John William Hughes obituary photo
 
In Memory of

John William Hughes

April 12, 1928 - November 21, 2016

Obituary


Having said goodbye to his children, John William Hughes, of Victoria, TX, passed away quietly at home on November 21, 2016. He was 88 years old. John was preceded in death three months earlier by his anchor in life, his wife, Bettye; and by his parents, Henry and Aline Hughes; his sister, Huline Rust; his brother, Charles Hughes; his son-in-law, Frank Herbold; and his great granddaughter, Johnna Wood.
John is survived by his children, Sue Herbold, Dona Sabin (Gary), and Jay Hughes (Melanie); grandchildren, Bridgette Wood (Wayne), Nic Herbold (Dianne), Kim Sewalt (Steven), Brian Sabin...

Having said goodbye to his children, John William Hughes, of Victoria, TX, passed away quietly at home on November 21, 2016. He was 88 years old. John was preceded in death three months earlier by his anchor in life, his wife, Bettye; and by his parents, Henry and Aline Hughes; his sister, Huline Rust; his brother, Charles Hughes; his son-in-law, Frank Herbold; and his great granddaughter, Johnna Wood.
John is survived by his children, Sue Herbold, Dona Sabin (Gary), and Jay Hughes (Melanie); grandchildren, Bridgette Wood (Wayne), Nic Herbold (Dianne), Kim Sewalt (Steven), Brian Sabin (Jennifer), Andrew Sabin, Jessica Delacruz (Chris), Jace Hughes, and Jake Hughes (Megan); 15 great grandchildren; and 5 great great grandchildren who all called him "John".
John was born on April 12, 1928, in Mt Pleasant, Texas, and grew up in the rural area of Titus County. He was driving by the time he was nine years old, and working with his father as a carpenter through high school. He went to work in American Petrofina's lab after high school, and at the age of 20 on June 5, 1949, married the only woman he ever loved, Bettye Jo Ingram, and became a member of the Presbyterian Church.
At the age of 24, John decided to become a Chemical Engineer, and packed his wife, one child, and one on the way, off to Austin, to attend the University of Texas. He worked for the Texas Highway Dept. in the lab while attending school full time and summers. Upon graduation in 1957, he joined Union Carbide, and he, his wife, and now three children moved to Victoria.
John taught his children everything they needed to know including riding a bicycle, roller skating, and water skiing - even walking on stilts that he built (the only kids in the neighborhood that could do that). He taught his children fishing, hunting, and swimming, and the value of working hard. John could repair anything that was broken, from cars, to toys, to electronics. He was also very involved in Junior Achievement, teaching other children valuable lessons.
John was a deacon at Grace Presbyterian Church and instrumental in the construction of the new sanctuary. He always insisted that Sundays were family days which began with attending church and then eating lunch out, visiting cousins or friends, or taking the boat out on the water.
In 1970 John left Union Carbide and went to work for Northern Petrochemical. After commuting to and from Los Angeles for a year while designing a refinery, he and Bettye moved to Seneca, Illinois, for two years, to build the refinery. Being too cold for the two of them, they left there to return to Mt Pleasant. John went back to work at American Petrofina as the Capital Projects Manager, renewing many friendships with people who were still there. While in Mt Pleasant he was active in the Lions Club, and began building his own two-seater airplane.
In 1979, John and Bettye moved to Houston and lived there for 30 years. He worked for SIP Engineers and Parsons Engineering, designing and building refineries. He was active in the local flying club, and continued to work on his airplane, three Triumph Spitfires that he had collected, and dog houses, bird feeders, and Purple Martin houses that he gave away as gifts .
In 2012, John and Bettye moved back to Victoria to be near their children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. Their hearts had never left their first true home as a family.
John will be fondly remembered by all for his strength, character, integrity, wisdom, dry sense of humor, and love of family. Having requested cremation, his ashes will be placed next to his beloved wife, Bettye, in the Columbarium located at Grace Presbyterian Church, 3604 N. Ben Jordan, Victoria. A Memorial Service will be held at 10:00 AM on Saturday, December 10, 2016, before the internment, and a reception will be held in the fellowship hall following. In lieu of flowers, John and family request memorial donations be made to Grace Presbyterian Church, 3604 N. Ben Jordan, Victoria, TX 77901.