On May 7, 2022, our Lord Jesus Christ came and personally escorted Carl Crabtree to his heavenly home where he was joyfully greeted by his father and mother, Rufus and Ethel Crabtree, family members and friends.
Carl was born on Oct. 3, 1953 near Tyrone and was raised in the Tyrone community. He attended all 12 years and graduated from Cabool Schools. During this time, Carl helped his family with their dairy farm and baled square hay bales during the summer to earn extra spending money. In his junior and senior year, Carl and good friend, Paul Dixon rented an apartment in Cabool and lived together until graduation. During his junior year of school he worked at Sunny Hill Poultry Plant as part of the night cleanup crew with his father. In his senior year, Carl participated in the auto mechanic class held at Honeycutt Chevrolet in Cabool and obtained a job as an auto mechanic for four years. He also worked at Coats Ford and Louis Still Ford as a mechanic until his employment as a night watchman at Brown Shoe Company in Houston. Carl has also worked as a carpet layer with Franklin Stone and as a kitchen cabinet salesman for Darrell Shriver. Carl was able to follow his true calling in life of living on the farm and being a beef cattleman when his father and mother gave him 40 acres in 1974. From 1978 until he was no longer able to operate a tractor, Carl was a custom hay operator who put up first square bales to round bales of hay. With hard work and determination the farm grew to 600 acres in which Carl made his home and raised his family.
In January of 1974, Carl married his high school sweetheart, Martha, at Near Home Baptist Church three miles from downtown Tyrone, Mo. Along with a neighbor, Gus Lodholtz, Carl built the house that he and Martha have lived in for 46 years. Carl was a devoted loving “hubba hubba” who supported Martha in raising their two sons Curtis and Timothy. He encouraged and helped Martha to finish her college undergraduate and graduate degrees as well as providing the needed support of taking care of Martha’s grandmother and mother. There were many times Martha’s mother thought more of Carl than her own daughter by taking sides with him when he got in “trouble” with Martha. Throughout his sons’ lives, Carl shared his knowledge and skills of being a beef farmer, running and operating a custom hay business, operating and maintaining machinery and bulldozer, mechanic, welder, electrician, plumber, and most of all on how to be a man of integrity by treating others in a kind and fair manner.
While on a date with Martha, during the 1971 3rd Crusade for Christ at the Raymondville Horseman’s Paradise race track, Carl asked our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to forgive him of his sins and be Lord of his life. From that day on Carl dedicated his life to our Lord Jesus Christ. He then joined the Near Home Baptist Church and later on became deacon, trustee and messenger to the Texas County Baptist Association. When the church closed their doors, Carl became a member of First Baptist Church in Cabool, and while there he served as a deacon, a member of various committees, and messenger to Texas County Baptist Association. Carl was part of the committee who voted to build the swimming pool at the Simmons Baptist Camp. Until the time of his passing, Carl was a member of Elk Creek Baptist Church. It was during this time, with encouragement from his son Timothy who was serving as a missionary in Nicaragua, Carl became a part of the Eric Paulson missionary team that served in Nicaragua for seven years as part of their vet team. Carl truly enjoyed serving the Lord and strongly encouraged others to be a part of this loving Christian group of men and women. Carl loved going to Sunday school and church, and it was a very rare day that he ever missed a service.
Carl was a strong dedicated man who served and loved his community by being a volunteer for the Tyrone Fire Department, Tyrone Community Building Board, Soil and Water Commission, Financial Credit Services Nomination Committee, Texas County Cattlemen board member, and at the Missouri State Fair Beef House.
Carl loved life, his family and friends. Anywhere there was family or friends there would be plenty of food, talking and laughter. He always looked forward to having his sons and families coming to the farm, attending family reunions, eating out with his cousins, and attending his high school reunions. He was looking forward to his 50th high school reunion later this month to meet and rekindle his friendship with his fellow classmates. Carl was very proud of both of his sons owning their own businesses and being Christian family men who are raising their families to follow Christ. While his grandsons were very small Carl taught them to fish and drive his old noisy Dodge truck and four wheelers. Carl truly enjoyed being with his brother and sister-in-law David and Cindy Crabtree who took him on vacations to Minnesota on a fishing and mosquito trip, Rocky Mountain National Park, and Yellowstone Park. But most of all he loved Cindy’s cashew chicken and playing dominos with them at the Ponderosa.
There were two seasons of the year that Carl really looked forward to: morel mushroom season and deer season. He loved to gather and eat mushrooms, and taught his family on how to hunt and eat them. During deer season, he loved to hunt, eat, laugh and play games with his fellow deer hunters first at his home, then at Possum Lodge, and later at the Ponderosa.
Carl was a true cattleman and loved to watch westerns. He could get cows and calves to do whatever he wanted along with his family helping to “chase” and “wrestle” them. With the help of family and friends, he built fences, rock posts and cutting thorn trees. Carl also enjoyed going on coon hunts with Gordon Scott and several of his friends and their sons.
After being diagnosed with brain cancer and going through radiation and chemo, Carl was able to enjoy life with his family and friends for almost four years. He was blessed by being able to eat at Hardee’s with his special Christian brother, Jerry Hood, nearly on a weekly basis. While at the Kabul Nursing Home, Carl enjoyed the cards, visits, food and prayers that he received as well as the loving compassionate care that he received from the staff of the Kabul Nursing Home.
Carl was preceded in death by his father, Rufus; his mother, Mary Ethel; grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins and many friends. Those who will be celebrating Carl’s legacy are his wife, Martha; sons and wives, Curtis and Kelsey and Timothy and Jessie; grandchildren – Caleb, Joshua, Yader, Anna Kaye and Lucy; as well as a host of family and friends; brother and sister-in-law, David and Cindy; sister-in-law, Ellen; brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Ralph and Karen; and a number of nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be held from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., Wednesday, May 11, 2022 at the funeral home. A Celebration of Life will be held at 12:30 p.m. at the Elk Creek Baptist Church. Private interment will be in the Near Home Cemetery under the direction of Elliott-Gentry-Carder Funeral Home of Cabool, Mo. Online condolences may be made at www.egcfuneralhome.com.
In lieu of flowers, a memorial may be given to the Near Home Cemetery fund at the Security Bank in Houston or to the Elk Creek Baptist Church mission fund.