Darlene Elizabeth Byrd

Darlene Elizabeth Byrd, 76, of Wharton went to be with her Lord and Savior on May 11, 2020 surrounded by her family. She was born June 16, 1943 in Wharton. She worked for Worthing Insurance Company for 28 years and later retired from Wharton County Junior College in 2013 serving as the comptroller. She was a member of the First Baptist Church of Pledger, Daughters of American Revolution, and the Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants.  

She attended school at Wharton High School where she graduated in 1960, at the age of 16 with honors. She then attended the University of Wisconsin obtaining her associates degree. Darlene never gave up on her education and obtained her Certified Public Accountant and Master of Business Administration at the age of 53.  

Darlene was a devoted Christian, wife, mother and grandmother. She was known for her superior work ethics, intelligence, and helping others. She loved learning and would always want to inspire others to achieve their goals.

Darlene is survived by her husband of 57 years, Johnnie Wayne Byrd, daughters: Margaret Bearb, Kathy Bennetsen and husband Timmy; grandchildren: Amy Galvez, Ashley Poncik and husband Dustin, Justin Hlavinka and wife Skye, Brittany Hlavinka and fiancée Shawn Acklin, Cody Bennetsen and wife Jessica, Brelynn Galvez, Tyler Bennetsen, Toni Galvez, and Tayler Bennetsen; great-grandchildren: Brooklynn Galvez, Nolan, Tate, and Presley Poncik, Madison Hlavinka, Ava Bennetsen, Paisley Bennetsen, and Everly Hlavinka to arrive soon; sisters: Janie Zahradnik, Joyce Brenk, and Judy Wernly; brother-in-law Daryl Byrd and wife Susan; and nnumerous nieces and nephews.  

She was preceded in death by her parents, a sister and two brothers.  

Visitation will be held 6-8 p.m. on Friday, May 15, 2020, at Wharton Funeral Home and services will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 16, 2020 at Wharton Funeral Home with the Rev. Will Hill and the Rev. Casey DuBose officiating. Burial will follow in Evergreen Memorial Park.

Pallbearers will be Justin Hlavinka, Dustin Poncik, Shawn Acklin, Justin Lara, Tyler Bennetsen, Edward Sherill, Daniel Zahradnik, Jr., Daryl Byrd, and Daryl Brenk.

Honorary pallbearers are Timmy Bennetsen, Tate and Nolan Poncik, Gus Wessels, Bryce Kocian, Phillip Wuthrich, Jimmy Folmar, William Ray Hahn, and Kevin Zahradnik. 

The family is very thankful for Catherine Dornak and Carrie Grigar who always went above and beyond to provide our mom with great care, and  to Houston Hospice/El Campo.

Memorial donations in memory of Darlene made be made to: Wharton County Junior College, Attn: Bryce Kocian

Funeral services are under the direction of Wharton Funeral Home. Condolences may be left at whartonfuneralhome.com.


To plant a tree in memory of Darlene Byrd as a living tribute, please visit Tribute Store.