Special to the Leader & Times
Bob Clingan, formerly of Liberal, was honored Oct. 4 at a luncheon and homecoming football game ar Russellville, Ark., when he was named honorary captain of the football team.
He graduated from Russellville High School 67 years ago in 1946, and was one of the oldest members of the athletic Hall of Fame. While in school, Clingan lettered in basketball, football and track.
Clingan recalled playing football before there were any classifications of sizes of schools, and through teamwork Russellville was able to defeat much largers schools like Fort Smith and Little Rock.
After high school graduation, he served two years in the U.S. Navy, and received an honorable discharge in 1948 with the rank of Petty Officer third class, Navy C-Bees. In 1952 Clingan graduated from Oklahoma A&M College, which is now known as Oklahoma State University. He accepted a job offer from the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company. The starting salary with a degree in business administration at that time was $275 per month.
He worked five years for Goodyear, and in 1957 purchased a one-third interest in Allen Tire Company in Liberal. In 1960, he purchased the company from the widows of the two other partners who were killed in an automobile accident.
During his working years, Clingan was honored to serve on the Dealer Advisory Board of Directors of his two most important suppliers, Michelin Tire & Rubber Company and Bandag Rubber Company.
Clingan Tires Inc. of Liberal is the holding company for three retail and commercial locations in both Kansas and Oklahoma. The Bandag shop produces in excess of 12,000 large truck grade and small earth mover tires per year.
He and his wife Margaret (Marg) have been married 63 years, and have three children, Robby, Melinda and Randy.