Lewis Odell Casey died December 31, 2012, at his home in Tarkington Prairie, Texas in Liberty County. He was born December 22, 1934, in Goose Creek, Texas and grew up in the Cedar Bayou community where he and his family were members of the Cedar Bayou United Methodist Church.
He was preceded in death by his father, Ruben Casey, his mother Eva Blagrave Casey and his wife of forty-eight years, Dorothy Evans Casey. He is survived by three sons, Kenneth Casey, Don Casey and his wife Dianna and Leeland Casey; grandchildren, Ayla, Clay, Kadi Lee, and Kodi Casey and Keth Lewellyn and her husband Jayme; great-grandchild, Parker Paige Lewellyn; brother, James Casey and his wife Lieta; sister, Jane Barilleaux and her husband Archie; numerous nieces and nephews and his best friend and traveling companion Denise Barkis.
Odell Casey attended Baytown's Lee Junior College and The University of Houston's Cullen College of Engineering, graduating with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering in June of 1962. While attending the University of Houston, Odell was a member of the Theta Tau Engineering Fraternity and by maintaining his grade in the top one fifth of his engineering class he became a Charter Member of the Tau Beta Pi Texas Epsilon Chapter.
Odell joined Johnson Space Center, NASA, Houston, Texas, on July 7, 1962, as a Measurement Engineer, spending 17 years as a Test Measurement Engineer in Crew and Life Support Systems Laboratory; 13 years managing Laboratories and 5 years as Assistant to the Engineering Director, implementing both an integrated laboratory safety program and ISO process. Casey has received many prestigious awards including several NASA Medals during his career with NASA, including "Exceptional Service Metal", "Exceptional Achievement Metal", and as a team member, "The Presidential Medal of Freedom" for Apollo 13 Mission Operations Team April 19, 1970.
Odell was certified as a Professional Engineer on January 29, 1969, by the State of Texas and has maintained his license to date. Odell was awarded a US Patent No. 3,448,341 for an "Electrical Load Protection Device" on June 3, 1969.
Lewis Odell Casey retired as Assistant to the Director of Engineering at JSC NASA, Houston, Texas, on December 31, 1999. In 2004/2005 Casey worked for Jacobs Engineering in a start up contract for JSC's Engineering Directorate's "Laboratory Operation Contract" Support.
Odell has been a reserve Texas Peace Officer for over 20 years attaining the rank of Captain with the Harris County Sheriff's Department, from which he retired and continued with the Liberty County Sheriff's Department.
In his retirement years Odell was very involved in his Tree Farm in Tarkington Prairie. The farm was awarded both the stewardship award and the watershed award. He was on the executive board of Three Rivers Council of the Boy Scouts of America, president elect of the Southeast Texas Forester's Association and district directors of the Lower Trinity Valley Soil and Water Conservation Board. He received his Master Mason designation in October 2012, as a 50 year member of the Masonic Lodge 321 Cedar Bayou.
Casey had a quick, brilliant mind and a kind and loving spirit. He was loved and will be missed by many.
Memorials may be made to local law enforcement or to the church or
The family will receive friends from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., Friday, January 4, 2013 at Navarre Funeral Home. Services will be held at 10:00 a.m., Saturday, January 5, 2013 at Cedar Bayou Grace United Methodist Church with Rev. Carol Turner officiating. Burial will follow at Cedar Bayou Methodist Cemetery.
Pallbearers will be Buddy Bender, Lynn Enderli, David Burris, Glen Jennings, Carl Pickett, Clay Casey and Kodi Casey.
To view his online obituary, or post a tribute to his family, go to www.navarrefuneralhome.com.
Arrangements are under the direction of Navarre Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 2444 Rollingbrook Drive, Baytown, Texas 77521, (281) 422-8111.