Harry Christian Hoover Jr.

A Celebration of Life will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. on May 17 at Royal Oaks Country Club for Harry Christian Hoover Jr., who passed away at home on April 25.

Harry was born in Dallas on June 29, 1926, to Harry C. and Pearl McKinney Hoover. He was predeceased by his parents; his two sisters, Dorothy Craven and Helen Heyn; and his wife, Emily, whom he tenderly cared for during her extended illness. They were married for 52 years.

Survivors include his four children: Andrew Hoover and his wife, Mary Ann, of Dallas; Nancy Hoover Landry and her husband, Daniel, of Lafayette, La.; Brian Hoover of Dallas; and Diane Hoover Conoly and her husband, Clay, of Bandera, Texas. His nine grandchildren, who he was extremely proud of, and who lovingly called him “Tex” and “Pop,” include Collin Hoover and his wife, Taylor; Christopher Hoover; Nicholas Hoover; Matthew Hoover; Morgan Landry and his wife, Amy; Christian Landry; Kelly Landry; Alec Conoly; and Sharp Conoly.

He also leaves behind his loving special friend and dancing partner, Martha Smith of Plano. Martha was a great companion to Harry these past four years, and we thank her for all the love and comfort she brought to his life.

Harry was a longtime resident of the Park Cities. He graduated from Highland Park High School with the Class of 1943. He continued his education at New Mexico Military Institute, where he was a cadet commanding officer and the cadet captain of the Fancy Drill Team Platoon. From 1944 to 1946, he served in the United States Army, Armored Engineer Battalion (3rd Army, “Hell on Wheels”). The Army sent him to Oregon State College to study civil engineering for army specialized training.

After his service, he attended Rice University, earning a B.A. in architecture in 1950 and a B.S. in architecture in 1951. He also served as president of Alpha Phi Omega fraternity. Harry fondly remembered his two years as a yell leader for his beloved Rice Owls and continued to be a very active supporter of Rice University.

After moving back to Dallas and apprenticing for three years, he started his own firm of Harry C. Hoover Jr. and Associates, Architects and Planners in 1955. His creative design style won several awards. Homes and commercial buildings he designed can still be found throughout the state of Texas. He is credited with creating “Retrospect,” a public outreach program designed to introduce architects and architecture to a broad spectrum of the Dallas populace and inform the public of the endeavors of the Dallas Chapter of AIA.

He met and married Emily Williams of Wilmington, Ohio, in 1956. They began their family in 1957, moving to University Park in 1962.

Harry was a very learned man and was constantly researching or writing. He recently self-published two books sharing his philosophy on spirituality and responsibility. He encouraged his children to be independent and educated, and led his life as an example of never giving up, always trying to improve yourself and your community. He was very active in many civic and professional organizations. He was a member of the American Institute of Architects, the Dallas Chapter of AIA, the Texas Society of Architects, the Dallas Chamber of Commerce, and the Zoning Advisory Committee of University Park. He was a past president of the Park Cities Lions Club, and was also very proud of his multiple turns as the club “Tail-twister,” as he was very good with a story or joke to bring the room to laughter. He was a past president of Rice University Alumni and represented Rice University as a member of the Cotton Bowl Athletic Association. Harry was a past director of the Downtown YMCA, and served on the Board of Management. He was formerly on the Board of Directors of Camp Grady Spruce and a past officer of the Dallas Tennis Association.

Harry was an avid tennis player through his memberships to Royal Oaks Country Club and T Bar M Racquet Club, and taught all four of his children how to play the game. Harry also enjoyed many years of coaching his sons and their friends through the Park Cities YMCA youth sports program. In these past years, Harry enjoyed the friendships he shared with the members of the Silver Haired Supper Club and the Carrollton and Farmers Branch Senior Dance clubs.

Harry and Emily both donated their bodies to UT Southwestern Medical Center for the research and advancement of medical science for the benefit of others.

Memorial contributions in Harry’s name may be made to Rice University, Department of Architecture/General Support, Office of Development, P.O. Box 1892, Houston, TX 77251. Or to the Highland Park Education Foundation, 4201 Grassmere Lane, Dallas, TX 75205 or www.HPEF.org.

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