James Goldston | 2010 | Obituary

James Goldston
James Goldston

December 09, 2010

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James Maxey Goldston, after an outstanding career in civil engineering and a life rich with loving family, and many friends and business associates, died of heart failure on December 9, 2010 at the age of 90 years.
He was born in Coblenz , Germany on October 7, 1920 to Sue and Colonel William Major Goldston. James grew up in Texas , Oklahoma and New Mexico , attending 17 different schools as his father traveled as a trouble shooter in the building of bridges for Austin Bridge Company. He graduated from Patti Welder High School in Victoria , Texas in 1938.
James soon became known as "Jimmy" while attending Texas A&M University-College Station and he graduated in the Class of 1942 with a degree in Civil Engineering. During his student years at Texas A&M, he was active in Ross Volunteers, Singing Cadets, Victoria Club, Gulf Coast Club, Fish Intramural Manager, Sbisa Volunteer, and the Student Chapter of American Society of Civil Engineers.
Upon graduation in 1942, James began military service as 2nd Lieutenant in the U. S. Army Reserves and entered World War II where he served in El Paso at Fort Bliss , California at Vallejo , Northern Africa, the battles of Salerno Beach and Cassino in Italy , the invasion of Cavalier Beach in Southern France, and continuing through Germany and Austria . As an U.S. Army Captain, he commanded an anti-aircraft artillery battery and was awarded five stars with two arrows for initial beachhead assaults. While serving as Battery Commander, he received Unit Commander Citation and a Bronze Star for his critical involvement in the Battle for Cassino , Italy . He was discharged in 1946 with rank of Major , U. S. Army Reserve in the Corps of Engineers.
James was a New Mexico and Texas Registered Professional Engineer and a Texas Registered Public Surveyor. He practiced engineering well into his 80s and mentored many younger engineers throughout his career.
James was a researcher, as well. In 1958, he prepared a study and report for the City of Corpus Christi on "The Removal and Relocation of the Stone Jetty at the entrance to the Corpus Christi Harbor ". In 1976, as a consultant to the Texas Coastal and Marine Council as authorized by the Texas Legislature, he co-authored "Model Minimum
Wind-Resistant Building Standards for the Texas Gulf Coast ." And, in 1978 for the Texas Deep Water Port Authority, he co-authored "An Assessment of Crude Oil Lightering Activities in the Western Gulf of Mexico ."
James began his professional work career in Corpus Christi as a partner in the engineering firm of McClendon & Associates in 1945. In September 1948, he joined his father's construction company as a project engineer and superintendent of construction. Then, in September 1949, James formed Goldston Engineering to perform design/build method of construction by The Goldston Company, Inc., a construction company with subsidiaries named GMG Construction Company and Refinery Maintenance Company. He employed more than 1,500 workers and craftsmen by 1974.
In 1989, James closed the construction companies and devoted his efforts to growing Goldston Engineering, Inc., a civil engineering firm that, today, specializes in marine, coastal, structural, and municipal public works. James served as Chairman of the Board. With William, his eldest son, serving as President of the company, Goldston Engineering grew to serve clients worldwide and to offices in both Corpus Christi and Houston . On February 29, 2008, Goldston Engineering, Inc. became a wholly-owned subsidiary of CH2M Hill, an employee-owned international engineering and construction firm.
His most cherished memories are of the numerous engineering and construction projects that modernized and enlarged much of the Port of Corpus Christi. At the age of 17, one of his first jobs was repairing the fender system on the Bascule Lift Bridge. On October 12, 2010, the Port of Corpus Christi Commissioners presented him with a Resolution that honors and recognizes his lifetime achievements, his contribution to growth of the Port of Corpus Christi and his many contributions to the community.
He designed and supervised the construction of the La Quinta Deep Water Channel, the Jewel Fulton Canal, the Rincon Industrial Park and numerous other canal-type land reclamation projects for industrial, commercial, recreational and residential use. As senior design engineer, he constructed oil tanker terminals, tank farm installations, including foundations, and storage facilities.
James rehabilitated harbor facilities, modernized docks, wharfs, bulkheads and renewed berthing facilities for increased depths to accommodate all size ships entering the Ports of Texas. He had extensive experience in the design and construction of pipelines and cable installations both land and marine, including pipeline installations under Corpus Christi Ship Channel, across Nueces and Corpus Christi Bays , across the Intracoastal Canal and electrical transmission lines above and below the Corpus Christi Ship Channel.
In 1980, he was appointed by the Chief of the Civil Works of The Army Corps of Engineers to serve as a U.S. Commissioner to the Permanent International Association of Navigation Congresses (PIANC). He traveled worldwide in representation of the United States to Scotland , Monaco , Germany , Virginia and Washington , D.C. , Finland , Poland , Belgium , and Morocco . He was chairman of the committee to organize the U.S. Section PIANC into geographical areas (East, West and Central Divisions) and hosted the first U.S. Section meeting in Corpus Christi , Texas , in 1985. James served as a U.S. Commissioner until 1988 and, in 1992, he received emeritus status where he remained active until his death.
James served as an advisory member of the Marine Transportation Panel to the Texas Transportation Institute, Texas A&M University system from 1989 to 1994.
He was active in the Texas Society of Professional Engineers. James was named "Distinguished Engineer of the Year 1979" by the Nueces Chapter of TSPE and he served as President of the local chapter (1968-69 and 1982-83) and as a State Director for the organization (1970-1972), becoming a life member in 1989. As a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, James served as president for the Corpus Christi Branch of ASCE from 1968-1969 and as a State Director from 1970-72, being awarded the "Service to People Award" in 1997 by the Texas Section American Society of Civil Engineers.
The professional engineer was also involved in the Gulf Coast Intracoastal Canal Association as a Director; World Dredging Association; Western Dredging Association; Propeller Club of America; Corpus Christi Chapter of the Navy League; Texas Association of Business; and Associated General Contractors.
In 2000, James was honored with a Distinguished Graduates Award presented by the Zachry Department of Civil Engineering at Texas A&M University , College Station .
Always an Aggie, James supported Texas A&M University in College Station as a founding member of The President's Endowed Scholars and made numerous contributions to The Association of Former Students, 12th Man Foundation, and Texas Aggie Corps of Cadets Association. From 1985 to 1995, he served as a member of the Chancellor's Advisory Counsel at Texas A&M University-College Station.

James was very active in numerous local community, business, and civic organizations as follows:

· Corpus Christi Chamber of Commerce, a Board of Director from 1978 to 1981 serving on the Industrial Committee (1981) and the Port Committee (1982);

· City of Corpus Christi, serving on the Mayor's Committee for North Beach Projects (1977), Budget Advisory Committee (1980), Bayfront Advisory Committee (1983), and Oso Development Committee;

· Corpus Christi Sister City Committee (1978);

· Texas State Museum of Asian Cultures, a founding member of the Board of Trustees in 1975 and continuing as a Board Member until 2006;

· Leadership Corpus Christi X Advisory Committee, 1981-82;

· Mercantile National Bank, a Board of Director from 1978 to 1982;

· Bank of Corpus Christi , a Board of Director from 1982 to 1983;

· Rotary Club of Corpus Christi, an active member from 1961 to 2010, a Paul Harris Fellow donor and recipient of their "Community Service Award" in 1984.

· United Way

· Texas State Aquarium, a supporter and member;

· Art Museum of South Texas , a supporter and member;

· Coastal Bend Bays Foundation, a current member;

· Corpus Christi Yacht Club, a past member;

· Corpus Christi Town Club, a past member;

· Corpus Christi Country Club, a current member and golfer;

· Kenyon Island Hunt Club, an original shareholder and emeritus member;

· Corpus Christi A&M Club, named him Aggie of the Year in 1983;

· Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi, supporting and serving on the President's Council from 1995 to 2010;

· Testifying at the Texas State Capitol in April 2007 in support of establishing a College of Engineering at Texas A&M-Corpus Christi;

· 2008 Laureate Business Hall of Fame awarded by Junior Achievement of the Coastal Bend.

· October 12, 2010 the Port of Corpus Christi Commissioners presented him with a Resolution that recognizes and honors his lifetime achievements, his contribution to growth of the Port of Corpus Christi and his many contributions to the community.
He was a member of the First United Methodist Church where, in the past, he served on the Administrative Board, the Engineering/Construction Committee, and as a president of the Jennie Hill Cooper Class. He designed the base foundation for the "It Is I" statue that faces Shoreline Drive .
When his sons were young, he was involved with Boy Scouts of America. He was Chairman of the Troop 3 Committee for seven years and Troop 180, totaling approximately 17 years.
His favorite pastimes were golfing, fishing, hunting, swimming, traveling, music and dancing. James and Mary delighted in discovery, with Norway, Argentina, Panama and Canada being their most memorable trips. They were often seen on the golf course with James hitting balls and Mary retrieving those that landed outside the fairway.
James was preceded in death by Eleanor, his first wife of 57 years and the mother of his two sons William and Donald; also, by his parents Sue and Colonel William Major Goldston; an only sister Billie Sue Goldston Mayfield Roth (Preston) of El Paso, Texas; a first-cousin Roy Munroe of Corpus Christi, Texas; and by a first-cousin Lowell Lebermann, Jr. of Austin, Texas.
He is survived by his wife of nearly 7 years, Mary Daniel Goldston of Corpus Christi, Texas; by two sons, William Frank Goldston of Corpus Christi, Texas and James Donald Goldston (Christie) of Denton, Texas; a grandson James Michael Goldston of College Station, Texas; a granddaughter Nicole Conner (Bryan) and great granddaughter McKenzie of Corpus Christi, Texas; nieces Suzanna Burns and Hita Dickson (Jim) of Pearland, Texas; an uncle Harry E. Bovay, Jr. of Houston, Texas; and an in-law first cousin, Marilyn Munroe of Corpus Christi, Texas. He is also survived by his brother-in-law Dr. Clyde Yost (Bette) and nephews Dr. Michael Yost (Tracey) and Greg Yost (Brittney) of Boerne, Texas.
A Memorial Service will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, December 11, 2010 at First United Methodist Church, with the family receiving friends in the Fellowship Hall at the church following the service.
The family would like to thank his many doctors, nurses and caregivers for their kind and wise care.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to First United Methodist Church, Corpus Christi, Texas.

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Maxwell P. Dunne Funeral Service
1222 Morgan Ave.
Corpus Christi, TX 78404
p: 361-884-2411
f: 361-888-6831

Maxwell P. Dunne Funeral Service, Inc.
5921 Yorktown Blvd.
Corpus Christi, TX 78414
p: (361) 994-6551
f: (361) 994-6533