Lemuel “Lem” Brewton Powell, a longtime resident of Galveston County passed away suddenly this past Sunday at the age of 67. Lem was born in Huntsville, TX on August 12th of 1946 to Elbert and Virgie Powell.
When Lem was 17 years old he joined the Navy and proudly served 2 tours in Naval Security Services, Vietnam. In 1969, he was stationed in Galveston on the USS Hainsworth and later was a part of Special Boat Unit 22 in the Naval Reserve.
In 1970 Lem worked as a Reservist for the Galveston County Sherriff Department.
In 1975 Lem proudly became a member of the Galveston Police Department and served the citizens and visitors of Galveston honorably for 26 years. He served in several divisions, including Vice and Narcotics. In 1978, he helped create and train the Galveston Police Department’s first Dive Team where he later acted as a supervisor. Lem was a certified armorer, instructor, and held a Master Peace Officer License. He was a tireless worker, working many extra jobs which included Mardi Gras where he was the head of security for the Krewe of Maximilian and also worked in security at Moody Gardens. Lem retired in 2000 as a patrol officer in the West Isle.
In 2000, Lem became involved with the Masonic Lodge. Within months, he was raised to the degree of Master Mason in Tucker Lodge 297 in Galveston, TX. Lem went on to serve as Past Master in both Tucker Lodge 297 (2003) and La Marque Lodge 1325 (2007), as well as serving as Marshall of La Marque Lodge since 2008. He served as District Deputy Grand Master of Masonic District 31B in 2012 and District Deputy of the York Rite Chapter and Council in 2013. Lem was presently serving as Senior Warden in the San Felipe de Austin Commandery, and was Past High Priest and Thrice Illustrious Master in the York Rite Chapter and Council as well as the Knight Masons and Allied Masonic Degee bodies. He was a plural and endowed member of Tucker Lodge 297, La Marque Lodge 1325, Rising Star Lodge 429, and Harmony Lodge #6.
Lem was a mentor and a leader to many. He proudly taught firearms at College of the Mainland and Police Academy in the position of Range Master. Lem was one of the first to teach CHL at the college level. Police Academies were his favorite interactions with students, and although the training was difficult the Cadets grew to respect and love him.
In 1993 Lem met the love of his life while working an extra job at Ashton Villa. Two years later he and Janet were married and settled in their home in Texas City, TX. The two of them enjoyed entertaining family and friends at their Annual Easter Party. He was blessed with a ready-made family, large extended family, and many friends. Although Lem traveled extensively in his Naval career, somehow he found himself having fun at sea again on the many cruises he and Janet set sail on. Since Lem loved nature, he and Janet sailed on an Alaskan Cruise twice.
In 2000 his first granddaughter was born. Since Lem had never raised a baby, Alison planted herself deep in his heart. She was his Sweety Pie. In 2005 his first grandson Ashton was born. He played with him and could not wait until he was big enough to shoot. Then came his little rascal Aidan in 2006, and he and his pawpaw had a special bond. In 2009 his Sweet Pea Audrey came into his life and it wasn’t too long until she had her pawpaw wrapped around her little finger. He brought her such peace when she would sit on his lap and suck her thumb while holding his thumb. In 2010, Stephanie and Chase came into his life when his step-son Jim married Jodie. Natural or not, Lem’s love for children was evident in his relationship with Stephanie and Chase. In 2011 his Sweet Pops Aven was born. Aven and his pawpaw loved to rough house and laugh.
Lem is survived by his wife, Janet T. Powell; step-son, James A. Daigle Jr. and his wife Jodie M. Daigle; step-daughter, Jennifer A. Rose and her husband Detective Anthony L. Rose; grandchildren, Stephanie P. Solis, Alison S. Rose, Chase H. Morris, Ashton J. Daigle, Aidan W. Daigle, Audrey S. Rose, and Aven A. Rose; brother, Thomas Elbert Powell Jr. and wife Carolyn Powell, as well as numerous family and friends.
Lem loved to share his life stories in his colorful and humorous manner. He was a nature lover, mentor, craftsman, history buff, provider, neighbor, friend, Paw-Paw and loving husband. He was a gentle giant who never met a stranger.
As expressed by Rabbi Jimmy Kessler, Lem was a truly special soul returned to his Creator and our world is darker. Lem blessed all who knew him and learned from him. May his family know comfort from his cherished memory, may we who mourn gain comfort from our time with him, and may his soul rest in peace.
Lem’s family will receive visitors beginning at 5:00 pm, Thursday, February 20th, at Malloy & Son Funeral Home.
Funeral service will be 10:00 am, Friday, February 21st, at Malloy & Son Funeral Home with burial following at Forest Park Lawndale Cemetery in Houston.
Pallbearers will be officers of the Galveston Police Department.