Lawrence "Tommy" Ray House
August 25, 1930 – August 8, 2019
Weighing in at only 2 ½ pounds on August 25, 1930 in Ringgold, Texas. Tommy’s grandfather decided that Lawrence Ray was too big of a name for such a tiny baby. Therefore, he nicknamed him “Tommy” and that has remained so all of his life. Being the son of a construction foreman, Tommy traveled throughout the State of Texas learning the trade of building bridges at a very early age. His deep love for construction and concrete never ended.
He was a veteran of the Korean War. Tommy worked for Southwestern Bell Telephone Co. until his death of his only brother, Levon. He then moved back to Austin to be with his mother and dad. Tommy then went to work for the Texas Highway Department where he worked for 38 years doing what he loved best, building bridges. He said his children and grandchildren could drive over these structures and remember him as he always did with his own father, when he drove over the Lamar Street Bridge.
Tommy professes a great love for his Master and therefore enjoyed being a 32 degree Mason, Ben Hur Shriner, Member of the Hill City Lodge #456, ROJ #35 and the Q. He was a life member of Ben Hur Golf team and enjoyed being on the golf course for every tournament that he could possible make. As a Shriner, he enjoyed the fundraiser and parades.
When his first born, Tracy, came into his world, he decided to take up the sport of golf. He became very good at the game and never missed a chance to get out on the course. The passion grew more, as he got older; therefore, he belonged to many golf groups. The Austin Police Assn. Seniors of Austin, TETCO and his beloved Ben Hur Team.
Tommy will be joining his beloved mother Ivy Pearl, his dad Virgil (Bill) and his brother Virgil Levon (Lanky). What a reunion that will be.
Tommy is survived by his wife of 59 years, Betty. His greatest accomplishments, as he always said, his sons Tracy and Timmy. Adding to his great joy was Sherry and Frances, the daughters he always wanted. However, the sons were great but only a grandchild can bring the brightest sun into your life. In his words “His shining lights of his world", Lauren (Curly-Top), Amanda (Sweet Girl), Garrett (Red Head), and wife Katie and children Georgia and MacieKate and last but not least Kristie (Baby Girl).
Rounding out his family is his adopted sister Lela Pearl (Jinks) Vavra (deceased) of Dime Box, Texas and the other kid he called his 3rd son Bee May of Austin.
Tammy Pavur of Austin (Dec’d) Talena Archer of Nevada, Tralesa Castner of Austin, Carlotta Wilson and a host of kids that he helped during Little League Days and the future.
Because of his great love and concern for little children the family would appreciate any donations be made to the Ben Hur Shriners Hospital for Children or to any charity that would enrich someone’s life. And remember as Tommy would say “Love and treat everyone the way you want to be treated”. “Hug your children”, “Tell them you love them.” “Hugs are cheap and you get so much in return.” Words from the BIG GUY.
Special thanks to Frances and Bill Carfer, Kata Carbone, David Orshalick, Sara Speghts and all the wonderful doctors and staff that have devoted countless hours to make life worthwhile for Tommy.
Tommy was a Baptist through and through. He was a lifelong member of the Ranger Baptist Church, Ranger, Texas.
We, as a family would like to pay our special thanks to Dr. Hans Haydon, Dr. John Sandbach, Dr. Peter Wollan, and Dr. William Rodriguez, the countless other doctors that came to our aid, Central Texas Rehab, and the 1st floor room B-5 ICU at Ascension Seton Medical Center. God bless each and all. Friends are cordially invited to a visitation with the family from 6:00-8:00 pm in the evening, on Monday, August 12, 2019, at Cook-Walden Funeral Home, 6100 North Lamar Boulevard, Austin, Texas. A graveside service will be conducted at 10:00 am in the morning on Tuesday, August 13, 2019, at Austin Memorial Park Cemetery, 2800 Hancock Dr, Austin, TX 78731.
And many thanks to the Tuesday Lunch Bunch, and especially James Evans. He was indeed a true friend.
The Bridge Builder
An old man, going a lone highway, Came at the evening cold and gray To a chasm vast and deep and wide Through which was flowing a swollen tide. The old man crossed in the twilight dim; The rapids held no fears for him. But he turned when safe on the other side And built a bridge to span the tide. “Old man,” cried a fellow pilgrim near, “You’re wasting your time in building here. Your journey will end with the closing day; You never again will pass this way. You have crossed the chasm deep and wide; Why build you this bridge at even-tide?” The builder lifted his old gray head. “Good friend, in the path I have come,” he said, “There follows after me today A youth whose feet must pass this way. This stream, which has been as naught to me, To that fair youth may a pitfall be. He too must cross in the twilight dim — Good friend, I am building this bridge for him.”
-Will Allen Dromgoole
- Ben Hur Shriners Hospital for Children
- Visitation Monday, August 12, 2019
- Graveside Service Tuesday, August 13, 2019
Lawrence "Tommy" Ray House
August 13, 2019
My deepest condolences to the family.
My name is Roque Rodriguez and I worked with Ms House many years ago,I was a crane operator and help build bridges for many years.
I was a presure to have known and work with him. He was a nice person to everyone. God bless you all.