Claude “Tex” Harper, 81, of Belton, TX, passed away Wednesday, July 3, 2019. Tex was born in Somerville, Texas, on Valentine’s Day, February 14, 1938. He is preceded in death by his father, John Watson, mother Gertrude Ethel, and twin brothers Billy Terrell and Isaac Herrell Hawthorne. He is survived by his wife Carina, children Gary, Jeanette (husband Hardy), Glenda (husband Kevin) and Cynthia, sister Maxine Yarbrough, grandkids Melissa, Michael, Kristina, David, Max, Beau, and Ty, great granddaughters Lily and Skylar, and a host of cousins, nieces, and nephews - from the
Harper and McClellan side of his family and in the Philippines - all of whom he treasured immensely. As a young man, Tex enlisted in the Air Force and served in the Vietnam War. He retired from the military as a Technical Sergeant in February 1979. He then moved his family from the Philippines to Merritt Island, Florida, where he worked at Kennedy Space Center and Cocoa Beach Shuttle simultaneously for 20 years. In 2005, Claude and Carina opted to move from Florida to Belton, Texas, to be closer to family.
In his younger years, Tex competed in talent shows, where he would perform comedy skits. He won several trophies for his acts, and his sense of humor was a joyful trait he carried with him throughout his life. His other hobbies included dancing, fishing, crabbing, bowling, darts, crossword puzzles, and trivia games. He was a hard-working, affable, and easygoing man who enjoyed the simple pleasures in life, such as grilling steaks for his family and friends, embarking on scenic road trips, or taking his wife shopping at local garage sales. As a husband, father, relative, and friend, Tex was an incredible pillar of strength and a family hero, and he strived to ensure that his loved ones were secure, happy, and unconditionally loved. His legacy of joy, laughter, and perseverance will continue on in the memories of all who were blessed to know him.
Family requests in lieu of flowers please donate to Disabled American Veterans at www.dav.org.
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