MIDLAND, Texas — Clayton Williams was as West Texas as they come.
The 88-year-old Wildcatter passed away in his home on Feb. 14 after a battle with pneumonia.
But his legacy in the Basin will live on forever.
"I've had a great life living in the West," Clayton Williams, in an interview with Haley Memorial Library in 2018, said.
Clayton or Claytie, was a boisterous oilman.He started multiple million, some even billion, dollar companies.
He worked well into his 80s before selling Clayton Williams Energy to Noble Energy for more than $1-billion dollars in 2017.
His name also made headlines in 1990 running for Texas governor against Ann Richards.
His name is all over town, including the Permian Basin Museum Hall of Fame. And a business complex you probably pass every day, Claydesta. He named it after himself and his wife Modesta.
“I think if you look at my wife Modesta you can tell I’m a pretty good salesman," Williams said.
He was also an Aggie through and through. Williams graduated from Texas A&M in 1954 where he was a member of the Corps of Cadets. In his later years, he was very generous to the university, always giving back.
Outside of the A&M Alumni Center named in his honor, makeshift memorials are placed to honor the man who was bigger than life.
Porter S. Garner III, the President and CEO of the Association of Former Students saying:
"Claytie was a great Aggie and a loyal friend. I will always remember his genuine emotion for Texas A&M and his fellow Aggies,” Garner said.
Governor Abbott is one of many paying his respects telling NewsWest 9, "His impact on the Permian Basin will be lasting and his legacy will live on as a man who helped drive the American oil and gas boom--leading to our nation’s energy independence. Claytie and Modesta transformed Midland with their ingenuity, warmth, and kindness."
A life well lived. Clayton Williams is a legend credited for making West Texas what it is today.
We are waiting to learn details on Williams funeral service. NewsWest 9 will continue to update you as we learn more details on how he will be honored here in the Basin.