Last week our Texas title industry lost not only a dear friend and colleague, but also a true TLTA Legend. Lloyd Draper passed from this earth peacefully, but much too soon and he will be missed by all who were blessed with the good fortune to know him. Those who didn’t know him will still benefit from the impact that he made on our industry through his many years of steadfast service to TLTA and the title industry that he loved so much.
When I came to work at TLTA in 1982, Lloyd Draper was an integral part of our organization and industry. While Lloyd had only been in the business for 6 years and was still very young, he had already established himself as an industry leader. He was awarded TLTA’s Outstanding Young Title Person award in 1981 and a short ten years later had worked his way up through the ranks of the TLTA Board, serving as President in 1990-91.In 1993, he was awarded TLTA’s highest honor – the Title Person of the Year Award. In 2013, he entered the ranks of our elite Honorary Members for Sustained Meritorious Service.
Lloyd was definitely an overachiever and his desire to accomplish things was matched only by his passion, loyalty and dedication. To say he put heart and soul into all he did would be an understatement. I had the pleasure of interviewing Lloyd in 1983 for the TLTA Magazine and quoted him as saying, “I believe that you have to work hard if you want to win,” a philosophy he carried with him from his time playing football at TCU. Lloyd walked the talk, chairing or serving on virtually every TLTA committee over the years. He believed in TLTA and was a constant champion of our work. His volunteer leadership spanned from education to regulatory to legislative and everything in between. If it mattered to our industry, it mattered to him. He was always willing to step up and put in the time and hard work to get the job done. Lloyd cared about what was in the best interest of the entire industry, not just any one company, sometimes sticking his neck out professionally for what he believed was right. He worked tirelessly on positions of compromise, always advocating for the path that benefited the whole. He leaves a body of volunteer work on behalf of and for the betterment of this industry that can only be described one way – a legacy.
Just as important as his formal leadership roles, there was Lloyd the encourager, the mentor, the friend. He will be remembered by so many for the care he showed in encouraging and mentoring them and other young industry professionals and budding leaders to excel and get involved, just as he had done. He believed in people and loved people, and they in turn loved him. Over the last few days as I’ve talked to TLTA members, a similar theme has emerged: “Lloyd was my mentor,” “Lloyd encouraged me to get involved and showed me the ropes,” “Lloyd made me feel welcome,” “Lloyd was my friend.” Everyone called Lloyd Draper a friend, and what higher compliment can be given than that?
Of course, no remembrance of Lloyd would be complete without mentioning his wonderfully big personality. He lived large and loved even larger, beginning with devotion to his beloved wife Mary and sons Stephen and Scott, and extending to all of his title industry “buds,” who he considered family. He lived life to its fullest and was comfortable being at the center of the action. He loved sports and his TCU Horned Frogs, a round of golf, a nice glass of scotch, and a trip to Vegas. But most of all, he loved having a good time with his friends. And with Lloyd, there was never a shortage of any of it.
While grappling with this loss, numerous members of our TLTA community have sent me emails over the last few days that I think sum it up well: “Lloyd was a one of a kind icon to this beloved Texas title industry,” “A true original in the Texas title industry,” “Lloyd was an institution in and of himself,” “A truly fine man and such a great title guy,” “The face of TLTA for many years,” “Bigger than life in so many ways and always a friend to all.”
Lloyd, rest easy knowing you made a difference, that you were loved beyond measure by your TLTA family, and that you left an amazing example of leadership and service that lives on. You will be missed but never ever forgotten, dear friend.
You can read Lloyd’s obituary, learn more about the celebration of his life this Friday, or get information about memorial donations here.