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Drue Roy Best, Jr.
August 27, 1937 ~ September 11, 2023 (age 86) 86 Years Old
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Funeral services for Drue Best, Jr., 86, of Portales, will be held at 10:00 AM, Thurs., Sept. 14, 2023 at the Emmanuel Baptist Church with Rev. Josh Faucett officiating. Clay Smith, Jonathan Thomas, Bailee Best, Sam Riester, Tom Cruse and Greg Duran will serve as pallbearers. The members of the Business Men’s Sunday School Class will serve as his honorary pallbearers.
Drue Roy Best was born Aug. 27, 1937, in Portales, to the home of Annie Baldwin (Hatch) and Drue R. Best, and passed from this life on Sept. 11, 2023 in Amarillo, TX. Mr. Best left Portales when he was 17 to join the U.S. Navy, and served shipboard as a Boiler Engineer. During his 14 years in the service, he served on several ships, including the USS Jewett and the US Constitution.
Following his discharge, he returned to Portales for a time, but soon moved to Texas. For 25 plus years he was employed at the Stroh’s Brewing Company in Longview, TX. He later lived in Lubbock for several years before returning to Eastern New Mexico in the early 1990’s. On Dec. 24, 2003, in Fort Sumner, NM, he was married to Shelly McMillan. In 2006, the couple returned to his hometown of Portales to live out their retirement years.
Drue was very mechanically minded, and seemed to be able to repair or do most anything he set his mind to. He enjoyed going fishing, and loved to fly. Drue was a 32nd Degree, Scottish Rite Mason, and a member of the Mount Moriah Lodge #54 in Fort Sumner, NM. Since living back in Portales, he and his wife were members of Emmanuel Baptist Church.
Drue is survived by Shelly, his wife of nearly 20 years of their home; his son, Drue Best III and his wife, Amy of Bon Aqua, TN; his daughter and son-in-law, Tracy and Hugh Stephenson of Bossier City, LA; his three bonus daughters and sons-in-law, Brande and Tom Cruse of Albuquerque, Wendy and Tony Proctor of Abilene, TX and Helen and Greg Duran of El Paso, TX; nine grandchildren, Bailee Drue (Sabree) Best, Carli Best and her fiancé, Sam Reister, Chaz Clay (Brandi) Smith, Terrie (Jonathan) Thomas, Hannah and Sarah Cruse, Addison Proctor and Benjamin and Cosette Duran; and 8 great-grandchildren, Reece, Lexi and Carter Autrey, Sadie and Jett Thomas and Jaycie, Brady and Tate Smith; by his devoted dog, Skeeter; as well as a number of other family members and close friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, and three sisters, Ouida Haywood, Mona Johnston and Betty Gray.