Family, Friends Celebrate Hastings’s Birthday As Council Prepares to Resume Full-Access Meetings

By George Slaughter

Phil Marsbary, right, presents Mayor Bill Hastings with an honorary membership in the American Legion Saturday. Joining them are, from left, legion members Bill Kennison and Mark Moore (George Slaughter photo)

Mayor Bill Hastings’s birthday was actually July 1, but family and friends celebrated his birthday Saturday afternoon at Snappy’s.

The party came as Hastings and the city council prepare for their first fully-open meeting since the pandemic struck last year. The council is set to meet at 6:30 p.m. Monday at City Hall.

The council held virtual meetings during the pandemic. In recent weeks, the council met in its city hall chamber, but the public wasn’t fully admitted due to pandemic concerns. Monday’s meeting will be back to normal.

Hastings was the third police chief in Katy’s history. The first chief, Pat Adams, hired Hastings in December 1986 for the police department. Previously, Hastings was a volunteer with the Katy Ambulance Service and the Katy Volunteer Fire Department.

Hastings worked his way through the ranks. Then-Mayor Don Elder, Jr., appointed Hastings chief to succeed R.L. “Buddy” Frazier, who had held the job for 13 years. Frazier died in 2018.

Hastings served as chief from 2009-19, when he retired and announced his candidacy for mayor. He defeated incumbent Chuck Brawner and took office in May 2019.

Family and friends said the “70/45” party theme commemorated both his age and years of public service.

Hastings said Snappy’s was gracious to host the party. Snappy’s is known for serving breakfasts and lunches and is typically closed in the late afternoons and evenings. The restaurant’s new owner, Anna Liu, said she hopes Snappy’s can host after-hours events such as Hastings’s birthday going forward.

“Bill turned 70, and is also celebrating his 45 years serving the community,” Liu said. “We canal  tell Bill really cares about the community and that’s why we wanted to do something extra, to give people the chance to show their appreciation for him.”