April 1, 2013

Audra Tommie Irwin

The Express-Star

— Audra Tommie Irwin

Graveside services for Audra Tommie Irwin, of Chickasha,  were held 2 p.m., Monday, April 1, 2013 at Fairlawn Cemetery, Chickasha.  Pallbearers were Bart Jay Robey, Darenda Sylvester, Darrelyn Phillips, Johnna Kempe, Colton Feroli, Kimberly Weger.  Brant Stubblefield, minister of the Church of Christ officiated.  

The Prism Quartet recording of Alex was played during the service.

A pioneer, retired nurse and dedicated caregiver has entered Paradise. Audra Tommie Irwin was born April 19, 1910 in Hawley, Texas to Acey Clifford and Flora Ann (Pruett) Bates.  She passed away on Friday, March 29, 2013 in Oklahoma City, at the age of 102.

She moved in her early childhood to Snyder, Oklahoma, later moving to Grady County in the Ninnekah, Pioneer and Fairview communities, and  presently residing in Oklahoma City.

She graduated from Fairview High School where she lettered in basketball and went to State two years.  She and her future sister-in-law, Nellie Irwin Beasley, were teammates and were known as the “mean ones” on the team. Her future husband, Carl, also went to State in basketball and vocal music.

Audra continued her education at St. Anthony Hospital, where she completed medical and radiology technology, being one of the original ones.

Audra married Carl. M. Irwin on March 18, 1928 in Anadarko, Oklahoma. They were attended by Archie Doss and Grace King.  They were close friends and later married.  To this union was born one daughter, Teddy Jo Ann Irwin.

In 1938, she obeyed the gospel of Christ at Central Church of Christ, now Southern Oaks in Chickasha, Oklahoma.  She was baptized by Brother Byron Fullerton.  She received much encouragement from a dear friend, now deceased, Irene Thompson.  She was presently a member at Deer Creek Church of Christ.

Her professional career began with Dr. Walter Baze and Dr. Joseph Swan.  She remained with them for several years.  She was associated with the Chickasha Clinic where she worked with pediatricians, Dr. A.W. Hoyt and Dr. William Click. In 1957, Dr. Hugh Connor and Dr. John Ennis opened the new hospital in Cyril.  She and Velma Hollern accepted the challenge to work in the new endeavor, working to build a health care facility.  She loved every minute of this demanding challenge.

Always eager to gain more knowledge and expertise in the medical field, she took any new seminar or advanced training that came her way.  Later she was on the  staff at Baptist Hospital, now Integris.  She did private duty nursing where she met many lovely patients, many becoming lasting friends.

With a busy career, she and Carl still had time to organize the Chickasha Ramrods Riding Club.  This was a youth group which participated in riding events throughout the State.  Just so happened, that their three granddaughters where charter members, Carla, Dara and Jamie.

Audra and Carl were very active in the Disabled American Veterans.  Both of them  serving as State Commander.  Many veterans benefited from the dedication to this organization.

Both Audra and Carl were strong, loyal Democrats, active in precinct, county and state functions.

In her eighties, she played basketball with her great grandson, Bart Jay Robey, the star in her eyes.  She might have been the winner.

Audra was a very strong willed and determined individual.  On her 90th birthday, she dribbled a basketball into the Quail Creek Bank in Oklahoma.  She had to prove to Bob Holland that she could still do it.

She loved her family and took care of them.  It was instilled in Audra and Carl that you take care of your own.  She cared for all her family.  She was the only one left standing. She accomplished her goal.

Audra is pre-deceased by her husband, Carl; son-in-law, James E. Watson, whom she considered as a son; granddaughter, Jamie Ruth Feroli; her parents, Acey and Flora Ann Bates; two sisters, Katie Lee Boswell and Ada Mae Simonton; one brother, David T. Bates and three nephews, Dennis Bates, Duane Simonton and Dan Simonton.

She is survived by her daughter, Teddy Jo Ann Watson; two granddaughters, Carla Robey-Harcourt and Dara Lynn Robison; seven great grandchildren, Bart Jay Robey, Darenda Sylvester, Darrelynn Phillips, Johnna JoAnn Kempe, Colton James Feroli, Sean Feroli and Kimberly Weger; eight great-great grandchildren, Grace, Elizabeth Robey, James Watson Robey; twins Addison and Aiden Sylvester, Alaura Litson, Jacoby Kempe, Jamielynn Kempe and Kadyn Weger; one very special nephew, Marlin Lee Boswell and his wife, Virginia

Interment was in the Fairlawn Cemetery, Chickasha, OK under the direction of Sevier Funeral Home.