Dr. Hubert Wilhelm Oppe passed away on October 18, 2017. He was born on November 1, 1924 in Bremen, West Germany to August and Emilie Haehnlein Oppe. He was the seventh of nine children. At age 17, he was conscripted into the German army during World War II. From 1943 to 1947 he was a prisoner of war in Egypt after being captured in Italy. He lost three brothers during the war: Hans, Conrad and Werner. After the war ended, he returned to Germany. In 1950, he came to America as a youth representative under Harry Truman’s Conference on Youth. He moved to California later that year to attend San Diego State University. He taught himself English with a textbook in one hand and a dictionary in the other. He met and later married Dorothy Fawkes on October 21, 1950. They had four children, all born in California. He received both a bachelor’s degree from San Diego State and a master’s degree and Ph.D. from Berkeley. In 1963, Hubert moved his family to Canyon, TX to accept a teaching position with West Texas State University (now WTAMU). He became head of the sociology/social work department in 1970. He started the social work degree program while at WTSU.
He always showed a strong sense of purpose and commitment to whatever project he started. His students respected his enthusiasm and his ability to teach. He retired from WTSU in 1988 and was awarded the Professor Emeritus in 1992. Following retirement, he spent a great deal of time with his five grand-children whom he treasured. He was a very loving husband, father and grand-father.
He was preceded in death by his wife, Dorothy, on September 16, 2006.
Survivors are Michael Oppe from Canyon, Thomas Oppe from Vicksburg, Mississippi, Janet Schulte and husband James from Amarillo, and Debby Arrant and husband Eddie from Plano. Grand-children include Christopher Schulte, Nicholas Schulte, Katie Schulte from Amarillo and Michael Arrant and Daniel Arrant from Plano. He was very supportive and proud of his entire family.