J.T. Sumerlin, Jr.

For those of you who were lucky enough to know my grandfather, Ted Sumerlin, I am posting part of his obituary below. He was my mentor and my friend, and I will miss him greatly.

James Theodore Sumerlin Jr.
James Theodore Sumerlin, Jr. a lifelong Houston resident, died June 16, 2007. Ted was born August 31, 1916, across the street from the present Houston City Hall, the son of Mamie Elizabeth and James Theodore Sumerlin. He attended Houston public schools, and graduated from San Jacinto High School, where he became interested in journalism. He was named editor of the Campus Cub, the school paper, in 1935. Ted worked for The Cotton Digest, the Houston Press and the Houston Post. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps and served throughout World War II, being discharged in 1946 with the rank of Major. While serving at Moses Lake Air Station in Washington, Ted met Elsie, who became his wife. They came to Houston and raised their family, and Ted returned to his position as a police reporter at the Post. He later worked for the advertizing firm of Gregory Giezendanner, and then for Lloyd Gregory and Associates. He completed his career as a member of the Staff of the Port of Houston, where he edited the Port of Houston Magazine. He retired in August, 1981. Ted will be remembered as a loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. He was a gracious, gentle man who will be remembered by his family for his quick smile and ready wit, his love of Elsie and all their family, and his ability to “fix” almost anything. He was a talented photographer and ham radio enthusiast, serving with the military’s “MARS” network keeping service men and women in touch with their families. Ted was a member of Bellaire Presbyterian Church for more than 50 years, and served the church as a Deacon and Elder. His church family became especially important to him after Elsie’s death in June, 2000.

A Memorial Service will be held on Tuesday, June 19, 2007, at 2:00 P.M., in the Sanctuary of ChristChurch Presbyterian, 5001 Bellaire Blvd, Bellaire, Texas, with the Rev. Lacy Sellars officiating. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the J. T. Sumerlin Memorial Fund at ChristChurch Presbyterian.
Published in the Houston Chronicle on 6/18/2007.