Albert Donald Houston

Albert Donald Houston, 81, of Jackson died unexpectedly on August 10, 2017.  Donald was born on July 14, 1936 the only child of Albert Gaston and Celia Webb Houston in Pinson, TN.    He was preceded in death by his loving wife of 59 years, Peggy Jo Holloway Houston and son-in-law John A. Copeland, Jr.  He is survived by his daughter, Rhonda Lynn Houston Copeland of Dublin, OH, son Donald Stacy Houston, daughter-in-law Robyn Mussario Houston and grandsons Joshua Donald and Sean Andrew Houston of Channahon, IL.  


Donald was raised in Pinson where he graduated from Pinson High School in 1953.  While still in high school, he began his career with the GM&O Railroad working part-time.  The GM&O became the ICG and then the Iand he changed with the company holding positions of telegraph operator and dispatcher.  He retired from CN’s Chicago Office in 1998 with 45years of service.  After his retirement he and Peggy returned to Jackson to be with extended family, rekindle old friendships and enjoy retirement.

Don was a gregarious, outgoing person who loved people and never met a stranger.  He loved to laugh and always had a joke or a story to share with the people he met.  His sense of humor endeared him to others and he would gladly poke fun at himself to get a smile or laugh.  He genuinely cared about people and worked to stay connected with his family and friends.  He was a devoted husband, father and grandfather who was extremely proud and staunchly protective of his family. He possessed a strong faith and love of the Lord.  He was a member of Pinson United Methodist Church and frequently attended Lester’s Chapel UMC, weekly bible study and services at Baptist, Presbyterian,andother churches in the area.

His interests were varied and his memory and ability to recall details and dates impressive.  A descendant of Madison County pioneer families (Houston and Haynes) he became the family genealogist and historian reciting relationships and birth dates of past generations from memory.   He was a history buff and loved all things railroad.  Any family vacation included stops to read historical markers and random depots and railroad offices, often to the dismay of his children.  He always loved to travel and managed to visit all 50 states, Canada and a few countries in Europe.  He enjoyed music and regularly attended live music events and jam sessions in West TN.   He and his daughter dubbed Thursdays “Music Thursday” because he spent each afternoon and evening listening to groups play and occasionally taking a turn at the microphone himself.  

Donald will be missed by his children, grandchildren, extended familyloving friend Ester Newton and her family and many friends.

The family will receive friends on Monday, August 14, 2017 from 10 am – 1 pm at George A. Smith and Sons South Chapel. Funeral services will follow at 1 pm at George A. Smith and Sons South Chapel with Rev. Jimmy Dyer officiating. Burial will follow in Lesters Chapel Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Pinson Methodist Church or Lester’s Chapel Methodist Church.