Our History

The beginning of our vibrant senior living communities.

In 1879, Buckner Retirement Services began among the least likely and most humble of backdrops: an orphans home in Dallas, Texas.

Thanks to the Christ-like vision of Dr. Robert Cook Buckner, the ministry that would one day become a leading provider of senior living and care – serving more than 2,000 senior adults each year – was launched in tiny row houses along the rural edge of Buckner Orphans Home.

Originally, these row houses served two purposes. They gave retired pastors and missionaries a place to enjoy retirement with dignity and comfort, while also providing children in the orphans’ home with grandparents to love and support them through their formational years. From the beginning, Buckner was a family ministry.

The growth of our retirement communities in Texas.

Eventually, in 1954, Buckner opened its first official retirement community, the Mary E. Trew Home in Dallas, located less than a mile from the original children’s home. In 1955, Buckner expanded its senior living ministry to Houston with the opening of Buckner Baptist Haven.

Over the next five decades, Buckner Retirement Services continued to expand with senior living communities and senior care services across the state.

In 1966, the Mary E. Trew Home in Dallas added the Buckner Ryburn Nursing Center and became known officially as Buckner Retirement Village. That community would be a staple of nonprofit senior living and care for Dallas-area seniors for more than 50 years, until Buckner Retirement closed the community in 2016 to focus on growth initiatives and accommodate the shifting Dallas landscape.

1970 added Buckner Villas in Austin to the Buckner family and further solidified Buckner as a leading provider of nonprofit senior living in Texas.

Buckner Westminster Place in Longview followed in 1996, opened originally as just an independent living community. Each Buckner retirement community has since grown to include every level of senior living and care, from independent living to assisted living, memory care and skilled nursing.

In 1998, Parkway Place in Houston opened its doors and replaced the original Buckner Haven, allowing the Buckner team to better serve Houston-area seniors through state-of-the-art amenities and a full continuum of expert care.

The fifth Buckner senior living community, Calder Woods in Beaumont, opened in 2000. Later, after Calder Woods’ successful beginning, the Buckner board of trustees voted to add hospice care to its retirement services repertoire. Buckner Hospice accepted its first patient, a Parkway Place resident, in 2010, and currently operates in both Houston and Beaumont.

Also in 2010, Buckner Retirement affiliated with Baptist Memorial Ministries, bringing Baptist Retirement Community in San Angelo, Texas into the Buckner family.

In 2017, Buckner brought its distinctive senior lifestyle back to Dallas when it broke ground on Ventana by Buckner, the organization’s first high-rise senior living community. Located just 10 miles from the original Buckner Orphans Home, Ventana is opened in 2019 and set Buckner apart as a leading provider of senior living in Dallas once again.

Today, Buckner Retirement is the second largest provider of nonprofit senior living communities in Texas, and the 52nd largest nationally. While Buckner has continued to refine its programs and senior care services to uniquely serve each generation of seniors throughout its 138-year ministry, one thing hasn’t changed: the faith-filled commitment to provide senior adults with dignified living and expert care, no matter what.

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