Sheriff Billy Burt Hopper (Retired)
Born August 14, 1937, in Odessa, Texas departed on May 10,2023. He was the third son of William Lafayette Hopper and Elva Marverine Brewer Hopper. The family moved back to Mentone, Texas in 1938 and education through high school freshman was conducted in the Loving County Independent School District. Sheriff Hopper was the last high school student in Mentone’s school. High school was completed in Pecos High School.
After three years attending school at Texas Tech, he enlisted in the United States Air Force for six years in the Strategic Air Command. The rest of AIC was attained as a Nuclear Weapons Maintenance Crew Chief and then Ballistic Missile Analogist Technician Titan II Launch Crew.
Upon leaving the Air Force, a twenty-two-year career with Imco Services, Division of Haliburton, beginning as a warehouse man, safe and service representative, senior sales and service rep., technical advisor, district manager, technical sales, district sales and division sales based in New Orleans, Houston, England, Anchorage, Singapore, Dubai, Johannesburg, London, and Madrid, and ended due to mergers. A small motel in Ruidoso N.M. was obtained and managed before relocating home to Mentone and contract pumping until asked to become a Deputy Sheriff in 1999.
Then Deputy Sheriff Hopper attended Odessa College Law Enforcement Academy graduating in 2000. He was elected as sheriff and took office January 1,2005 and retired December 31,2015.
Sheriff Hopper was a member of the following organizations.
Life Member: American Legion, Texas State Sheriff Association, Big Bend Area Law Enforcement Association and National Association for Gun Right.
Benefactor Member: National Rifle Association, Texas State Rifle Association
Founder and Trailblazer: NRA Whittington Center
Sheriff Hopper is preceded in death by his parents, a son, Berry Lafayette and daughter Tracy Suzette, and brothers McKinley Dirvin Hopper and Ernest Thornton Hopper.
Survivors are niece Becky Elaine Hopper Hill and husband Larry of Kermit, son Lance and family of Kermit and son Derek and family of Leander, Nephew, Harland Burk Hopper of Mentone.
Burial will be on family property in Loving County.
In lieu of flowers please donate to Big Bend Law Enforcement Assoc. or a charity of your choice.