Rest In Peace, Patrick Lopez

Rest in Peace, Patrick Lopez!
Your Devotion to Family, Your Love of Life, and Your Artistic Always Growing Gifts to the World Are Your Ongoing Legacy!

Patrick George Lopez
1937-2018

Patrick George Lopez died on Wednesday, April 11, 2018 after a brief stay in hospice. He was born in Houston on January 7, 1937 to Manuel and Carmen Lopez.

He married Barbara Jean Holman in 1961. Survivors include his wife of 57 years, his children (Claudia, Patrick, and Sarah), his grandchildren (Patrick Joey and Justin), and his brother (John David).

As an architectural delineator, he worked with some of the most important national and local architects and architectural firms of the post WWII era, including Skidmore Owings and Merrill, Johnson Burgee, and Helmut Jahn.

He loved his family, his lifelong home of Houston, his pets (Oso!), baseball, the Astros, art, buildings, music (he was a lifelong piano player), fishing, plants (he grew orchids, bromeliads, succulents), and a good meal.

A public memorial will be held in the future at an as-yet undetermined date.

Published in Houston Chronicle on Apr. 15, 2018

Title: “Buffalo Walking” or “Travis Street Park” By Patrick Lopez (at Fair Grounds Base Ball Park), One of Several Works that Patrick did for the 2014 “Early Houston” Baseball History Book researched and written by members of the Larry Dierker Chapter of SABR and published in 2014.

Patrick Lopez finished a year ahead of me at St. Thomas High School in 1955. Although we never really knew each other at St. Thomas, Patrick always impressed me then as a very nice and thoughtful person. He could often be seen staring across the front lawn during classroom breaks, looking far to the south, beyond Buffalo Bayou. We never actually met until the Houston Early Baseball book project arose, nearly 55 years later, but it was only then that the question clarified about this true 21st century Renaissance man came to roost. — He could have been thinking about anything much earlier in life — as long as it was artistic, giving of itself in part to some greater whole idea, then it probably was getting the attention of the naturally artistic Patrick Lopez.

When our team member Mike Vance, with some independent discovery work help from Darrell Pittman, finally found that the Travis Street Ballpark was our best bet as Houston’s first true organized baseball park, we had no pictures of the same, but we did possess some very detailed newspaper writing on the construction of the place.

Patrick Lopez was able to let his creative mind go to bed with all these black worn sentences on fading white paper and put together for our eyes — and the whole world — to see — how it was meant to be seen. The watercolor work featured here is only one of the many he did that gave us all a vision into how the typical game day looked to Houstonians back in the 19th century. If you can hear the sound of horse hooves making a steady beat up and down Travis — and if you can hear the thud of a bat and ball joyously, or sorrowfully, interrupting every now and then, you may actually be able to allow your own mind to travel back to the corner of Travis and McGowan at many spring afternoons of those late 19th century years and actually experience the presence of old time Houston for yourself. And, if you get there, try to remember — the now late Patrick Lopez probably helped you make the trip.

Patrick Lopez
1937-2018

Thank you, Patrick Lopez! All of us are the richer for having known you even a smidgen’s amount of eternity’s time.

And God Bless you too, Barbara! Patrick was lucky to have found and never lost you. That doesn’t always happen.

Sincerely,

The Pecan Park Eagle

 

********************

Bill McCurdy

Principal Writer, Editor, Publisher

The Pecan Park Eagle

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8 Responses to “Rest In Peace, Patrick Lopez”

  1. roy bonario Says:

    My condolences to the Lopez family for their loss. May Patrick rest in peace in the arms of the Lord

  2. Anthony Cavender Says:

    I agree–very well said, Bill. Rusty Staub’s notice was in yesterday’s Chromicle.

  3. Tom Hunter Says:

    I only know of Patrick Lopez through his artwork evoking the old Travis Street Ballpark that appeared in “Houston Baseball: The Early Years, 1861-1961,” and his memories of attending games with his parents and as a member of the Knot Hole Gang at Buff Stadium. It seems like a personal loss to me as it obviously does for those who actually knew him.

    This second obituary in as many days for you, Bill, reminded me of the words of The Bard in Hamlet:

    “When sorrows come, they come not single spies, but in battalions.”

  4. Mike Vance Says:

    As I wrote on the online obituary register, I felt that my finding Patrick for the baseball book was pre-ordained. The first phone call made it clear that I had found the perfect person for the job. More fortunate for me, however, was becoming friends with a generous and curious soul. I’m the richer for it.

    • Bill McCurdy Says:

      Thank you, Mike, for bringing Patrick into our lives in this 21st century. Patrick and I both marveled at the fact that we had been fated to miss a relationship that could have surpassed a half century, had we become friends earlier.Thank God we all had you in our future to bring us together for a look at 19th century Houston baseball together – and through the spiritual lenses of a man who literally painted it for us in a way that was accurate and unique to the transcendent hopeful vision of Patrick Lopez.

  5. Marsha Franty Says:

    Sad news indeed. Condolences to the Lopez family.

  6. Mark W. Says:

    I offer my condolences to all who knew and cherished him.

  7. Patrick Lopez Says:

    Bill, thank you so much for this wonderful remembrance of my father.

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