Mike Maxwell

February 16, 1942August 10, 2011

JAMES MICHAEL MAXWELL, born February 16, 1942 in Houston, Texas died August 10, 2011 at 9:40p.m. at the DeBakey VA Hospital after a valiant battle against recurring lung cancer caused by Agent Orange. Having beaten lung cancer in the right lung 3 years ago, he battled strong to win against the recurrence in his left lung. He was a strong, moral, sweet man who was loved by many. He was proud to be a native Houstonian. He graduated from Bellaire High School in 1960 and went on The University of Houston. He served in the United States Army from 1966 to 1969 in the 2/47 9th Infantry Division. He was a combat medic in Viet Nam from 1966 to 1967, having served with honor and bravery. He was awarded: The Combat Medical Badge, Bronze Star, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Good Conduct Medal (1st Award), and Sharpshooter Badge. After his service in the military, Mike worked as an administrator and an officer in the insurance industry, working at Great Southern Life Insurance Company, SCI, and Mission Life Insurance. In the last years of his life he worked tirelessly for the benefit of his grandson, volunteering his time, talent, intelligence, and humor at The Westview School for autistic children in Houston. He and his wife were known as “Mr. Mike” and “Mrs. Kay” by the children. He was loved and respected by parents, teachers, and children. He was always, ready with a story, a joke, snappy comebacks and famous for his Excel spreadsheets. He loved history and adored snuggling with his Grandson, telling “war” stories and discussing history. He was a font of knowledge and no one dared play trivia games with him because he always knew the answer. He was our “go to guy” for answers to questions large and small, and we will miss him answering our questions and giving the history of the answers. We would like to thank the doctors who helped take care of Mike, particularly Dr. Rogg, Dr. O’Leary and Dr. Fada, and the nurses and care giving staff who helped us in the hospital. We acknowledge the DeBakey VA Medical Center for the giving care of “our veteran” and all other veterans. He lived his life for the loves of his life, his wife of 45 yeas Kay Jones Maxwell, his son Clifton Rollin Maxwell, his daughter Marilyn Michele Maxwell and his adored grandson Christopher Michael Maxwell. He is survived by his wife, son, daughter, grandson, his mother, Jean Peebles Maxwell, his sister Ann Looney and husband Gary, Brothers-in-law Gary Jones and wife Diane, Cary Jones and wife Patsy, Sister-in-law Jeanne Jones Jacobus and husband Chuck, and many loved aunts, uncles, cousins and nieces and nephews. Service: Saturday, August 20, 10 a.m. at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, 3816 Bellaire Blvd., Houston, Texas 77025 Visitation: 5 to 8 p.m., August 19th, at Forest Park Westheimer, 12800 Westheimer, Houston, Texas, 77077. Internment at Forest Park Westheimer. Reception following in Forest Park Westheimer. In lieu of flowers, a gift may be made to the JAMES MICHAEL MAXWELL MEMORIAL FUND, at Tradition Bank, P O Box 40, Bellaire, Texas 77402. This fund is for the benefit of his grandson—Mike is still taking care of him. Or, a gift may be made to The Gateway Academy (, 3721 Dacoma Street, Houston, Texas 77092, or The Westview School (, 1900 Kersten Drive, Houston, Texas, 77043, schools who teach children with differences, so his Grandson and other children can soar.


  • Visitation Friday, August 19, 2011
  • Funeral Service Saturday, August 20, 2011

Mike Maxwell

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Kay Maxwell

November 30, 2011

We remember Mike, Daddy, Dad, Granddaddy, Son
To affirm the blessing he was in our lives;
To focus on his love;
To rejoice in his memory;
To celebrate his life;
And to have him live on forever in our hearts.
We honor him as “The Keepers of His Memory”.

That excruciating pain which goes to the bottom of our souls
Which makes us truly understand the meaning of “heartache”,
And which triggers endless tears for the great void in our lives.

To get up in the morning/mourning,
To reweave our family tapestry,
To seek comfort for our pain,
To put one foot in front of the other each day,
To find understanding and hope with our family and friends.

So precious as time goes on.
Reliving all the times we laughed and cried, and loved;
Argued, fought, disagreed, and loved,
Teased, played, rejoiced, and celebrated, and loved;
All the times we want to memorize and tuck into our hearts forever.

That special love we have for him
Which we don't ever want to waste…
That lives and glows in our hearts
And shines for the rest of the world to see
In the good things that we do in his memory.

That he will live on through us
Never to be erased from memory,
That his life still makes a difference in the world;
That he loved us.
That he is proud of us.
“The Keepers of His Memory”.

Patty Horridge

August 24, 2011

Kay, I pray that you feel God's love and peace during your time of grief. The devotion and compassion Mike showed to those with special needs warms my heart. He will be missed but his legacy will always be with those who knew and loved him.

Barbara Anne Stephens

August 22, 2011

Kay - I am so sorry to learn of Mike's death. I know that you and the family will miss him terribly, especailly Christopher. His service to our country and to wounded soldiers in battle is heroic. I am a grateful American. We are praying for you. Love, Barbara Anne

Clyde Fortenberry

August 21, 2011

Sorry to learn of Mike's passing, and was really interested in learning about his extended family. We, in our earlier lifes were quite close; and had a lot of laughs, and good times together. His experience in Viet Nam changed him forever, as it did a lot of us. Love to all of them.

Kevin Cunningham

August 20, 2011

We will definitely miss Cousin Mike. He always had a smile and a story. He was very thoughtful and cared about others. Our prayers are with all of the family.

Dawn Tollefson

August 19, 2011

I enjoyed Mike, he was a soft spoken and kind man. He loved his family which was apparent from the beginning. He was so much fun to talk to as he told stories about being a Houstonian. I loved to hear him describe his love for Christopher, he was amazed by so much in him. I feel blessed for having crossed path's with Mike and will miss him. I'm so sorry for his family's loss.

Nancy Parker Grissom

August 19, 2011

I was sorry to read of Mike's death this morning. I grew up with him in the East End of Houston, and went to Jackson Junior High with him back in the 1950's. Then his family moved to Bellaire, and we ran into each other again at Sam Houston State in 1960. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family at this time.

Birgit Fisher

August 19, 2011

The first time I met Mike he was reading Texas Monthly and I instantly knew I had found a kindred spirit! Mike and Kay helped me navigate the scary road of special needs, always available to listen, to encourage, to give out hugs if need be. Mike was a gracious, compassionate, kind, and intelligent man who will be missed dearly. He will live on in the hearts of the many he

Cynthia Reece

August 19, 2011

Mike was an exceptional person. I am honored and proud to have known him and my life is richer for having crossed paths with him. I will cherish the memories of working long hours on volunteer projects and just sitting around wasting time with him. He was such a wealth of information and always told the most interesting stories. I will miss him. I love you Kay, Marilyn and Christopher, may you find comfort and strength in each other and in the Lord.

Jim Adair

August 19, 2011

I worked with Mike at Mission Life Insurance throughout the nineties and he was a wonderful mentor, collegue and friend. He had wonderful stories and a unique perspective on things that was just simply honest. My prayers are with your family.