Max Harrell, Jr.

Max Harrell, Jr.

Brownwood - Max Harper Harrell, Jr. 90 of Brownwood, passed away February 5, 2021 after a long illness. A memorial service will be planned for a later date.

He was the only child of Max H. Harrell, Sr. and Catherina Daniel Harrell. Max was born in El Paso, Texas on June 4, 1930 in the original Hotel Dieu Hospital. His paternal grandparents were early settlers in the state of Texas and his paternal great grandfather was a participant in the "Drawing of the Black Bean."

Max graduated from El Paso's Austin High School in 1948 and enlisted in the U. S. Army. When sent to Tokyo, Japan, he was selected to be part of General Douglas MacArthur's Honor Guard stationed there. He was with General MacArthur at the Inchon Invasion. After General MacArthur was recalled and replaced by General Ridgeway, Max volunteered for duty in war torn Korea, serving nearly a year there. While in Korea, he served as tank commander in the conflict. He returned to the United States after completing four years of military service. Upon returning, he enrolled at the University of Texas-El Paso and also worked in the insurance business. Max was very active in the General MacArthur Honor Guard Association for many years and served as Treasurer.

Max met his future bride, Daphne Farley, while attending UTEP. They were married on December 19, 1953, in El Paso, Texas at Asbury Methodist Church. The wedding was officiated by Dr. Ewart G. Watts. Max began his career in the oil and gas industry in June, 1954 completing over thirty-one years with El Paso Natural Gas and Meridian Oil Companies. He retired as Regional Administrative Manager in 1985.

Upon retirement, he and Daphne moved to Durango, Colorado in early 1986. In 1992 they moved back to Texas settling in Brownwood to be closer to two of their children.

At the time Max and Daphne transferred their church membership to First United Methodist Church, Max immediately volunteered to cook hamburgers for the "Burger Bar" at the church. He treasured his time spent with the youth and the wonderful association with all the burger bar volunteers. After volunteering several years at the Burger Bar, Max assisted in cooking for the Men's Breakfast every month for many years. He served as teacher for the Brewer Friendship Sunday School class for over 10 years.

Max was a member of the Elks organization for 57 years. His membership began in the El Paso Elks Lodge in 1964. He held all local lodge officer positions as well as district, state and Grand Lodge (national). He served on the Girl Scout Board of Directors. Max spent several years on the Texas Elks Endowment Board and served as chairman. He was a member of the National Rifle Association and the American Legion. After moving to Brownwood, Max volunteered at the Good Samaritan food pantry for over 15 years.

He was very much a man who loved his family and spent his life being a good husband, father and community participant. Although Max was an only child, he always enjoyed being part of the huge family that Daphne had. Since she was the seventh child in a family of fourteen children, there was never a dull moment when the family got together. Sometimes he just sat back and listened to the roar!

He will be greatly missed by the "light of his life"-Daphne; his children, Michael Harrell of Cedar Park, Linda Tays of Leander and Tammy Vedrode of Dorchester, South Carolina; two grandchildren, Jerry Vedrode, Heather Harrell and one great-granddaughter, Savannah Lea Vedrode. He was preceded in death by his grandson Scott Harrell.

One note of humor- most of his life Max didn't care much for cats. He much preferred to have a dog as a pet. In his 84th year, he was adopted by a beautiful cat who decided that it was better to live at our house rather than the one he had. He showed up one day out of the blue by climbing over the back fence and made his wishes well known. He instantly made it known that Max was just about the right person for him. Most of his naptime was spent on Max's lap in the lounge chair stretched out to his full length of nearly a yard, tip to tail! Needless to say, Max has been a cat person ever since.

Condolences, memories and tributes can be made to the family at

Published on March 07, 2021