Vearl Gordon McBride, beloved husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather passed from this world to the next, December 8, 2009, after a full life of service to the Lord, his family, and his profession. He was born September 24, 1919, in Pima, Graham County, Arizona, one of 10 children, to Don Carlos McBride and Emma Jane Hubbard McBride. He is survived by his sweetheart of 66 years, Betty Jean Henderson McBride, whom he married May 14, 1943, in the Mesa Arizona Temple, of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and by their children and their spouses: Maurice & Alicia McBride, Dr. Dane & Karma McBride, Darla Anderson, Tanya & James Skeen, Dr. Reo and Keri McBride, Bonnie Colleen & Dr. Alan Whitehurst, and Gina LaRee & Dr. Michael Jones, together with 34 grandchildren, 24 great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.
He was an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and served in a variety of church callings. He served as Branch President or Bishop for the Church in Iowa, North Carolina, and Illinois. Together with his wife, he served as a volunteer missionary for the Church in the Houston Texas Mission, where they taught remedial and rapid reading to over 1800 people, most of whom were not members of his church. For the past 17 years he served as Patriarch of the Roanoke Virginia Stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
He earned his Bachelor’s Degree in History and Political Science and his Master’s in Educational Administration at Arizona State University. He earned his Ph.D. in education at the University of Virginia. He spent 30 years teaching at the college level, serving as department chairman at three colleges, Upper Iowa University in Fayette, Iowa; Methodist College in Fayetteville, North Carolina; and Culver-Stockton College in Canton, Missouri.
One of his greatest achievements was the creation and development of a unique reading program, which he called “Panoramic Reading.” He taught over 10,000 people in 42 states, 3 Canadian provinces, the islands of Samoa, and in Hong Kong. He was able to apply these principles to helping problem readers, including the dyslexic, the emotionally disturbed, the blind and sight-impaired, autistic, deaf, and ADHD students. He felt deeply that the reading program he developed was received through inspiration from the Lord, and he was quick to share the blessings of that gift.
The family expresses its deep gratitude to the entire staff at the Brandon Oaks Rehabilitation and Nursing Center who so lovingly and excellently cared for our father in the final weeks of his life. Funeral services will be held on Saturday, December 12, at 11:00 a.m. in the LDS Roanoke Virginia Stake Chapel located at 6311 Wayburn Drive, Roanoke, Virginia. A viewing will be held on Friday evening 3:00-5:30 p.m. at Oakey’s South Funeral Home, 4257 Brandon Avenue, Roanoke, and 9:00-10:30 a.m. at the church prior to the services. Interment will be in the Ferguson Family Cemetery in Roanoke County.