SAN SABA — Willard Kenneth Jordan of Mason went to his heavenly home surrounded by family on April 28, 2015 at the age of 80 after battling pancreatic cancer. Funeral services will be held at the First Baptist Church in San Saba at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 29, 2015. Interment will be held at Gooch Cemetery in Mason at 5:30 p.m. Services under the direction of Heritage Funeral Home in San Saba.

Willard was born on Oct. 27, 1934 to Frank and Ella Jordan. He was born and raised on the family ranch that borders Willow Creek just south of Art in Mason County. Throughout his childhood, he participated in many local and major livestock shows and garnered several prominent winnings. In 1951, the Jordan family was recognized as the Farm Family of the year by LIFE magazine. Willard graduated from Mason High School in 1952 and attended Tarleton State University. On April 17, 1954, Willard married his high school sweetheart, Peggy Chew. For 61 years, the two were inseparable. They remained best friends in plenty and in want, in sickness and in health, in failure and in triumph. As the saying goes, a true love story never ends. Their separation, though difficult, is only temporary.

Willard and Peggy settled on the family ranch in Art to continue their family’s ranching heritage and start a family of their own. In 1956, Willard was encouraged by a close friend to attend a livestock auctioneer school and learn the trade to help supplement the family’s income. After completing a two week course, Willard began his livestock auctioneer career. For 17 years he worked as an auctioneer in several Hill Country, Central and West Texas livestock markets. In 1971, he competed in the World Champion Auctioneer contest and was the winner of the Central Region. In 1973, he competed once again and brought home the Runner Up World Champion trophy.

In the fall of 1973, Willard and Peggy purchased the Junction Stockyards and began their venture of over 40 years in the livestock marketing industry. With the help from their family, the Jordan’s grew their business combining their love for livestock and people. They owned and operated Junction Stockyards for 11 years. In January 1985, they opened Jordan Cattle Auction in San Saba that has been noted to market more replacement cows and heifers than any auction in the United States. In April 1988, Jordan Cattle Auction held its first sale in Mason.

Willard was taught at an early age to appreciate the beauty of land and cattle, the rhythm of nature and the priceless value they bring to man. Willard loved people, keeping up with old friends and meeting new. He never knew a stranger. He and Peggy traveled countless miles together visiting ranches and creating a legacy that forever changed the cattle industry. Willard will be remembered as an enthusiastic cattleman, businessman and friend to all.

He is survived by his wife, Peggy; sisters, Ethyl Byrn of Phoenix, Ariz. and Lois Koock and husband Bill of Mason; four sons, Donald Jordan and wife Cheri of Hamilton, Ronald Jordan and wife Karen of Leander, Ken Jordan and wife Kynda of San Saba, Greg Jordan of Frisco, Colo.; seven grandchildren, Jima Montfort and husband Clint of Corsicana, Julie Havelka and husband Kris of Sandia, Brendon Jordan and wife Tina of Leander, Brandon Jordan and fiancée Hollie Driscoll of Pottsboro, Karoline, Kristin and Katherine Jordan of San Saba; six great-grandchildren, Graycie and Cole Montfort of Corsicana, Sydney, Keaton and Heston Havelka of Sandia, Jase Jordan of Leander; and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Frank and Ella Jordan; brother, J.D. Jordan and wife Joyce; and brother-in-law, Harold Byrn.

Memorials may be made to West Texas Rehab 4601 Hartford Abilene, TX 79605 or the charity of your choice.