Wayne Thomas Castleberry, of Belize /San Pedro, died peacefully on Monday, July 8th, 2019, at the home of his youngest daughter, Rachel Castleberry Capron of Amarillo, Texas USA. Rachel was by his side as he took his last plane flight to Heaven. He was 82 years old. Wayne was born on November 17, 1936, in Merkle, Texas, to Faber and Rebecca Brown Castleberry. He was preceded in death by his wife, Jo Katherine Castleberry of Belize / San Pedro, and his loving sister, Mrs. June Simmons of McAllen, Texas. Wayne obtained his private pilot license at age 17 by forging his daddy’s signature. He attended West Texas State University in Canyon, Texas and graduated from University of Texas–Pan American (UTPA) in Edinburgh, Texas with a degree in commercial pilot license. Wayne also was FAA Certified A&P – Airframe and Powerplant.
He married Dorothy Demetra Hornung, in the summer of 1960, in McAllen, Texas. He moved his young family from El Paso, Texas in the late 60’s to work for Big Falls Ranch in Belize, Central America. Wayne was one of the pioneers who brought agricultural crop dusting to Central America. He worked for Big Falls Ranch as their lead crop dusting pilot for several years. Wayne decided to start his own crop-dusting service, Castleberry Ltd, to fly for several large agricultural farms in the Belize area. He was the only aeronautical pilot/certified mechanic in Belize in the 60’s to mid70’s. Wayne was helpful in repairing airplane engines for planes that were used in the movie “Dogs of War” that was filmed in Belize and released in 1980. Wayne married his second wife, Jo Katherine Doffing, who came to live in Belize in 1974 with her two children. For many years, the Castleberry’s lived in the Fort George area. As the kids grew and moved away, they decided to live on San Pedro, Ambergris Caye. Wayne had several small businesses to keep him busy which he enjoyed immensely. Wayne was a quintessential Texan, from his demeanor, dress, cowboy boots, talk, walk and his famous chewing tobacco! He was most definitely a Texan, but he deeply loved Belize, San Pedro and the people. This was most definitely his Utopia. He was a citizen of Belize and the United States. Wayne enjoyed the simple life while he sat on his patio watching the planes fly over his house and drinking his favorite drink…black coffee. He is proceeded in death by his wife Jo who passed away in December 2017.
Survivors include his four children: Jimmy Castleberry and wife Christine of Evans, Georgia; daughters: Rebecca Waterwall and husband Michael of Tomball, Texas; Robin Castleberry of Bryan, Texas and Rachel Capron and husband Rick of Amarillo, Texas, Wayne’s Aunt Tommie Stroud 98 years old of Pampa, Texas; Niece Karen Hesterly and husband Lloyd of Weslaco, Texas, Nephew Kim Simmons and wife Pamela of Littleton, Colorado. Wayne leaves behind seven grandchildren, six great grandchildren and many cousins. Funeral and Mass are planned for a later date.
Submitted by Rachel Capron for the San Pedro Sun
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