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Monday, May 25, 2020
Starts at 2:00pm (Central (no DST) time)
Helen Ruth Houston, 90 years old, died on Friday, May 22, 2020 at her care facility in Spring, Texas after a valiant fight with dementia. Helen’s optimism, strong will to live, unwavering faith in God, along with the love and prayers of family and friends carried her through the last phase of her life with grace, compassion and dignity.
Helen was born December 1929 in Snyder, TX, to Dr. William Francis and Edna Ferguson. She was the daughter of a Baptist preacher and the youngest of four children. Helen was known for her vitality, ease of frequent conversation and genuine empathy for those around her. Throughout her life she maintained a beautiful and gracious demeanor that won the trust and hearts of many, who even now are being changed by her witness of constant nurturing, love and faith. Her signature gift of joy, shown through her constant smiles and wonderful sense of humor will never be forgotten.
She attended Slaton High School and continued to enjoy many of those high school friendships throughout her life. In retirement they would enjoy many much anticipated weekend retreats together.
She attended Baylor University, majoring in voice. She was a member of the Baylor Chorus and was so proud of her alma mater. The couple soon married and raised their 5 children, Herb Jr, Deborah, Travis, Lloyd and Sam primarily in McAllen, Texas. Possessing a true servant’s heart, Helen faithfully cared for family and friends. As a woman of faith she shaped the foundation of the Houston family by her tireless Christian example.
Later in life Helen returned to Baylor University to complete a degree in education. She then went on to a full teaching career. Over the next 20 years she taught English Literature and Grammar in McAllen, Weslaco and Sharyland,TX. She was loved as a teacher and continued to have her past students drop by to visit and share their lives with her.
With five children their home was always a hub of activity. She would gather her family around a dinner table each evening to say a prayer and discuss the highlights of the day. She welcomed everyone into her home where there was always room for one more at the dinner table.
Helen was both a teacher, and alongside her husband Herb, she was a rancher, as well as a citrus and palm tree farmer. She had a long list of hobbies and enjoyed sewing, knitting, needlepoint, reading, singing and playing the piano. Her true joy came from her grandchildren and watching them grow up. She was so proud of her family.
Helen was a faithful member of First Baptist in McAllen, TX and Holly Brook Baptist in Hawkins, TX. She was a respected and loved member or her congregation. She loved music and embraced it with great enthusiasm. She was a dedicated choir member and loved being a part of the Christmas productions each year. Helen taught many Sunday school classes and always helped teach vacation bible school.
Retirement was an exciting time for Helen and Herb. They enjoyed traveling around the United States in their RV, visiting their children and grandchildren along the way. Whenever possible they would grab a couple of grandkids and away they would go! Costa Rica was a favorite travel destination and eventually they settled down to a place they often referred to as “perfect”, Holly Lake Ranch, TX. A place with a wonderful church family and a beautiful golf course.
During her later retirement years you might see Helen in a golf cart at 6AM heading to her water aerobics class, walking her precious dog Little Bit down Timberidge Trail, sitting on her front patio by the rock waterfall, chatting with neighbors and welcoming all who passed by. She was also active in Tea and Tales, the Holly Lake book club.
Helen was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Herbert Houston, parents, William and Edna Ferguson, sister, Marion Hudson, and brothers, Dr. Travis Ferguson and Waylon Ferguson.
Helen is survived by her children, Herb, Jr. and wife Susie Houston of Laguna Vista, TX, Deborah and husband James Harlan of Memphis, TN, Travis Houston and Katherine of Grand Cayman, Lloyd and wife Lise Houston of Spring, TX , Sam and wife Jimmye Houston of Holly Lake Ranch, TX.
She had 13 grandchildren, Trey Houston and wife Shannon, Taylor Beck and husband Paul, Tyler Houston, Sean Houston and wife Cheri, Mollie Sawyer and husband Mark, Aaron Amos and wife Jamie, Caleb and wife Camila Harlan, Jonathan and wife Jaqui Harlan, Carter Houston, William Houston, Rose Houston, Josh Houston, Caity Coffman and husband Bo. Helen also has fifteen great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
Services will be held at 2:00 PM at Hollybrook Baptist Church in Holly Lake Ranch, Bro. Larry Taylor officiating, interment will follow at Holly Tree Cemetery.