Ross Eugene Burris, age 85 of Sabinal, went to be with the Lord on August 26, 2020.
Ross was born March 31, 1935, in San Antonio, TX and was shortly after adopted by Eugene and Constance Burris of Sabinal.
Eugene and Constance had moved to Sabinal in 1925 when they bought the Majestic Theater on Center Street. In 1939, they tore down the Majestic and built the current theater building naming it after their son, Ross.
Ross grew up working at his parent’s theater as well as on their Burris Acres’ dairy farm. Ross graduated from Sabinal High School in 1953.
Ross graduated from Southwest Texas State in 1957 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology.
Ross proudly served in the U.S. Army from 1958 to 1960. Since Ross had a Biology degree, the Army made him a combat medical specialist. Ross was stationed in Germany as part of the 46th Field Artillery Group supporting Redstone missiles.
In 1960, Ross attended Sul Ross State to get his teaching certificate. He began his teaching career in Natalia, TX where he taught science and history at the middle and high school levels. Ross also coached girls’ basketball and volleyball.
While in Natalia, Ross met and married Bernice Julia (Julie) Herber in 1962. They had their first of three children, Mike, in 1964.
In 1964, both of Ross’ parents died. Ross moved back to Sabinal to live on Burris Acres and operate the Ross Theater. Their daughter, Glenda, was born in 1965 and second son, Randy, was born in 1966.
Ross taught in Natalia until a teaching position opened in Sabinal in 1968. He taught in Sabinal until his retirement in 1989. Over the years in Sabinal, Ross taught history, science, biology, and government as well as coached girls’ basketball. Ross had a unique teaching style that helped students learn and appreciate the history of their country.
Ross and Julie operated the Ross Theater from 1964 to 1987. The TV program “The Eyes of Texas” did a show on the closing of the Ross Theater. Ross and Julie had started renting videos in 1986 and, after the theater closed, transformed the concession and lobby areas into the Ross Video store. They operated the video store until 2012. The Burris family was in the movie/video business in Sabinal for 87 total years (1925 to 2012).
Ross was the statistician and correspondent for the Sabinal Yellowjacket football team for 42 years. After each game, he communicated the stats to area newspapers in San Antonio, Hondo, Uvalde, and Sabinal. In 2010, Ross finally hung up his clip board. In 2015, Ross used his stats and other research material to author and publish the book “Sabinal Yellowjacket Football History (1919 -2014)”. His son Randy helped co-author the book.
Ross was a devoted member and deacon of the First Baptist Church of Sabinal where he served in many capacities. As a devoted Christian, Ross had a great compassion for the unsaved and yearned to teach anyone who would listen about Jesus Christ.
Ross was a member of the Sabinal Lions Club for over 30 years and was the last founding Club member of the annual Wild Hog Festival. He served multiple positions in the club, but his proudest role was as Treasurer and the Vendor Director of the Festival for over 20 years.
He is survived by his wife of 58 years of Sabinal; children, Michael Burris and spouse, Cynthia, of San Antonio, Glenda Haynes of Sabinal and Randy Burris and spouse, Nive, of Boerne; grandchildren, Brook Youngs and husband, Jerod, Shevawn Balderas and husband, Micah, Brittany Sandoval and husband, Ramon; Thomas Burris and wife, Vanessa, Michael Matthew Burris, Abby Burris, and Joshua Ross Burris; great grandchildren, Autumn Longoria, Gabriel Sandoval, Scarlett Longoria, Lincoln Burris, and Stetson Balderas; niece, Klarissa Johnson and husband, Scott; great nieces, Karlei and Khloei Johnson.
He is preceded in death by his parents; sister, Mary Thompson-Rainey, nephews, Robert (Robbie) A. Thompson, Jr. and Gordon Eugene Thompson; niece, Mary Kim Thompson.
The funeral service will be held Saturday, September 5, 2020, at 2pm at the First Baptist Church (FBC) in Sabinal. Visitation will be from 9am to 1:30pm at the church. Due to COVID restrictions, the church sanctuary will unfortunately need to be reserved exclusively for family. Other attendees will be able to view the live streamed service in the South Fellowship Hall. A brief graveside service with military honors will follow at Sabinal Cemetery. Those who are unable to attend the services at FBC, may view the service by way of Facebook at ‘First Baptist Church Sabinal’.
Pallbearers will be Thomas Burris, Michael Matthew Burris, Micah Balderas, Ramon Sandoval, Joe Redus, and Robert Redus.
Honorary pallbearers will be Joshua Burris, Gabriel Sandoval and David Rainey.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks donations be made to one of the following Sabinal organizations: Sabinal EMS Ambulance, PO Box 104; Sabinal Volunteer Fire Department, PO Box 145; Sabinal Cemetery, PO Box 94; or Sabinal Lions Club, PO Box 233. All at zip code 78881.