ACU to present June and John Estes Jr. with Christian Service Award

For immediate release
February 16, 1999

Abilene Christian University will present June and John Estes Jr. with the Christian Service Award Monday, Feb. 22, at noon at the Abilene Civic Center.

"John and June Estes offer an uncompromised lifetime of Christian service," said Dr. Royce Money, ACU president. "It will be an honor to present them with this award."

Both John and June attended Abilene Christian College, both graduating in 1948. After graduation, John taught high school for three years in Rosebud, then went to the University of Texas Dental Branch, Houston, to earn his dentistry degree.

John served in the United States Air Force for four years. He was a pilot who flew B-29s in World War II. By 1956 he had come home to Abilene and established a dentistry practice.

John and June have four children: John Levi Estes III, Jill Bailey, Jay Estes and Jane Tindol.

"Two priorities have always been evident in the lives of John and June Estes -- God and family," said Dr. Money.

Since their days at ACU, then ACC, in the late 1940s, John and June have been strong supporters of Christian education. All four of their children went to Abilene Christian Schools and ACU, and now, almost all of their grandchildren have experienced Christian education.

"Their appreciation for Christian education has intensified through the years," said Kay McGlothlin. "They have been among the most ardent supporters of Abilene Christian Schools."

Both John and June have served on the ACS board, with John serving as chairman. Support of Christian education has evolved into a family commitment, with their children, now adults, also serving on the ACS board.

"Their love for family is also strong and committed," said Mrs. McGlothlin. The extended family gathers at John and June's home every Sunday for lunch, and on Wednesday nights, the grandchildren and their friends often stop by to visit their grandparents.

"Sunday dinner has continued to be family time at the Estes' house -- persisting beyond the growing up days of the children into the growing up days of the grandchildren," she said. "The grandchildren, from the youngest to the oldest, look forward to these family gatherings."

John currently serves as chairman of the ACU committee to raise funds for the John C. Stevens Endowed Chair for History. He served as president of ACU's Parents' Executive Committee in the 1970s, and he chaired the $100,000 development campaign for Abilene Christian Schools in 1973.

June is an active supporter of Women for ACU on both the local and national levels.

"John and June have always made everyone feel more important than themselves," said Bill Hilton, long-time friend and ACU vice president emeritus. "John's been interested in every area of the school at one time or another. He and June have always been involved in Abilene Christian schools. They believe in Christian education."

The Estes have been members of the University Church of Christ since their return to Abilene in the 1950s. Johns currently serves as an elder there.

John and June have been described by friends as pioneers, teachers, healers, children of God and servants of His poorest.

They have served as medical missionaries to North America's Navajo Nation and also in Africa, Guatemala, Haiti and Mexico. They spearheaded the establishment of a preacher training school in Haiti for which John served as the first board chairman, and they have supported countless missionaries and preachers.

"Even though 'Dr. John' has helped large numbers of people as a medical missionary, this front-line service may be surpassed by yet another contribution, that of establishing a formal institution for training Haitian men as Gospel preachers," said Tim Mastenbrook, chairman of the board for the Haitian Christian Foundation.

"John and June Estes have enriched countless lives, especially mine," he said.

At home, June is an active member of the Abilene Garden Club and the Big Country Audubon Society. She constantly seeks unique flora and fowl.

John is a member of the Texas Dental Association, and he served as president of the 17th District Dental Association.


If you are a member of the media who would like more information about this release, please contact Tom Craig, director of media and community relations, at or call 915-674-2692.

Last update: Feb. 18, 1999
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