John H. Melching, Jr. passed from this life to his eternal home in heaven on July 24, 2020, at the age of 96. John was born January 14, 1924, in Huntington, Indiana to John H. and Cozy Melching. He graduated from Union Township High School in Huntington in 1942 and began his military service in the United States Army on January 27, 1943. He was transferred to the tank destroyers unit at Camp Hood in Killeen, TX and was soon deployed to Europe to fight in World War II. He saw action in the Ardennes, Rhineland, and Central Europe campaigns. Injured in the Central Europe campaign when the jeep he was driving ran over a land mine, John returned to the US and was discharged in October 1945.
While stationed at Camp Hood, John visited Austin one weekend. As he stood in line to wait for a ticket and a seat at the movie theater, he met Ester Bell Hays from Liberty Hill. Ester corresponded with John during the war by mailing letters sealed with lipstick kisses! Once he recovered from his injuries, John returned to Austin to visit Ester. John and Ester were united in marriage on November 8, 1945. They lived a short time in his hometown of Huntington, Indiana where their son Timothy Wayne was born. They moved to Austin in 1948. Their daughter Karen Sue was born here in Austin. John and Ester celebrated their 70th anniversary on November 8, 2015. This union of 70 years lasted until Ester’s death in 2016.
John was a licensed union plumber and a member of the Plumbers and Pipefitters Local Union #286 for 70 years. He was known as a hard worker – dedicated to doing the job right. He was an active, faithful member of Hyde Park Church of Christ, where he served as a deacon. He actively participated in helping Ester serve fellowship meals at the church. “Game night” was a favorite event for both of them.
John was preceded in death by his wife Ester, his parents, and his brother Carl.
He is survived by his son Tim and his wife Gem of Georgetown, and his daughter Karen Sue McCormick and her husband Lamar of Taylor. He is survived by the following grandchildren, Kara Beth Melching Farmer and husband Kirk of Killeen, Matthew Melching and wife Amy of Killeen, Jonna Evans and husband Brent of Sundown, Cove McCormick and wife Casi of Georgetown, and Temple Masters and husband Clint of Houston; great grandchildren, Jonathan Melching, Jackson Melching, Gracie Farmer, Collin Evans, Jimmie Evans, Julia Evans, Watson Evans, Gracie McCormick, Addie McCormick, Michael Ivey, Gaven Ivey, Jordan Masters, and Madison Masters. He is also survived by his brother, Fred Melching.
The family would like to thank the staff of Rocky Hollow Assisted Living and Memory Care in Georgetown, TX for the exceptional care they provided.
Individuals may pay their respects at Cook-Walden Funeral Home, 6100 North Lamar on Thursday, July 30 from 12-8 PM. The funeral service will be held at 11 AM, Friday, July 31 at the Cook-Walden Funeral Home, 6100 North Lamar. Interment services will follow at Memorial Hill Cemetery, 14501 North IH-35, Pflugerville, TX. The funeral service will be live streamed at https://www.facebook.com/CookWaldenFuneralHome/ and will be available for viewing after services have concluded.
Memorials may be made in his name to the charity of your choice.