Raymond Walter Neck Jr.,PhD
November 12, 1946 - March 23, 2017
Raymond Walter Neck Jr., PhD was born Nov. 12, 1946 to Raymond Walter Neck and Joyce Stansbury Neck in Brownsville, Texas. He died on March 23, 2017 in Houston, Texas. Preceded in death by his parents and son, Patrick Kent Neck. He is survived by his wife, Mary Eleanor Rentfro Neck; daughter, Anna Kristine Nickless (John Michael) of Corpus Christi; brother, Stephen Neck (Nora); and many cousins and inlaws. Raymond graduated from Brownsville High School in 1964 and Texas Southmost College in 1966. He continued his education at the University of Texas in Austin culminating with a PhD in Biology in 1974. Raymond was a Conservation Biologist in Master Planning for Texas Parks and Wildlife until 1991. Dr. Neck was a member and past president of the Texas Organization for Endangered Species. He was a member of the American Malacological Union serving as the editor of the Newsletter (1990 – 1993) and the Lepidopterist Society (1968 – 2013). In 1991, he and Pinke moved to Houston to be the Curator of Invertebrates for the Houston Museum of Natural Science. He was the Director in Planning for the Cockrell Butterfly Center. Always a curious and avid scientist, he was published almost 200 times and was the author of the state-wide field guide, “The Butterflies of Texas”, 1996, a Texas Monthly Field Guide. He was a co-author of “Freshwater Mussels of Texas”, 1996. Unfortunately, health problems in 1993 forced him to retire from his much loved professional life. The next 23 years he lived quietly with his wife as his sole caregiver until his death only 5 months prior to their 50th wedding anniversary. Always courteous and kind, he endured his disability and fragile health with courage and dignity. Raymond will be interred in Assumption Cemetery next to his son, Patrick, in Austin, Texas. No services as he wished. Be kind; be compassionate; and make a call to someone you care about while they are still here.