Donald Lee Moore passed away at 81 years of age at Duke University Hospital on September 4, 2019, after a valiant battle with lung cancer.
Don was born in Fort Worth, TX on May 20, 1938 to Evelyn Irene Angel Moore and Homer Lee Moore. He enjoyed a childhood of golf and boating on Possum Kingdom Lake with his younger brother Mike and his cousin Tom Larimore. Behind their home Don kept a horse, Trigger, who could drink Coca Cola out of a bottle.
He was always an early riser with a strong work ethic. As soon as he learned to ride a bike, he became the neighborhood paper boy. He later cleaned barns, delivered furs, caddied, and opened the golf shop at dawn every morning. He graduated from Paschal High in 1956 and, at his 50th Reunion, was excited to win “Least Changed Guy”.
At the University of Oklahoma, Don studied accounting, joined the Phi Delta Theta fraternity, and worked for Standard Oil of Ohio. He also joined the Army Reserve Officer Training Corps, serving as an air traffic controller at Fort Leonard Wood in the Missouri Ozarks. Most importantly, at OU he met Patricia Gail West of Elk City, OK, who he married on New Year’s weekend in 1962.
Don graduated from OU with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accountancy plus graduate accounting studies. In January 1963, the newlyweds moved to Houston, where he joined Arthur Young as a Certified Public Accountant. His career flourished and they moved to Dallas and then New Orleans, where he became Managing Partner for Louisiana and Mississippi. A trusted advisor for management teams in many industries, Don was often sought out for his special expertise in energy and industrial services. His roles required international travel and he would often bring Gail along for extended trips to Mexico, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia.
Don was appointed by the Governor to the Board of the Louisiana State Board of Certified Public Accountants, and for many years he enjoyed his Board service and helping oversee the CPA examination.
After he retired from the merged Ernst & Young, Don and Gail continued to travel broadly and to enjoy New Orleans, where they loved entertaining countless houseguests. He was an avid reader and a quick adopter of new technology, never far from his Kindle and iPad.
Don was a successful Southern Gentleman, a wonderful father to his son and daughter, and a devoted husband to Gail for 57 years. With steely resolve yet optimism and characteristic humor, he steadfastly endured hardship, including losing homes in New Orleans to Hurricane Katrina and in Houston to Hurricane Harvey. He was immeasurably discrete and a lifelong rule-follower who had a surprising devilish side. A family member recently called Don “a charming gentleman with a naughty sparkle in his eye”.
He was a favorite of his grandchildren and their friends, perhaps because he never stopped using funny Fort Worth expressions like “I have been to two goat ropes and a county fair!” and “I’m just a simple man”. Don could relate to people from all walks of life. He was a regular guy who was always inclusive and extraordinarily friendly. In fact, many people considered Don a friend – in one day he could enlist a U.S. Attorney’s help for a troubled friend and then have a Budweiser on his porch step with a house painter.
Don loved people and enjoyed socializing with friends and family. An avid golfer, he loved hitting the links in Elk City, New Orleans, Houston, and Chapel Hill. In New Orleans, he was a member of various charitable organizations, Mardi Gras Krewes, luncheon clubs, and “Swing Fiesta”, a fun travel and golf group for couples.
Don was a member of First Presbyterian Church of Kingwood, Texas and First Methodist Church of New Orleans, where he chaired the administrative board. He was also a proud member of The Military and Hospitaller Order of Saint Lazarus of Jerusalem.
Don was proceeded in death by his parents, Evelyn Irene Angel Moore and Homer Lee Moore, and his younger brother, Michael Jon Moore.
Don’s survivors include his wife of 57 years, Patricia Gail West Moore of Chapel Hill; two children, Jeffrey Lee Moore and his wife Mary Susan Wiggins Moore of Locust Valley, NY, and Stacey Lynn Moore Towning and her husband Gary Mark Towning of Chapel Hill; and six grandchildren, Madeline Abigail and Isabella Lee Towning, and Sallie Bell, Mary Cooper, Jeffrey Lee, Jr., and Duke West Moore.
A funeral service will be held at one pm on Friday, September 13, 2019, at The Chapel of the Cross, located at 304 East Franklin Street at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
The Reverend Elizabeth Marie Melchionna, Rector, and The Reverend Scott Balderson, Deacon, will officiate. Burial will follow immediately in the Memorial Garden on Franklin Street, followed by eulogies in the Chapel’s Parish Hall and then a jazz reception at home.
Instead of flowers, friends may make donations in Don’s memory to The Chapel of the Cross or Meals on Wheels.
Don’s family would like to thank his many concerned friends and dedicated care givers, including the tireless medical teams at Duke University Hospital, especially the elite Duke Thoracic Surgery, Oncology, and Radiation Teams.