• Joe William Criner

Joe William Criner

Joe William Criner, 65, of Lyons passed away at his home on Saturday, Nov. 11, 2023.

Joe was born in Houston on Oct. 28, 1958, and was raised in Milano. He was the son of Evelyn Loui se Cotten Criner Smith and Roy Howard Criner. Joe was the fourth child of six and the youngest son.

Through his early working years, he earned the nickname “Muddkatt.”

He graduated from Milano High School in 1977.

Joe had a memory like a steel trap. He could remember the names of just about every person he ever met, every place he’d ever been, and everything that ever happened.

He never missed an opportunity to pull someone out of the mud or do some “bat turns“ on the water.

If you were not an outdoorsman when you met Joe, he was going to make sure you were by the time you left.

Joe’s career was the oil field, where he worked for 30-plus years. During his oil field career, he and Debbie opened “MuddKatts” Country Store & Grill on FM 2000 in Caldwell, later selling the business and moving to Lyons, where he could enjoy the water.

Joe enjoyed fishing, hunting, making memories, and pulling pranks. He enjoyed a good hunting story and great fishing on the Brazos River.

If you ever went over and visited Joe, you were guaranteed to hear some good music and eat some good food. He also loved to fry fish and eat a good pot of chicken and dumplings.

More joy came into Joe’s life when his grandchildren and great-grandchildren were born. He shared his passion for the outdoors with them as well and took pride in being their “Pappy.”

Joe had the biggest smile and the toughest voice.

He loved animals—most especially his dogs, Beaner and Buster.

He always seemed to be at peace in the woods or on the water.

Joe was preceded in death by his daughter, Brandie Jo Mireles; his parents, Evelyn Smith and Roy H. Criner; his brothers, Donald, Marvin and Billy Criner; and his sister, Tammie Searcy.

He is survived by his wife, Debbie Criner, of Lyons; daughter Christie Criner; son Mark Rickerman and daughter-in-law, Angela; grandchildren Rolando “Little Man” and Riley Fernandez and her fiancée Rueben Rodriguez, Alyssa Martinez and husband Antonio, Cameron and Mia Mireles, Shelby Narro and husband Anthony, and Ryan Rickerman; six great-grandchildren; and a sister, Pamela Perry and husband Sam; and numerous nieces and nephews.

In keeping with Joe’s wishes, those who want to honor Joe are encouraged to go fishing, gather with family and friends, and make good memories.

Condolences may be expressed at phillipsandluckey. com.

Rockdale Reporter

221 E. Cameron Ave
Rockdale, TX 76567