With heavy hearts, we grieve the loss of a pillar of the Friendswood ISD family, Walter Wilson, who passed away on March 11, 2019.
During his 36 years of service is FISD, Wilson served in many roles, but perhaps the role he was best known for was being a friend to all. When we remember Wilson, words such as “kind,” “passionate,” “caring,” “influential” and “exceptional” come to mind. He showed these qualities throughout his life, and we are glad to have been a part of it.
Wilson began his education career in 1966 as a science teacher and head basketball coach at Friendswood High School. Under his direction, the Boys’ Varsity Basketball team advanced to the State Tournament in 1968, 1969 and 1971. The team won the State Championship in 1969 and instantly became a topic of pride for Wilson, his family and the Friendswood community. His athletic impact was so huge, the FHS Field House was named after him in his honor.
With his Bachelor Degree from Texas A&I University (now Texas A&M Kingsville) and Masters Degree from Sam Houston State University, Wilson advanced up the ranks in the education system.
Wilson served as Assistant Principal of FHS from 1970 to 1974. He then took the lead as the school’s principal until 1977 when he transferred to administration to become the Assistant Superintendent. In 1998, Wilson was appointed as the ninth Superintendent of FISD.
As Superintendent, Wilson was adamant about creating the best possible educational experience for the students of Friendswood. His great support of various educational programs led to the creation of the Friendswood ISD Education Foundation in 1999 which has given more than $1.7 million back to students and teachers over the past 20 years.
After retiring in 2002, Wilson continued to leave his mark on the District. In 2012, the Friendswood ISD Education Foundation and the FHS Alumni Association presented him with the Honorary Alumnus Award for his many years of outstanding service.
However, perhaps Wilson’s greatest legacy is one that cannot be measured or given an award. To most, Wilson’s biggest impact was the one he left on the hearts of those he served. From taking time during practice to encourage his athletes during his time as a coach, to writing personalized notes to students every morning while he was Superintendent, Wilson always found a way to do the little things and make everyone around him feel special.
“Walter Wilson was a Friendswood pillar,” Thad Roher, FISD Superintendent, said. “I knew Walter as a student an administrator in FISD. He shaped my view of Mustang pride and its importance and foundational value to our community. I will miss talking basketball, kids, and Friendswood pride with him.”
Though we mourn the passing of the incredible man who was Walter Wilson, we know he lives on with us through every dribble of a basketball, every teaching moment and every kind word spoken.
Friends are cordially invited to the visitation on April 5, 2019, from 5 to 7 P.M. at Friendswood Friends Church, 502 S. Friendswood Dr., Friendswood, Texas 77546.
A service celebrating Walter’s life will be held on April 6, 2019 at 12 P.M. at Friendswood Friends Church with Rev. David Bridges officiating. An interment of ashes will be held at a later date in Fredericksburg, Texas.