John Temple Rice, born in Danville, Virginia, on December 9, 1888. His family moved to Spencer, North Carolina. Rice assumed the role of taking care of his sisters and mother after his father’s passing. The family moved to El Paso, Texas in 1904. At the time he operated one of the leading drugstores in El Paso. John Temple Rice was active in St. Clements Episcopal Church and served as vestryman and senior warden. *St. Clements was founded by the masons of El Paso Lodge # 130 A.F. &. A.M.
He served his country proudly and enlisted in the 36th division of the Texas National Guard, as a medic and served in the Meuse-Argonne offensive. The Meuse-Argonne offensive is considered as the second deadliest battle in American history.
John T. Rice is perhaps the most decorated mason El Paso Lodge # 130 A.F. & A.M. Had. He served as President of the lodge in 1915-1916. In the Shriners, he served as El Maida’s Potentate. In 1937, served as Grand Master of masons in Texas. In York Rite – he was elected Grand Commander of Knights Templar in Texas and more notably, was elected as Grand Commander of Grand Encampment of North America. He was coroneted honorary 33rd Inspector General of the Scottish Rite.
Everyone who knew him said he knew every person by name.
“Live respected and die regretted”
John T. Rice
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