Shirley Evelyn Hamilton

September 11, 1935 - May 31, 2012

Shirley Evelyn Hamilton

September 11, 1935 - May 31, 2012

Obituary

Shirley Hamilton – a woman of many talents: daughter, wife, mother of many, funny, mechanical, inventive, and creative. This is lengthy because she lived a full life to the end. You will find categories, so scroll down and enter her life celebration with us Family: Daughter: Shirley came from a very proper English and staunch German heritage. The English side of her was always, very proper and the German side was very conservative. She lived with her grandparents, Charles & Mary Osborn, off and on through her developing years. Some of her favorite memories of her Granddad were sitting at night talking about life and playing games. Granddad always shared his knowledge with his 13 kids and 66 grandchildren when they were at his place and Shirley listened and learned. Not surprising, when Granddad was in his last days at the hospital, she had a specific day of the week that she spent the day with him at the hospital and they continued their talks. Grandma Mary instilled her artistic talents in Shirley by the way she set a table. Every morning Grandma would get up and set a proper table with all the plates, napkins, silverware, and those extra touches like sculpted butter for each plate. Shirley’s parents, Jack & Iletta, were always a part of her life. She would come up with something to be built and she’d call her daddy and get him to weld a creation, build an addition, or teach her kids how to plumb. Her mother instilled her English background by being proper in everything to do with running a household. Whether setting a proper table, cleaning to white glove perfection, how to make a lot from a little, sharing your blessings with others, or teaching your children to be self-sufficient, that came from her mother. Wife: Shirley met her future husband, Burrell, while getting gas at Tallent’s Snappy Service in Sand Springs (SS). Burrell would pump her gas and clean her windshield and that’s how their 56 years together began. Their dates were exciting! On one of the early dates they went to Tulsa, and Burrell impressed her with his driving talents down the SS Line (Charles Page Blvd) on the way back to Sand Springs They parked in front of the SS Library to chat while Tulsa Police put out a bulletin about a speeding 49 Ford in Tulsa and gave the tag number – SS Police radioed back and announced that car was no longer in Tulsa it is sitting in SS in front of the library. The next day Burrell was arrested for excessive speeding. Their life was full of adventures from the very beginning! Her boyfriend was critically burned while cleaning out “the pit” at Tallent’s and she spent many hours at the hospital with him during his recovery. Their relationship developed and six-months after his discharge from the hospital they were married. That’s the way Shirley was, when someone was hurt or needed assistance, she was there for them. Mother of many: Shirley and Burrell had two girls, Lexie & Tonya, but they took in many that Shirley mentored the same as her girls. Two specific girls were Karen and Denise. Karen Stavig met Shirley while on vacation in Hawaii. Shirley was walking across the street admiring the architecture of the building and stepped in a chug-hole, breaking her foot! Karen wheeled Shirley all over Hawaii and their relationship began. There have been many hours visiting, listening and counseling Karen through her wedding to Roy, adopting Nathan & Kadelyn, advice on raising kids, graduations, Nathan’s wedding, the loss of Karen’s parents, and holidays. Karen started as an accidental friend and became a cherished and loved part of Shirley’s life. Denise Warner was a friend of Lexie’s and mom took an instant liking to her “red-headed daughter”. Mom always smiled when she would talk of her daughter, Denise. She was so proud of Denise’s perseverance in overcoming hardship and putting herself through nursing school. Mostly Mom was thankful of her love of God and the beautiful way Denise could simplify sophisticated, scary medical terms and make them easy to understand. Denise was key in saving Shirley’s life when she had an event in the emergency room – Shirley never forgot that and her love for Denise naturally grew. Mom loved that girl so much she actually created an adoption certificate and gave it to Denise for Christmas. Lexie and Tonya’s lives were touched on a daily basis in too many ways to share them all. Shirley shared her love of drafting and design with Lexie. They created house plans that Lexie’s company built and sold. After designing the homes, she would get to be a part of the decorating, and get to see the finished product. She loved to come over and decorate the model homes, and go through the process together. She made so many dreams come true for so many people. As most know, Lexie spent many years of her life on the not-so-straight and narrow, and through it all, Shirley’s prayers, love and compassion were always there. In 2003, Lexie’s life changed, when she started attending Guts church. Through ministry training classes, Lexie began to teach abused and hurting women. That began their journey into the Bible together as mother and daughter, where Shirley would impart her knowledge, and they would share together, and continue to share the Word. Shirley’s love, compassion and faithful prayer brought Lexie through some tough times. Lexie married Mark in 2010, and Shirley found common ground with him and imparted her knowledge of landscaping and gardening. He also got “the look” and a warning not to take her away! She shared time, cooking, sewing, and Bible study tools with Tonya. They had a standing date on Monday nights to watch TV together, and they worked together to make a family cookbook, that we continue to add favorite recipes to. The joke with mom when she cooked a new dish was, “Oh, you made something new!” When you wanted to know what made it so good, she would grin and say, “I didn’t write it down!” When she had a new sewing project, like how to make a cornice board, she would call Tonya and have her come up to “help”, thus teaching her a new skill without saying, “let’s have a lesson”. She always inquired with Tonya what she was teaching that week at church, and then she would pull out scriptures and references, and would always tell her to refer back to the Word of God. She encouraged everyone to always read the before and after, so you would understand the entire context of the scripture. When she knew Tonya was leading worship or singing a special, she would manage to sneak in, and sit on the back row at church so she could listen. Shirley did everything possible to help her girls to become self-sufficient in every way while focusing on their individual personality strengths to continue a strong team after she was gone. Grandmother: Shirley had two grand children, Genny & Will. Genny and Grandma Shirley spent hours together drawing and cooking over the years. You always felt special at Grandma’s house! Grandma Shirley was always encouraging Will and giving him suggested direction in his life as well. When Genny married Adrian, Shirley was thrilled with the character she saw in this young man. He took to her immediately, calling her “grandma” within a few days of meeting her. The only negative was that he wasn’t an Okie and just might move her Genny away – they did move but Shirley never really was upset, she just went and visited them, and helped with ideas for decorating their house! Shirley gave Will many memorable birthdays and Christmases. One year he had a scavenger hunt with riddles for the next hiding place – he had to really use his thinking cap that year. Another year she rolled up money and taped it to an umbrella so when he opened it, all the money rained down on him. We all know that grand children are special, but then we met Will’s daughter, Mya, and we all understood the magic of having “GREAT-grandchildren”. Mya is as capricious as Will was at a young age, and Shirley knew just what to do to pique her interest and keep her entertained. She would always have a project for Mya when she came over to the house. It might be reading a special book, coloring, painting, playing cards or dominoes, or Mya’s favorite – dress-up! Shirley observed people and discovered their interests and then built a relationship around them by sharing her knowledge that interested and enhanced their lives. Shirley had a way of teaching you something whether you knew you were learning or not. Funny Lady: Shirley had a wry sense of humor. You knew something was coming because her eyes held this little extra glimmer and then, wham! You were laughing either at the joke on you, or jokes she shared that happened to her. One time Bennie, her brother, took the hubcaps off one of her cars and hid them under the seats of the car. She thought Burrell stole her hubcaps, so she drove all over town to track down Burrell and confront him about her hubcaps. When she found Burrell, she was furious with him, while Bennie and his buds were across town chuckling about the prank he pulled on his sister. Mechanic & Dragster Wife: Shirley learned about engines from the time she was little. Growing up on Grandad’s farm in Pawnee, they had to make due over the years. One thing they did was make their own gaskets for the tractors. Either her Grandad or her father would sit her down with an engine part and have her put several layers of paper over the area they needed a gasket and she’d begin tapping around the part with a ball-peen hammer. Eventually the paper would cut and she created the gasket. She learned to work on her cars too. Burrell, being the car man he is, always brought home treasures for mom to drive, but sometimes they gave her issues, so she learned what to do – that was before cell phones, so she didn’t have a choice! Burrell and Bennie both raced cars. They would race on Saturday and Sunday, then come in late Sunday evening. While they worked on Monday, Shirley would break down Burrell’s dragster engine and have it ready for “the guys” to work through it and rebuild during the week. Being married to a drag racer and having a brother that raced too, her life was often on the road. One memory was a time Burrell and Bennie took Shirley, Louise, and the kids to OKC for a family weekend. The weather was turning bad so they called one of the team members and they pulled the dragsters down to OKC and off they went to Amarillo for a weekend competition. The girls took things in stride and Shirley’s creativeness kicked in. Where do you put three kids to sleep in a small motel at the last minute? Simpledresser drawers! Easter at a drag racing event? No problem! Shirley and Louise made sure the kids were all dressed up for Easter while they were the pit crew of the day. Inventive: Shirley would look at things in a unique way. Is there a better way to complete this task? For exampledid you know scotch tape works wonders in two ways?! Put a strip of tape across your bangs with the top edge where you want the bangs to fall – make your straight cut and the tape holds the hair you just cut off! Another time, mom became frustrated at constantly gathering supplies and then picking through them when she was creating a bouquet or wreath, so what better thing to do than just design a holder? She did and then all her tapes, wires, and cutters were in a 10″ diameter florist caddy. Vacations also brought challenges. Mom overcame them one by one. We had horrible fleas in Florida one year, so she went to the store and bought flea collars and pinned them in our hair so the fleas would leave us alone. She came up with the first ankle bracelet too. Yes, she put the flea collars on us while we ran through the sand! Need to cook gravy or scrambled eggs for nine when at the lake? No problem! Use heavy duty foil in your pans and you could cook anything using a wooden spoon and then just throw the foil away and wash the spoon. Shirley had a quiet way of observing a person or situation, finding what was needed, and providing it. One example is when her brother Sammie and his wife, Sharon, were living in England running the Osborn Foundation’s offices. Sammie mentioned in a letter how the mustard in England was so different than American mustard, and that they didn’t have French’s. Next thing you know, Shirley found a gallon plastic container, filled it with French’s mustard, and shipping it to England for him. Their European friends weren’t quite sure what to think when Sammie slathered a hamburger with this strange mustard, but they sure liked it! Business Owner & Designer: Shirley had a few businesses during her adult years. One was a florist shop and the other was SHE Designs. She loved to talk to people and create flower arrangements tailored specifically for those people. She’d add birds, rooster feathers, hidden animals and anything else she could think of to add. One year she made teddy bears with honey pots adding honey and little bees all over him. Another theme she created was hidden birds in a log. One time she found a lot of grape vines and went out to pick them – a few days later she was having issues breathing and come to find out, she contracted poison ivy internally because of the picking venture. She loved to decorate for Christmas. She would get cousins together and go to their houses and bake and decorate their houses. One year she suspended reindeer and Santa across a living room! Her personal house was decorated with dolls – she used all the dolls from us kids and set them all over her tree. It was a great time to reminisce over whom they belonged to and when/how they got them. Shirley enjoyed a design challenge. Many times Burrell would find good deals on motor homes and campers that needed a little TLC. Mom would jump in and gut them so she had a clean slate to start with and begin building. Next thing you knew, there was triple the amount of storage space and seating with matching drapes and cushions. There wasn’t much she would give up on doing when she had the picture in her mind. She made snap-up shades to cover windows, raised floors for storing life jackets and TV trays, and Velcro hit its zenith in her campers! She could have won every home design star competition shown on TV. She moved on to decks, kitchens, and complete house plans. She decided a deck on the back of her home would be very nice place to relax and so she drew the plans, called her dad and we had a family project. Shirley redesigned her kitchen two times, each way different than the previous. She wanted a walk in closet and knocked out a wall and changed one bedroom into a closet and added square footage to her bedroom. When Lexie began building homes, Shirley wanted to do the drafting of the plans. She loved to think about every house plan and put storage in each wasted wall space and tried to put at least one thing just for the specific family she was designing for. If you live in a LexMark or a Cashmere Builder’s home, you are living in a SHE design home. Artist: Shirley loved to draw and she took that to oils, acrylics, pastels, pencils and watercolors. Her Aunt Thelma Bean taught her how to take her ideas and put them on canvas. Often she would go to someone’s home and see a photo on their wall and ask to borrow the picture. She’d have it for a few weeks and return the photo with an oil painting to put the wall. Shirley was just that type of giver. She would see a dress she liked and figure out a pattern to make it for her or her girls and provide a current style on her budget. She took drapery classes via mail (no internet back then) and made beautiful drapes. Shirley shared her sewing shortcuts with her girls so they could make their own clothes later in life. Shirley loved to have an annual Christmas basket cooking day! She would plan the menu and then make her list of supplies and anyone that wanted would begin cooking at 6am on a Saturday and finish up around midnight with all the fancy wrapping. Later in years we all slowed down and we’d begin on a Friday night, make it a slumber party and then continue cooking on Saturday. There were chicken and dumplins, stews, sugar cookies, breads, candies, homemade rice krispy treats (no marshmallows here!) and fancy decorations as well. Counselor and Teacher: Anyone who met Shirley knew there was something special about her. It was her personal relationship with her Lord and Savior. Shirley always volunteered at her church. Whether sewing, teaching or cleaning, it didn’t matter. Everything she did was done for her Father in Heaven’s honor. Early on, she had one project where she made Barbie Doll clothes and sold them for a fund raiser. She taught children, teens, college kids, and adults. When she taught the college age kids, she worried about the age difference. After all, she was in her 60s and they in their 20s. The kids came over to her house every week and had a Bible lesson, all the while not realizing they were receiving social lessons as well! Burrell was very gracious and didn’t fuss much at all these college kids invading his den. They all came to love each other! Two weeks before she passed, she was teaching two group Bible studies and a private class as well. She was heart-broken about having to give it up but she just didn’t have the energy or ability to study the hours SHE felt necessary to bring the lesson to life for each person. Once a month she taught at a nursing home and every week she worried about bringing the Word of God to life for every person in that room. When one of her girls was having a really difficult time in life, Shirley decided to take a counseling class and ask her daughter to join her in the class because she was uncomfortable attending alone. That humility in her helped many a person to help themselves and move forward in their lives with skills that lasted a life-time. She always found time to sit with friends and friends’ children and just listen to them share their problems and then with a quiet voice she’d point out what the scripture said about their situation and show them God had a plan and was really the one they were receiving guidance from. Thank You: From the time Shirley was sent home on April 4th with hospice and a verdict of months to live all of her friends and church family have gone above and beyond to stop by and visit, bring food, send flowers, sit with her and just give us moral support. We cannot say thank you enough times to convey how much our lives have been touched by every kind deed. Special thanks to Kim Fairchild for months of daily visits to give Shirley her shots and encourage the family, Reba Harvey, for sitting up with Shirley at night, Brandi Brown for all of your help with keeping her comfortable, helping around the house, and staying up with Shirley through her last night, and Dugan Brown for his special dinosaur creations made just for Shirley. Just in case we miss someone with a thank you note Thank you for touching our family in very tangible ways through the past two months. Your gift has lifted us through this difficult time and we appreciate you very much. May God bless you as you have blessed and continue to bless others. With great love, Burrell A. Hamilton, Lexie M. Hamilton-Nolen & Tonya E. Huffman Condolences may be sent through the guestbook on this page.

Funeral Service

  • Date & Time: June 04, 2012 (2:00 PM)
  • Venue: Angus Church
  • Location: 4401 S 129th West Ave Sand Springs, OK 74063 - (Get Directions)

Visitation

  • Date & Time: June 03, 2012 (12:00 PM - 6:00 PM)
  • Venue: Butler-Stumpff & Dyer Funeral Home & Crematory
  • Location: 2103 E 3rd St Tulsa, OK 74104 - (Get Directions)

Visitation

  • Date & Time: June 02, 2012 (4:00 PM - 8:00 PM)
  • Venue: Butler-Stumpff & Dyer Funeral Home & Crematory
  • Location: 2103 E 3rd St Tulsa, OK 74104 - (Get Directions)

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13 responses to Shirley Evelyn Hamilton

  1. I didn't get to know her very well, but remember her welcoming me into her home. Her's was the first micro-wave I had ever seen. Lexie cooked me a steak in it. I also remember I helped drive cars they bought from Okc City back to Sand Springs and we got paid for it. I've known Lexie since my young twenties, and I am blessed to have still kept in touch with her. Mrs. Hamilton did a good job, in making Lexie a productive, God fearing young lady out of Lexie. I'm sure our Lord is proud of her and happy that she is at his right hand today. She will be missed by the ones that met, knew and loved her.

  2. Renny Boone says:

    My deepest sympathies to your family. Shirley has had a huge impact on my life. She taught me so much. Like soooo many others, I will miss her beautiful smile, great laugh and incredible insight and teaching. It was always evident how much she loved her Savior. God bless you all.

  3. Jim Pryor says:

    My heart is heavy for your loss but what a glorious life pleasing her Heavenly Father Shirley Lived. And she really lived! Her kindness and Christian witness showed through in everything she did. Shirley was always concerned about the eternal destiny of those with which she made contact. I wasn't as close to her as to her hubby but I always considered her my friend and I knew she cared about me. I loved her! She was a woman's woman and my life was enriched for knowing her. Heaven's a richer place and earth is not. Please know you are in our prayers. I'll see you Monday!

  4. Lee Pinkus says:

    Thinking of you in this tough time.

  5. This is not goodbye ths is goodnight.

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