Rebecca Trueheart Brown Rogers Hutcheson died peacefully at home on Oct. 5, 2020, surrounded by her family following a brave battle with cancer.
A Texan with deep roots, Rebecca was born Sept. 21, 1951 to Susan Judd and Joseph Chenoweth Brown. Named for her great aunt, Rebecca Trueheart Turnbull, Rebecca was faithful to its meaning: the tie that binds with pure love.
Rebecca attended St. John’s School and graduated from Chatham Hall in Chatham, Virginia.
A student at the University of Texas, she was a member of Pi Beta Phi sorority, completing the Plan II curriculum in three years.
Graced with the heart and vision of a natural leader, Rebecca, affectionately known as “The Lone Arranger” brought order to everything she touched. Such a talent began at her family’s Lambshead Ranch, established in the mid-1800s by her great-grandfather.
During college, Rebecca volunteered for two weeks one summer to run Lambshead’s Cook Shack. Her days were long. Beginning at 5 a.m., she fed cowboys all day and an undetermined number of ranch guests at lunch and dinner. Rebecca quickly proved she had the right stuff to run a kitchen, demonstrating her natural ability to organize, manage and keep the men well-fed, from coffee to chicken fried steak. As high as the bar was, Uncle Watt and the cowboys declared her tenure a success. “She did good. No one died.”
As intrinsically Texan as Rebecca was, she was equally tied to Boothbay, Maine, where she and Thad spent many happy summers sailing and entertaining, creating special memories and lifelong friends. There Rebecca became instrumental during the early development of the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens to which she remained devoted.
Wherever she was, central to Rebecca’s thoughts was the next meal. And it had to be good. Whether she was in London, England, or Albany, Texas, she researched and reserved tables at the best restaurants. No sooner than breakfast dishes were done, she’d ask, “What are we doing for lunch?”
She met Wes Rogers through mutual friends and they married in 1979. Together they traveled widely for his business. Wes died unexpectedly in July, 1986 in a tragic plane accident.
One of Rebecca’s affiliations was with The Junior League of Houston, Inc. Employing her talent for organization and an original foodie, she served as co-chairman of the Star of Texas cookbook published in 1983. Rebecca then served as chairman of the capital campaign for the Junior League’s new building at 1811 Briar Oaks Lane. During a time when oil prices were crashing, it was a notable achievement that before the doors opened April, 1986, the campaign had exceeded its goal.
Professionally, Rebecca became proficient at various computer software programs. Hired into the development office at Texas Children’s Hospital, Rebecca rose to chief development officer under Physician-in-Chief Dr. Ralph Feigin.
Rebecca was a member of the board of San Jacinto Museum of History Association. Later, she served for years as board member and secretary of Matthews Land & Cattle Company. Maturing with each board affiliation, Rebecca’s ultimate passion grew to be the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens, largely due to the deep, lasting friendships she formed.
Rebecca was all about people. She lived with joy, curiosity and a sense of hospitality. She was subtle, disdaining anything pretentious. She carried herself with confidence and dispensed compassion touching those around her with humor and intellect inspiring doctors, nurses, friends and family with her courage, grace and dependable humor.
Rebecca loved “The Cleburne” and unflavored, sparkling water. She adored her Welsh Corgi, José and her precious Coton, Hondo.
She was a member of the Houston Country Club, the Bayou Club, The Assembly, The Garden Club of Houston and Town & Country Garden Club.
The family wishes to express its gratitude for the care of Martin Poliak, M.D. and UT MD Anderson Cancer Center. Central to her life was the loving, round-the-clock care and friendship of Trese Yarbrough, Evette Turner, Monica Glaude, Marci Soto and finally, Seasons Hospice & Palliative Care.
Rebecca was predeceased by her husbands Wes Rogers and Thad Hutcheson, her father Joseph C. Brown and nephew Phin Armstrong.
Rebecca is survived by her mother, Susan Judd Brown; brothers, Matthews Brown (Christy) and John Overton Brown (Georgia Carter); sister, Ardon Armstrong (Tobin); stepchildren, Genevieve Hutcheson Butcher (Keen) and Curtis Hutcheson (Courtney); nieces and nephews, Courtney Brown Snyder (Chad), Lauren Brown Stewart (Ryon), Wes Brown (Macy), Berkeley Brown (Leah) William Brown, Sallie Armstrong Bentley (Matthew), Tobin Armstrong III, Oliver Herzog (Mollie), Hannah Herzog Moser (Roland) and Rita Herzog; step-grandchildren, Keen Butcher IV, Lenox Butcher, Madeleine Butcher, Lily Butcher, Thad Hutcheson, Eleanor Hutcheson; and her great nieces, Meryn Stewart, Berkeley Stewart, Phoebe Snyder, Poppy Snyder, Ruby Brown and Rebecca Trueheart Bentley, born two days following Rebecca’s death.
“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, a time to die. A time to mourn, and a time to dance.” Ecclesiastes 3
Rebecca will be buried in the Reynolds Bend Cemetery at Lambshead Ranch in Albany, Texas, next to her husband Thad. A celebration of their lives will be held when circumstances permit. For those desiring, the family suggests memorial contributions be directed to the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens, www.mainegardens.org, or the charity of your choice.