BEEVILLE – Bee County’s new veterans service officer knows the problems of securing the benefits promised to those who have served their nation in uniform.
“I want to give them the best service that they can possibly get,” Ralph Anthony “Tony” Ferguson said this week.
Ferguson knows what it means to wear his nation’s uniform. He spent seven years in the U.S. Navy as an enlisted man.
A native of the Texas City/Houston area, Ferguson left high school early to join the Navy. He ended up getting his diploma from a Department of Defense school while serving in the Philippines.
After leaving the Navy, Ferguson attended several different colleges before earning his bachelor of science degree in education from Corpus Christi State University in 1984.
“Since then, I’ve been coaching,” Ferguson said.
He coached football, basketball and golf at A.C. Jones High School from 1985 until 1988 and again between 1998 and 2003 before moving to Pettus High School to coach.
Ferguson retired from that position last year.
He was just admitted to the Beeville Sports Hall of Fame.
The lifetime member of Texas’ Veterans of Foreign Wars is proud to have raised his family, a daughter, Katie, and son, Will, right here in South Texas.
Katie started her first year of teaching in Pettus this year, and Will is an IT technician in Austin.
Ferguson said his wife of 31 years, the former Sheryl Sanders, is the daughter of Ruth Sanders who served as the school nurse in Three Rivers for 28 years.
The new service officer said his goal is to provide the best assistance possible for the veteran population in Bee and surrounding counties “in a diligent fashion.”
To help achieve that goal, Ferguson said he has contacted other veteran services officers in the area and asked them to offer some help when he needs it.
“I’m looking forward to serving our veterans, and I hope they give me that chance,” Ferguson said.
Gary Kent is a reporter at the Bee-Picayune and can be reached at 358-2550, ext. 120, or at reporter@mySouTex.com.