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Billie Sol Estes. Tempera, ink, and pencil on board, 1962, by Boris Chaliapin. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Time magazine.


Estes, Billie Sol (20 January 1925–14 May 2013), business entrepreneur, was born in Gray County, Texas, the second of six children of Lillian Coffman and John Levi Estes, struggling farmers. His parents raised their children in the fundamentalist Church of Christ. Young Billie attended local public schools near Clyde, Texas, and as a teenager wrote to President ...