As a family prepares to say their final farewells to a loved one, several Harlingen residents remember the man who they believe made the city what it is today.
"Bill was always involved in making Harlingen a much better place to live." Former Harlingen Mayor Connie de la Garza reflects on man he considered a mentor and a friend, Colonel William "Bill" Card, Jr.
The Iwo Jima combat veteran moved to Harlingen to head the Marine Military Academy."Right away he got very involved in our community. De la Garza says in a blink of an eye, Card was leading Harlingen's Chamber of Commerce and making his mark as a local politician.
"Over the years, especially during the years he was mayor in 1998, he was instrumental in so many things happening for Harlingen." Card was part of the Valley International Airport Board of Directors and helped bring major corporations to Harlingen including Fruit Of The Loom and General Dynamics, but his passion for opening up Harlingen to economic successes didn't end there.
"The free trade bridge in Los Indios that we've been dreaming about since 1951, became a reality under his leadership."
While taking a walk around City Lake or reading a book at the Harlingen Public Library, make note that Bill Card had something to do with all of that as well.
The ambitious businessman and South Texas leader passed away of natural causes Sunday at the age of 88, but de la Garza and many others in the Harlingen community say his legacy will not soon be forgotten as the city continues to grow because of the steps Bill Card took to get it moving.
He loved this city and he always tried to do everything he could do to make the city better.
If anyone every needed advice, his door was always open and he was there.