Hometown News For Orange County, Texas

Travis Arthur ("Pete") Gresham, 92, Orange,

Travis Arthur (“Pete”) Gresham, 92, of Orange, Texas, passed away on January 15, 2024, at his home in Orange.

Graveside services will be held at Orange Forest Lawn Cemetery, Friday, January 19, 2024 at 1:00 p.m., in Orange. Officiating will be Reverend Lani Rousseau.

Born in Sacul, Texas, on November 16, 1931, Pete was the son of L.E. Gresham and Mattie Mae Ballard Gresham. As the youngest of eight children, more than one of his siblings reported that in the first few years of Pete’s life, his “feet never touched the ground.”

He attended high school in Cushing, Texas, where, during his sophomore year, he met the love of his life, Janice Gatlin. After a brief career as a semi-professional baseball player, Pete married Janice in the summer of 1952; they then headed to Fort Hood in Killeen Texas for service in the Army during the Korean War. Following his discharge, the couple moved to Orange, where Pete began his career at the local DuPont facility. He attended college for several years at Lamar University.

Both Pete and Janice were both able to retire early, took up golf with great passion, and played at many courses throughout the country, including Pebble Beach in California, and Pinehurst in North Carolina. They both served as board members for Sunset Grove Country Club.

Pete also organized several local real estate development projects, and in the late 1990s, established a 13 acre farm in West Orange.  He kept Brangus cattle and populated the farm with a wide variety of animals: chickens, goats, donkeys, buffalo and emu. (Unwelcome trespassing alligators also made regular appearances.)  All in all, It was a successful and satisfying agricultural enterprise. During this period of his life, Pete also found time to become an award-winning gumbo chef at the International Gumbo Festival in Orange.

Pete’s other great passion in life was gardening. Inspired by the hidden gardens of the French Quarter in New Orleans, he designed and built a brick courtyard garden in the back of his home. It featured many exotic and tropical plants, an outdoor fireplace, and even modernist metal sculpture designed by Pete himself.  The garden was featured and photographed in several local newspapers.

His family and many friends will honor and cherish the memory of Pete Gresham as a devoted and doting father and a steadfast friend.

He is preceded in death by his wife, Janice Gresham, and his two sisters and five brothers.

He is survived by his son, Jay Gresham and partner, Davace Chin of San Francisco, California; and his daughter, Jan Gucker and husband, Michael of Crosby, Texas.

Honorary pallbearers are Joe Gresham, Fred Copeland, Dan Cochran, Kim Marcantel, Michael Gucker, Shawn Carrizal, and Davace Chin.


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