Terry Dale Funkhouser

Terry Dale Funkhouser of Clear Lake City passed away on June 23, 2017 at home.  He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Mary E. Funkhouser; his daughter Linda Funkhouser and friend Harry Fuchs of Clear Lake City and grandkids Katie and Kirby Crumpler; his son Jim Funkhouser and wife Shanna of Bellaire, TX and grandson Jake; his sister Norma of Rantoul, IL and brother Lyle Funkhouser and wife Ellen of Okemos, MI and nephews and nieces.  Terry was preceded in death by his parents and his sister Wilma Brommel of Clinton, IL.

Terry was born at home in quiet farming township of Burnt Prairie, Illinois on April 27, 1936 to Arvel & Veda Funkhouser. He attended a one-room schoolhouse where his Uncle John taught him.  John was his favorite teacher and the family purchased a horse “Nellie” to allow Terry and his brother to follow John to a different area school.  Terry formed his lifelong love of playing card and domino games while competing with his sisters and brother.  He was an avid reader, reading anything he could get his hands on.

Terry graduated from Carmi High School as valedictorian of his class at the age of 16, and earned the White County academic scholarship that allowed him to attend the University of Illinois. He achieved academic recognitions and graduated from U of I in 1956 with a degree in Chemical Engineering.

Terry flew to Houston for an interview in February 1956 and decided that because it was so warm and sunny he would accept the job with Shell Chemical as a research engineer, and live in Texas.   He moved to Houston with college classmate Karl Whisennand and wife Ramona, then roomed at the Downtown YMCA where he met best friend Jim Hessman.  He met the love of his life Mary in a single’s square dancing group at St Paul’s Methodist Church at 21 years of age, and relished a first date with Mary at the original Prince’s Hamburgers in Houston.  Mary still has the red dress she wore to a dance at Shell.  His memoir reflects that he was taken by her sweet personality and friendliness.  He proposed a year later and they were married December 27, 1958 in her hometown of Knoxville, TN.

Terry went to work for Petro-Tex Chemical Corporation in 1961 and spent the rest of his 45 year career as a process design engineer. He earned several patents while at Petro-Tex, where he led the development of gasoline octane booster technologies.  He was the rock of the engineering group and a great mentor.  During lunch Terry enjoyed playing bridge.  He also belong to the Big Time Investor club where Terry developed his love of individual stock investing.

Terry and Mary bought their first home and spent 27 years in LaPorte, TX while raising their children Jim and Linda. Terry’s love of nature and all things outdoors led him to spend many years volunteering in a variety of leadership roles with the Boy Scouts of America.  While in LaPorte they enjoyed many years and made lifelong friends square dancing with the Robinhood Spin-N-Wheels club.  Terry especially enjoyed the annual family road trips to visit his parent’s farm in Illinois and Mary’s mother in Knoxville, TN, always stopping in Missouri to buy his favorite Black Diamond watermelons.

Terry and Mary designed their dream home and moved to Clear Lake City in 1987 where they transferred their membership to Clear Lake United Methodist Church.  At CLUMC they were charter members of the Voyagers Sunday School Class and enjoyed traveling with the 55 & Better group.  Terry loved giving back to his community and dedicated his free time serving as a board member and delivered groceries to seniors for Interfaith Caring Ministries.

Terry enjoyed his retirement. He loved spending time with his grandkids by helping with homework, watching sporting and music events, and assisting on all types of school projects.  His favorite place to visit was the Smoky Mountains outside of Knoxville where they would make annual visits.  Terry loved the fall colors and spring dogwood blooms of Tennessee as much as he admired Texas Bluebonnets.  The trips would always involve visits to pottery shops and bird carving artists.  Terry was very close with his brother and sisters especially enjoyed their annual family gatherings.

Terry was a man with a deep faith in God. Every night Terry would pray the Lord’s Prayer before retiring to sleep.  In Terry’s words “My parents believed in God and the Ten Commandments but never actually joined a church.  My father taught me the Commandments and to always honor the Sabbath.  My mother always told me to believe in God and say my prayers.  When I die I believe I will have a second more perfect life with Jesus and God”.

A celebration of Terry’s life will be held July 8, 2017 at 3:00 PM in the sanctuary of Clear Lake United Methodist Church, 16335 El Camino Real, Houston, TX 77062. A reception will follow.

In lieu of flowers the family requests memorial donations be made in Terry’s memory to the Clear Lake United Methodist Church UM Army Fund or the Interfaith Caring Ministries of League City (281) 332-2025 / www.icmtx.org).  Condolences may be sent to the Funkhouser family in care of Crowder Funeral Home at www.crowderfuneralhome.com.


  1. We are so sorry to hear of your loss. Hugs and kisses to you all with love,

    Suzy, T2, Grant, Jordan and Stephanie

  2. Mary,

    We are so sorry to hear of Terry”s passing. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

    Steve and Carrie Keathley

    Carrie Keathley
  3. Mary, it was so good to see you a few months ago and catch up on family. Bill and I are so sorry for your loss, Terry and you were always so sweet to us and the kids. You were the perfect neighbors. Our prayers are with you and your family.

    Cindy Herrington
  4. Barbara and I are sorry to hear of your loss. Your family has been special friends, since Terry was my mentor at PetroTex. Our prayers are w/ you and your family.

    Barbara and Gene O’Gorman. Wed. July 5th, 2017

    Gene O'Gorman
    • Mary, I had the privilege of working with Terry at Petro-Tex Chemical. He was a great engineer, and had the sharpest mind of anyone I knew. The Lord will grant his reward in Heaven for having such a good heart to all who worked with him. My prayers are with you and your family.

      Ed Alvarado Wednesday, August 9, 2017

      Eduardo (Ed) Alvarado

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