Longtime Texas banker John Robert Dyer passed away peacefully with family at his side on October 6. He was 74. After graduating in 1968 from Stephen F. Austin University as a member of the collegiate golf team, Dyer served in the U.S. Air Force, stationed in Laredo. He then worked as an office manager and supervisor for Limestone Electric Co. until 1976, when he and his wife, Louise, moved to Beaumont. It was there that Dyer joined First Security Bank and embarked on his nearly 45-year banking career.
In 1978, the couple moved to Longview, where Dyer joined Longview Bank & Trust as a commercial lending officer. For the next 35 years, he established lifelong banking friendships and experiences throughout East Texas that he cherished. One of his honors as a banker was assisting determined, enthusiastic and trustworthy entrepreneurs in support of their dreams and determination to succeed. In 2013, Dyer joined Quitman-based BTH Bank as chairman and CEO, a role he served for the next seven years.
Dyer was widely known to have an affectionate nickname for each friend, family member and colleague. He came up with witty, long-winded acronyms as words of encouragement and had an uncanny ability to recall dates and name everyone in a crowd. He was also, as he himself put it, “pretty good” with numbers and had a lifelong passion for the game of golf and the life lessons it teaches. He was proud of completing 13.5 marathons and always looked forward to trying to keep up with his friends in the “Pack of Fools,” a running group of which he was a member during the 1990s and 2000s. He was fiercely dedicated to providing for, and spending time with, his family, often at the expense of other life experiences.
Dyer’s community service and accomplishments in life were voluminous and othing was accomplished without his wife Louise at his side. Together, they developed early-childhood educational institutions throughout East Texas, supported various philanthropic causes and provided scholarships for underserved children and students. A few of Dyer’s active leadership and advisory positions included serving on the boards of Hospice of East Texas, Hospice of Longview, Longview Economic Development Corp., Longview Chamber of Commerce, Tyler Economic Development Council of the Longview Rotary Club, Alzheimer’s Alliance of Smith County, SFA Rusche College Advisory Council, Greater Longview United Way, East Texas Communities Foundation of the First United Methodist Church of Longview, Junior Achievement of East Texas and the Longview 2020 Forum.
Dyer is survived by his wife of 52 years, Louise, three children and their spouses, and nine grandchildren, among many additional family and friends.