Roy Lee Powell, age 94 years young, left this earthly place and danced into heaven on March 26, 2018. He was at home, on hospice, after a brief stay in the hospital for pneumonia.
Roy was born January 11, 1924 to Floyd Minor Powell and Faye Marie Sutherland Powell, in Two Buttes, Colorado. He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife of 68 years, Margie; his daughter, Laura Lee Higgins; his brothers: Willis, Floyd Jr. and Fay; sisters-in-law: Rutha, Martha Ann and Leona; and nephews: Ronnie, Donnie and Albert Powell.
He is survived by daughters: Linda Ely (Ned), Brenda Mercer (John) and Sandy Powell of Alvin; son-in-law, Darrell Higgins (Shelly) of Pearland; and sister, Shirley Ober Landrum of New Braunfels. Grandchildren are: Tracy Eads Podesta (Albert) of Friendswood, Eric Eads, John Mercer Jr. (Kasandra), Jennifer Mercer, Jason Mercer (Heather), and Joanna Mercer Lawson (Chris), all of Alvin, and Ashlee Jones and Sydney, James and Lilly Higgins of Pearland. Great-grandchildren are: Isabella Podesta of Friendswood, Emily, Cole, Camryn, Callie and Chandler Mercer, and Hailei, Kristen, Hayden and Katelyn Lawson, all of Alvin. Nephews are: Floyd, III and Chuck Powell of Alvin and Jimmy Ober (Tami) of Manor. Nieces are: Donna Lee Powell of Alvin, Susan Ober Cowart (Alan) of New Braunfels and Nancy Ober Foyt (Tony) of Hockley, along with many great-nieces and -nephews and distant cousins all over the country.
Special thanks to members of First United Methodist Church, Alvin ISD and especially the Athletic Department and Fine Arts Department and Charlie and the girls at Alvin Seafood for your love, prayers and support for our dad these many years.
Roy and his family came to Alvin in 1925 when he was 1 1⁄2 years old. His grandfather Edgar Alonso Powell was the Methodist Episcopal minister here in Alvin at the time. He attended Alvin schools and was a member of the first Alvin High School Band. Mr. Powell graduated from Alvin High School in 1943, and by October, he was drafted into the Navy and sent to Radar School in San Diego, California.
His first assignment was as a radar operator on the U.S.S. White Marsh during WWII. He subsequently served on the U.S.S. Frank Knox and the U.S.S. Leonard Mason during the Korean War.
He served mainly in the Pacific Campaign from Aleutian Islands to Guadalcanal, crossing the equator 18 times.
After his first tour of duty, Roy Lee met and married Marjorie Lee Trimm in July of 1947 in DeQueen, Arkansas. He brought her back to Alvin and re-enlisted in the Navy. When his time was up in the service, Roy attended the University of Houston to study electronics.
Roy brought his family back to Alvin where he pursued several endeavors to take care of his family. He even sold appliances at Stanton’s for a while. Soon he began working for a steel building company and the rest is history. After working under another boss for a while, he decided to start his own company, and Construction Service Company was begun. They erected thousands of the steel/sheet metal buildings you see today all over the Gulf Coast. He finally retired from construction when he was in his 80s.
Roy Lee was an avid fisherman who owned several boats in his lifetime. He would take his family and/or friends fishing anytime they were available. There was something about fishing that soothed his soul. From this love of fishing came a hobby of his in creating one-of-a-kind fishing poles. He would design and create from scratch, winding colored threads around the pole in various patterns and colors. Many of his family and friends are recipients of those poles.
However, fishing took on new meaning when Roy began his relationship with Jesus Christ. He began to be a fisher of men. On any given day during lunch or fishing trip or having a cup of coffee, Roy was available to witness to others about his great faith and love for the Lord. He was a beacon of light to many. He never met a stranger. His faith led him to another hobby, making crosses out of horseshoe nails. Roy would share these crosses with people he would meet. They have been shared as far as central Mexico and Hawaii. Somehow, he knew that these people needed encouragement or a friendly face. He always carried an extra one in his pocket to share.
At home, Roy was an avid gardener. Although he would never take credit for the beautiful things in his yard, he said God grew it there. He was able to grow citrus trees, when others struggled to keep them alive. His trees were prolific, and he shared the bounty with all. He grew roses and hibiscus and would frequently carry a bloom to church to share with a woman who needed it. God placed in him an extraordinary gift to be an encourager.
Over the past couple of weeks, so many people who have shared stories of how our father changed their lives have blessed the family. Sometimes, it was seemingly just a little thing he had done, but lives were changed for the better because of him.
Our father was small in stature, but he had a huge heart full of faith and love and he showed it every day. He was thankful for every little part of life, stars in the sky, a smooth bay in which to fish, and family and friends to care for him and each other. Roy Lee taught, by example, how to be appreciative and how to have faith in God.
He was an American Patriot and loyal to the U.S. Navy and to his schools, Alvin High School and the University of Houston.
Being a longtime Alvin resident and over-50-year season ticket holder, Roy attended almost every high school home game at Memorial Stadium. Because of his dedication to Alvin High School, Alvin ISD recently recognized Mr. Powell by naming the press box of the newly renovated stadium in his honor. He was amazed at the attention he received and humbled by the experience.
The family would like to thank Alvin ISD, Harbor Hospice Care and all the friends of our family who have supported him and us with your prayers through his brief, but critical, illness.
A Memorial Service will be held for Roy Lee Powell on Saturday, April 14, 2018 at 10:00 a.m. at First United Methodist Church, 611 W. South St., Alvin.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be sent to First United Methodist Church, 611 W. South St., Alvin, TX 77511. The donations will go to the missions.