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Thalia Bunnell


1925 - 2014 Obituary Condolences
Thalia Bunnell Obituary
Thalia Sasseen
Bunnell passed away Thursday, July 24th, surrounded by her family and loved ones. Since her cancer diagnosis, she blessed her family with her faith, her humor, and her unending charm, continuing to lead and nurture those she loved into her final days. Thalia was born January 5th, 1925 in Houston, Texas. She spent her early childhood in Alamo Heights in San Antonio, and graduated from Reagan High School in Houston, Class of 1942. Thalia attended Texas Woman's University in Denton prior to transferring to the University of Texas where she graduated with the Class of 1947.
Thalia was one of the first women to attend the University of Texas School of Law. She worked as a buyer for the original Foley's Department Store on Main Street for several years before marrying the love of her life, Donald Bunnell, in 1950. Our beloved Thalia was gracious and extremely welcoming to everyone she met, and treated strangers like family. Her love and Christian faith immediately enveloped everyone she encountered. Thalia volunteered as a Sunday school teacher, Vacation Bible School coordinator, Girl Scout leader, Boy Scout leader, Red Cross Water Safety instructor, and Kolter Elementary School room mother - sometimes for each of her four children at once! She served as a Deacon, Elder and Trustee at St. John's Presbyterian Church, where she and Don were founding members. Thalia was presented with an Honorary Life Membership by the Presbyterian Women's organization for her outstanding service to the community.
Thalia is survived by her husband of 64 years, Donald Girard Bunnell and children Jeanne and husband Bill Leach of Houston; Barbara and husband Dr. Steve Samples of Victoria, TX; Dr. Paul Bunnell and wife Dr. Jeannine Griffin of Port Lavaca, TX; and Carol Bunnell Bailey of Houston. Her thirteen beloved grandchildren: Will Leach and wife Stephanie, Steven Leach and Michael Leach; Jared Samples and fiancé Rachel Gohlke and Anna Samples; Griffin Bunnell, Charles Bunnell, Randall Bunnell and fiancé Allison Way and Riley Bunnell; Aubrey Bailey and fiancé Derek Crosby, Addison Bailey, Hannah Texie Bailey and Dylan Bailey. As well as her three adored great-grandchildren Skyler, Quinn, and Landry Leach.
Thalia was preceded in death by her parents, Texie Bollinger Sasseen Betters and Edward Betters; brothers John Howard Sasseen and Robert Daniel Sasseen.
Her values and kind spirit will continue to be reflected through her children and grandchildren. She inspired each of them to be strong, independent, loving and caring to one another and in their respective communities. Thalia was "an Angel placed on Earth".
A memorial service will be held at 11am the morning of Saturday, August 9th at St. John's Presbyterian Church, 5020 West Bellfort, Houston, 77035. A luncheon will be held immediately afterwards in McPhail Hall. In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made to Braes Interfaith Ministries, 4300 W. Bellfort 77035, 713-723-2671 where she was a longtime volunteer or the McPhail Scholarship endowment at St. John's Presbyterian Church. A special thank you to Thalia's caretakers whose kindness and generosity were much appreciated throughout her illness.

Published in Houston Chronicle on Aug. 3, 2014
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