Publisher’s note: Lucile Melcher passed away in May, 2004. The city has lost one of its most revered and beloved philanthropists and her passing leaves a void in our community, but the legacy she and her husband LeRoy created will continue.
Lucile Melcher, a native Houstonian, graduated from San Jacinto High School, attended Massey Business College then leaped into the fascinating and challenging world of business.
Lucile married Clarence LeRoy Melcher in 1935. At one point, leading to their 64th wedding anniversary, Lucile’s grandfather suggested some part of whatever they earned in Houston from opportunities afforded them should be returned to benefit someone or some need. And turning to Lucile he said,”you should give also.” So Lucile and LeRoy began in very small ways to show their appreciation for what opportunities Houston had given them.
Lucile has been a member of Seventh Church, Christ Scientist for 5 years. She has been a Den Mother, a Brownie Leader, a Chairman of the San Jacinto District of the Girl Scouts, Past Vice President of the Women’s Auxiliary of the Salvation Army and a Board member of Feed the Hungry. Also, she received Honorary Doctor of Humanities from the University of Houston and was named an Honorary Cougar of the U of H Alumni Organization. Lucile is an honorary member of the order of “The Thistle,” a past Chairman of the Ladies Season Box Seat Committee at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo and was top seller of box seats for about 12 years. She is Past President of the Women of Rotary of Houston, was given the Pearl Award by the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo, is a life member of the Livestock Show & Rodeo; and is an Angel of Hope Award recipient given by Child Advocates.
LeRoy and Lucile received the Maurice Hirsch Good Citizenship Award; they were honored by the Downtown Men of Rotary Club of Houston with the Citizen’s of the Year Award; and the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo presented Lucile with the Pearl Award for her work with the Rodeo. She has been honored by The Cancer League, Citizens for Animal Protection, and Tourette Society. Lucile was a board member of the Moores School of Music and has funded many scholarships.
Lucile owns and operates, with a long-time loyal manager, a working cattle ranch in Chappell Hill, Texas, raising Registered Angus. The Melchers bought the Champion Steers at the Livestock Show for about fourteen years.
Lucile and LeRoy donated a fountain at the resting area at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, in memory of their son, LeRoy, Jr. and have been supporters of Channel 8. Lucile supports Philanthropic for the University of Houston. She has been responsible for memorials honoring sons LeRoy Melcher, Jr. and Frank Melcher, Jr. for Unity Theater, as well as Boys and Girls Clubs in Brenham, Texas. She provided funding to build the LeRoy and Lucile Melcher Girls Dormitory for Blinn College in Brenham, Texas. She is a member of The Petroleum Club, the Houston Racquet Club, the Woman’s Club of Houston and the Junior League Tea Room.