Darrell Wayne Ward, 69, of Midland went home to Jesus on Friday, February 18, 2022 in Midland. Visitation will be 6:00pm until 8:00pm Tuesday, February 22, 2022 at Nalley-Pickle & Welch Funeral Home & Crematory in Midland. A Memorial Mass will be 10:00am Wednesday, February 23, 2022 at St. Ann’s Catholic Church.
Darrell was born August 29, 1952 in Wichita, Kansas to Carlton Ward and Helen deStieguer Ward. He grew up in Bartlesville, Oklahoma. Darrell attended Sooner High School and was active in music and drama and graduated class of 1970. He went on to attend the University of Oklahoma from 1970-1974, earning a degree in History with a minor in Broadcasting. While at OU he was a member of University Scholars Academic Honors Group, and a member of the Pride of Oklahoma University Band. Needless to say, Darrell was a lifelong Sooners fan. While in Norman, OK he was active in the music program at First Baptist Church, including singing in the gospel ensemble, “The Maker’s Dozen”. Shortly after graduating he got a job as a DJ on KWON in Bartlesville, which started a decades long career in Radio and TV broadcast. After about a year in Bartlesville, a job opportunity came available in Lamesa, TX which he accepted and worked there for 13 months. While on-air one day he received a phone call from a manager of an Odessa station, who was just driving through Lamesa and heard Darrell on the station. Darrell was offered a job in Odessa/Midland, where he lived and worked ever since. Darrell’s on-air career led him to be with many different stations including KYXX, KCRS, KNFM, KGEF, KODM, KLFR AND KIOG. In the early 1980’s he was once again called by the news director who offered him a job doing the weekend weather. He soon became the fulltime morning weather person for two decades. Darrell later worked for KPEJ, Fox24, and CBS 7. Darrell was active in the community, doing numerous shows at Midland Community Theater, the Villain in Summer Mummers from 1980-1998. He was also active in the Globe Theater in Odessa, sang with the Midland/Odessa Symphony & Chorale, and was a member of the Permian Basin Madrigal Singers. Not only was he active in the theater and singing locally, but he served on many Board of Directors for organizations such as; Summer Mummers, Globe Theater, and Permian Basin Multiple Sclerosis Society, and the Make A Wish Foundation. He also served for several years as the On-Air host for the Jerry Lewis MDA Labor Day Telethon.
Darrell met and fell in love with his beloved Midland native Arminae Forest in 2001. They married soon after in 2002 and together they raised their two fraternal twin sons Bradley and Brandon. Darrell and Arminae had many opportunities to sing together, including special gospel shows at the Globe Theater, Christmas, and other holiday specials in Big Spring. They also sang regularly for residents at many of the assisted living facilities. He would always say that Arminae has the voice of an angel and is a great joy to perform with. Darrell served as the Minister of Music for a church in West Odessa, and later he and Arminae helped lead the Youth Ministry at St. Stephens Catholic Church in Midland.
As Darrell’s broadcast career drew to a close, he went back to school and got certified to teach Social Studies grades 8-12 in Texas. He taught for three years at Richard Milburn Academy in Odessa. After one last stint doing weather on CBS 7, Darrell started teaching at Permian high in Odessa. He taught there for six years before his health issues forced his retirement.
Those left to cherish Darrell’s memories are his loving wife of 20 years Arminae Ward of Midland; sons Bradley Ward and Brandon Ward; brother Roger Ward of Klamath, OR; father-in-law Ron and Ann Forest of Midland; mother-in-law Armina Forest of Midland; brother-in-law Ron and Corri Forest of Montgomery, TX and their children Caitlin and Reese. He is preceded in death by his parents, Carlton Ray Ward and Helen Jane Ward and brother, “Peewee” Ward.
Honorary pallbearers will be Jay Hendricks, Spencer Bennett, Bob Bailey, Joe Pool, Charles Atchley, James Whitmire, Larry Thibeault and Jeff McDonald.
The family would like to thank Kindred Hospice for all their care, support and love for Darrell and his family.
Arrangements are under the care and direction of Nalley-Pickle & Welch Funeral Home & Crematory in Midland. Online condolences may be made at www.npwelch.com.