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Joel Michael Verbois Sr. took the early morning Flight #7 to Heaven on January 13 at 3:30 am. It was a direct flight and first class all the way. Even as a pilot himself, on this flight he took the seat as co-pilot and surrendered the controls to our Heavenly Father.
Joel was a native Houstonian of 76 years. He was an honored member of the first graduating class of Memorial High School in 1963 and then launched into post-secondary studies at the University of Houston. He was preceded by his father, James Daryl Verbois Sr., mother, Grace Werner Verbois and brother, James Daryl Verbois Jr. He is survived by his son, Joel Michael Verbois Jr., daughter, Katherine Grace Robertson, granddaughters, Kellyn Ashlee Robertson and Nicole Kayleigh Robertson and a loving partner of 18 years, Linda Stout, sister in law, Mary Ellen Verbois, niece Michelle Verbois Wasaff, nephew Jimmy Verbois and great nieces and nephews.
His passion for flying grew at an early age and by the time he was 12 years old he began to study for his pilot’s license. He was up in the air, flying co-pilot and finally landed a pilot’s license at the mature age of 15-years-old.
He was a story telling extraordinaire and was awarded the trophy three years running for the Tejas Vaquero’s joke telling contest at which point they sadly informed him they were going to have to recruit ‘new blood’. To no surprise that branched out into all areas of his life. Give him the microphone and he was one happy fella. Give him a mic or give him a gun as there were no limits to his fun! No limits...as he once pistol-whipped a rattle snake to make room for lunch.
Joel had a gift for catching the wind between the sails and won multiple trophy’s and set records at the Houston Yacht Club. He could navigate the seas with ease and navigate life like a breeze.
He was a career salesman and entrepreneur as he embraced his role in the family business, Pilgrim Cleaners. Joel has held many leadership roles throughout his career such as his service as past President for the Greater Houston Laundry and Dry Cleaners Association. His love for horses and people kept him active through the years as past Chairman of various committees and Lifetime Member and Director of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, Tejas Vaquero’s and Valley Lodge Trail Ride Associations. Entrepreneurship led him into many partnerships with his good friend Bill Wolf and many other associates for more than 50 years.
Joel will be missed by many friends and family, but we know he is now at peace with our Lord and Savior.
For those wishing to join the family in celebration of Joel's life, a Mass will be held Saturday, January 23rd at 1:00 pm. St. Cyril's Catholic Church, 10503 Westheimer, Houston, 77042
(All COVID protocol will be enforced for the attendees)
You may also join the Mass, via livestream, on Facebook at St. Cyril of Alexander Catholic Church. https://www.facebook.com/stcyrilhouston/
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions be directed to the Shriner Hospital, St. Jude's and HLSR.