Houston Chronicle Obituary for John Moore…And a Few Family Pics

On Monday night, May 18, 2015, the Lord swept Marcell “John” Moore, the dearly loved patriarch of our family, to Heaven, after he’d overcome enormous health challenges for years, valiantly cheating death again and again. We are blessed beyond words that he fought courageously to live against all odds and we count dear every moment we had with him. After a number of hospitalizations over the previous year, we are deeply grateful to God that John was home, surrounded by family in the days and hours leading to his passing and at the time he took his last breath. A man has never been more loved by his family than John Moore and due, in such large part, because he taught us well and loved us well. The great affection he fostered among us kept us all close, living life together and laughing, particularly at him. He was the star of the family and could hold the floor like no one else. We were audience to continual stories and anecdotes retold with tremendous color, flair, and no little exaggeration. None of us has to wonder how he felt about us. We were told often how much he loved us.

His is a household name in Houston, Texas. Down any freeway in this city, you can still see the words “Call John and Get Moore” on plumbing trucks and most Houston residents could sing the jingle from the commercial in a heartbeat. He started John Moore Plumbing Company in 1965 with one set of tools in the back of a black van on Vogue Lane and, in his tenure, the company serviced 750,000 homes. The company was sold in 2004 but not until he’d managed to mark the plumbing industry in Houston with a gentleman’s handsome face and winsome way. His hospital room and home were graced continually by countless friends and business associates.

Born in Houston on January 8, 1934 to Marcell John Moore “Red” and Mary Moore, John loved this city and never lived a moment of his life outside the area. He leaves behind his wife of 62 years, Mary “Sue” Pereira Moore, whom he adored and constantly called “my bride.” Perhaps nothing conveys how lovely she was to him like the fact that he did not feel nearly so called to become a Catholic priest once he set his sights on her. Needless to say, his change in vocation from future priest to future king of plumbing is one to which we – his children – owe considerable thanks.

Alongside his wife, John was a devoted Catholic and his faith in Jesus Christ grew dearer and dearer to him. They were members of Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church in Houston for many years then, after moving to the country beside their son and daughter-in-law, they became members of Saint Anne Catholic Church in Tomball, Texas. He was preceded in death by his brothers Ronnie Moore and Pat Moore and leaves behind one sister, Etta Heemer. John and Mary’s two beloved children, Marcell John Moore III (“Duke”) and Nalda Jean Moore Presnell each preceded him in death. Our consolation in the loss of a family man we can never replace is that he holds the two of them in his arms this very moment.

Left to recount endless stories about him are his son, Keith Moore and his daughter-in-law Beth Moore of Tomball, Texas, his daughter Tina Moore Carroll and his son-in-law John Carroll of the Woodlands, Texas, and his daughter Mary Moore Meadows and his son-in-law Mike Meadows of Waco, Texas. If it sounds like from our locations that leaving Texas would have been an almost unpardonable sin, we say with a grin that perhaps, then, you understand our family. We stick close. And we are so glad he insisted on it. John had no greater joy in his life than his six grandchildren, all of whom adored him. Tearful farewells were said to him by Amanda Moore Jones and her husband, Rev. Curtis Jones, Melissa Moore, Ben Meadows, Joe Meadows and his wife, Chauntell, John Taylor Carroll, and Hannah Carroll. Their tremendous attentiveness and help to their grandfather and grandmother enabled Hospice to oversee his care but primarily and confidently leave John in the hands of his family until the Lord took him home. John also had the privilege to love and be active in the lives of his two great-grandchildren, Jackson (9) and Annabeth Jones (6). He ended his life here having the joy and satisfaction of knowing that two more great grandchildren would be born into our family this year. We have smiled saying that God knew it would take the addition of two people to comfort us in the loss of the one big personality we will miss deeply.

We are grateful for the doctors and the nurses at Tomball Regional Hospital who knew him well from his many visits and loved him. We are also inexpressibly grateful for the last four years of his life spent in the fresh air of the country where he sat atop every conceivable John Deere on wheels and ruled the roost. These woods and neighbors will never forget him. We don’t plan to let them.



Here are a few random pictures of our branch of the Moore family with our beloved Big Pops:

This is one of my favorites because it captures both Keith and his dad’s expressions when Keith shows him a document that proves their ancestors were in Texas while it was still a Republic.

With Keith



This one doesn’t show what a lovely woman Keith’s mother is but I had to include it because this is Big Pops taking completely over when we built our two houses out in woods so thick with vines and brush that we had to hack our way into it. He was in his absolute element overseeing the development of the houses and yards and water wells. Here with his blueprints.





Here he is with our Jackson not long after we moved in. We four generations were so blessed to do a tremendous amount of life together. Not many kids get to know their great grandparents as well as Jackson and Annabeth did. We consider it a gift beyond price.


With Jackson


Here with Annabeth the first year we lived in the woods:

With AB


With me on the gator. He took a gator ride seriously. The first two years we lived in the woods were dream years for us with him. His health stayed pretty stable and, as he had a natural God-given inclination to do, he ran the place. And we let him. He never got off the saddle of some kind of John Deere.

on gator

I love this one so much because it shows him a bit younger. This is Amanda with both her grandparents at her wedding. You can see what a beautiful woman Keith’s mom is in this picture. Not to mention that first grandchild in that wedding dress.



These next two are very recent. Big Pops with Melissa. Good grief, he was crazy about her. He loved his six grandkids to no end. Amanda and Melissa were his first two.




This last one is not the greatest picture but it is a classic. Amanda, the eldest grandchild, had the foresight to plan an evening for the grandkids to come over to his house and celebrate him. Lover of Ireland that he was, she chose St. Patrick’s Day, his all-time favorite. We knew he wouldn’t be with us for long. He was nearly on his deathbed even then. The grandkids told him their favorite memories with him and he reciprocated with stories of his own. It was the greatest night. We laughed our heads off and partied to high heaven. The only sad part is that two of the grandkids were missing with the flu. I hate that they weren’t part of this night. We will remember it forever. Ben (top) and Joe (left) Meadows, the young guys in this picture, are two of the finest young men I have ever known. The tender care these two gave their grandfather in his last days and hours and countless previous times was just astounding. They spent night after night in the hospital and at his home, holding his hand and tending to every conceivable need. Joe is a paramedic and he single-handedly enabled us to take care of our loved one with a minimum amount of oversight from Hospice over the last forty-eight hours. It was just family. A tremendously sacred time.

On St Patrick's Day


Thank you so much for indulging us. People process grief different ways. I mostly write. Well, and of late, play hymns on my new antique piano. I’ve never been more grief stricken over losing someone of such advanced years, even knowing it was coming. He was just such a force in our family. Such a wonderful handful of a man. He could be the biggest mess. So much fun. And he was good and ornery. Just one of those kinds of people who can never be replaced. I feel like a gigantic meteor hurled straight through these woods and left a huge, gaping hole. I had the privilege to be loved like a blood daughter to my father-in-law. Thirty-six years is some substantial bonding and, what it doesn’t provide, living right next door does. He told me continually how much he loved me. I would not have traded this exact father-in-law for all the stellar dads in the world. I will miss him every single day.



403 Responses to “Houston Chronicle Obituary for John Moore…And a Few Family Pics”

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  1. 151
    Deb Mott says:

    Thank you for the wonderful gift of remembrance you have graced your dear family and this community with. The beauty of love is expressed and shows a network of thriving, healing, abundant life relationships with God and His creation. All that is expressed honors God and shows others the treasures He gives through love, marriage and family, heritages of prayers and praise and faithfulness to God being a delight and bringing forth delight and deep love bonds that go beyond human measure and touch the heart of our Savior in His immeasurable grace for His Glory. 1John living. I was truly touched and dearly feel the pain and sorrow of the loss you are all experiencing, ESP you,Beth as it sounds like he is a father to you in a way God ordained and gifted you with for such a time as this. Such purposes beyond what we know often and perhaps God Himself is restoring, confirming, strengthening, establishing you in these days. 1 Peter 5:10. May you sense God’s presence and be comforted by a His Word, Whisperes, Wind of His Spirit. I pray you allow God to enter you into His Rest (Hebrews4) and take time to grieve. Didn’t Israel take 40 days to grieve Joseph? We Americans can lean from them. With love and prayers to my mentor in God’s Precious Word, Deb Mott

  2. 152
    Kim says:

    So sorry for your loss. I pray God’s peace wraps around you all during this time.

  3. 153
    Mildred says:

    So sadden by your loss. May God continue to uphold you and your family through this time.

  4. 154
    Amy says:

    What an incredible and precious legacy! Thank you for sharing your heart with us. It is a dear thing to be a witness both your joys and your sorrows and to see how the Lord works in and through them. I count it a privilege to walk this road of grief with you and lift your family before the very throne of God. Love you so much!

  5. 155
    Paige Buckler says:

    Thank You for always sharing your love of our LORD & your family!
    Big Pops is now walking by sight not just by faith!
    The enitre Moore family is in our thoughts & prayers!

    With love,

  6. 156
    Mary says:

    My deepest sympathy. Thanks so much for sharing this with us. At times like this I am reminded, that we are just passing through Earth to get HOME.

  7. 157
    Gerri S. says:

    Dear Keith, Beth and family-
    I was touched by your loving tribute to a wonderful man, husband, father, grandfather and friend! I feel like I knew him too! You all will be lifted through this time of mourning…. In His love!
    PS… Well done, good and faithful servant!

  8. 158
    Susan Wimmer says:

    So sorry for your loss. The separation from our loved ones is so very hard and painful. The hope of heaven is such a comforting soothe to the aching heart. Thank you for sharing, it was a blessing to read of his life well lived in loving others.

  9. 159
    Patti says:

    Loving, precious tribute. Praying for your family.

  10. 160
    Meagan says:

    Wow. Beautiful. I’m so sorry for your loss.

  11. 161
    Beth says:

    What a beautifully expressive face he had! What a beautifully written tribute to a loving and much loved man. Praying for you all as you move into a new normal here on earth, but thankful of the assurance that you will be together again.

  12. 162
    Stephanie S says:

    This is beautiful.

  13. 163
    Sheryl Coley says:

    Lifting you and your family up in prayer! As you all well know there is no comfort like that of our loving Father’s at a time like this.

  14. 164
    Kelley says:

    So very sorry for your loss of this tremendous man. How lucky you all were to have him in your life. Prayers and blessings to your family!

  15. 165
    Jenny F. says:

    What a beautiful tribute to a life well lived and a man, obviously, well loved. My sincere sympathies to the entire Moore family.

  16. 166
    Amanda McFadden says:

    May the El Olam of the universe wrap you and your entire family in peace, love, and comfort as you are guided into this new season of life without your beloved Patriarch.

  17. 167
    Sandra Plate says:

    What a beautiful legacy of grace! So sorry for your loss!

  18. 168
    Tatia says:

    Lifting you all before the throne of the One who welcomed Big Pops with a big grin!

    Grief is a strange creature – may you all grieve well.


  19. 169
    Noreen says:

    Dearest Beth and Moore Family,
    Words cannot express my deepest sympathies to you and your family. I pray you feel the arms of our Savior around you as we hold you you in pray. I pray as you gather during the services you are able to celebrate his life and his homecoming. As it says in the mercy me song “I’ve never been more homesick than now” “so I’ll hold onto Jesus for as long as I can to see you again”

    Love you dear sister

  20. 170
    Amy Monsees says:

    What a lovely tribute. So sorry for the loss you are experiencing.

  21. 171
    Jill Sullivan says:

    Blessings for you all. Even though we don’t know each other, I am a follower of your studies – you are a blessing in my life. Hugs and prayers go out to you.

  22. 172
    Sandra Oden says:

    I loved my Father -in-law the same way. Blessing to you and your family.

  23. 173
    Katie says:

    What a great legacy he left your sweet family! And what a great welcome he must’ve received as he finally got to meet Jesus face to face! Can you even imagine?!!! Ultimate healing. Ahhhh, one fine day! May your family find comfort in knowing that you will see him again 🙂

  24. 174
    Carol says:

    What a beautiful tribute! My sweet daddy went home to be with our Lord and Savior last March & my father-in-law passed 5 weeks ago. They are missed everyday. Prayers for the entire Moore family as you go through these coming days and weeks. I am so thankful God gives us the grace we need to live our new normal.

    2 Corinthians 1:3-4 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

  25. 175
    Linda Hansen says:

    My prayers are with you during this difficult time. Such an amazing legacy!
    May the Lord touch your family with His loving arms of love and comfort.

  26. 176
    Shanna C says:

    What wonderful memories God has given to you and your family Beth. I will keep you all my in prayers in this difficult time. Praying that his peace and love will be felt all around you.

    A sister in Christ,

  27. 177
    Pamela P. says:

    My prayers and thoughts are with you and all of the Moore family. What a sweet tribute to your father-in-law. I remember you recently talking about at their 61st anniversary dinner and how he went around the table blessing each one of you by name. What a blessing, & sweet memory that is. I’m praying for comfort and peace for all of you. Hugs and thank you for sharing this. Pamela

  28. 178
    Nancy A says:

    What a wonderful tribute! My thoughts and prayers go out to the Moore family. <>

  29. 179
    Kaye Bennett says:

    You and your family will be in my prayes. Give yourselves permission to do the work that grieving requires. Numbers 6:24-26

  30. 180
    Kimberly Mason says:

    Beth and family,

    I’m so sorry for your loss. He sounds like a wonderful man! I am in tears after reading.

    God bless you dear sister,


  31. 181
    Kim says:

    I’m so sorry for your loss. Loved seeing the pictures, thank you for sharing the special memories with us. May it teach us to love every moment we have.

  32. 182
    Karin says:

    What a beautiful tribute to your father-in-law. He must have been an incredible man. I am sorry for your loss. Lifting your family up to the throne.

  33. 183
    DeLene Gilbert says:

    Beth, thanks so much for sharing these beautiful memories with all of us. May you all be comforted in the knowledge that you will all see his smiling face once again with Our Dear Lord!
    He is no longer suffering and is now Healed smiling in the Face of Our Lord!
    How awesome that must be! Blessings Dear One!

  34. 184
    Jennifer Nowak says:

    Beth and Moore family,

    I agree it’s such a deeply spiritual time to care for your parent right up until the Lord calls them home…with our Dad my sister and I were in the middle of singing “Precious Lord Take My Hand” when we noticed he had left this earth. I love your writing about Mr. Moore…what an amazing man he was! Prayers for comfort and peace to fill each of your hearts. Love to all of you <3

  35. 185
    Sheryl Potts says:

    you were blessed to have so many years with such a beloved family member. Praying for your family in your loss.
    Sheryl Potts

  36. 186
    Lindy says:

    My father is elderly and nearing the end of his life as well. Your sweet post brought tears to my eyes. I have a similar reverence and love for my dad. Your family will be in my prayers!!!

  37. 187
    Kimmygirl says:

    Thank you for sharing yet another piece of your private life with us. I add my condolences to the others, and I will keep your family in my prayers as you mourn the passing of a great man in your life.
    I want to let you know also, that my weekly ladies Bible study finished our last week of homework for Children of the Day yesterday. One of my dear ladies read to us a note of thanks to you that she wrote in her book. She teared up while reading her appreciation and love to you, and all of the hard work you put into the study, and her amazement at your transparency. A really sweet moment.
    We love you out here, Miss Beth! Prayers will continue for our dear Siesta….

  38. 188
    Laura Reimer says:

    Oh Beth…we all love you so much…feel like you are one of our dear friends. Always we speak of you by your first name and share stories about things you have taught us like we were right across a cup of coffee with you as you spoke. Thank you so very much for loving us enough and trusting these unseen friends with the dearest and most precious of places in your heart. I cried through the whole thing and just lift your family in prayer as you all grieve your own loss while rejoicing in your father-in-law’s gain. Knowing he is with the Lord is everything, isn’t it? Bless you dear Beth and your family <3

  39. 189
    Ann says:

    Sweet Beth,
    I saw the Life Tribute yesterday’s paper about your father-in-law. Praise the Lord for a life well-lived.
    Prayers to all of Keith’s family especially his mother. I lost my mother recently, and my father is trying hard to cope. He’s 88, but they had a wonderful 61 year marriage.
    Keep her close. 🙂

  40. 190
    Amy says:

    So sorry to hear~ So very very hard to lose someone who has been such a huge part of the family…My heart breaks for you all. Love and many prayers.

  41. 191
    Kami says:

    Blessings to you and all the Moore family as you celebrate the life of Mr. Moore! Soon and very soon we will all be Home, just as he is this day, and in the meantime, I pray his memory brings so much comfort to you all.

  42. 192
    Ann says:

    I am so sorry for your family’s loss. I pray that God will comfort and strengthen all of you as only He can do. John’s death may be your loss, but it is his gain…and also heaven’s. It amazes me how we can be in mourning while they are rejoicing! But that’s our God….Amazing!!

  43. 193
    Lynne J. says:

    Thank you for sharing such a beautiful tribute. May the peace of our Savior invade your heart and of your family as well. Prayers…

  44. 194
    Annette says:

    Thank you so much for writing the loving tribute of your father-in-law. His life was a blessing and will continue to bless. I’m praying for you today and all of the future days when you will miss him.

  45. 195
    Abi Welch says:

    THIS was a LIFE CELEBRATION. This post is an example of what the Bible is referring to in Ecclesiastes 7:1 when it is said “A good name is better than fine perfume, and the day of death better than the day of birth.” For the Saints, like your Father-in-law, his flesh passing was a day of celebration! You have been very blessed and thank you for sharing.

  46. 196
    Heather says:

    Dear Beth, Keith and the entire familia.
    I truly feel like a part of the family after reading that incredible honoring of his legacy. What an incredible gift of a man from God. Thank you for sharing that part of your life and family with us as you always do. May God continue to wrap His loving arms of peace, strength and comfort around you all at this time. It’s not easy even when we know it’s coming. It never is. We were around my father in the same exact way. It provides a small bit of peace along with God’s comfort and family, friends. So happy y’all got to reside together in the country, what an incredible place to be. I have no doubt you all will carry on his legacy in every way imaginable. Praying for all of you and loving you at the same time.

  47. 197
    Abraham's Daughter says:

    My tears and prayers are mingling with yours.

    My family will be gathering this weekend without out patriarch for the 66th anniversary of my psrent’s marriage. Always bittersweet.

    Thank you for sharing your joys and your sorrows with us.

  48. 198
    Jody Chance says:

    What a BEAUTIFUL tribute!! Beth, I am so sorry for the huge loss to you and your family. My prayers will be with you!

  49. 199
    Susanne Delledonne says:

    Beth, Keith & Family,

    I am so sorry for your loss. I pray for God’s peace and comfort during this time. What an incredible family you have. Thank you so much for sharing your such important parts of your life with us. You are so loved Beth. I will continue to keep you in my prayers.

  50. 200
    Liz Payne says:

    Sending hugs – losing people we love is never easy, and never expected….even when we know it is coming. Praying for you and your family in the days and months ahead.

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