William W. McElroy, III (Tres), Ranch Foreman of Cherry Canyon Ranch, died on December 6, 2019 of a heart attack. He was laid to rest at the Hillcrest Cemetery in Ft. Davis on December 10th at a graveside service attended by hundreds of family members and friends.
We are grateful to have celebrated Tres’ 20th anniversary as Cherry Canyon Ranch Foreman at the Shield Ranch all-staff retreat in October 2019. We recognized Tres’ diverse array of talents, his ability to repair anything, his positive approach to his work and to everyone he met, and his intimate and incomparable knowledge of and love for the Ranch.
Tres’ ties to Cherry Canyon Ranch extend far beyond those 20 years. He arrived on the Ranch as a baby when his parents, Sonny and Penny McElroy, moved there from the neighboring McElroy Ranch so that Sonny could assume the role of Cherry Canyon Ranch Foreman. Tres was raised on the Ranch and, except for the one year he attended South Plains College in Levelland, he lived his entire life there. He worked first for his father during the time Sonny was leasing Cherry Canyon Ranch from the Shield/Ayres family, and then since 1999 as Ranch Foreman.
We remember Tres for his warmth and generosity of spirit, his devotion to his family and friends, and his stewardship of the land. Visitors never failed to express their gratitude for Tres’ hospitality and his knowledge of the history of the Ranch and its flora and fauna. We all appreciated his gifts as a storyteller and stand-up comic, including his colorful accounts of his exploits, mishaps and adventures living and working at Cherry Canyon.
We have lost a valued employee, a talented co-worker and a beloved friend. Our hearts are with his family who survive him and the tight-knit community to which he belonged and gave so much of himself.
A scholarship fund has been established in Tres’ honor through the Balmorhea FFA Ag Boosters. If you would like to contribute, you may send a check payable to the Tres McElroy Memorial Scholarship to:
Balmorhea FFA Ag Boosters
P.O. Box 207
Balmorhea, Texas 79718
To read more about Tres’ life and work, you may read his obituary here.