Funeral services for Zane Whatley, 83, of Blanket, will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, Jan. 25 in the Blanket United Methodist Church under the direction of Heartland Funeral Home. Burial will follow in the Antioch Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 24 at the funeral home.

Zane S. Whatley left this life to join her Savior and loved ones passed on the evening of Jan. 19, 2019. Born on April 16, 1935 to Ione and Earl Stewart in Sheridan, Wyoming, Zane spent her early childhood in Brownwood as the daughter of a Texas Ranger and Brown County Sheriff. She graduated from Pecos High School in 1953 to attend North Texas University and Sul Ross State University. She graduated with a BBA in 1956, just before marrying her best friend, Jerry L. Whatley Sr. on Sept. 8, 1956 in Pecos.

She worked in civil service throughout her life at the civil defense office in Denton; Perrin Air Force Base in Sherman; the FHA in Comanches; and the United States Postal Service in Brownwood, Priddy and Zephyr. In June of 1998, Zane retired as the postmaster. Zane’s three children knew her as strong, independent, and a great encourager. She was proud of her family heritage as the daughter of a Texas Ranger and former Brown County Sheriff. She owned and operated a ranch in Zephyr, where she had lived since 1965. 

Zane always kept those she loved close, participating in milestones in the lives of her family and friends. She embraced her retirement by traveling across Texas for countless sporting events, dance recitals, and birthday parties; she proudly cheered for each child and grandchild. She was deeply involved in her church community at Blanket United Methodist, where she earnestly supported volunteer organizations. 

She was extremely social and kept strong bonds with her high school and college friends. Zane was a magnetic force for love, fun, and festivity – maintaining family and community traditions through congregation. While still young in life, Zane and Jerry hosted regular square dance parties on the weekend in their garage at the ranch. Her home was known for warm gatherings and friendly fellowship.

She was a pillar in the community and the rock of her family. She loved Jerry, her children, her cousins, her parents, her grandchildren, her dogs, and her ranch. She stood shoulder to shoulder with the most respected individuals around, as she was also so well-regarded. 

This beloved wife and mother was preceded in death by husband, Jerry Lahn Whatley Sr., 62; and eldest son, Jerry Lahn Whatley Jr., 60. 

She is survived by her devoted son, William “Bill” Stewart Whatley (Helen); her loving daughter, Zana Gayle Gill (Woody); her cousin and best friend, Sharron Miller; extended family, Steve, Teressa, William and Sarah Butler; grandchildren, Jacey Wood (Gabriel), Haley, Darby, and Turner Whatley; and great-grandchildren, Owen and Mazie Wood.

Condolences, memories and tributes can be offered to the family online at heartlandfuneralhome.net.