Maxine Lucillia Volga Brecht passed away on February 8, 2012, in Bryan, Texas, where she lived for the past three years. Born March 1, 1923, in Weston, West Virginia, to Daniel and Susan (nee Detamore) Volga, she came of age in Washington, D.C., and was working at the newly built Pentagon when she met Maj. Harold M. Brecht, a decorated Army Air Corps pilot on leave. She married him four days later. A newspaper photographer snapped their wedding picture to accompany the story, “War Hero Weds Washington Beauty.” After the war, her husband was among the first pilots in the U. S. Air Force, so she adapted to living in places as varied as pre-statehood Alaska and rural France while raising their four children. An active volunteer, she participated in school and church projects and the Officers’ Wives Club, rising to president of the large group at Scott AFB in Illinois. She was an unusual blend of artistic ability, keen intuition, and business savvy, a woman of big picture scope and detail smarts. She could throw a great party anywhere, and often did.
When the couple retired to Charleston, SC, she found outlet for her talents as a fashion coordinator and commentator, and then as manager of a medical practice. She was so successful that she was chosen to speak to fellow managers at two national conventions. She tried her hand at real estate, joining a top firm and selling a house only eight days later. Her warm personality, artistic eye, attention to detail, and vast experience setting up households made her a great agent. She went on to earn a broker’s license. To be closer to family, she and her husband relocated to San Antonio, Texas. He died a year later, but the incredible chemistry between them remained to the end. His final word was to her: “Sweetheart.” The courtship of only four days led to a loving union of over four decades.
After her husband’s death, she did what she had done her whole married life: she established herself in a new environment and made new friends. Her volunteer work included the Randolph Metro Chamber of Commerce and the McNay Art Museum. A lifelong devotee of art, music, cooking, and fashion, she passed her enthusiasms on to her children, grandchildren, and even great-grandchildren. Her intelligence, beauty, intuition, sense of humor, and loving spirit will be greatly missed.
She is survived by her children: Stephen (Nancy) Brecht of Orinda, CA, Susan (Lyndon) Hibbard of St. Louis, MO, L. Christine (Royce) Fudge of Mount Pleasant, SC, and Robert (Gloria) Brecht of College Station, TX. She is also survived by her nine grandchildren: Lisa (Jaime) Boero, Stephen (Melanie) Hibbard Trouvere, Alyson Fudge, Lara Poirier, Andrew Brecht, Amanda (Jamie) Weber, Robert (Marisa) Brecht, Matthew Brecht, Michael Brecht, and seven great-grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas, on Friday, February 24 at 11 am. She will be buried with her husband.