Clara Frances Russell, a former long-time resident of Idabel, Oklahoma passed away September 26, 2020 at her residence in Naperville, Illinois, surrounded by her loving family. She was 94 years of age. She was born in West Fork, Arkansas on August 3, 1926, the daughter of Willie Parks Rosebeary and Ethel Ivy (Davidson) Rosebeary. Clara was one of ten children.
Clara met Luke Russell at Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma City, OK--where they both worked--and were married in 1946, after which they moved to Idabel, where they raised four daughters: Gail, Karen, Carla, and Rosalind. Clara was also Stepmother to Luke’s three children, Larry, Harry “Buzzy”, and Kathy. Clara and Luke were married for 45 years, until Luke’s death in 1991. She later married Louie Johnson of Broken Bow, OK.
Clara graduated from West Fork High School in 1944, where she was very proud to be a member of the girls’ basketball team who participated in the state playoffs. She received her Nurse’s training at Fayetteville, Arkansas City Hospital. In Idabel, she worked for 35 years as an Office Nurse for Dr. A.M. Clarkson, Dr. W. T. Brinson, and Dr. Jon Maxwell. Prior to that, she was also employed at McCurtain Memorial Hospital.
“Granny”, as Clara was known by family and friends alike, loved sports and games-- playing on a women’s softball team, as well as on both a women’s bowling team with two of her daughters and also on a couples team with her husband, Luke. She also played a mean game of Horseshoes, Spades, or Dominos. She was an avid Oklahoma Sooners Football fan, as well as the Dallas Cowboys, before moving to Illinois—where she also became an avid Cubs baseball fan, cheering them on to win the World’s Series in 2016. In her latter years, she worked hundreds of jigsaw puzzles, while continuing to follow her many sports teams.
Clara is preceded in death by her parents, Willie and Ethel Rosebeary, and siblings: Letha Rieff; Euell “Lefty” Rosebeary; Alva Rosebeary; Willie, Jr. Rosebeary; Ray Rosebeary; Orville Rosebeary, Loy Rosebeary, and Nolen Rosebeary. Also preceding her are husbands, Luke Russell and Louie Johnson; her daughter and son-in law, Gail and George Rhea; her stepsons, Larry Russell and Buzzy Russell; and stepgrandson, Stuart Russell.
She leaves her cherished family: brother, Everette Rosebeary and his wife, Carol; daughters Karen Ogle, Carla Baker, and Rosalind Burwell and her husband Scott Mitchell; stepdaughter Kathy Bitter; sisters in-law, Carrye Rosebeary and Gwen Rosebeary; stepdaughters in-law, Thelma Russell and Sue Russell. She is further survived by grandchildren and their spouses; Russell Baker, Richelle Scribner, Kason Smith, April and Dennis DeCou, Jeanna and Jared Talley, Stephen Rhea, Emilie Mitchell, Ronnie Russell, Steven and Jennifer Russell, Susan and Andy Burger, Scott Russell, Stacy and Kenny Sims. Lastly, Clara is survived by several great and great-great grandchildren and also numerous nieces and nephews.
A Celebration of Life Service will be held Saturday, October 3, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. at the Clardy Funeral Service Chapel in Idabel, OK. The family will receive friends from 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. just prior to the Service. A private family interment will be at Denison Cemetery in Idabel.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in Clara's name to Residential Hospice Foundation. https://www.residentialhealthcaregroup.com/services/hospice/give-back/
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