Funeral services are scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 14, 2013, 11 a.m. at LaGrone Funeral Chapel for Evelyn “Bunkie” Deck Key, 85, of Boot Ranch, Yeso, who passed away Dec. 10, 2013, at her ranch home. Floyd Goodloe will officiate. Burial will follow at South Park Cemetery.
Bunkie was born in Roswell, May 15, 1928, to Tom Deck and Gladys Moss Deck. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Melvin Ray Key; an infant daughter; a sister, Edith McDougal; and a brother, Tom Deck Jr.
She is survived by three children: Billy Ray Key, of the family ranch, Gary Lee Key and wife, Jeri, of Roswell, and Sandra Barraza and husband, Joe, of the family ranch; one sister, Dorothy Edwards, of Ruidoso; a sister-in-law, Sara Key, of Fort Sumner; seven grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces, nephews, and friends.
Bunkie grew up on the Lazy T Bar Ranch east of Dunlap. She attended school through the eighth grade at Dunlap. In order to complete high school, she then moved to Roswell, where she lived with W.C. and Mamie Urton. She graduated from Roswell High School in 1946, then attended Colorado State University and New Mexico A&M, where she was an active member of the Tri Delta Sorority.
On June 18, 1949, Bunkie married Melvin Ray Key, also of Dunlap, in Roswell. They built their home at Wire Lake and established Boot Ranch, 55 miles north of Roswell, where they both resided until their death. Bunkie and her husband were active in the sheep and cattle business and ranched together in De Baca and Chaves counties for more than 50 years. Bunkie was a wonderful homemaker and was well known for her hospitality and the food that she prepared for her family, ranch crews and anyone that stopped by the ranch. She was bookkeeper for the family business, a tax preparer for H&R Block, and also kept books for Key’s Welding Service/Drilling and Pump Service for many years, where she assisted her son.
Pallbearers will be Cody Key, Monty Key, Clinton Key, Casey Key, Lane Barraza, Brady Barraza, Garrett Goodloe, and Justin Bowman. Honorary pallbearers include Richard Deck, Jeff Deck, Ron Merritt, Yogi Hurford, Harold Green, Heath Metcalf, and Jim Bob Best.
Special thanks are extended to Claudia Juarez and Jody Rogers for the special love and care that they extended to Bunkie and her family over the past months.