Linda Lelia Susan “Muffie” Moroney passed at her home in Houston on Monday, April 19, 2021. She was 77 years old. Muffie was born on May 27, 1943 in Washington, D.C. to Jessie Robinson Moroney and Robert Emmet Moroney, who was then serving in the United States Navy for the war effort.
Muffie grew up in Houston, with frequent visits to her mother’s family in what was then-rural Fort Bend County. Those early experiences in “the country” shaped and informed her character for life. She attended St. John’s School in Houston from pre-school through high school, graduating in the class of 1961. She then attended Randolph-Macon Woman’s College in Lynchburg, Virginia, where she was a member of the class of 1965. After college, Muffie worked for the National Security Agency before returning to Houston and marrying Clarence Renshaw, II, with whom she had two sons, Robert and Justin Renshaw.
Muffie and Clarence divorced, after which she attended law school at the University of Houston Law Center, where she was a member of the class of 1982. After completing a clerkship at the 14th Court of Appeals, she practiced with several law firms in Houston, including Vinson & Elkins, LLP, before opening her own practice and later joining her son, Justin, concentrating in civil litigation.
Her education in the law released Muffie’s inner activist, driving her to work tirelessly for justice and equality everywhere, all tempered by her desire to elevate conversations and bring people together. Her unstoppable commitment to various causes earned Muffie the respect and admiration of many, including those with whom she disagreed. As she matured in years and philosophy, she added interfaith dialogue to her long list of causes, participating in women’s groups and gaining many new friends from diverse backgrounds.
Much of what Muffie was able to accomplish in her life was enabled through the support of her friends, chief among them Nancy (“Nan Nan”) Woods, with whom she shared a treasured sisterhood and many adventures, not the least of which was raising Muffie’s two sons. In addition to her sons and Nancy, Muffie is survived by her daughters in law, Alisha Renshaw and Lynne Renshaw; grandchildren Carrie Renshaw, Beverly Renshaw, Emerson Renshaw, and Catherine Renshaw; her nephews Michael and Rob Kuntz; niece Katie Kuntz; numerous cousins and friends; her dog “Sweet;” and an uncertain number of feral cats she was attempting to “domesticate,” including “Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg” and “Representative John Lewis.”
Muffie served on the boards of directors of Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast and the Episcopal Church Publishing Company; the Alumni-Alumnae Boards of St. John’s School, Randolph-Macon Woman’s College, and the University of Houston Law Center; was a co-founder and member of the executive committee of the River Oaks Area Democratic Women (“ROADwomen”); and served as the Secretary of Sisters United Alliance, working to increase voter turnout among women throughout Texas.
She was a lifelong Episcopalian and member of Christ Church Cathedral, Houston, where she was active in numerous social justice causes. A service celebrating Muffie’s life will be held at Christ Church Cathedral on a date to be determined in the future to allow full participation and attendance. She will be interred in the Christ Church Cathedral columbarium in a private ceremony.
In lieu of flowers, those who wish to honor Muffie are asked to consider making a donation to one of her favorite charities: The Houston Food Bank, Heifer International, or the Wildlife Center of Texas.
Only our concept of time makes it possible for us to speak of the Day of Judgment by that name; in reality, it is a summary court in perpetual session.
If you see a good fight, get in it.