an early age gave him an advantage and made him a great asset to the ranchers he assisted. With his ties to Navasota Livestock and his unmatched work ethic, he earned the business of some of the largest cattle ranches in this area.
As a family, they spent many years at Navasota Livestock Auction, more commonly known as “The Salebarn.” The Salebarn brought many challenges over the years, but the memories, friendships, and life lessons made there far surpassed any and all challenges. Loyd and Gail used The Salebarn to not only raise their children but also many other “kids” from Grimes County, Texas A&M, Sam Houston State, and all over the world. It was Loyd’s thought that everyone should have to work in the back of a sale barn at least once.
Loyd and Gail shared a passion for helping the youth of Grimes County. The Grimes County Fair held a special place in both of their hearts. To help educate the youth on the commercial cattle business, Loyd and Gail, with the help of others, started the Grimes County Commercial Heifer Show. Local ranchers donated a heifer for a fortunate FFA or 4-H member to raise and show each year in hopes of starting their own herd one day.
Loyd’s final years were truly a God Send. Managing Dawn’s Promise Farms for Waltrip Ranches utilized all Loyd had learned throughout the earlier years of his life. Here, he was able to ride good horses, tend to cattle, grow the lushest green pastures and hayfields, all while being less than a mile from home. Loyd took immense pride in everything he did, especially his time at Dawn’s Promise Farms. It was a cowman and cowboy’s dream; he was both.
Loyd, Gail, Jodi, Kodi, and Sloan were raised in the Lutheran Church. Loyd had a strong Christian faith. He was baptized, confirmed, and married at Salem Lutheran Church in Whitehall. In more recent years, Loyd had been attending the Cowboy Church of Brenham.
Loyd lost his wife, Gail Armatys Finke, to cancer on May 8, 2009, leaving behind their three children Jodi Gwen, Kodi Lyn, and Sloan Matthew. He had the joy of becoming a father-in-law to his sons-in-law, Casey Rice and Doug Burdette, and his daughter-in-law Paige Marek Finke. Earning the title of Lolo Pop, his greatest joy and accomplishment was becoming a grandfather to his four grandchildren: Cambry Gail and Creed Matlock Rice, Gage Douglas Burdette, and Jaxson Roger Finke.
He was preceded in death by his parents; siblings, Rayburn Finke and Barbara Finke; in-laws, Irene and Andrew Armatys; as well as his beloved wife Gail Armatys Finke. Loyd is survived by his children, Jodi Rice & husband Casey, Kodi Burdette & husband Doug, and Sloan Finke & wife Paige; grandchildren, Cambry, Creed, Gage, and Jaxson; siblings, Lawrence Finke and wife Brenda and Margaret Finke, sisters-in-law, Connie Griffith and husband Johnnie, and Nellie “Tootie” Finke; and several nieces and nephews.
Loyd will be deeply missed by friends and family. Lolo loved us all, and he is truly cherished by many.
Serving as pallbearers are Mark Shimshack, Kenton Shimshack, Jimmy Shimshack, Rayburn Imhoff, Carlos Zepeda, Miguel Gutierrez, Johnnie Griffith, John Atkinson, Don Henderson, Dr. Don Goodman DVM, David Boenker, Slade Griffith, Chris Finke, Carl Schroeder, and Quinn Hansen.
Honorary pallbearers include Doug Burdette, Casey Rice, Gage Burdette, Cambry Rice, Creed Rice, and Jaxson “J.R.”Finke.
For those that desire, memorial contributions may be made to the Gail Finke Memorial Scholarship Fund, c/o First National Bank of Anderson, PO Box 159, Anderson, TX 77830.
The family invites you to leave kind words or fond memories at