Bruce Alton Jordan died on Monday, April 12, 2021 at his home in Prairie Hill, Texas from complications caused by Parkinsonism with Lewy Body dementia. His Memorial Service will be at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 17 at the Prairie Hill Baptist Church with Rev. Shane Norcross officiationg. Visitation with friends and family will be at 1:00 at the church. Burial will be at the Prairie Hill Cemetery following the Memorial Service.
Bruce was born in Dallas, Texas on August 15, 1941, to Claude and Eula Mae Murphree Jordan. He had one sister, Esta Faye Moon and husband, Lonnie. They preceded him in death. He graduated from Rylie High School in 1960.
Bruce served four years in the United States Air Force and was stationed at James Connally Air Force Base most of that time. He met his future wife, Linda Heussner, on June 23, 1962 and they were married in early 1968. After completing his military service in August 1965, Bruce began working for LTV in Grand Prairie as the plane captain of the ground crew of the experimental aircraft, the XC-142, a vertical/short takeoff and landing transport (V/TOL). Running flight tests on the XC-142 took him to Lancaster, CA; Edwards Air Force Base; Pensacola, FL; Wallops Island, VA; and the Patuxent River Naval Air Station in MD. In 1967 Bruce accompanied the XC-142 to the Paris Air Show where it wowed the audience flying maneuvers like a helicopter then tilting its wings and flying off like an airplane. The flight testing continued at Grand Prairie and Langley Air Force Base, VA. In 1970, the crew delivered the XC-142 to the National Museum of the Air Force at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, OH where it is on display.
In 1971, Bruce began working as a salesman for the Jack Huppert Co. which produced biological additives to treat waste water. The company later sold and became the Heussner Company. In 1972 Bruce and Linda made Prairie Hill their home when they purchased acreage with an old farmhouse originally built about 1920. Bruce remodeled the house and added additional floors and a back wing.
In the early 1970’s, Prairie Hill residents gathered to form the Prairie Hill Volunteer Fire Department. Bruce was elected to the original board of directors and served as a volunteer fireman and first responder until 2019 when his health prevented him from responding. Because the community did not have a building to house the first fire trucks, they were parked in Bruce’s yard. In 2000, Bruce got the Prairie Hill Water Supply Board and the Prairie Hill Volunteer Fire Dept. Board to work together to build the current 3-bay fire station and water office building.
In 1978, Bruce was elected to the Prairie Hill Water Supply Board serving for 42 years until his health declined and he resigned. He served as president of the board for many of those years. He secured class C water and waste water license from the state of Texas to help him better serve the water system. He was a member of the Tri-Sota Valley Water Utilities Association, a chapter of the Texas Water Utilities Association, for over 20 years and served as secretary for the last 15 years.
Bruce was elected to the original board of directors of the Prairie Hill Community Center in 1977. He was the “go-to” person when things needed to be repaired, doors unlocked, etc. He was part of the “Prairie Hill Gang” that prepared and served the BBQ brisket dinners each year at the annual Prairie Hill Fall Festival and the Limestone County Crimestoppers fundraiser.
Being interested in local and family history, Bruce became a member of the Limestone County Historical Commission which led Bruce to become drawn to old and abandon cemeteries. From 2004 until 2013, Bruce, with a little assistance from his wife, surveyed all the cemeteries he could locate in Limestone County. These surveys were combined into the 1,183 page book, Limestone County, Texas Cemeteries: a Survey of 149 Cemeteries Conducted From 2004 to 2013. He gave the copyright and ownership of the book to the Limestone County Historical Commission.
In 1991, Bruce was introduced to genealogy by his cousin, Jerry Murphree. He began spending much of his free time at libraries, courthouses, and cemeteries in Texas, Mississippi, and Alabama searching for information on his Jordan and Murphree family lines. In 2000, Bruce wrote and published a set of 6 books on his mother’s Murphree line which included the surnames of Murphree, Bynum, Cornelius, Allgood, Ellis, and Glover. Each year he would go to Alabama to attend meetings of two genealogy groups – the Murphree Genealogical Association and the Four-Families Reunion. Bruce learned much at these gatherings and was always willing to share his research with other; but more importantly were the many wonderful friends he made along the way. Bruce and his wife were the editors of the newsletters for both of these organizations.
The other activity that Bruce enjoyed immensely was playing dominoes. For more than 15 years Bruce and his wife were part of a group that played 42 and 84 on most Friday nights at the Prairie Hill Community Center. For years large and small groups of Prairie Hill men and their friends from other communities gathered on Friday mornings to play Moon. Bruce rarely missed a game.
Bruce is survived by Linda, his wife of 53 years; sons Silvester and Ricky Salazar; sister-in-law Luanna Neighbors of Dallas; brother-in-law George Heussner and wife, Jo Ann of Bruceville-Eddy; nephews Ray Moon and wife Kim, Richard Moon and wife Laurie, Michael Heussner, and David Heussner; nieces Claudia Paugh and husband Lynn, Tammy Nicks and husband Jody, Lisa White, and Kristie Montgomery. Brother-in-law Carl Neighbors and nephew Steven Neighbors preceded him in death.
Memorials may be made to the Prairie Hill Cemetery Association, the Prairie Hill Civic Center, or any of the foundations working to find a cure or treatment for dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
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