Henry Ivas Montgomery passed away Monday, February 26, 2018 at home at the age of 82 surrounded by his family.
Ivas was born July 9, 1935 at home in Richards, Montgomery County, Texas to Henry Andrew Montgomery and Dessie Grissom Montgomery. Ivas was the great grandson of Andrew Jackson Montgomery, who established a trading post in the present day town of Montgomery.
Finishing high school at the age of 16, he set oﬀ for Houston to attend Business School. He met the love of his life soon after. Although not old enough yet to marry, Ivas had his father sign for he and Jewitt Smith of Cedar Bayou to tie the knot on June 27, 1953. They spent 64 happy years together.
Along his journey in life he was a very hard worker and it was not unusual for him to have 2-3 jobs at any one time. He became employed at Humble Oil, now ExxonMobil, and rose from Boiler Maker to Public Relations Associate, the position from which he retired. During his time at ExxonMobil, he and Jewitt opened Bee Hive Florist, and operated that business until his retirement in 1985 and daughter Sheri took over the florist.
Retirement meant heading back home to Richards and the farm he grew up on. Building their home there, surrounded by his brothers and sister, he and Jewitt spent 26 years there before returning to Baytown. Many vegetables filled the pantries and freezers of the extended family from his huge garden. He helped with having a parsonage built, and later a new church building for his boyhood church, Union Grove Baptist, became a Democratic Poll Judge for Montgomery County, and traveled extensively with the San Jac Wheelers and others in their motor home. He was instrumental in helping establish the Baytown Women’s Center, and was active in the Baytown Chamber of Commerce and Rotary Club. He was also very active in Allied Florists of Houston and Texas State Florists Association.
The flower shop never left his blood though, and he opened Botanical Designs with his girls and Jewitt in 2001. That for him was the happiest place on earth. He would have worked til his last day if not for his Wegener’s Disease.
In addition to his parents and in-laws, Cecil and Addie Smith, he is predeceased by his daughter Sheri White, his sisters and brother in laws, Florine and Cotten Wooster and Myrtle and Nolan Welch, brother Harold Montgomery, sister and brother in law Shirley and John Old. He is survived by his wife Jewitt, daughters and sons in laws Vicki and Lester Knupple, Donnie White, and Robyn and Ricky Howell. Also surviving is his brother Bobby and wife Pat Montgomery, sister in law EvaNell Montgomery, and brother in law Clifton Smith. Grandchildren are Jared Keene and wife Whitney, Melony Witthaus and husband Ethan, Christopher White and husband Jerry, Bryan White, and Katie Davidson. Great grandchildren are Logan Keene, Makenna Keene, Jaxon Kunkel, Hallie Kunkel, and soon to be here baby Lexi. He also leaves many nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be at Navarre Funeral Home on Friday, March 2, 2018, from 5-7 pm with a prayer service immediately following with Dr. Mark Broussard oﬃciating. Services will be Saturday, March 3, 2018, at 11 am at Union Grove Baptist Church in Richards, TX with his nephews Rev. Jim Welch and Rev. Dave Saﬄe oﬃciating. Burial to follow in the family cemetery at Pooles Cemetery.
Serving as pallbearers will be Donnie White, Lester Knupple, Ricky Howell, Jared Keene, Christopher White, and Bryan White.
To view the online obituary or to post a tribute for the family, go to www.navarrefuneralhome.com
Arrangements are under the direction and personal care of Navarre Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 2444 Rollingbrook Dr., Baytown, TX, 77521 (281) 422-8111.