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T. Boone Pickens Remembered As 'Bigger Than Life' At North Texas Funeral

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM/AP) - T. Boone Pickens was remembered at a Dallas funeral on Thursday for his humor, tenacity and larger-than-life personality.

"Boone was bigger than life. In fact, Boone was bigger than Texas itself," Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said at the service at Highland Park United Methodist Church.

Abbott recalled that when Pickens was once asked if he was from Texas or Oklahoma, he replied: "Both." Abbott said, "Boone was too big to be confined to just one state."

The brash and quotable oil tycoon who grew even wealthier through corporate takeover attempts died Sept. 11 at the age of 91 at his Dallas home.

There will be a public memorial Sept. 25 in Stillwater, Oklahoma, at his alma mater, Oklahoma State University. Pickens donated hundreds of millions of dollars to OSU.

T. Boone Pickens
Founder and Chairman of BP Capital Management T. Boone Pickens participate in a discussion during a "birthday bash" to celebrate his birthday at the 2015 Southern Republican Leadership Conference May 22, 2015 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. About a dozen possible presidential candidates will join the conference and lobby for supports from Republican voters. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones told those gathered that when faced with difficulties, Pickens often used humor and tenacity.

Jones said that was especially true as Pickens' health failed near the end of his life.

"Boone would get slapped back. Boy, here he'd come again. He'd get slapped back. He'd call on that humor. He'd call on everything he could. He would inspire the people around him," Jones said. "Boone was a fourth quarter player. Probably the best fourth quarter player you and I will have ever had the privilege of being on the team with."

Aside from Jones and Governor Abbott, former CEO of PlainsCapital Bank and close Pickens friend, Alan White spoke at the memorial service.

They both praised him as an accomplished businessman.

Pickens owned Mesa Petroleum which became the largest independently owned oil company, then became a billionaire after creating the B-P Capital Hedge Fund.

His Pickens plan ten years ago pushed for independence from foreign oil.

White said while Pickens made billions of dollars, spent billions of dollars, and lost billions of dollars, he also gave more than one billion dollars in donations to Oklahoma State, community non-profits, and Texas hospitals.

"They're going to have a tremendous impact on the life you live, the life I live, the life this country lives, this world lives."

(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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