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Bernice Coombes Bevers

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Sept. 12, 1930 – Feb. 21, 2019

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    Bernice Coombes Bevers
  • Article Image Alt Text
    Bernice Coombes Bevers

Longtime Boerne resident Bernice Bevers passed away on February 21, 2019, in Johnson City at the age of 88. Bernice was a colorful and vibrant part of the Boerne business community for many years. She and her late husband Howard Bevers owned the well-known Antiques & Old Lace on Main Street from the late ‘80s until 2003.

Bernice had five children, 16 grandchildren, 18 great-grandchildren and too many friends to count. She was well-known for her two great loves in life: the color purple and her Savior, Jesus.

Bernice was married to Howard for 48 years, and they lived in many different places during their marriage, including Corpus Christi, Watertown, South Dakota, Sulphur, Louisiana, San Antonio and finally, Boerne, which they loved and called their forever home. Bernice had been a member First Baptist Church of Boerne for many years, where she sang in the choir (or, as she would say, made a “joyful noise”) and taught Sunday School and Bible study.

Bernice loved to make new friends wherever she went. She had a love of new places and faces, ready to go anywhere on a moment’s notice. She traveled with her church many times in recent years on mission trips to Central America and once to Moldova in Central Europe. She also loved Branson, Missouri, so much so that she encouraged all her kids and anyone else who would listen to travel there. She loved growing roses, sewing, watching the Hallmark Channel, having conversations (she could talk for hours), visiting with her children and grandchildren, but most of all, she loved Jesus. Her favorite Bible verse was Proverbs 17:22, which says, “A cheerful heart doeth good like a medicine…”

Bernice always had an entrepreneurial spirit and the belief that she could accomplish anything she set her mind to. As a young girl of 13 years, Bernice placed an ad in the local Corpus Christi newspaper advertising her services as an “expert seamstress.” Anyone who knew Bernice will agree that yes, that sounds just like something she would have done. Prior to her launch into antiques, she owned several dressmaking shops, first in Corpus Christi and then in Olmos Park in San Antonio during the 1960s and ‘70s, where she made custom garments, including wedding gowns and men’s tailored attire.

For several years, she assisted with the creation of the incredible gowns made for the Battle of Flowers parades during Fiesta Week, which were subsequently on display at the Witte Museum in San Antonio. Bernice had a unique gift in that she could look at a dress in a store and then, using newspaper and tape to devise her own pattern, would recreate the dress for friends and clients. When her children were growing up, they would complain that their clothes were homemade and usually cut from the same bolt of fabric. Now, as adults, they look back at the photos of their matching clothes and notice the special tailoring and styling incorporated by their talented mom. (Still, they complain about the matching!)

The following years were a great time for Bernice. She and her husband opened a successful art gallery and framing shop called “House of Howard” in San Antonio’s Monte Vista area. After doing major renovations on the gallery’s building while managing and working the business, they decided to sell it all and spend a few years traveling the United States, doing home and business renovations for clients and friends. They were in great demand and had a lot of fun, moving to a new location every few months. At some point, they decided that a travel trailer wasn’t big enough to hold all the antiques gathered along the way, so they bought an old Blue Bird yellow school bus with the school’s name barely painted over and transformed the interior into a beautiful “coach,” as they then called it. It was still a school bus on the outside, but the inside had everything they needed, including a miniature bathtub and washer and dryer.

Since this was before the advent of cell phones, their children would call each other to see if anyone knew where their parents were! Bernice and Howard would cruise into town and choose one of their children to “surprise” by parking the school bus “coach” in front of their house (or apartment parking lot), hook up to electricity and begin to cook dinner, usually something exotic that Bernice had just learned to cook during their latest travels.

Bernice was preceded in death by her parents, Charles and Minnie Pearl Coombes, and her sister and husband, Shirley and Robert Johnson, all of Corpus Christi. Also preceding her in death was her daughter-in law Sandra Bevers; brother-in-law Maurice Bomer; Bernice’s husband, Howard; and their oldest daughter Glenda Bevers Boone, who passed away much too early, just a few months prior to Howard’s death in 1998.

That was a hard year, but Bernice, in her usual determined way, got right back to work in her antiques shop as soon as possible, buying a new toilet for her antiques shop at Home Depot the morning of her husband’s funeral – because it was on sale.

Bernice is survived by four children: Gary D. Bevers and wife, Kathy Bevers of Cypress; Dennis D. Bevers of Sulphur, Louisiana; Judy L. Troutman and husband Mike Troutman of Johnson City; and, Nanette K. Bevers of San Antonio. Bernice’s 16 grandchildren live in Castroville, League City, Lubbock, Johnson City, Victoria, San Antonio and New Braunfels; North Carolina, South Carolina, Louisiana and Washington.

She also is survived by her sister, Nellie Bomer of Belton, and her brother and his wife, Charles and Joan Coombes of San Antonio, plus numerous nieces and nephews. The great-grandchildren are growing in number each year, and her many dear friends are scattered all over, with the majority living in Boerne.

Family visitation will be held on Wednesday evening, Feb. 27, at the Ebensberger-Fisher Funeral Home, 111 Rosewood Ave. in Boerne from 6 to 8 p.m. A memorial service will be held Thursday, Feb 28, at 3 p.m. at First Baptist Church of Boerne. Please wear purple in memory of Bernice and bring a joyful spirit to celebrate with us that she is now forever with Jesus. For those interested in making a donation in honor of Bernice’s memory, please consider the Missions Ministry of First Baptist Church of Boerne, at 631 S School St, Boerne, TX 78006. To leave condolences for the family, please visit www.ebensberger-fisher.com and select obituaries.

Arrangements with Ebensberger-Fisher Funeral Home of Boerne.