Joe Denoyer - October 12, 2017 8:08 am
Richard Mason (a.k.a. Tom/Cowboy) , 82, of Liberal, Kansas was called home on October 07, 2017 at Southwest Medical Center, Liberal, Kansas.
Richard “Tom” Mason, was born January 02, 1935, to the late Columbus Palmer and Ardella Horton Mason in Queen City, TX., and was raised there throughout his High School years in Lubbock, TX.
Richard’s life’s journey began when he moved to Houston, TX, where he lived and attended Texas Southern University for two years. Richard lived in Albuquerque, New Mexico where he was married to his first wife Temple Joyce Holmes Mason in 1956. He later moved to Liberal, KS in 1960. Richard entered into matrimony with Eartha Mason of forty-six years on October 17, 1971. Richard fathered six children, Monique Mason-Kelley; Pepper Mason Caldwell; Tamara Michele Mason (deceased); Rita Denise Mason (deceased); Jeffery and Lawrence Martin.
Richard was the first African American to integrate his family into an all-white community and to work for the Liberal Police Department for five years. Richard worked for Panhandle Eastern Pipeline and retired after twenty-five years.
Richard Tom Mason was known as a “Trailblazer” in our community. Richard was recognized for community involvement on March 13, 2002 . He was a part of “Leadership Focus on the Future.” Last but not least Richard received the A.H. Smith Service Award on February 27, 2016. Richard was instrumental in the development of the following projects, Mahuron Park, Parklane Towers, and the beautification of the Southeast side of Liberal, KS.
He spent his free time, relaxing, listening to music and driving through the neighborhood seeking ways to make things better for our people. Richard was instrumental in advocating for recruitment of African American teachers in our schools.
This showed Richard’s boldness and courage. This explains his protests against racism, inequality, and degradation of women, which, is believed to have been what led him towards the interests of Civil Rights Activist, Community Development and Politics. Additionally, Richard was enamored with the elections of President Barak Obama (first African American) President elected for two terms. Through it all, Richard kept a sense of humor, which, we cherish today. Richard lost his battle with life due to complications with heart disease.
Richard was preceded in death by: Ardella Horton Mason (mother); Tamara Michele Mason & Rita Denise Mason(daughters); Johnnie, Willie, Columbus, & Wilford Joe Palmer (brothers); s Elise & Gertrude (sisters).
Richard is survived by his wife, Eartha Mason of 46 years (Liberal, KS); ;daughters, Monique Mason-Kelly of Pearland, TX., Pepper Mason Caldwell (Terry Caldwell) of Houston TX; sons Lawrence ( Tracey Martin) of Liberal, KS, Jeffrey Martin of Waianae, Hawaii; sisters, Noval Ann of Apple Valley, CA & Louise of San Diego, CA; host of grandchildren, great grandchildren, and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends, and special thanks to Linda Kay Watley (niece) of Lubbock, TX.
Viewing will be1:00 pm – 8:00 pm Friday, October 13, 2017, at Miller Mortuary .
Funeral services will be 10:00 am Saturday, October 14, 2017, at the Bibleway Church of God In Christ in with Pastor Steven Bailem, officiating.
Friends may send condolences to the family through Richard’s tribute web page at www.millermortuary.net.