Robert Max Richter was born on July 18, 1939, to Max Carl and Hertha Suess Richter in the community of Pine Springs, Fayette County, Texas, and died on May 22, 2019, in Katy, Texas, at the age of 79.
Robert was born at home on the 105-acre, family farm and was baptized on Aug. 13, 1939, at Salem Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod by the Rev. E.C. Knoernchild in Freyburg, Texas. This is the same church and school were his great-grandfather, the Rev. Simon Suess, served. His family was very faithful in church service and living by the Holy Bible. He was confirmed at Salem Lutheran by the Rev. T.R. Zucker on May 11, 1952. Robert’s confirmation verse was “Be thou faithful unto death and I will give you a crown of life.” Revelation 2:10.
Robert attended school in Flatonia and told how he walked through the fields and woods to catch the bus. Nothing was easy. First grade was really hard not knowing the English language, having a late birthday, and being absent with measles, chicken pox and colds. So, Robert repeated first grade. He was very outgoing, played football, was captain of the basketball team, was an officer in FFA, and was elected vice-president of his senior class. Robert made money, which all teenage boys needed, by working for Western Auto earning $1 per hour. He also harvested and sold corn in order to have enough money for gas in his 1947 Plymouth. In 1958, Robert graduated from Flatonia High School, the first of his family with that opportunity. Robert could not wait to get away and be his own boss. He joined the U.S. Army in August of 1958 and then had to listen to the Army sergeant. While in the Army, Robert studied engineering in Germany where he served until 1961. After serving his country, he was employed as a service technician for Mustang Tractor of Houston for 14 years.
In 1963, he met the love of his life, Betty Lou Kelm, at Trinity Lutheran Church in Houston. Later that year, he married Betty on Nov. 23, 1963, at Zion Lutheran Church in Brenham. The day before the wedding, President Kennedy was assassinated, and two weeks after their marriage, the new couple experienced the loss of Robert’s father, Max. Nevertheless, the couple experienced 54 years of marriage in 2017.
Robert and Betty started their marriage in Houston where they were blessed with two children, Lori Beth in 1966 and Glenn Robert in 1970. After 11 years in Houston, they moved to Wharton where they lived 18 months before making their home in Sealy. In 1974, a third child, Hollie Joy, was born in Wharton and also died at the age of 3 months while the family resided there.
Robert moved to Wharton to work for Woods and Copeland Tractor to build a rice farm tractor that would operate in water. Wanting to start his own business, he left Wharton and established S & R Services, Inc of Katy, offering tractor repair and engineering services. After serving customers for 28 years, he sold the business to retire, but established RB Repairs of Sealy in 2001.
Robert was actively involved at Trinity Lutheran Church serving in various leadership roles and sang in the church choir. He also coached baseball, volunteered with 4-H and served as treasurer of the Sealy Lions Club. Robert truly enjoyed raising farm animals and cultivating vegetables in the garden, but he always found time for his favorite pastime, deer hunting.
Robert is survived by his daughter, Lori and her husband, Allen Jurecka of Katy; and his son, Glenn of Bellville; and grandsons, Paul Jurecka of Cedar Park, Philip Jurecka and his finance, Elizabeth Peterson, of Midland, Luke Jurecka of College Station, and Jack Richter of Bellville. Also surviving is brother Lawrence and wife, Burnies, of Houston, and brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Helmuth and Bernice Schulze Richter Schuetze of Houston; numerous nieces and nephews, great-nieces and nephews, and great-great-nieces and nephews.
Robert is preceded in death by his parents, Max and Hertha Richter, and his loving and faithful wife of 54 years, Betty. He is also preceded in death by his brother, Rubin Richter; sisters, Doris Sander, Pearlie Schuetze, and Verline Schulze; daughter, Hollie Joy; and daughter-in-law, Jody Bolten Richter.
Visitation was held May 27 at Trinity Lutheran in Sealy. The funeral service was held May 28. He was buried at Sealy Cemetery.
Pallbearers were nephews Dennis Richter, James Richter, Richard Richter, Michael Richter, Stephen Richter, Terry Richter, and Randy Schuetze. Honorary pallbearers were grandsons Paul Jurecka, Philip Jurecka, Luke Jurecka, and Jack Richter.
The family requests that persons wishing to remember Robert consider giving memorials in his name to Trinity Lutheran Church, 402 Atchison Street, Sealy, TX 77474 or to the American Cancer Society.
Services under the direction of Knesek Bros. Funeral Chapel, 768 Forth St. Sealy, TX 77474; www.knesekfuneralhome.com.