Memorial services for Aaron “Kell” Clopton, formerly of Emory, were held on December 21, at Community Life Church in Forney. Interment followed in Rock Hill Cemetery in Yantis.
Mr. Clopton died on December 17, 2023, following a lengthy and hard-fought battle with cancer. He was born on July 26, 1976, to James “Bob” and Pansy Clopton in Tyler.
He graduated from Rains High School in 1995 and received a scholarship to attend and play football as an offensive lineman for Southern Arkansas University (SAU) from 1995-1998. On May 24, 2008, he married Faith Harry. Their marriage was blessed with three children. He was a man of great faith and a devoted husband and father. He loved the Lord, his family, his church and his community. In his spare time, he enjoyed coaching his girls in youth sports and being out on the family farm.
Throughout his years, Mr. Clopton had many notable achievements. He was named an NCAA Division II All American on two occasions while at SAU. He later signed as a free agent with the New Orleans Saints in 1999. He went on to play with the Arena Football League and eventually returned to SAU to serve as a graduate assistant. He graduated with his Bachelor of Science degree from SAU in 2000 and with his Master of Education in 2002. In 2010, he was one of the 100 principals in Texas chosen to attend the Harvard Graduate School of Education in Boston, Massachusetts to participate in a program titled “Redesigning High Schools for Improved Instruction.”
He completed his superintendent certification in December 2011 through the Lt. Governor Bill Ratliff Northeast Texas School Executive Academy and served as the Assistant Superintendent and ultimately the Deputy Superintendent of Kaufman Independent School District. In 2017, he was inducted into the SAU Hall of Fame for his contributions to the football program. While he was honored by his football and professional accomplishments, he was most proud of the family that he and Faith created and watching his daughters grow into godly young women.
Mr. Clopton is survived by his wife; daughters, Addison, Averie and Andi Clopton; parents, Bob and Pansy Clopton of Yantis; brother and sister-in-law, Kevin and Leigh Clopton of Gunter; nephews, Bryce Clopton (wife Abby and daughter Presley) of Pilot Point, and Braiden Clopton of Sherman; father and mother-in-law, Bill and Beth Harry; sister and brother-in-law, Lacy and Russ Coker and nieces, Caroline and Camille; and sister and brother-in-law, Crysta and Evan Hooker and nephew, Ethan and niece, Josie, all of Sulphur Springs; and a multitude of uncles, aunts, cousins and friends that he considered family.
He was preceded in death by his paternal grandparents, Ricky and Julia Clopton; and his maternal grandparents, Aaron “Booster” and Lillie “Maxine” Gilbreath.
In lieu of flowers memorial donations can be made to the Benefit Kell Clopton account at American National Bank of Kaufman for his daughters’ college tuition.