ANGLETON — Though Angleton attorney Melvin “Mel” Burridge Jr. was just 61 when he died, his accomplishments in the community and in his personal life left lasting impressions on those he encountered.
Several friends and family members took to social media to express their condolences days after Burridge’s death Jan. 2.
Burridge’s daughter, Rachel, said he passed away after receiving a final Sacrament of Anointing of the Sick sometime after being rushed to the hospital for a heart attack Jan. 1.
“He was a wonderful man who welcomed everyone into his family,” Rachel Burridge said in a written statement. “There was not a single stranger to him, everyone who met him became his best friend and brother/sister … we find comfort in knowing he no longer feels pain and passed with peace, surrounded by those who loved him.”
Growing up in Freeport, Burridge graduated from Brazosport High School before moving on to Brazosport College and Southwest Texas State University, where he earned a law degree, according to his obituary.
Burridge spent his life devoted to public service, including running for Brazoria County Court at Law No. 4 in 2006 and Pct. 2 Justice of the Peace in 2010.
He opened a private practice in Angleton “where he was honored to work with many fine lawyers and to honorably represent those in his community until his death,” according to Burridge’s obituary.
”We extend our heartfelt condolences to Mel Burridge’s family, friends, and colleagues,” the Brazoria County Bar Association said in a written statement Jan. 2.
Burridge met his wife, Tracey, during law school and they married in 1988, according to his obituary. The two raised three children, Rachel, Abby and Charlie.
“Mel was a wonderful storyteller...Although, he moved to Pearland, his heart belonged in Freeport with his family,” Freeport Mayor Brooks Bass said. “(He was) passionate for his family, a strong defender of his clients. Gonna miss his smile.”
Congressman Randy Weber, R-Friendswood, expressed his sorrow at the loss Thursday.
“I got a text yesterday … that notified me that our great friend, Mel Burridge, died suddenly of a massive heart attack. What a great guy he was. Please join me in praying for his wife, Tracey, and their family,” Weber said in a written statement.
In his personal life, Burridge spent time reading, cycling, camping and playing cards, according to his obituary.
“(He) will be remembered for his huge smile, deep laughter, warm heart, generosity of spirit and cultivation of friends,” Burridge’s obituary states.
Volunteering on the Board of Directors of Communities in Schools in both Harris and Brazoria County, Burridge was actively involved in the community all his life, according to his obituary.
“Mel celebrated his life by creating meaningful relationships with everyone he met,” his obituary states. “Mel saw no color or social class and his wealth was measured by the diversity of those he loved and enjoyed.”
Services for Burridge will take place beginning with a rosary prayer at 12:30 p.m. today at Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church, 6502 CR 48 in Manvel, followed by a memorial Mass at 1 p.m. at the same location.
The family asks that, in lieu of flowers, memorial donations be made to Communities in Schools of South East Harris and Brazoria County, 1600 E. Highway 6, Suite 423, Alvin.