If God judges us by the “little things we do,” then Buddy Hicks was a giant of a man. Buddy Hicks died April 3. His passing affected thousands of people in Lake Houston because that’s the number of hearts he touched.
He touched my heart 23 years ago the way he touched the hearts of so many people, through kindness and thoughtfulness.
We’d just moved to Lake Houston. I didn’t know a soul when I was sent to the old Humble Bingo Parlor on First Street to attend a Chamber breakfast. It was packed. Everybody knew everybody and I didn’t know a soul. I sat by myself. Buddy sat down by me, introduced himself, welcomed me to Humble, then took it upon himself to introduce me to others. I never forgot his kindness that day.
So many others remember that same streak of kindness and ability to mentor.
“I don't remember the exact day we met, but Buddy has been my friend for a long time,” confessed Cynthia Calvert, founder and owner of The Tribune. “When I started the Tribune, I wanted strong local voices to write for us. Buddy was immediately on board. And what a wonderful job he did! I loved reading his column and he received a tremendous amount of support and praise over the 10 years he wrote for us.”
Cynthia Calvert especially remembers the spirit Buddy had to be able to “uplift” anyone.
“He never ‘preached’ and he sought to help people who felt criticized or confused about Christianity,” she said. “Instead of coming off judgmental, he was simply a shepherd of positivity.”
Buddy Hicks was her constant cheerleader.
“He was encouraging and supportive - and he never missed deadline!” Calvert recalled. “I will personally miss him and forever be indebted to him for his contributions to our paper and to the community.”
Born on February 1, 1938 in Electra, Texas, Dr. C.E. Buddy Hicks died peacefully on April 3 doing what he loved to do most, preaching the Bible. Buddy knew what he was preaching about. He earned a bachelor of science degree, master’s degrees in theology and divinity, and his doctorate in ministry. He met his wife, Carolyn, appropriately at a revival he was preaching, and, in May of this year, they would have celebrated 50 years together. Besides Carolyn, he is survived by his daughters, Angela Haydel and Shari (Mike) May; and son, Trey Hicks; grandson, Cole Haydel; and granddaughter, Zoey May.
Long-time local journalist Jennifer Summer recalls how Buddy Hicks touched her heart and the entire Lake Houston community.
“Buddy was one of those people who could unite others, no matter their faith, for a particular cause,” said Summer who now is part of the Tribune Team.
“For several years,” Summer recalled, “I interviewed Buddy Hicks about the Interfaith Prayer Breakfast at the Humble Civic Center on National Day of Prayer. Buddy always responded eloquently to my questions. What I always appreciated about Buddy was his willingness to continue to host the Prayer Breakfasts even when it was tough to get people together to pray. The breakfasts were always well organized. If you attended - which I did several times - you would leave feeling empowered, more spiritual and feeling like you could accomplish anything. His fiery spirit will be missed by many in this community. My thoughts and prayers are with his family during this difficult time.”
While active in many community organizations, Buddy was especially committed to the Lake Houston Area Chamber.
“Buddy was a true community leader who served selflessly to improve the lives of the citizens of Lake Houston,” said Jenna Armstrong, president of the Lake Chamber. “He served two terms on the board of the Chamber with great passion and zeal for making a difference. He was a very caring, sincere man who touched many lives in this area. We were all better for having Buddy in our lives and community.”
Buddy Hicks was a mentor to many in Lake Houston – community leaders as well as workers on their way up. They knew and respected Buddy. He had a special relationship with Insperity, the publicly traded HR-outsource company based in Kingwood, first as a client and later as a consultant and contractor.
“Dr. Hicks was an invaluable leader in our community, and a cherished member of our Insperity family,” said Jay E. Mincks, Insperity executive vice president of sales and marketing. “His guidance, support and strong faith positively impacted all who knew him, and he was an unparalleled mentor to many, myself included. He leaves a legacy of true servant leadership, always putting the needs of others first, and he will be dearly missed.”
Corinn Price recalls Buddy as a special friend and a friend of Insperity.
“He was a client for many years as he led ministry efforts in the Lake Houston community,” said Price who is director of Community Involvement at Insperity. “As time went on he became a consultant and a contractor for Insperity as we sought to establish an employee benevolence program.”
Buddy eventually helped develop the Insperity Fund, which aids employees going through a time of unforeseen crisis. His ministry, Somebody Cares Humble, was the administrator of this program which has helped more than 300 employees since its establishment.
“He was greatly loved and respected by all,” Price said. “Buddy continuously prayed for Insperity and its leaders. Through all the trials Insperity has gone through, he was always there with diligent prayer, an encouraging word, and unwavering faith. He believed in the mission of Insperity and never gave up the hope and vision for its growth and success. We could always count on Buddy to have a smile on his face and a corny joke on his lips. Most importantly, he always had a word of encouragement.”
And he was a special friend to the City of Humble.
“He was always kind and upbeat with words of encouragement,” said Merle Aaron, mayor of the City of Humble. “He was a great friend of the City of Humble. He brought grace and prayer to the City.”
A Celebration of Life was held on April 8 at New Covenant Church in Humble followed by interment at Rosewood Memorial Park, Humble. The family encourages gifts in his name to Somebody Cares Humble, 120 E. Main St., Humble TX 77338.