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Frances Ansel Stalnaker

March 10, 1929 ~ December 4, 2023 (age 94) 94 Years Old

Frances Stalnaker Obituary

Frances Stalnaker, 94, was called home by the Lord on December 4, 2023. She died at her home in Destin, Florida, with two of her three children at her side.

The widow of Howard B. Stalnaker, Jr., Fran is survived by her children and their spouses: Steve (Glenda), Janey Becnel (Mark) and Kent (Debbie); grandchildren, Mike, Doug, Ashley, Aubrey, Katie and Blake; great granddaughters, Izabel and Emma; and great grandsons, Jackson and Adrien, as well as a host of other relatives and friends.

Born Frances Nell Ansel on March 10, 1929, in Hollis, Oklahoma, she was the second oldest of the five children of Frank N. Ansel, Sr. and Thelma (Dickenson). Losing her mother and father before she was ten years old, Frances was raised by her uncle and aunt, Oscar and LeNeve Messamore, in Norman, Oklahoma.

Frances graduated from Norman High School in 1947 and joined the administrative staff of the Oklahoma University athletic department. She eventually became secretary to legendary Oklahoma Sooners football coach Charles “Bud” Wilkinson.

In 1952, Frances married Howard Stalnaker, beginning a life-long romance that was interrupted by his death in 2008. Fran has now resumed that romance. Her children know this because she often told them that she did not mind dying, since she knew she would then rejoin her beloved Howard.

Frances and Howard raised their three children in Louisiana and Texas, living in several cities conforming to Howard’s job with Continental Oil Company (Conoco). Frances made a Christian home for Howard, Steve, Janey and Kent. She occasionally worked as a church secretary.

Always a creative person, Frances was an accomplished artist in oils and watercolor, as well as being adept at knitting, crochet, cross stitch and other needlework. Many of her paintings adorn the walls of her children’s and grandchildren’s homes.

In 1999, Frances and Howard, now retired, moved back to Oklahoma and lived in Norman until 2018 when she moved to Destin, where she was living when she passed away.

Arrangements are under the direction of Davis-Watkins Funeral Home. To share memories, express condolences and sign the guest book, please visit www.daviswatkins.com.

In lieu of flowers, Fran’s family asks that memorials be made in her name to Disabled American Veterans or St. Jude. The family will celebrate Fran’s life later in the spring.

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