WACO, Texas (KXII) -- Milford Nelson “Buddy” Bostick, former owner of KXII-TV, died Thursday at St. Catherine Center.
He was born May 18, 1918, east of Moody, in the Liberty Hill community in McLennan County.. Buddy was the son of Veda Welborn Bostick and Seth Pendleton Bostick.
Buddy Bostick graduated from Moody High School and entered Baylor University. He treasured his Baylor education and the relationship he had with then president, Governor Pat Neff.
During his college years, he began announcing on WACO Radio and imagining the day that he would have his own station. At the beginning of his junior year, he met a new Baylor transfer, Virginia Muller; they married in the Fall of 1939, following their graduations.
After working as a radio announcer in Memphis, Tenn., Little Rock, Ark., and then in Dallas, Buddy entered the United States Army. He became a part of the Army Air Corps and eventually trained as a fighter pilot. He was ready to fly the P51 Mustang into battle just as the war ended. He later purchased a P51 from the Canadian Air Force, refitted it as a private plane with a passenger seat, and had a joyous era flying and showing off his plane to anyone who might be interested -- and there were many.
Upon his return following World War II, he continued to pursue his goal of having his own radio station. He learned of a group of local men who had become business associates with Governor Buford Jester and were pursuing a license for a station in Waco.
Buddy landed the job of manager of that station, which he put on the air in 1946. The studios were located at 508 ½ South Sixth St. In 1952, he built new studios at 4520 Bosque Blvd.
In 1955, Buddy competed and was successful in obtaining a license for KWTX-TV, channel 10, to serve the Waco television market. He next added KBTX-TV in Bryan/College Station in 1957. After that he added KNAL radio in Victoria, KWTX-FM radio, KXII-TV in Sherman-Denison, and KLFY-TV in Lafayette, La.
In 1976, Bostick and W. W. Callan bought controlling interest in the Bellmead State Bank, changing its name to American Bank. They were later approved for a branch bank on the west side of Waco and built the American Plaza Building, with the American Bank occupying the first floor.
When he was not working, he was striving to perfect new skills. He loved to snow ski, practicing diligently to execute all the basics as well as he possibly could. He loved fly fishing in Colorado, tying his own flies and aiming to land the trout with finesse. He became an avid bow hunter, practicing many hours so that he would be ready for the big moment. He loved quail hunting, raising and training his own hunting dogs.
Buddy's first love remained flying, piloting his King Air until the age of 90.
Hilton H. Howell Jr., Chairman, President and CEO of Gray Television Inc., released a statement saying, "I and everyone at Gray Television are greatly saddened by the passing of M.N. "Buddy" Bostick. Buddy was a wonderful man and distinguished businessman throughout the state of Texas and beyond.
"Personally, he was an inspiration to me in many ways. When we first began building Gray Television it was Buddy I came to to get his advice and counsel on building a great broadcasting business. His legacy as a pioneering broadcaster is known far and wide.
"On behalf of the entire Gray Television family, of which KWTX, KBTX and KXII are a part, we extend our most heartfelt condolences to his family and many friends.
"His legacy continues at each of the stations he worked so hard to grow and develop and his accomplishments have, and will continue to serve as an inspiration for our entire company and the broadcast industry itself."