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Obituaries » Howard Crupain

Howard Crupain

May 19, 1932 - February 7, 2017

U.S. Veteran

Burial Date February 9, 2017

Graveside Service will be held at 10:00 am on Thursday, February 9, 2017 at Beth Yeshurun Post Oak Cemetery, 1037 N. Post Oak Rd Houston, Texas

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Howard Crupain was a loving, compassionate man who lived an exemplary life of purpose and faith. Born in the Bronx, New York, at a young age Howard discovered his mechanical talents, designing and constructing a printing press to print money with his picture on it, buying and rebuilding a Ford Model T car, and repairing neighbors’ appliances. He also had a passion for science fiction, dreaming of one day traveling into space and exploring the cosmos. After graduating high school, Howard joined the Army working on radar systems and later, completed his college education. While on his first blind date, Howard became smitten and fell in love. After admonishing his friends “to back off,” he married Helen, the love of his life, and so began their 60+ year real life love affair.

Among Howard’s greatest passions were his family, friends, and faith. He was a constant presence at Congregation Shaar Hashalom, participating in services and spending time with his beloved congregants and Rabbi. He was a devoted grandfather to Jeremey and Britney Margolis and Matthew and Melissa Darlow, a hands-on adoring parent to his children Rachel (Jeff) Margolis, Edie Crupain (Dr. Jim Paskow), and Debbie (Michael) Darlow, a loving brother to Daniel (Diane) Crupain, an admiring Uncle to his nephew Dr. Michael Crupain, and a faithful friend to his many colleagues, friends, and neighbors.  But it was Helen who held his heart for over 60 years. Together they shared numerous adventures and united in everyday life.  The pair were often observed walking together, always hand-in-hand, never more than inches apart.  The mutual adoration and soulful connection was demonstrable in the way they always knew each other’s thoughts, completed each other’s sentences, and shared each other’s meals.  While Howard is no longer physically with us, one need only look at Helen to find that Howard’s love and spirit reside permanently in her heart.

After serving in the military, Howard successfully fused his tinkering talent and passion for space exploration by becoming involved in America’s great space race. For 50 years, working with Philco Ford, Ford Aerospace, Loral, and Lockheed Martin, Howard applied his considerable talents supporting various NASA missions including the Gemini, Apollo, Skylab, and Apollo Soyuz missions. Howard was particularly thrilled to be part of NASA’s Space Shuttle Program, supporting the Shuttle Astronauts, maintaining the complex hardware, developing innovative techniques to improve vital equipment, and serving as the “computer man” for the NASA’s Shuttle Training Aircraft program’s Digital Avionics Systems. One of the highlights of his work was his experiences at Mission Control and being upfront during the Shuttle Launch at Cape Canaveral with his wife, Helen, at his side.

After Howard retired, his interest in space exploration never waned; he continuously monitored the latest NASA probes, missions, and projects, dreaming of a manned mission to Mars.  Howard became totally immersed in modern technology, tinkering with laptops, navigating the new world of iPhones and iPads, and downloading and exploring Apps by the hundreds.  When cancer was diagnosed, Howard maintained his courageous composure, refusing to let the disease alter his positive outlook, life plans, and incessant smile.  On February 7, 2017, Howard took his final mission. Godspeed Howard. You are deeply loved.  While we will miss your wit, charm, humor, fuzzy beard, twinkling eyes, and contagious smile, we know you are at peace in your sojourn through the stars.