The Herald Democrat
October 18, 2009
J. Forrest Bryant, associate dean emeritus of Austin College, passed
away Friday, Oct. 16, 2009 at Wilson N. Jones Hospital in Sherman. He and
his family observed his 97th birthday on this past Monday.
Forrest was born Oct. 12, 1912 in Pilot Point to Joe H. and Ethel
Saunders Bryant. He graduated from Austin College in 1941 with a B. A.
in biology. His M.S. was earned at North Texas State University which was
followed by advanced graduate study at the University of Texas. During
World War II he served his country in the U.S. Army Service Forces from
1942 to 1945 as a civilian supervisor at the Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville,
Ala. After the war he returned to teach at Sherman High School where he
was chairman of the science department.
His career at Austin College began in 1948 as associate professor
of biology, and he later became registrar and associate dean of the college.
During his tenure at Austin College he served as secretary for the Presbyterian
Education Association of the South and secretary for the Texas Association
of College Registrars and Admission Officers. In honor of his retirement
in 1977 he received the Homer P. Rainey Award for Outstanding Achievement
and Service to Austin College. In 1997 he received the Distinguished Alumnus
Award from Austin College.
Forrest was active in the community as a Little League coach and
a Boy Scout merit badge counselor, in addition to serving on the boards
of the Red River Museum and the American Red Cross. He was a 75-year Mason
and a charter member of the Andrew Randall Masonic Lodge 1342. He served
in many leadership positions, and as Grand Master, directed the construction
of the new lodge building on South Crockett Street in Sherman.
He was a long time member of Covenant Presbyterian Church, serving
on the Building and Education Committees as well as many others through
the years. He was elected to the position of Deacon and later to the office
of Ruling Elder and Vice Moderator of the Session.
In June 1942 he married Joyce Wilson, who preceded him in death
in January 2002 after 59 years of marriage. He was also preceded in death
by his parents and his brother, Winston Bryant, of California.
Forrest is survived by his sister, Florene Bryant Watson, of Dallas,
sons; Stephen Forrest Bryant and wife Carolyn of Granbury, Timothy Lee
Bryant and wife Connie of Austin, Mark Alan Bryant and wife Kathy of Texarkana,
Ark. He is also survived by grandchildren; Laura Bryant Ebener and husband
Dr. Robert of Jacksonville Fla., Jamie Bryant and wife Kacey of Spring,
Amy Bryant Jaska and husband Joe of Sherman, Brad Bryant and wife Amy of
Fredericksburg, Dr. Shelly Bryant Thannum and husband Michael of Collierville,
Tenn., Kevin Bryant and wife Amanda of Hot Springs, Ark. He is also survived
by seven great-grandchildren who were a special delight to him in his later
The funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. on Monday, Oct. 19,
2009 at Covenant Presbyterian Church, with burial after in West Hill Cemetery
in Sherman. Pastor Neill Morgan will officiate. Visitation will be from
2 -4 p.m. Sunday at Waldo Funeral Home. The family requests that in lieu
of flowers, memorials be made to Home Hospice of Sherman or the Joyce Wilson
and J. Forrest Bryant Endowed Academic Achievement Scholarship at Austin