Deacon George Melvin Mooney, age 83, was given the gift of life, and now he must give it back. He passed away peacefully on Thursday, May 30, 2019, in San Antonio. He was surrounded by his loving wife of 62 years, Verlene, and family.
Although our hearts are heavy, they are filled with joy and peace, knowing that you are now in God’s arms. You have joined the heavens to embark upon a special reunion with your father, mother, brothers, sister and your beloved son —George Gerald Mooney, affectionally known as “Jerry,” and many family members and friends you have not seen in a long time. You will be forever missed, but you will be remembered as a loving husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle, deacon, and friend.
George was born on a small, thriving farm in Luling, Texas on November 11, 1935, in the cool of winter and with a faint smell of crude oil permeating the air. Isaac and Amelia (Littlefield) Mooney were excited to welcome their fourth child to their already blossoming family, which would eventually grow to include six children. George received Christ at an early age at Union Hill Methodist Church and grew up playing in the cornfields and sweet watermelon patches, watching his dad go on to win many of Luling Thump’s famous watermelon-growing competitions.
George shared fond memories of walking miles to the one-room Luling-Rosenwald School, determined to get an education. He delved into his studies, discovering an insatiable love for complex mathematics and uncovering an uncanny gift for memory and recall, which later would prove a winning combination. He cherished his relationships with his classmates and made a concerted effort to attend the annual Rosenwald High School class reunions in Luling’s City Park each year.
After graduating from high school, George entered the United States Air Force. While stationed at the military installation at Greenville Air Force Base (Mississippi), George attended a dance. Upon entering the room, he laid eyes on one of the most perfect human beings he had ever seen. He was smitten, and after working up the courage, he finally asked Verlene to dance. After a year-long courtship, the two were engaged, and they married in Greenville on September 5, 1957. Their marriage spanned a remarkable and blissful 62 years.
The newlywed couple relocated to San Antonio, Texas, and as their family quickly grew to include six children, George changed careers, transitioning to corporate America. In 1962, he joined National Life Insurance Company, now AIG, as one of the first African Americans hired by the company in insurance sales. George’s love for math and memory helped him recall the names of his hundreds of clients and the ages of their children. He spent his successful 32-year career serving the east side of San Antonio. As one of the company’s top producers he was awarded trips to Vienna, Austria, Hawaii, and other unforgettable destinations. He always traveled with his beautiful “Yellow Rose of Texas,” Verlene, by his side.
George M. Mooney was an honest, authentic, hardworking man who came home every night to have a hot meal with his family. George stressed the importance of education to his six children, who all went on to experience college life and enjoy prosperous careers. George was proud of all his children and had the privilege of watching his nine grandchildren succeed in high school and college.
With love for the Lord, George and wife were active members of Westridge Park First Baptist Church, serving as deacon and deaconess. The two understood God’s words, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few.” George was a fixture by his wife’s side as they would go out and provide ministry to the elderly at the Westover Hills Senior Center with other beloved friends from the church. They continued to learn and grow throughout their religious journeys, enrolling in theology and divinity courses at St. Philip’s College. George also served as chaplain for the San Antonio Community Workers Council.
We will miss your optimism and determination, like when you believed you could fix any automobile that ever rolled off the assembly line.
Watching you open the doors of the church during your time as a deacon, greeting new members with a smile, is an indelible image etched in our memories. We will miss the creative tinkering you did outside and in your tool shed. However, mother will miss everything about you. She will miss your scent, when you would help her in and out of the car, and when you would bring coffee to her bedside. She will always remember when you prayed together, talked for hours together, and when you whispered “I love you” in her ear with your rich baritone voice. We will all continue to carry pieces of your beloved plaid shirts in our hearts forever. Until we meet again in the next life, save a bowl of heavenly ice cream for us.
He leaves to honor and cherish his memory, his devoted companion of 62 years, Verlene; his six children, George Gerald Mooney (preceded him in death), wife Sharon, Pflugerville, TX; Sharon L. Mooney, San Antonio, TX; Verlena E. Mooney Newell, and husband Daryl, Chicago, IL; Toni Mooney Smith, and husband Morris, Houston, TX; Darryle K. Mooney, Austin, TX; and Matthew Maxwell Taylor Mooney, Los Angeles, CA; nine grandchildren, Jose Revada, James Bobby Revada, Amanda Mooney, Christie Mooney, Isaac Mooney, Deliah Mooney, Daryl Newell, Brieonne Mooney-Bird, Grant Newell; siblings, Wilmer Mooney (deceased) Evelyn Nobles, Verna Taylor (deceased) Johnie V'Nell Richardson, Louise E. Mooney(deceased); and many loving devoted nieces, nephews, relatives and a host of friends.