Cover photo for Rudy Dwan Beard's Obituary

Rudy Dwan Beard

August 18, 1944 — January 24, 2024

Rudy Dwan Beard

Rudy Dwan Beard went home to be with Jesus on January 24, 2024, at the age of 79 surrounded by family in Arlington, Texas.


He is survived by his loving wife, Shirley Beard; sons, Gerald (Dixie) Beard, and Wyatt (Karyn) Beard, daughter, Penny (Fletcher) Douglas; grandchildren, Jill (Daniel) Borroum, Brandi (Ryan) Bennett, Hayden Beard, Melanie Beard, Will Gilley, Ben (Megan) Gilley, Devir Douglas, Denim Douglas, Dagin (Alicia) Douglas, DeLaci Douglas; ten great grandchildren, nephews, nieces, and extended family, whom he cherished deeply. 

The last child of James Barney Beard and Audie Ophelia Beard, RD was born August 18, 1944, in Mexia, Texas. He was preceded in death by his parents and brothers Eudell, LaRue, and Floyd Beard and his sister Varnell Peterson.

RD was a graduate of Mexia High School, in 1962, where he played football and made many lifelong friends. 

RD married the love of his life, Shirley Driver, on December 1, 1962, in the First Baptist Church in Wortham, Texas. RD and Shirley honeymooned in Waco where they celebrated their union at the Elite restaurant before settling in Arlington, TX where they lived and raised their three children. RD devoted his life to raising his children with Shirley. He was a deacon at Tabernacle Baptist Church for many years, where they both made many dear friends. They were also members at Lane Prairie Baptist Church in Cleburne, TX and more recently he and Shirley were members of First Baptist Church, Josephine, Texas. 


In 1963, RD began working at the General Motors plant in Arlington, Texas where he worked on the line and in supervisory roles, a position he held for 31 years before retiring to Cleburne, Texas. He enjoyed his life in Cleburne and took advantage of the opportunity to make many new friends while working for the Joshua School District in various positions including being a supervisor for the Durham bus service, sound man for productions and events at Joshua High School, and safety coordinator while the school district built new facilities.  


One role that he cherished was being the general manager, sound man, and all-around chauffeur for the kids' band the Texas Gold Minors. His son Wyatt was in the band, and they traveled alongside the other talented child musicians to various venues in Texas and across the country to perform their kids' variety show. RD maintained the band’s schedule and every weekend they were off to play for audiences in venues such as the Grapevine Opry and 86 Music Hall in Branson, MO. All his hard work would pay off as the kids landed the first variety show in Branson, MO. Many of the musicians RD hired to be in the band over the years are still enjoying music careers today. 


RD enjoyed many hobbies such as working on cars and tinkering in his wood shop. His family and friends were delighted to receive his creations. One of the items he made that his family enjoyed receiving was his porch swings. He lovingly made each one for his children and grandchildren. One Christmas he and Shirley made each child and grandchild a custom wood game of Joker, a family favorite to play. RD created the game board and Shirley painted each piece so beautifully.

Music was a passion of RD’s, and all his children were gifted musically.  He grew up playing music with his father, brothers, and sister. Playing guitar was a hobby that he enjoyed daily. He kept his guitar next to his chair to play whenever the mood struck. He enjoyed playing gospel and country music songs the most. 


Both he and Shirley loved Lake City, Colorado, and camped there every year. They served as gracious camp hosts at Wood Lake campground where they cherished many friendships and campers throughout their years as hosts. They entertained many folks with cards and domino games, checkers (where he remained undefeated against his grandchildren), rounds of corn hole, Jeep, and trout fishing trips through the San Juan mountains, hotdog roasts, fish fries, cowboy breakfasts, and rounds of bingo were enjoyed by all who visited them in Colorado. One thing RD loved the most while visiting Colorado was playing music with fellow campers. They would play for visitors, family, and friends under the pavilion and often they played on a float in the Lake City, CO Fourth of July parade.


RD was the beneficiary of a lively sense of humor. All his friendships were lifelong. Some friends called him Dwan, others RD and he could recall details of events from decades ago and spin hilarious tales for his various audiences. He was also a man of integrity, honesty, hard work, and grit, and it was evident to all who knew him. He never met a stranger and everyone who knew him loved him. 


May he rest in the care of Jesus until we are gathered together by Him and can hug his neck once more.


The visitation will be held on January 27th 2024, from 3:00-4:00 p.m. with a Celebration of Life to follow at 4:00 p.m. The burial will follow at the Mexia cemetery. 


In lieu of flowers, you can send a contribution to First Baptist Church, P.O. Box 9, Josephine, Texas 75164.     



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Past Services


Saturday, January 27, 2024

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Central time)

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Celebration of Life

Saturday, January 27, 2024

Starts at 4:00 pm (Central time)


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Saturday, January 27, 2024

Starts at 5:00 pm (Central time)

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