The estate auction for Charles and Clella Petty is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. on April 8 in Clovis, N.M. Charles Petty, lifetime member of RMFU and member of the board of directors for eighteen years, died January 11 in a work-related accident.
Petty was cutting metal on his Ranchvale, N.M. property when his cutting torch ignited a grass fire. According to local authorities, he was trying to put out the fire when he collapsed from smoke inhalation. He was pronounced dead at Plains Regional Medical Center.
Charles was born in Ranchvale, northwest of Clovis, on September 5, 1930. In 1950 he married Clella Hays, and together they farmed and ranched in the Ranchvale community all their lives. His life companion Clella died in 2007.
Charles was a lifetime member of the Rocky Mountain Farmers Union. He played an active role in re-establishing Farmers Union in New Mexico and served on the RMFU board for 18 years, and took on the role of vice president after Todd Hagenbuch stepped down in mid-2009. Charles was a member of the First Baptist Church in Ranchvale where he served as a Deacon and Sunday School Director. He was also a legendary cook with closely guarded recipes.
Funeral services were held at the First Baptist Church. Farmers Union members from across the state, along with more than a hundred family and friends, filled the small church.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Baptist Children’s Home, P. O. Box 629, Portales, New Mexico 88130.
The estate auction will be handled by Tate Auction Service.