Roy Ernest Mitchell
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Roy Ernest Mitchell
  • August 27, 1936 - July 5, 2017
  • Fort Worth, Texas

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Roy Ernest Mitchell, 80, passed away on July 5 at Memorial Hospital in Colorado Springs, CO. He was born in Fort Worth, Texas in 1936 to Kent and Florence Mitchell.

Roy grew up in a military family, living in several places during his childhood including Canada and Germany. He graduated from Arlington Heights High School in Fort Worth in 1954. After high school he attended Texas A&M University where he received a bachelor degree in Chemistry. He then received a doctorate in Chemistry at Purdue University in Indiana. He worked at Texas Tech University, teaching Chemistry and later wine making. Roy married Jan Wells in 1958 in Fort Worth. They were happily married for 58 years. Dr. Mitchell was a legend in the Texas wine industry. He is often referred to as the Father of Texas Wine. He worked endlessly to expand, strengthen and grow the industry through education within the University & College Systems at Texas Tech, Univ. of Texas, Texas A & M, Grayson College & The T.V. Munson Center, and the Texas Agricultural Extension System. Roy helped to establish Texas Wine and Grape Growers Association. He also wrote a handbook for beginner winemakers and spent hours of personal one on one time consulting growers and winemakers. He will forever be remembered for all he did for the Texas Wine Industry. When he wasn't walking the vineyards, pumping wine or running tests, he was an avid RV'er, having stayed or visited every Texas State park, taking his grandchildren as often as they could go. Roy and Jan were both excellent photographers and spent hours photographing their beloved wild birds. He enjoyed model planes, and would frequently design and fly his own models. He was also a devoted historian of his family, keeping scrapbooks dating to the 1800's and digitizing them for future generations.

Roy was preceded in death by his wife Jan who passed away October 28th 2016. He is survived by his daughter Lani, her husband Steve and grandchildren Ryan, Lucas & Tessa, Colorado Springs, CO. His brother Carry Mitchell, wife Vivian of Fort Worth TX, and many nieces and nephews and cousins.

A memorial service will be held at Bratcher Funeral Home 401 West Woodard, Denison, TX 75020 at 2pm, August 5th. A reception will be held immediately following in the Family and Friends room where Roy will be remembered with friends and family. Light finger food, refreshments and wine will be served.

In lieu of flowers the family requests that you support your local winery, sending him a toast for a life well lived.