Irving Coleman Houston was born on November 7, 1929 and he passed away peacefully on May 24, 2019.
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Irving was born in West Newton, MA to the parents of Ernest Houston and Helena (Rollins) Houston. He was the youngest of six boys, and he was educated in the Newton Public Schools. Later in life, Irving studied and received a Bachelors degree from the University of New Hampshire.
Irving possessed a strong work ethic, and he always worked in the Human Services fields. He worked at the Roxbury Multi-Service Center, where he helped families to secure affordable housing. He worked within the Boston Public Schools as an Intervention Counselor, where he helped under-performing students to improve and succeed academically. Irving retired from Boston College after being employed there for many years. At Boston College, he served as an Upward Bound Counselor and helped high school sophomores and juniors to improve their academics and he helped high schools seniors prepare their college applications to achieve their future goals. Also at Boston College, Irving worked in the Campus Housing Department, where he retired as the Assistant Director of Campus Housing after many years in the mid 90’s.
Even after retirement, Irving continued to stay busy by taking on small odd jobs like lawn work, cleaning vacant buildings, and delivering furniture. He eventually accomplished a lifetime dream, in his 70’s, of opening up his own Thrift Shop, where he finally he had a home for all his collectables, that were formerly stored in the basement of his home in Newton at 6 Philbrick Road.
Irving was the loving Dad to Sharon, Irving, Jr. & April (both deceased), Shirley, and Jennifer. He will be greatly missed by his five grandchildren: Young Irving, Shamar, Albert, Tyler, and Ariana; and nine great- grandchildren: Kaela, Brian Irving, Victoria, Ariyah, Aliyhana, Shamar, Jr., Jakai, Avery, and Mayra. In addition, Irving was a steadfast “father figure” to many of his grandchildren, nieces and nephews, and he fulfilled that role effortlessly.
Irving was a huge sports fan and enjoyed watching and routing for the Boston Celtics and New England
Patriots, and when Tiger Woods put golf on the “MAP” for Blacks, he loved cheering Tiger on, too! One of
Irving’s other sports related joys was being a member of the Black Ski Association of Boston. During his time as a member of Black Ski, he became an avid skier, and he traveled on trips to ski on many mountains throughout New England, and he even had the pleasure of skiing the mountains of Aspen Colorado. Favorite summer past-times of Irving were gardening, yard work, boating, fishing, and watching westerns.
Irving will be lovingly remembered and missed by his devoted wife of 54 years, Shirley Houston; his children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends.