Lucian Leeds Morrison, III, an accomplished lawyer for over 55 years and an acknowledged expert within the Trust and Estates segment of the legal profession in Texas, died at home in Houston after a short illness. Lucian was born in San Antonio to Rowena Fay Johnston Morrison and Lucian Leeds Morrison, Jr., on the 23rd of February 1937. Growing up in San Antonio he attended school in Alamo Heights, graduating from the University of Texas, with a BBA in Accounting, where he was a member of Kappa Alpha Fraternity and a JD from The University of Texas School of Law.|
Lucian served in the US Army before returning to San Antonio to follow in his father's footsteps becoming a partner in the successful firm of Morrison, Dittmar, Dahgren & Kaine, all established experts in the practice of oil and gas law. The firm attracted many of the state's highest profile names, including legendary Texas Governor, Dolph Briscoe, who became a mentor and particular favorite of Lucian's.
An offer to practice law within the high profile world of corporate banking was a challenge that Lucian accepted without trepidation. This decision took him initially to Corpus Christi, but within a few short years he was recruited by the high powered team at Texas Commerce Bank and moved to Houston to accept the position of Senior VP and Trust Officer with that organization. What at first seemed an odd career move for the purist oil and gas lawyer from San Antonio, proved a natural fit for the businessman/lawyer Lucian became. His innate understanding of the need for a perfect marriage between the law, banking and estate planning became the crossroads which informed the rest of his successful career.
Lucian had many passions; certainly his love for the law was first among equals, with a close second the intellectual stimulation needed to create a trust instrument that supported his client's goals, for perhaps many generations, while complying with the rigors of the banking and legal worlds that he navigated so well. Out of these two passions was born Heritage Trust Company, founded in 1979, with Lucian serving as President, CEO and Principal Shareholder. In 1990, Heritage was sold to Northern Trust to provide a platform for their entry into Texas; the holding company for Northern Trust in Chicago is one of the largest trust institutions in the United States. Lucian agreed to stay on with Northern Trust for a period of transition, but his sights were already set on the next phase of his career which would allow him to focus more closely with several private families and institutions creating and chartering private trusts designed specifically to serve their special needs.
Retirement was a word Lucian never used; it was simply not in his lexicon. But, as he allowed recently, if he was ever going to retire, it would have been to escape with his beloved Nancy, to their idyllic house outside of Santa Fe, located high up on the Mesa. Every window offers a spectacular view of the horizon blending with the sky, and where, if there is eternity, this is exactly what he imagined it would feel and look like.
As a lifelong Texan, it seems appropriate that Lucian almost died with his boots on, conducting an intense hour-long phone conference with a client just a few short hours before his untimely death-if he had been in charge (and he was always in charge) it's exactly the way he would have planned it.
Believing in giving back to the community that gave him so much, over many years Lucian has been a generous supporter of many of the city's great institutions, including The University of Texas Houston Health Science Center, Houston Grand Opera, where he and Nancy chaired one of the most fun and successful Opera Balls and Lucian subsequently continued his support, serving on several HGO committees, Friends of Hermann Park and the Legacy Society at Rice University.
Lucian is survived by the love of his life for the last 22 years, Nancy Reed Morrison; two sons from a previous marriage, David Morrison and his wife Kay, and their 4 children, all of Denver, and John Morrison of Houston; as well as a nationwide group of friends and clients who will sorely miss the tall Texan.
Friends are cordially invited to a visitation with the family from six until eight o'clock in the evening on Friday, the 28th of February, in the library and grand foyer of Geo. H. Lewis & Sons, 1010 Bering Drive in Houston.
The funeral service is to be conducted at eleven o'clock in the morning on Saturday, the 1st of March, in the Jasek Chapel of Geo. H. Lewis & Sons.
At a later time, the family is to gather for a private interment at Glenwood Cemetery in Houston.
In lieu of customary remembrances, and for those desiring, memorial contributions may be directed to the
Published in Houston Chronicle from Feb. 27 to Mar. 1, 2014