May 25, 1928 - December 28, 2021
Delbert “Del” Merrell Kulbeth, Sr. 05/25/1928 – 12/28/2021 Del Kulbeth, 93, of Lafayette, Louisiana, died peacefully at his home on the morning of Tuesday December 28, 2021, with his loving wife, Wanda by his side. Del is survived by his wife of 68 years, Wanda Miles Kulbeth, and his children: Delbert Kulbeth, II, Tina Kulbeth Creel and her husband, Scott, and Robert “Bob” Kulbeth and his wife, Karen; his grandchildren: Amy Kulbeth Stovall (Tommy), Rocky Kulbeth (Cassie), Marie Kulbeth, Mike Kulbeth (Sarah), Kristin Creel Kling (Mike), Luke Kulbeth (Kerrie), Jake Kulbeth, John Kulbeth (Cadence), Kelly Creel Harmon (Greg), Keith Kulbeth (Annie), Michelle Kulbeth Howell (Brock); his great-grandchildren: (Amy)Christopher Landry, Ginger and Patrick Stovall; (Mike) McKenzie, Ray and Lainey Kulbeth; (Luke) Miles and Sawyer Kulbeth; (Kristin) Everett Kling; (Kelly) Matthew, William and Amelie Harmon; (Rocky) Lucy, Margo, Darcy and Wyatt Kulbeth; (John) Charly Rae and Austin Kulbeth; (Michelle) Mason, Eli, GiGi Howell, (Keith) and one on the way Rhyan Harper Kulbeth. He is also survived by his sisters, Betty Franklin of Athens, TX, Linda Brown of Florida, Dean Boozer of Monroe, LA, and a number of other extended family members. Not to be forgotten, all of the many unofficial grandchildren and great-children and close family friends who also referred to Del as “grandaddy” and all of his DEL Corporation family. He was preceded in death by his parents, Robert L. Kulbeth and Bonnie A. Kulbeth. Del Kulbeth lived the fullest 93 years of anyone you have ever met, guaranteed. This was a man of dedication and character. To know him was to love him, and if you didn’t know him, he would introduce himself and find a connection, tell you a story (and man could he tell a story) and he would never forget you. He loved God, his wife, his family and baseball, in that order, more than anything. Del, born in Wilmar, Arkansas, grew up in humble beginnings in railroad camps in south Arkansas and later attended high school in Camden, Arkansas. He was an outstanding basketball player at Camden and later played college basketball at Henderson State before transferring to Louisiana Tech. During his summers Del played baseball for the Southern Kraftsmen in South Arkansas and was afforded the opportunity to travel all over playing the game he deeply loved. He joined the Air Force in 1950 and was stationed at Lackland Airforce Base in San Antonio, Texas. He would hitch hike all the way back to Camden just see a certain young lady. Although they attended different high schools in Camden, Arkansas, Del Kulbeth proposed to former Miss Camden, Arkansas (1950), Wanda Faye Miles, on New Year’s Eve 1952, and they were married on September 12th, 1953. Del got the opportunity to play baseball for the Air Force and caught the eye of professional scouts. In 1954 he was honorably discharged and shortly after received a contract to play professional baseball for the Boston Braves. Wanda and Del decided it was time to start a family and traveling the country for baseball didn’t fit the plan, so he gave up his baseball dream. During his tenure in baseball and the Air Force, Del played ball with stars such as Joe Bill Adcock, and hit against the infamous Don Newcombe. He also played golf for the Air Force with PGA star Don January. (His version – he taught them all a few things). Del’s love for baseball continued as he coached all his kids and was still giving hitting and fielding tips to his great grandkids until the very end. He was on the American Legion Baseball board, sponsored Lafayette Little League teams and semi-pro teams, donated funds to build area high school fields and kept box seats at “The Tigue”. He was at every baseball game, basketball game, track meet, dance recital, piano recital, you name it, that his grandkids and great grandkids participated in…and there were LOTS. This man thrived on it all. But if you had room for improvement – he was playing back the tape he made to point out how you could get better. Career: Del retired from Armco National Supply after 30 years of service. He then took over as President of Tiger Drilling Company at the request of the one and only “Tiger Mike” Davis. Before moving to Houston with Armco and later Tiger Drilling, he inspired and financed his two sons to start what is now DEL Corporation. In 1984 he and Wanda moved back to Lafayette, and he took over as CEO of DEL Corporation. With his guidance and wisdom DEL Corporation became the major supplier of tank systems for numerous industries across the globe including the oilfield, dredging, and environmental industries. DEL Corporation has now been in existence for over 42 years and has provided jobs for a lot of hard-working men and women and he loved them all for their loyalty and work ethic. He appreciated every single employee and viewed them all as an extension of his family. DEL Corporation was recognized by Governor Bobby Jindal in 2015 for its economic growth impact in Louisiana. Del told stories of starting off his career in door-to-door sales of vacuum cleaners, pounding the pavement from the bottom up. Del started at Armco National supply sweeping the floor and ended his career there as the Regional Manager of the Machinery Division. He appreciated hard-earned success and instilled that in his family to no end. Del never retired, he just moved his office to Heaven. Arrangements: A Celebration of Life for Del Kulbeth will be held on Friday, December 31, 2021 at Asbury United Methodist Church in Lafayette, LA. The visitation will take place at 9:00 am with a funeral service immediately following at 10:00 am. A gathering for family and friends will take place after the service at the home of Scott and Tina Creel. Thanks: Special thanks to Suzette Malone for her longtime care and service to Del and the Kulbeth family. Also, thank you to Bridgeway Hospice and Drs. Kenneth Spiller, Chris LaGraize and Jon Leleux for their kindness and service which Del greatly appreciated. Donations: In lieu of flowers please make donations to UL Baseball or Asbury United Methodist Church in honor of Del Kulbeth. Personal condolences may be sent to the Kulbeth family at www.delhommefuneralhome.com. Delbert Merrell Kulbeth, Sr. and his family were cared for and entrusted final arrangements to Delhomme Funeral Home, 1011 Bertrand Drive, Lafayette, LA.
Delbert “Del” Merrell Kulbeth, Sr. 05/25/1928 – 12/28/2021 Del Kulbeth, 93, of Lafayette, Louisiana, died peacefully at his home on the morning of Tuesday December 28, 2021, with his loving wife, Wanda by his side. Del is... View Obituary & Service Information
Obituary & Service
Delbert “Del” Merrell Kulbeth, Sr.
05/25/1928 – 12/28/2021
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