Lola McLain

Surrounded by family, and resting peacefully, Lola McLain passed from this world shortly after midnight on May 1, 2023, following a sudden illness.

Lola was born in Monahans, Texas, on August 12, 1942, to Robert Harold and Lola Claire Butler of Grandfalls, joining her older brother, Anthony Wayne “Tony” Butler, and followed six years later by her baby sister, Kathryn Ann “Kathy” Butler-Painter.  The Butlers eventually “moved to town,” relocating to Monahans in 1953.

Lola graduated from Monahans High School in 1960, and she then attended college at The University of Texas at Austin where she studied music and jazz composition.  After her freshman year at UT, Lola returned to Monahans for the summer where she reconnected with an older MHS classmate, Tommy McLain, who would become the love of Lola’s life.

Lola would return to UT Austin for her sophomore year, and she completed her 3rd and final semester there before transferring to The University of Texas at Arlington, and then to North Texas State University in Denton, all in order to be closer to Tommy, who was attending school and playing football at UT Arlington.

Lola and Tommy then returned to Monahans where they were married on June 16, 1962, at the First Baptist Church.  Lola would go on to complete her undergraduate degree in music and education at Sul Ross State University in Alpine, and she would later receive a graduate degree in education after attending classes at both Texas Tech University in Lubbock and The University of Texas Permian Basin in Odessa.

But Monahans was always Lola’s and Tommy’s home; and over the ensuing fifty-six years, Lola would establish herself as a devoted, and much beloved, pillar of the Monahans and greater Ward County communities, including being named the Monahans Chamber of Commerce’s Outstanding Citizen of the Year in 2006 (along with her lifelong friend, and fellow musical maestro, Sue Branam).

Lola’s civic activities and associations are simply too numerous to list, but it was through her love and passion for music that she touched the lives of so many.  She played the organ for over five decades of regular services and special productions at First Baptist Church in Monahans; she also played music for weddings, funerals and other special occasions no doubt numbering well into the hundreds; she also loved heading up the musical side of many community theatrical productions; she accompanied scores of young local musicians in their solo and ensemble competitions at school; and she even served for several years as the principal of the Milam Fine Arts Magnet Academy in Odessa.

But in the summer of 2016, Lola and Tommy decided to “take their show on the road” moving to League City where Lola would once again become a devoted, and much beloved, pillar of a new community, this time in Galveston County, and all of course centered around the church:  Galveston Church established in 2018, and its successor, Galveston County Church, established in 2020, where Lola and Tommy were pivotal to the founding of the church, and Lola blessed everyone with her God-given musical talents.  In fact, Lola played the keyboard for Galveston County Church’s morning worship service on Sunday, April 30, 2023, just mere hours before her passing.

Affectionately known as “Yaya” by her family, Lola will be remembered for making every moment together fun and magical, often waking family members to the sounds of the piano, and assembling the “family band” for a concert whenever possible.  With “Yaya,” there was much laughter and creativity.  She loved to give gag gifts and play practical jokes, and she also loved to serve the family traditional Texas dishes like fried chicken with “crackles” and gravy, chicken and noodles, and her famous rolls and rum cake.

Lola is survived by her husband, Tommy; two children, William Thomas McLain (and his wife, Tirzah) of Galveston, and Lola D’Ann Hervada (and her husband, Juan) of League City; five grandchildren, Micah (and her husband, Gareth), Nina, Clara, J.D. and Thomas; six great grandchildren, Weston (11 years), Levi (10 years), J.D. (6 years), Willa (3 years), Jack (3 years) and Kasey (1.5 years); plus colleagues, friends, acquaintances and fellow Servants of Christ numbering into the thousands.

Viewing will be at the Crowder Funeral Home, located at 851 FM 517 in Dickinson, Texas, on Thursday, May 4, 2023, with a family visitation at 5:00 p.m. The funeral will be held at Galveston County Church, located at 6601 FM 2004, Hitchcock, Texas, on Friday, May 5, 2023, at 10:30 a.m., officiated by Pastor Taylor Wehrle.

A second viewing will be at Harkey Funeral Home, located at 210 South Allen in Monahans, on Tuesday, May 9, 2023, with a family visitation at 5:00 p.m.  A private interment will occur at the Monahans Memorial Cemetery on Wednesday, May 10, 2023, followed by a Celebration of Life ceremony honoring Lola at First Baptist Church at 11:00 a.m. officiated by Pastor Chris Powell.

“…Well done, good and faithful servant…” Matthew 25:23.



  1. We sure are going to miss you Yaya !

    You were the star around which we all orbited.

    With love always….

    Scoot, Tirzah, Clara, Thomas and Wilhelmina

    William T McLain
  2. Lola, Mrs.McLain was the best of the best! She was my Micah’s first principal and she taught him and me lots in our 3 years at Milan. Wish we could have stayed longer there! We remained friends while she was in West Texas. I am so very sorry for your loss. Our prayers are with you

    Jeannie Tripp
  3. My sincerest condolences to the entire family. Prayers and peace to all.

    Ray Zepeda
  4. Lola was a devoted friend and even more a devoted servant. She will forever be in our hearts. ~ The Harkey family

    Judy Harkey
  5. My heart is broken for the loss of Lola. She was a special lady always with good things to say. Lola and Tommy were great neighbors and friends. My condolences go to Tommy and their beautiful children and families. Lola will be missed.

    Kathy Reynollds Patterson
  6. I knew Ms. Lola, growing up in Monahans playing at FBC all the time. Her smile was contagious and she was always so, so very sweet and I have had the absolute joy to be able to come to know some of her family.

    She will be dearly missed by so many.
    All of our prayers go out to you

    Haley Popham
  7. So sorry Tommy. My heart breaks for you. Condolences and love to you and your family! 🙏❤️

    Nancy Riggins
  8. Lola was such a special lady, loving, caring for others. Her love for God and the church was so evident.
    Tommy you and your family are in Jeanie’s and my prayers.

    Terry Lowe
  9. Oh sweet Lola the tears flow as I think of all the happy times with you
    Especially the heavenly music you and Mom made together. What a beautiful gift you were to Mom, to me & Dianne and all our family. We loved you here on this earth & will love you forever in heaven when we see you again . Much love and prayers for Tommy & all the family .

    Suzanne Bloodworth & family

    Suzanne Bloodworth
  10. We started first grade together and was my first girlfriend, she always made things better.miss you.

    Robert white
  11. I am so sorry to hear this,but we all know it is best for Lola. We had some really fun times back in the day. Hugs for all of you. It will get better.

    Ann Adams
  12. D’Ann,
    You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers.

    Michelle Simmons
  13. We are grieving with the family for such a huge vacuum Lola will leave with her colorful character and amazing talents. She touched more lives than we will ever know in our lifetime. Her heart was full of love and kindness.
    Sincere Condolences!

    Diana Ryan, Jenna and Ryan Wuensche

    Diane Ryan
  14. What a lovely lady! And incredible musician. Anyone who ever knew her will always miss her. R.I.P.

    William Orr
  15. We will all miss Lola. She was a shining example of true Christianity on display. Condolences to Tommy and the family, our prayers are with you.

    Laurence Gore
  16. We loved having Lola as a neighbor. And were obsessed with her famous rolls. We enjoyed her love for life on many occasions. She was a treasure on earth.
    The Moody’s

    Debra Moody
  17. She was a wild and wonderful girl in high school, and later a gracious and charming woman. We will all miss her. Condolences to Tommy and his family.

    Don Hubbard
  18. Dear Tommy and all the McLain family, please accept our sincere condolences for your loss. It was so sudden that it is difficult to believe or understand. The Good Lord, whom Lola served all her spectacular life, must have had an urgent need for her presence with Him in Heaven. Just remember that Lola touched the hearts and souls of everyone she met and the world is far better off than it would have been without her presence. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your wonderful family who will give you strength in the coming days. Lola was so helpful to me since first meeting her in our high school days in the late 50’s in Monahans. I’m just grateful that I had the pleasure of knowing her. She was a “rock star” in my book.

    With all our love, Clinton and Sue Carlisle

    Clinton Carlisle
  19. Tommy my heart hurts for you and your family; as you know Lola and I grew up together as friends and cheerleaders at MHS and I witnessed her sweet friendliness to everybody. She was an inspiration to all who knew her.
    Marvilyn,Cecil & family

    Marvilyn White
  20. Love and prayers for Tommy and family.

    Charles Kirkpatrick
  21. Lola was love and laughter. Lola was beauty and music. It is hard to visualize Sunday morning without Lola making beautiful music on the stage of our chruch. She truly demonstrated what living a life dedicated to her Lord and Savior looked like.

    We continue our prayers for Tommy and their children and grandchildren. May God give you strength and support. “Heavenly Father, Bless this family and let them feel your presence and take comfort in your everlasting love.”

    Jerry and Beth Rudloff

    Beth Rudloff
  22. Lola added life and education to everyone she met. I am so grateful to have known her. Hays elementary stands on the back of great people, and she is one of those people. You have definitely earned your wings. I will truly miss you.

    Sonya Wilson
  23. Tommy: We are so blessed that we could be with you and your family on this holy day. Lola was everything described in the other messages from so many people who loved her. Lola “Let her light shine before men and they saw her good deeds and glorified her Father in Heaven.”

    John & Linda Winder
  24. Lola was an incredibly gifted and incredibly kind lady and we were so lucky to have known her. Our condolences to her family.

    John and Angela Stickels
  25. Lola had the brightest smile and a sense of humor to accompany it. As a child I thought she was a movie star, but as an adult I saw her as a very accomplished woman who loved God, family, and life.
    May the Peace of Jesus Christ rest in the hearts of her family.

    Ginger (McLain) and Richard Honeycutt Sunday, May 7, 2013

    Teresa M Honeycutt

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