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Homer Carroll Jones was born February 18, 1941 to the parentage of the late Horace and Beulah M. Aldridge Jones in Pittsburg, Texas. Homer united with North Chapel CME Church in Pittsburg, Texas, in his early childhood. Homer’s early schooling began in the Harvard Switch Community, where he grew up. Homer was a 1959 graduate of Frederick Douglas High School, where he was in the band and played his first year of football.
Homer is preceded in death by both his parents, a brother: John Paul Jones, infant child, and one granddaughter: LaTrista Joyce Nickleberry.
Homer leaves to cherish his loving memories his wife: Betty Brown Jones of Frisco, Texas, two sons: Homer Jones, Jr. of Compton, California, Charles (Camille) Dumas of Houston, Texas, four daughters: Kiki (Mark) Ferguson of Houston, Texas, Erica (Willie) Sanders II of Frisco, Texas, Marcie (Robert) Bell of Frisco, Texas, LaCarroll (Tristan) Nickleberry of Naples, Texas, eight grandchildren: Charles Dumas, Jr., Kaitlin Sanders, Kinley Ferguson, Willie Jay Sanders, Robert Bell, Jr., Tristan Nickleberry II, Riley Bell, Carter Nickleberry, one sister: Patrica Bolton of Marshall, Texas, two nieces: Patrice Mitchell of Houston, Texas, Angela Bolton, and one nephew Jonathon Bolton both of Marshall, Texas, and a host of relatives and friends.
Homer graduated from Douglas High School in Pittsburg, Texas, in 1959, during his high school years. Homer was a member of the Douglas High School band and played the saxophone. Homer wanted to attend college after high school, so during his senior year of school, he switched to football and earned a scholarship to Texas Southern University in Houston, Texas. While at Texas Southern University, Homer participated in track while continuing to develop his football skills with the team there. In track, Homer competed in the 100, 220, 4 x 110-yard relay, and the 400-meter relay. Homer recorded times in the 100-yard dash at 9.3 seconds, the 220-yard dash at 20.6 seconds which tied the American record. Homer also ran on the 1962 U.S. Olympic Track team 400-meter relay with Bob Hayes, and they set a world record against the Russians. In 1964, Homer was drafted by the New York Giants (NFL) and the Houston Oilers (AFL). Homer elected to play with the Oilers, but was released due to a knee injury allowing the New York Giants to pick him up after waivers. Homer went on to become one of the NFL’s all time great receivers. During the 1960’s, Homer Jones and Bob Hayes were considered the two fastest men in the world. In 1965, Homer had 26 receptions for 709 yards and 6 touchdowns. Homer averaged 27.3 yards per catch during the 1965 season and set the record for the longest touchdown reception with the Giants, an 89 yarder against the Philadelphia Eagles. Homer Jones is known as the innovator of the spike football celebration which is still performed by players today. During the 1966 season, Homer extended the touchdown record by scoring a 98 yarder, and this record still holds today. In 1967, Homer dominated the league with 49 receptions for 1,209 yards and 14 touchdowns, Homer averaged 24.7 yards per catch that year and was elected as the Giants most valuable player. In 1970, Homer was traded to the Cleveland Browns where he had 10 receptions for 141 yards and caught 1 touchdown pass. The Browns used Homer as a kickoff specialist, and he returned 29 kickoffs for 739 yards and 1 touchdown. Homer averaged 25.5 yards per return that year. In 1970, Monday Night Football debuted in September and Homer returned the second half kickoff 94 yards for a touchdown. In 1971, Homer retired from the NFL while playing for the St. Louis Cardinals. Homer’s football career stats consisted of 224 receptions for 4,936 yards averaging 22.3 yards per catch. Homer’s yards per catch stat still tops all time among NFL players with at least 200 catches.
After retiring from football Homer returned to his hometown of Pittsburg Texas and worked at Lone Star Steel retiring in 1989. Homer spent his leisure time making pottery, gardening, building and repairing bicycles, fabricating furniture, and spending time with his friends, family, and especially his grandchildren.