Tuesday, November 30, 2010

OBT: Warren Pulich

Warren M. Pulich of Irving passed away peacefully on November 27, 2010
surrounded by his loving family. He was an only child and was born on
December 1, 1919 in Stockton, CA to Leonilda and Raymond Pulich.
Warren was married for almost 60 years to the love of his life, Anne
Marie, who died July 17, 2003. Warren is survived by his 4 children:
daughter Marcia Pulich of Irving; son Warren M. Pulich, Jr. and wife
Joyce of Austin with their children Michelle (Alex) Stewart, Mark
(Kate), and Jennifer; daughter Therese M. LeRoy and husband Russell of
Duncanville with their children Sara (Charlie) Schild, Rebecca (Jon)
Horton, and Tim; and daughter Nancy Bednarz and husband George of
Parker with their children Christopher (Kellie) Parrick, Samantha, and
Andrew. Warren was also a proud great-grandfather to Austin, Ryan,
Sidney, and Julia Anne LeRoy; Axel Stewart; and Sadie Schild. WWII
interrupted his college years at the University of California-Berkley
and stationed him at Luke Field, Phoenix, AZ as a technical aviation
mechanics instructor. There he met the “best thing that ever happened
to him in his life,” Anne Marie Doles, and they married in 1943. He
finished his BS degree at the University of Arizona-Tucson in 1948 and
his MS from Southern Methodist University, Dallas in 1958. He
completed all coursework towards his PhD. at the University of
Oklahoma in 1963.

He worked for the AZ Game Commission and then the US Fish and Wildlife
Service in AZ and NV until 1951 when he was transferred to Ft Worth.
He began his teaching career at Our Lady of Victory College in Ft.
Worth teaching nurses. He joined the newly-established University of
Dallas in Irving in its first year (1956) as a founding member of the
Biology Department, retiring as associate professor Emeritus after 50
years. He taught basic biology, pre-med, and environmental courses at
UD. He was especially proud that numerous successful nurses and
doctors were his former students. One in particular, Dr. Robert
Israel, was his personal primary care physician. He also mentored many
life sciences students who became successful researchers and biology
professors at various universities. He taught environmental science
courses before this discipline even had a name. Warren was primarily
recognized for his expertise in avian ecology and ornithology. He was
a life-time member of the American Ornithologists Union. He was the
first resident professional ornithologist in the north-central Texas
area. He conducted meticulous bird studies of the region resulting in
the books of Birds of Tarrant County, Texas (1961) and Birds of
North-Central Texas (1988). He published numerous articles on birds in
scientific journals and magazines such as Texas Parks and Wildlife. He
specialized in research on the endemic Golden-cheeked Warbler of the
Texas Hill country, culminating in a classic book on this unique
endangered species (published by Texas Parks and Wildlife Dept, 1976).
All books were illustrated by his talented wife Anne, making them a
renowned scientist-artist team. He donated 1000s of valuable museum
specimens of birds to the American Museum of Natural History in NY,
the Western Museum of Vertebrate Zoology in CA, and the University of
Dallas, most of which were migrating birds found dead at TV antenna
towers, or birds killed on roads. He was very interested in bringing
natural science to students and the general public. He mentored many
young people and sparked their love of science and the outdoors. He
started community natural history programs by first working at the Ft.
Worth Children’s Museum in the 1950s, and he continued to share his
knowledge with local Audubon societies and environmental groups. His
impact was felt by many through his outreach classes in bird study and
natural science which included his now-famous Whooping Crane bus trips
to the Texas coast. Many people helped Warren towards the end of his
life but we especially acknowledge the loving care of the Bethlemite
Sisters and community of St. Joseph’s Residence, Dallas. In addition,
the excellent dignified treatment by the staff at Vitas Hospice Care
in Irving is gratefully recognized. He will be dearly missed by his
immediate family, close friends, and the community. At the same time,
we also celebrate his wonderful life and take comfort in knowing that
he is now reunited with his beloved Anne. Visitation and rosary will
be held on Thursday, December 2, 6-8 p.m. at Ben F. Brown’s Memorial
Funeral Home at 707 North MacArthur Blvd, Irving, TX. Mass of
Christian burial will be held Friday December 3 at 10 a.m. at the
University of Dallas Chapel of the Incarnation, 1845 E. Northgate Dr.,
Irving. Following a reception, internment will take place at Calvary
Hill Cemetery, Dallas. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Warren’s
memory may be sent to the Warren M. Pulich Memorial Biology Fund,
University of Dallas, Advancement Office, 1845 E. Northgate Dr.,
Irving, TX 75062 or to a favorite charity.

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