Written by Odessa Mahan Purselley

Weldon A. Newman was born December 24, 1912 to K.T. and Bertha Newman at Fairview in Hood County, Texas.

He married Oleta Mahan on April 15, 1936 in Granbury, Texas. They lived at Fairview and farmed until he went to work for the Granbury Power and Light Plant as an operator.

Weldon signed up for U.S. Navy duty in 1943 to serve in World War II. He served as a “Seabee,” MM 1/c, with the 128th U.S. Naval Construction Battalion. His tour of duty was in the South Pacific and lasted until 1946.

When Weldon returned to Granbury, he became Plant Superintendent of Granbury Light and Water Plant and served until 1954. He went to Burkburnett, Texas where he served as City Manager for six years. The he went to Marshall, Texas to work as a salesman for the Southwest Meter Company.

Weldon retired in 1980, and they moved back to Granbury. He was a member of the First Methodist Church of Granbury.

Weldon Allen Newman & Oleta Mahan Newman

Later, as a 79-year-old retiree, Weldon spearheaded restoration of the old Granbury Power and Light Plant. Former Mayor Raupe stated, “He (Newman) was the stimulus of the whole thing. He did all the cleaning up and polishing of those engines.”

“He was invaluable,” Loren Wilson stated. “He worked on every one of the Candlelight tours at the plant,” Wilson pointed out.

Weldon Newman died on February 10, 1993. His services were conducted at Martin’s Chapel and burial was in the Granbury Cemetery in Hood County, Texas.

Survivors include his wife Oleta Newman, sisters: Lorene Ward and Atha Benson; and sisters-in-law: Blanche Newman, Marie Newman, and Wilma Newman.