Donald Pulte

February 14, 1932 ~ July 21, 2023 (age 91) 91 Years Old


Donald Pulte, 91 of Idabel, passed away July 21, 2023 at home surrounded by his family and long time

family friend/caretaker- Barbara Mitchell. He was born February 14, 1932, and was raised in the

Redland Community, the son of Gladys and William Pulte. He was known by many in the community as

“Dutch”. He married Melba Jean Jones August 20, 1951 in Dequeen Arkansas. The first 10 years of their

marriage, they traveled throughout the Oklahoma, Texas and New Mexico oil fields working. They

returned to McCurtain County when her father became ill and built a little house with dirt floors to live

in on the farm. After he passed they purchased his farm at Shults. They made their home there and

shared 64 years together.

Don was a gentle and kind-hearted father and grandfather. He loved all his family. He appeared to be

tough as rawhide or nails, but was the most tendered hearted man when it came to his family. His

oldest great grandchildren adored their Papaw and many great great nephews and nieces adored their

Uncle Donald who would always have some money or a treat to give them.

Donald grew up loving horses. He was an avid horseman and was a self taught- skilled farrier. For many

years he shod, broke and helped cut horses in McCurtain County. The ranker or higher the spirit of the

horse, the better. The only horse he was not able to tame, he sold as bare back stock. This horse

traveled the rodeo circuit throwing many riders as far as Madison Square Gardens in New York.

His passion also was raising cattle and visiting with his fellow cattleman friends. For many years he

managed the family farm and lease land. Having over 300 head. He enjoyed fellowship with his best

ranching buddies Grant Harrison and Dr. Thomas Howard; along with going to horse sales with Melba’s

cousin Lawrence Dale Owens. He was always willing to give his father-in-law Lester Haltom a helping

hand with his cattle and traveling to Used Car Auctions with him and Lillie as they aged. He rarely

missed a Wednesday at the Idabel Sale Barn or the Monthly Brinkley Auction and you might find him

hanging out with Dean Justus, whom he worked with in the past, at his resale store- Eastside Furniture.

He enjoyed hog hunting. He set and trapped hogs until the age of 85.

He was the king of his daughters’ hearts and a man of many trades. He worked hard outside the farm to provide for his family. He worked as a skilled carpenter; working with iconic carpenters, Rudolf

Harris and Claborn Walden, building the newer brick home additions as Idabel expanded east of the

Historic District. In the 60’s he helped to build the spillway at Broken Bow Lake.

The last 7 years after leaving the farm due to his health, he enjoyed sitting on his stocked catfish pond

banks in his pajamas catching his fish and taking drives to the farm and the old Redland homeplace where he grew up, reminiscing about the old days.

Donald is survived by his daughters, Diane and spouse Ken of Perkins, Oklahoma, Kathy (Gray) Coffey

and husband Mark of Valliant; grandchildren, Dwayne Cobb, Patrick Cobb, Kyle Gray and wife Danielle,

Kortney Gray; great-grandchildren, Patrick “Jr.” Cobb, Tate Cobb, Preslee Cobb, Lincoln Gray, Karter

Gray; sister-in-law, Betty Pulte of Tool, Texas; special friends and caregivers, Barbara Mitchell, Linda

Strawn, Dr. Gordon Butzirus, the staff of Enhabit Home Health and numerous other relatives and


He was the last survivor of a great generation, being preceded in death by his parents; wife, Melba

Pulte; son, Jimmy Don Pulte; siblings, Alene Mathews, Leatrice Mills, Doris Whisenhunt, Billy Pulte and

twin sister, Donna Dollarhide; and the majority of his closest friends.

A celebration of life service will be held at 10:00 a.m., Tuesday, July 25, 2023 at the Redland Cemetery Pavilion with Diane Pulte officiating. Family will receive friends from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. Monday, July 24, 2023 at the Clardy Funeral Service Chapel.

To send flowers to the family, please visit our floral store.

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July 24, 2023

6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Clardy Funeral Service
1201 E. Lincoln Road
Idabel, OK 74745

Graveside Service
July 25, 2023

10:00 AM
Redland Cemetery Pavilion


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