Joe McDermott
1929 - 2018
Bradshaw-Carter Memorial & Funeral Services
Houston, TX
Joe A. McDermott
Joe A. McDermott passed away peacefully to be with his Lord and Savior Sunday, January 14, 2018, surrounded by his family and many dear friends. Joe lived his life dedicated to "making a showing": in business, athletics, and most importantly in his overwhelming love for family and friends.
Born March 12, 1929, Joe was raised in Lufkin, Texas by his loving parents Joseph A. McDermott, Sr. and Lorraine Lane McDermott. As the first boy born into his mother's large extended family in a generation, it's fair to say Joe was doted on by numerous female relatives. While this may have gone to his head, it also equipped him with confidence and determination to succeed.
Growing up, Joe learned from his father a lifelong love of horses; the family often kept a horse in the backyard. Joe loved roping calves at small rodeos in East Texas and was never satisfied with anything other than the best tie-down time.
Joe's love for athletics was nurtured by his favorite aunt, Frankie Lane, who spent hours playing every kind of ball with him. A gifted athlete, Joe starred in football and basketball for the Fighting Lufkin Panthers, going to the state quarterfinals in football. His basketball prowess attracted the attention of the legendary football coach and athletic director of Rice Institute, Jess Neely. Joe often said that the luckiest day of his life was the day that Coach Neely sent Rice basketball coach Joe Davis to Joe's father's Gulf filling station to offer Joe a basketball scholarship to Rice. Joe enrolled in Rice in 1947 and promptly made a showing in basketball, starting as a sophomore and leading the Southwest Conference in scoring his junior and senior years. He proudly graduated from Rice in 1951. Joe repaid Rice with lifelong support, and was accorded numerous honors including Rice University's Distinguished "R" Man award in 1982.
After a stint in the US Army, Joe settled in Houston, where his first son Joseph A. McDermott, III was born. Joe quickly found his way into the mortgage business and from there into real estate development working for Walter M. Mischer, who became his lifelong dear friend and mentor.
Joe soon went into business for himself and with hard work, attention to aesthetics, and an uncanny gift for picking locations, made a showing developing several million square feet of commercial property, including projects spanning five decades in partnership with his great friend Roy Henry Cullen. Joe made his biggest early splash developing Town and Country Village, a major shopping center, with Dan M. Moody, Sr., who took a chance backing a young talent and was rewarded with a signature property.
Joe's great professional talent and love was land development: finding a large tract in the path of Houston's growth, buying it worth the money, and turning it into a first class mixed use commercial development. Beginning in the 1970's with Cypress Station, Northwest Crossing, and Champions Villages and continuing until his death, Joe reveled in finding and "cutting up" great pieces of land. He was always looking for, and usually finding, the next big deal.
During the gaps in his eighty hour work weeks, Joe nurtured his love of horses. He founded McDermott Ranch in 1968 and made a showing in American Quarter Horse racing, producing half a dozen All American Futurity qualifiers, and ranking among the leading breeders and owners of American Quarter Horses for many years. He later turned to Thoroughbred racing; he bred and owned 2001 Texas Horse of the Year Lights on Broadway. Joe was Texas Thoroughbred Breeder of the year in 2002, and inducted into the Texas Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 2014.
Joe served on the boards of Allied Bank, Town and Country Village Bank, Cypress Bank, Goodwill Industries, the YMCA, the Executive Board of the Association of Rice Alumni, Rice University Fund Council, American Quarter Horse Association, and Texas Thoroughbred Association where he served as president in 1984 and 1985. He was a longtime member of River Oaks Country Club.
In 1986, Joe married his great love Nancy Young. To their delight, they had two children, John Joseph "JJ" McDermott and Jake Matthew McDermott. Joe was, to say the least, an enthusiastic backer of his wife and all three of his sons. He championed them and their achievements, professional, academic, athletic and artistic, and never missed an opportunity to "brag on" his family. Joe passed to his family his great enthusiasm for life, his tremendous heart, and his love of people.
Anyone who had a conversation with Joe lasting longer than a few minutes came away feeling as if he'd known Joe for years. The secret is Joe really cared about people and they knew it. His vivacious personality and charisma were infectious; any room became brighter when Joe walked in. Many considered Joe a close friend; luckily his huge heart had room for each of them.
Joe is survived by his devoted wife, Nancy, son Joe III and wife Charlotte, son J.J. and wife Hallie, son Jake, all of Houston, sister Ursula Sanders of Fort Worth, many beloved sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law, nieces, nephews, great-nieces and nephews, cousins, and a long lifetime's worth of dear friends, young and old.
The family would like to thank his longtime caregivers and friends Alejandro Gonzalez and Yolanda Ipiña.
Friends are invited to a visitation with the family on Thursday, January 18, 2018 from five until eight o'clock in the evening at Bradshaw-Carter Memorial & Funeral Services, 1734 West Alabama Street in Houston. A funeral service will be held on Friday, January 19, 2018 at ten o'clock in the morning in the chapel at Second Baptist Church, 6400 Woodway Drive in Houston. A reception will follow at a location to be announced. Burial at Glenwood Cemetery is private. In lieu of flowers donations may be given in Joe's memory to Houston Area Parkinson's Society, 1475 W. Gray St., Houston, TX, 77019 or a charity of your choice.

Published by Houston Chronicle on Jan. 18, 2018.
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23 Entries
Dear Nancy and Family,
Joe was a very special friend and we will miss him so much. He always made us smile.
Joe was loved by many. Keeping you in our thoughts and prayers.
Love, Gene & Lyna
Gene & Lyna Janiszewski
February 11, 2018
Gene & Lyna Janiszewski
February 11, 2018
Oh my. I just saw this. He was a wonderful man to do business with. I knew him for many years. RIP Dear Friend. Many prayers for his family.

Sue Pellegrino
Sue Pellegrino Real Estate.
Sue Pellegrino
February 9, 2018
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.
Sarah Rodriguez Kubena
February 1, 2018
So sorry to hear about your dad, Joe. He was an amazing, dynamic, & kind man and a dear friend to my dad. And what an amazing life! The world was a much better place for having your dad in it!

Randall Hudgens & family
Randall Hudgens
January 19, 2018
Dear Nancy, Im so sorry to hear of your loss. Joe was bigger than life itself ... he will be missed by everyone but especially by you and his family that he loved so much.
Therese Ranzau Garner
January 19, 2018
My condolences to the bereaved family at this most difficult time. May you be comforted by reflecting on the many wonderful memories that you can cherish forever. Also please take notice of the promise recorded at John 6:40, regarding those loved ones asleep in death.
A. L.
January 18, 2018
Dearest Nancy,
I was so saddened to hear of the loss of your Joe. I am in Upstate NY and Jeff called me from Houston to tell me the news...I remember our modeling days when you first met Joe and I could see what a deep affection he had for you. He was a wonderful man, a friend to Jeff and to so many others. My heart goes out to you and your boys, and our prayers for you and for Joe.
Pat & Jeff Ryan
Patricia Ryan
January 18, 2018
I met Joe when he first started dating Nancy. He was such a delight to always be around. Nancy got her prince and he got his princes. I have always admired the way in which he lived his life. What a great human being. We should all take note of his great attributes and live accordingly. Rest in Peace Joe! I am so glad that I was privileged to know you.
Sheree Frede
January 18, 2018
Joe was a kind and bright light in my memory. God speed now! With love Jerry Surber
Jerry Surber
January 18, 2018
stephen stransky
January 18, 2018
We are so sorry to hear of your loss. You all have wonderful memories to hold onto as family. May they strengthen you in this difficult time and provide comfort to each of you. You are in our thoughts and prayers.
Take care,
Lisa and Steve VanMeter
January 18, 2018
Andrea Bauer
January 18, 2018
Anne Prappas Clark
January 18, 2018
I just now saw your post. In the Greek Orthodox Church we don't pass away or die. Instead, we refer to the transition from this world to the next as falling asleep, then we reawaken in God's Kingdom.

May his memory be eternal
Lampros Greek Vrinios
January 18, 2018
My heartfelt condolences. May Gods loving kindness bring comfort and strength to you at this very difficult time. John 3:16

January 17, 2018
So very sorry Nancy. Joe was such a wonderful man and we so enjoyed our time with him during the Kinkaid years. May he rest in peace. Love and prayers to you, JJ, Jake and the rest of the family.
Rene, Terry and Charles
Terry Bell
January 17, 2018
Love stands firm forever Psalm 89: verse 2 Love and light and God's peace to the lovely McDermott family. Our sincere condolences on the passing of your beloved Joe!
Ann, Don & Will Short
January 17, 2018
What a beautiful life. What a beautiful family. God bless. Jeanette
Jeanette Cerna
January 17, 2018
What a special, unique, extraordinary man. Nancy and his boys were the luckiest people in the world to be loved and adored by Joe McDermott. To know him was to love him. RIP, Joe
Sheila Partin
January 17, 2018
Nancy, I have such great memories of you and Joe when we all lived at Sutton Court. I'm going to hold on to those special memories when I think of Joe. Lifting you and your boys up in prayer as you go through this difficult time. All of our love.
Melinda Overstreet
January 17, 2018
thoughts and prayers are with the family
stan baugh
January 17, 2018
Our Deepest Sympathy to Nancy , Sons , Sister and Family.
Harold and Pat Wells
January 16, 2018
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