John Sweeney, born in Houston on June 10, 1959, died on April 15 in Houston after several months' illness. He had been employed at the Houston Press for more than ten years in the production department as the Layout Editor, handling both editorial and ad copy.
John went to Lockhart Elementary and Lanier Junior High and graduated from the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA.) He attended Texas Southern University, where he was a fashion design major. He worked with several magazines before joining the Press.
"Whenever I walked into our production department, John was always the first one to say hello. I keep thinking about that. He was a good employee who contributed a lot to the success of our publication and I will miss him for the person he was as well as the work he did," said Houston Press Publisher Stuart Folb.
"Working every day together for years, John wasn't just a co-worker. He was family. We discussed fashion, music, art, politics, television and more. And that could have all been in just one morning. Smart, funny, compassionate, caring and fabulous. He's missed more than I can put into words," said Houston Press Production Manager Brian Cook.
Houston Press Art Director Monica Fuentes had this to say: "Professionally, John Sweeney was an art director's dream. He made my job seem easy for the entire time I worked with him, and I knew he took pride in his work for the Houston Press. Personally, John always had a smile and quick wit that made those around him feel totally at ease. He was incredibly creative in many mediums, but his true love was fashion. He will be missed, and he will always be a Presser."
John is survived by his twin sister and only sibling, Donna Fernandez, and husband Ricardo Fernandez; his nieces Cassidy Edwards, Ryan Wheeler and Taylor Fernandez; his nephew Jesus Fernandez; his grand nephew Jordan Blanks and grand nieces Aaliyah Edwards, Zoë Seiglie and Londyn Edwards. He was predeceased by his mother and father, John and Azoree Sweeney.
Friends and family are invited to a visitation from 9-11 a.m. Tuesday, April 21, at Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church, 3826 Wheeler Avenue. A service will follow starting at 11 a.m. Bill Clair Family Mortuary is handling the arrangements. A GoFundMe account has been established to help defray the costs.