Ida Jo Butler Grainger Moran (’54)

Ida Moran
October 9, 1934 — June 5, 2024

Ida Jo Butler Grainger Moran, cherished mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, died peacefully on June 5, 2024, at her beloved Mayfair Ranch surrounded by family.

Ida Jo was born in Houston, Texas on October 9, 1934, to George and Anne Butler. She attended River Oaks Elementary and St. John’s School. She graduated from The Madeira School in McLean, Virginia, where she further developed her lifelong love of horses. She then enrolled in the animal husbandry program at University of Houston.

Ida Jo was a debutante in Houston during the 1953-54 season, during which she met Robert Lee “Bobby” Grainger on a blind date. She and Bobby married on December 20, 1954, and soon departed to fulfill Bobby’s naval service, which included deployment to Key West, Florida where their first son, Robert Lee “Robby” Grainger, Jr., was born. Ida Jo and Bobby then returned to Houston and were blessed with two more children, George and Allen. Ida Jo later moved to the family’s Mayfair Ranch, where she resided with her second husband, Tom Moran, with whom she was married for over thirty years.

Ida Jo was a lifelong member of the Junior League of Houston and took great pride in designing and constructing sets for the League’s children’s theater program. Ida Jo also served on the board for the Washington on the Brazos Historical Foundation. Later in life, she devoted herself to overseeing her family’s ranch and cattle operations.

Ida Jo, or Mimi as she was affectionately called by her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, loved, and spoke passionately about, Texas and English history, University of Houston athletics, politics, and her family. She loved a good martini and a celebration of any kind. She was proud of her family’s legacy, and their many contributions to Houston, Brenham, and Washington on the Brazos. Simply put, Ida Jo was one of a kind.

Ida Jo is survived by her three children, Robby Grainger, George Grainger and his wife, Makeea, and Allen Grainger, and his wife, Cheryll; her grandchildren, Ginny Grainger Heller and her husband, Drake, Vince Grainger and his wife, Jace, Valerie Grainger Henderson and her husband, Brandon, Rob Grainger and his wife, Georgia, Allison Grainger Nepveux and her husband, Michael, Parker Grainger, and Lauren Grainger Rossi and her husband, Tino. Ida Jo is also survived by ten great-grandchildren, with one on the way, as well as her sister, Anne Butler Leonard. She is predeceased by her first husband, Bobby Grainger; her parents, George and Anne Butler; and her brother, George Butler, Jr.

Ida Jo’s family will forever cherish memories of her at Mayfair Ranch, in Roaring Gap, North Carolina, and at celebratory dinners at the Bayou Club, The Palm, Carrabba’s, and Morton’s. Ida Jo will be missed dearly by all who love her, but her family and friends are comforted knowing she had a full life, and she is now living for eternity in the big ranch in the sky.

The family would like to thank Ida Jo’s lifelong friend, Leonard Hubert, who has worked for Mayfair Ranch for 54 years and visited her daily while she lived at the Ranch, as well as Ida Jo’s caregivers, Phelicia Williams, Carolyn Fielder, and LaShonda Fielder.

A private graveside service will be conducted by Reverend John Pitts at Glenwood Cemetery in Houston, where Ida Jo will be buried next to her beloved, Bobby, as well as her parents and her brother.

Two of Ida Jo’s favorite places in Houston were the Bayou Club at 8550 Memorial Drive and Carrabba’s on Voss. The family thought it befitting to host a celebration of her life at both venues on Saturday, June 8, 2024, from noon to 2pm. All friends and family are invited to attend either or both. Please note the Bayou Club has a dress code for men that requires coat and tie and no denim.

In lieu of flowers, the family invites friends and family to make a donation in Ida Jo’s name to the Washington on the Brazos Historical Foundation, https://wheretexasbecametexas.org. If flowers are preferred, please send them to the Bayou Club.

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to Memorial Oaks Chapel, 1306 West Main St., Brenham. To post a tribute to the family, please visit www.memorialoakschapel.com.

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