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George McIngvale Sr.

March 1, 2013

HOUSTON, Texas — Mr. George Critz McIngvale Sr., 89, devoted family man, World War II veteran, successful businessman, philanthropist and devout Catholic, died Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013 in Houston, Texas.

He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Angela; five children, Jim McIngvale, Julia Stout, Mary Dunson, Ralph McIngvale, Angela Jones and their spouses; 16 grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his eldest son, George C. McIngvale Jr.; and his great-granddaughter, Mathilde Juliette Stout.

Mr. Mack’s legacy can be summed up with the three Fs: Faith, Family and the Bishop Lynch Friars.

He was born on Sept. 17, 1923, the youngest of four children to loving parents, Bessie and George McIngvale, and grew up in his beloved hometown of Starkville. There, his outgoing personality and zest for life made him a friend to all, many who knew him as “Teaberry” McIngvale given his penchant for performing the Teaberry shuffle for his teammates. He attended Starkville High School where he lettered in football and track, and was voted “Mr. Starkville High School” and “Best Athlete.”

After two years at Mississippi State, he joined the U.S. Army to fight in World War II. He served in the 91st Infantry Division, 316th Engineer Combat Battalion, and between 1943-1945 saw action in the Italian Campaign in Rome, Acno, North Appennines and Po Valley. Following his military service, he returned to Mississippi State and lettered in football, basketball and track. He was also a member of Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity — a tradition his son, Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale and three grandsons upheld.

After graduating college in 1947, he met the love of his life, Angela Buffler. They married Oct. 13, 1948 in Florence, Ala. and moved to Dallas, Texas in the early 1950s. Mr. McIngvale worked for Allied Finance for years before beginning his own insurance company, McIngvale Associates.  

Moved by his wife’s faith, George converted to Catholicism and raised their children in the traditions of the Church: attending St. Pius X Catholic Church and parochial school. In the early 1960s, Mr. McIngvale worked with Msrg. Weinzapfel as chairman of the Budget Sunday campaign to build a new church for St. Pius X. Their collective vision was to build a beautiful church where only cotton fields had stood.  Monsignor dubbed the team his “twelve apostles.” 

Mr. McIngvale then took his fundraising talents to the next level helping to raise the capital to build Bishop Lynch High School. Always an avid sports fan, he took a particular interest in construction of the football and baseball field for the school’s teams, dubbed the Friars. Mr. Mcingvale traveled the state following the Friars. Today, Bishop Lynch is a Blue Ribbon school recognized around the state as one of the finest private schools in Texas. It has served over 10,000 students in the Dallas area, had more than 320 National Merit Scholars (one of which was his eldest son George), and has won over 60 state championships in various sports. 

Over 25 years ago, Mr. Mack and his wife moved from Dallas to Houston to join his son in his new business venture, Gallery Furniture. He was loved by the Gallery employees and noted for his generosity and devotion to his faith. In fact, he served as a mentor to many throughout his life, and was responsible for numerous conversions to the Catholic faith.

Known as Daddy, Pops, PePaw and Mr. Mack, he was the lifeblood of his family — always encouraging his children and grandkids to do their best, help others, make friends, love one another and work hard. Mr. Mack was the quintessential optimist. He saw the best in all people and had never met a stranger. Complimenting people, putting them at ease making them feel like the most important person in the world. His greetings were full of colloquialisms and truisms which would straighten you out in a hurry — “Right’s right and wrong’s wrong. The Lord hates a coward. Make up your mind and be somebody.”

Finally, the McIngvale family would like to express our most sincere gratitude and thanks to Mr. McIngvale’s wonderful, skilled, kind, and devoted caregivers: Febe Keers and Alicia Cortes. 

A vigil and rosary service will be held this Sunday, March 3rd at 6 p.m. at the Forrest Park Woodlands Funeral Home, 18000 Interstate 45 South, The Woodlands, TX 77384 Phone (936) 321-5115.

The Mass of the Resurrection will be Monday, March 4th at 1 p.m., Christ the Good Shepherd, 18511 Klein Church Road, Spring, TX 77379.

Pallbearers for Mr. McIngvale will be his grandsons, Bryan Dunson, Thomas Dunson, George McIngvale, Randol Stout, Hank Stout, James McIngvale, Sam McIngvale, Ken Jones and Benjamin Jones. 

A Christian burial will follow the funeral mass at Forest Park Cemetery 18000 Interstate 45 South, The Woodlands, TX 77384 Phone (936) 321-5115.

In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts can be made to Bishop Lynch High School, Dallas, Texas (http://www.bishoplynch.org/page.aspx?pid=1324) or Blessed Frasatti High School in Spring, Texas (http://frassaticatholic.org/).

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