Colette Lebourg Grinstead
1940 - 2020
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Colette Lebourg Grinstead
If there was ever anyone whose birth name should have remained with her for her entire life, it was Colette Lebourg. Born on April 23, 1940, Colette was the only child of Maurice and Marcelle Lebourg, descendants of proud two French families. Colette was the epitome of a French grand dame --- glamorous, charming and fun, and someone with whom you would always want to share gossip or a good political story while enjoying a glass of French wine or champagne, with a meal that included sliced avocados, of course.
Colette was a Houston native who had wonderful memories of her childhood. From chasing fireflies to sleeping on a screened porch in the summer to feel the Gulf breeze, Houston nights could not have been more idyllic. Colette also loved her parents' weekend home in Colorado County. It was there that she entertained friends and had fun with her family.
Colette passed away on May 15, 2020 after a valiant battle against Myasthenia Gravis disease. She was diagnosed more than 30 years ago and spent the ensuing years battling the disease with an incredibly positive attitude and great determination. Because of her illness, she left an impressive career that began as an aide to Houston Mayor Fred Hofheinz, Jr. She capitalized on her contacts and political savvy to become the legislative director at the Houston Chamber of Commerce where her rolodex was legendary. She was instrumental in curbing the proliferation of billboards across Harris County, improving transportation and establishing important political alliances between the Houston business community and the Texas Legislature. Colette was a pioneer in supporting women in legislative roles. She was generous with her advice to employees as well as friends, both career and personal.
Colette is survived by her children Michele Griffiths and her husband Richard, two grandchildren Auden and Lulu Griffiths and her son William Grinstead. She is also survived by caregivers Sharrie Prejean, Felipa Huipz and Efrain Lopez, and countless friends and admirers. Colette had several dogs, which she dearly loved, especially her springer spaniel called Misty that always made her "happy, happy, happy."
A private service will be held for immediate family on May 18, 2020. In lieu of customary remembrances and for those desiring to do so, memorial contributions in memory of Colette Grinstead may be directed to Houston Humane Society.

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Published in Houston Chronicle on May 17, 2020.
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4 entries
May 24, 2020
Je viens d'apprendre par Serge Lebourg, le décès de Colette. Je voudrais vous dire combien j'appréciais celle-ci. Notre rencontre téléphonique fut tardive, pendant la maladie de notre cousin Jean-Louis Philippon nous nous téléphonions toutes les semaines et nous parlions de sa maladie bien sûr, de nos familles respectives, mais aussi politique et bien d'autres choses. J'ai pu apprécier sa profonde humanité. Notre rencontre à Paris fut un moment d'émotion très fort. Colette était une belle personne. Je partage votre chagrin et je vous prie de recevoir mes plus sincères condoléances. Bernard Vernade
bernard vernade
May 23, 2020
Will and Michelle I'm so sorry for your loss. I was fortunate enough to have met your mother a few times. She was always very kind and generous to me.
Tiffiny Wiggins Corbett
May 17, 2020
All my heartfelt condolences to Michele and William
May 17, 2020
Colette Lebourg was my second grade teacher at Kinkaid School. She was beautiful and kind and we loved her. She invited us to her wedding, and lavished attention on us. We thought we were special, and so did she. So to Miss Lebourg, a tribute from your 1962 class, thanks for being so gracious and caring, to a group of rowdy 8 year olds. Rest In Peace, free of pain. Repose bien cher professeur
Franci Williamson
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