Harriett C. Burch
04/23/1943 – 11-09-2022
Harriett Eileen Calhoun Burch, 79, of Houston passed away unexpectedly on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2022. Harriett dedicated herself to caring for and protecting all those close to her, from her children and extended family, to friends who she had known for more than 60 years. She greatly valued reading and education, and maintained a strong desire throughout her life to understand more about the world around her.
Harriett was born April 23, 1943 in Gentry, Ark. and lived in her early years in Montrose, Mo. before the family settled in Tyler, which she considered to be her hometown. She graduated from Lee High School in Tyler in 1960, and from Southern Methodist University in 1964, where she was a member of Pi Beta Phi sorority. During her time at SMU, Harriett took a three-month grand tour of Europe, a transformative experience she used to encourage her sons and other young people to explore the worldand embrace different cultures. After college, Harriett first lived in Houston and then moved to Washington, D.C. in 1966. It was in the nation’s capital, while working at American Petroleum Institute, that she met Bob, her husband of 52 years. They were married in Tyler in 1970. The young couple soon resettled in Houston in 1972, where they raised sons David and Andrew, and continued to live there with the exception of a year and a half interlude in Santa Monica, Calif. in the mid-1970s.
Harriett was an active volunteer at her sons’ schools and in their Scouting, and was a member for many years at ChapelwoodUnited Methodist Church. She also was a decades-long member of P.E.O. International, and was deeply committed to its mission of fostering educational advancement for women.
Survivors include her husband, Robert “Bob” Burch of Houston; sons David Burch of Washington, D.C., and Andrew Burch and wife Lauren of Sugar Land; brother Ken Calhoun and wife Kristina of Houston; nieces Claire Calhoun of Austin and Janet Almanza of Linwood, N.J.; nephews Ben Calhoun of San Angelo and Michael Calhoun of Beaverton, Ore.; honorary “sister” Kathy Buck of Grandview; and many beloved aunts and cousins. Preceding her were parents Charles and Eileen Calhoun, and brother Charles David Calhoun, all of Tyler; and sister Martha Jane, who passed in infancy.
Service details TBD
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to P.E.O. International or the charity of your choice.