McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

January 9, 2014

Loyce Lorene West Bell

From submitted reports
Staff Writer

McALESTER — Loyce Lorene West Bell, of the Boggy Community north of Red Oak, died Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2014, at her home.

Funeral services will be at 3 p.m. Sunday at Red Oak School Auditorium with Curtis Curry officiating. Mike Bailey will give the eulogy. Burial will at North Rock Creek Cemetery. Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Jones-Harkins Funeral Home of Wilburton.

Born Sept. 21, 1936, in McCurtain, she was the daughter of Ted and Lottie “Nan” Thomas West. At birth, her father dubbed her “Fatty” and her twin sister “Sticky.”

She was a member of Red Oak Church of Christ and served as the longtime author and publisher of the weekly church bulletin.

After 30 years of service, she retired from Jones Academy Indian Boarding School. At Jones Academy she was known as “Mrs. Bell.” She received numerous awards, plaques and commendations.

She was an active member of the Choctaw Nation throughout her life and career, having been selected twice as Elder of the Year by her tribal councilman. She was first appointed to the Inter Tribal Council of the Five Civilized Tribes by the late Chief David Gardner. She was the longest serving member of the Inter Tribal Council, having the opportunity to serve with three Choctaw chiefs. She also served on the Arkansas Riverbed Authority Board, as well as the Choctaw Nation Health Services Authority Board.

She was recognized by the Humane Society of the United States as a Humane Hero.

She was a voracious reader, crossword puzzle zealot, and cook and often played with the Kwanokasha, the Little People of the Choctaw. She and her sister were inseparable companions who took daily jaunts to visit friends, relatives, and the sick and elderly, ballgames and antique stores and made frequent trips to Eureka Springs, Ark.

Survivors include her five daughters, Jodie White, of Red Oak, Joyce Jones, of Talihina, Kim Prock, of Claremore, Shelley Free, of Red Oak, and Kalyn Free, of Tulsa; the father of her daughters, Guy Free; four sons-in- law, Johnny White, Danny Jones, Roger Prock and Steve Bruner.

Also, seven grandchildren, Dru Shea and Randy Kauk, of Red Oak, Kachelle and Danny Bullard, of Red Oak, Brian and Jennifer Jones, of Oklahoma City, Sloane Prock, of Claremore, Chance and Jade Adams, of Durant, Carly Jones, of Wilburton, and Lane Adams, of Red Oak.

And, 10 great-grandchildren, Hunter Prock, Oscar Boyle, Kimberlyn and Jerret Carpenter, Asher, Reed and Quincee Kauk, Lakyn and Teagan Adams, and GuyJack Jones; four sisters, Faola Hilburn and Juanita Noah, of Red Oak, her twin, Joyce Brownlie, of Edmond, and Nadean Reynolds, of Broken Arrow; her foster children, Felicia, Melody and Adrian Johnico; her very special friends, Francis Harjo and Robert Holden; sisters-in-law, Erma Free, Mary Tolson and Doris Ann Baker, and numerous cousins, nephews, nieces and friends.

She was preceded in death by her soul mate, Forrest Bell; her parents, Ted and Lottie “Nan” West, and her nephew, Chris Hilburn.

Pallbearers will be Chance Adams, Lane Adams, Danny Bullard, Brian Jones, Randy Kauk, John Noah, Hunter Prock and Sloane Prock.

Honorary pallbearers will be Arnold Baker, Bennie Brooks, Johnny Coleman, Frankie Fazekas, Francis Harjo, Robert Holden, Richard Lyons, Larry Mabry, Arlie Marris, Doug Martin, Robert Smith, Brad Spears and Pete Swafford.

Memorials may be made to Eastern Oklahoma State College Church of Christ Bible Chair, 1301 West Main, Wilburton OK, 74578; Hope Harbor Children’s Home, P.O. Box 1047, Claremore, OK, 74018; or PAWS of Latimer County, P.O. Box 15, Wilburton, OK, 74578.