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Faber F. McMullen Jr.

Obituary Condolences

Remarkable is an insufficient word to describe the life of DR. FABER F. MCMULLEN JR. MD. He came into this life on July 20, 1929 in West University Place, Texas, and his soul went out to be with the Lord on July 19, 2009. He lost his life in an accident while working on his beloved farm in Navasota, Grimes County, Texas. He was one day short of being 80 years old. He felt called to be a physician at the age of 5, and he was determined to live a life of serving others. He did so extraordinarily. After attending elementary, junior high, and two years at Lamar High School, he joined the Marine Corps and attended his last year of high school in California. In the Corps he served as an airplane mechanic and Master Sergeant. He was honorably discharged and he enrolled at Baylor University in Waco, Texas where he met Roxanna Connally, who has been his wife for 57 years. He was a straight A student and was an Alpha Chi honor graduate, wearing the key proudly for his entire life. He moved to Houston with his bride, and he attended Baylor Medical School. While in Med School he had 3 children, Lela Susan McMullen Newsom (of Houston, TX,) Faber F. McMullen III (of Navasota, TX,) and Rosemary McMullen Poe (of Denton, TX.) He was an outstanding physician throughout his career, first serving on staff at Hermann Hospital in Houston, then St. Luke's, and finally Park Plaza Hospital, which he helped to develop with friends. He was known to be a "doctor's doctor". He was a brilliant physician, a Fellow of American College Physicians, passing boards in Internal Medicine and Cardiology. His patients loved him and were devoted to him beyond description. He was a passionate student of art, history, and language. He was an accomplished water color artist, having founded the Southwestern Water Color Society in Houston. He studied Chinese, Farsi, Spanish, French, German, Cherokee, Biblical Greek and Hebrew, and finally Irish Gaelic/Gaeilge. In January of this year he learned that he was a direct descendent of Robert the Bruce, Kenneth McAlpine (First King of Scotland) and all of the Kings of Scotland and Ireland back to 180 AD. He was determined to learn Gaeilge (Irish-Ulster Dialect), the language of his ancestors, and he obtained great proficiency. He was scheduled to visit his ancestral home in Cornamuck, Dromore, County Tyrone, Ireland later this week, and he planned to attend Irish language school in Donegal, Ireland next week. His love of God was ever present in his life. His love for Hebrew was a life-time pursuit. He attended Torah Study at Temple Beth Israel for 20 years, and he was proud to be on the membership roll. He spent much of his time studying both the Hebrew and Christian Scriptures. He described himself simply as a "Believer". He was a devoted follower of Jesus, seeking to live out the gospel fully. His life was characterized by love, joy, peace, prudence, temperance, justice, and fortitude. He faithfully attended St. John the Divine Episcopal Church on Sunday nights, where he had studied Greek under Dr. Bill Dixon. His life deeply and permanently touched all who knew him. He lived with a passion for love and life that few understood. He was continually grateful for the effect that teachers and University professors had on his life. Last year, with wife Roxanna, he gifted his retirement account to Baylor University and he oversaw the creation and completion of the McMullen-Connally Faculty Center at Baylor University, which also became the home for his extensive, lifetime watercolor collection. He is survived by his brother Roswald Knox McMullen, his wife Roxanna, daughter Lela and husband Bob Newsom and their daughter Kelly, son Faber and wife Sandy Ridings McMullen and their three children (Faber IV, Katherine, and Alex), and Rosemary McMullen Poe and husband Steve and their daughter Adriana. His life gave great glory to God. He exuded joy in all he did. He was a mentor to many. He was a wonderful husband, father, and grandfather. He will be so, so deeply and sorely missed. The family will receive friends from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM on Wednesday, July 22, 2009 at Woodlawn Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held at 10:00 AM, Thursday, July 23, 2009 at St. John the Divine Episcopal, 2450 River Oaks Blvd., Houston, Texas with Pastors Bill Dickson and Ben Phillips, officiating. Interment immediately thereafter at Woodlawn Garden of Memories.

Published in Houston Chronicle on July 21, 2009
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