Okmulgee County News Source

Grayson  File' Fest on tap Oct. 4
It is that time again to come and enjoy the festivities of the Grayson Annual File' Festival, Saturday, October 4,2014. The event will be from from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Everyone is invited to come and partake in the family filled day.
The main attraction is the tasty Gumbos. Seafood gumbo $10.00 and File' gumbo $7.00, both served with a desert and a drink. Carry outs are available upon request.
There will be a turkey shoot, bring your own gun the shells will be provided, 50/50 ticket drawing, door prizes, Jupiter jumps for the children and other treats.
Other vendors will be on site with flea market finds, homemade edible items baked and canned and music. Bring the entire family and dine in and enjoy old friends and family.
All Grayson alumni are asked to stop in and support your home town. For information on booth rental with and without electricity and more information regarding the festival call 918-652-8823 and 918-652-3909.
The Town of Grayson is located west of Highway 266 and Highway 52 Junction. Just follow the signs. Come early so you don't miss out!

Tulsa VIPs tour Okmulgee
Mike Neal, President & CEO of the Tulsa Regional Chamber of Commerce recently visited Okmulgee all with four of his top executives:  Justin McLaughlin, Executive Vice President, Matt Pivarnik, Executive Vice President, Brien Thorstenberg, Vice President, and Syky McNeil, Vice President.  The purpose of the visit was for the group to learn more about Okmulgee and discuss ways that collaboration can be enhanced to increase economic prosperity in the greater Okmulgee Area.
The delegation had a working luncheon meeting with approximately 20 local citizens in the Community Room, Citizens Security Bank.  John Fidler, East Central Oklahoma Regional President, Citizens Security Bank, and Roger Ballenger, Okmulgee City Manager, facilitated a discussion among the participants.  Chief George Tiger, Mayor Steven Baldridge, Representative Jerry Shoemake and Representative Steve Kouplen were among the local people to attend the luncheon.
Following the luncheon meeting, the Tulsa delegation visited PACCAR Winch and Covington Aircraft. Allen Hall, Plant Manager, PACCAR Winch, provide a tour of the company and an explanation of its products manufactured in Okmulgee. PACCAR Winch - Okmulgee is a leader in manufacturing innovation, utilizing some of the newest technologies in machine tools to provide high quality parts in a flow cell environment.    
At Convington Aircraft, Paul Abbott, CEO, conducted a tour of the turbine facility.   He explained that Covington Aircraft is a Pratt & Whitney Canada authorized Distributor and Designated Overhaul Facility (DDOF) specializing in the maintenance, repair and overhaul of corporate PT6A Turboprop engines.
John Fidler pointed out that both companies are major employers in the greater Okmulgee area, and outstanding corporate partners in the area.  He also said that the visit by the Tulsa people was excellent and it showcased Okmulgee in a very positive way.

Okmulgee enjoys
sales tax increase

Henryetta sees minor decline

Municipal sales tax collections showed a solid increase in Okmulgee, according to the latest monthly report from the Oklahoma Tax Commission.
Okmulgee generated $493,153.28 in taxes - up over $21,000 from the $471,807.72 which was collected during the same period in 2013.
Beggs, Morris, Dewar and Grayson also enjoyed minor inceases.
 Henryetta saw a decline of about $3,000 with $221,260.40 in sales tax collections in the latest date, compared to $224,414.62 last year at this time.
Collections also fell slightly in Schulter.
The latest report from the Oklahoma Tax Commission is the September distribution of sales tax collections.
Statewide, the disbursement of $137,184,095 in sales tax collections was returned to 511 cities and towns reflecting an increase of $3,400,442 from the $133,783,653 distributed to 511 cities and towns in September last year.
The use tax disbursement of $11,475,105 was distributed between 385 cities and towns.
In county returns, 76 counties shared in a $32,918,280 sales tax disbursement.  The use tax disbursement of $2,781,615 was distributed between 75 counties.
Here is a look at the local total for collections in September:
City             Sept 2014    Sept. 2013
Okmulgee          $493,153.28     $471,807.72
Henryetta        $221,260.40     $224,414.62
Beggs         $29,637.34     $27,872.03
Morris         $26,155.37     $24,517.29  
Dewar         $9,875.64     $9,466.43
Schulter          $372.97     $449.11
Grayson         $278.75     $228.41
City Use Tax
Okmulgee         $14,613.77     $18,277.06
Henreyetta         $9,744.23     $19,182.84
Beggs            $4,078.18     $2,228.23
Morris        $1,360.35     $1,206.59
Dewar         $257.50     $205.73
Grayson         $219.50     $270.26  
Schulter         $17.65         $14.13
County Sales Tax
Okmulgee Co.        $275,810.40     $272,224.83
County Use Tax
Okmulgee Co.        $12,373.35     $14,931.14

Pictured from left: Kevin Bales, Jeff Applekamp, Ryan Cocklin, Johnny Dreyer, Dr. Bill R. Path, and Joe Bartlett gather for the opening of the GPA/GPSA Midcontinent Chapter Classroom ribbon-cutting and dedication ceremony held Thursday. (Photo provided)

Dedication held for new GPA/GPSA classroom

for Pipeline Integrity program
Representatives from the Gas Processors Association (GPA) and Gas Processors Suppliers Association (GPSA) were on the OSU Institute of Technology (OSUIT) campus Thursday for a ribbon cutting and dedication ceremony of the newly renovated GPA/GPSA Midcontinent Chapter Classroom in the school’s new Pipeline Integrity Technology program.
The need for skilled engineering technologists that install, operate, maintain, repair and manage the integrity and security of pipelines is on the rise, and the OSUIT program enables students to develop the skills necessary to be successful in the pipeline industry. Major topics of study include safety, assessing pipeline damage and risk, corrosion control, design and integrity management. The Midcontinent chapter of GPA and GPSA, incorporated nonprofit trade associations, donated $25,000 toward classroom improvements for the program.
The renovated classroom includes new teaching tools, technology and equipment, as well as classroom supplies and furniture. This most recent contribution, combined with other scholarship and excellence funds donated to the school, brings a cumulative amount of $100,000 donated by the GPA/GPSA Midcontinent Chapter to OSUIT since last summer.
“The millions of Americans who rely on natural gas to heat their homes or cook their meals may not realize it, but they depend heavily upon the skilled and knowledgeable pipeline technicians every day,” said GPA/GPSA Midcontinent Chapter President Brian Leedy, Exterran. “We are proud to help support this vital mission to train and teach our future pipeline integrity technicians who are in such demand across the country.”
The Pipeline Integrity program started in the fall of 2013 with nine students. One year later, the program is full with 20 students and nearly 100 more inquiries into the program so far.
Fernanda Solis, who started in the program this fall, said she became interested in the pipeline industry after hearing the stories and experiences of her father.
"I realized it's a great opportunity and I chose the program at OSUIT because it's not all about classroom lectures, but getting the hands-on training we will need on the job," Solis said. "I like that the companies and sponsors that support the Pipeline Integrity program are committed to the development of young professionals in this industry. I feel grateful that it's giving us, the students, the necessary tools to become successful."
The program began at OSUIT after industry leaders came to the university asking for a training program to help meet the need of skilled technicians in the pipeline field.
“We’re one of the only pipeline integrity programs in the country,” said Dr. Abul Hasan, Engineering Technologies Division chair. “This kind of support for our program is significant and contributions from an organization like GPA/GPSA are how we’ve been able to improve and grow our curriculum and training.”
With more than 2.5 million miles of pipelines in the U.S., transporting 65 percent of the country’s oil and nearly all of its natural gas, having skilled workers to maintain that complex network of pipelines is a top concern for the energy industry.
“The growth potential in the pipeline integrity field is unbelievable as we continue to see not only interest from students, but interest from industry professionals who want to be part of this program,” said OSUIT President Dr. Bill R. Path. “We are so thankful to the GPA/GPSA Midcontinent Chapter for recognizing our program and what it’s doing for the industry, and choosing to support the education of the next generation of pipeline technicians.”


Clifford Hammon, 69, a resident of Okmulgee, passed away Sunday, September 28, 2014 in Okmulgee hospital. Arrangements are pending with House of Winn Funeral Home.

Lillian Pearl Jones
Lillian Pearl (Webb) Jones, longtime resident of Okmulgee, passed away September 25, 2014 at the age of 94.  Mrs. Jones was born November 15, 1919 in Natura, Oklahoma.
 She was preceded in death by her husband of 53 years, Roscoe Dee Jones, her father and mother, Arthur “Bud” and Ida Mae Webb, and brothers, Lester Webb and Eugene Webb.
 She is survived by: her three sons, Donald Wayne Jones and wife, Melanie of Littleton, Colorado, Dennis Glenn Jones and wife Helen of Edmond, Oklahoma, and Darrell Lee Jones of Okmulgee, Oklahoma; six grandchildren: Kimberli McLennan and husband, Chuck, Brian Jones and wife, Kristi, Kevin Jones and wife, Rachellee, Scott Jones and wife, Kirsten, Chris Jones, and Kelly Kaye and husband Eric; also, sister-in-law Allowe Webb, fifteen great-grandchildren and several nieces, nephews and cousins.
 A service will be conducted at the Church of Christ, 318 S. Grand Ave. in Okmulgee on Monday, September 29, 2014 at 1:00 p.m. with Bob Howard and Kevin Copeland officiating. Burial will follow the service at the Okmulgee Cemetery.  Pallbearers will be her sons, Donald, Dennis and Darrell, and grandsons, Kevin, Scott and Chris.  Honorary Pallbearers will be grandson, Brian and grandsons-in-law, Eric Kaye and Chuck McLennan.
 Visitation will be held Sunday from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Family will greet friends that afternoon from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Jackson Funeral Home Chapel in Okmulgee.
 Mrs. Jones funeral arrangements are under the direction of Jackson Funeral Home and Crematory in Okmulgee.
 In lieu of flowers, the family requests that a donation be made to the Church of Christ, 318 S. Grand Ave., Okmulgee or to a favorite charity in Lillian’s name.
 Our family would like to express our appreciation to the entire staff of Rebold Manor and members of Good Shepherd Hospice for all their loving care and compassion for our mother.
 Friends may send condolences to www.jacksonfhandcrematory.com

Mary Lee Jamison Sweeten
Mary Lee Jamison Sweeten, 89,  formerly of Henryetta, currently, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, died Thursday, September 25, 2014 in Oklahoma City. Graveside Service: 11:00 a.m., Monday, September 29, 2014
Greenlawn Cemetery, Checotah, Oklahoma
Arrangements: Integrity Funeral Service

Virginia O. Tyree was born May 7, 1928 in Ada, Oklahoma to C.B and Pearl Oliver.  She passed away Tuesday September 23, 2014 at Okmulgee Memorial Hospital at 86 years of age.
    She was preceded in death by her parents and two brothers Clinton and Clayton B. Oliver.  Virginia married Jack Tyree, Jr. on Easter Sunday April 6, 1947 at Oak Avenue Baptist Church in Ada.
    She is survived by her husband of 67 years, Jack Tyree, Jr. of the home, three children, Barry A. Tyree of Petersburg, Illinois, Dr. Philip J. and wife Kay Tyree of Holdenville, Oklahoma and Ginger T. and husband David Wendt of Overland Park, Kansas, two sisters, Wanda Murphy of Enid, Oklahoma and Phyllis Burchfiel and husband Bill of Houston, Texas, four grandchildren, eight great grandchildren, three sisters-in-law, and numerous nieces and nephews, all of whom loved and cherished her deeply.
    Virginia was a retired Legal Secretary, active member of First Baptist Church of Okmulgee, and the Gideons Women’s Auxiliary.  She loved to cook for her family, was an expert seamstress, loved to sew for her children and work in her flower garden.
    The family will receive friends Sunday from 3:00 P.M.-5:00 P.M. at the McClendon-Winters Funeral Home Chapel.
    A funeral service will be held at the First Baptist Church in Okmulgee at 10:00 A.M Monday, September 29, 2014 with Dr. Dennis Taylor and Reverend James Robinson officiating.  A committal service will be held at 2:30 P.M. at the Rosedale Cemetery in Ada.  Honorary casketbearers will be members of Gideons International.
    The family requested that contributions be made to Gideon International in lieu of flowers.
Arrangements are under the direction of the McClendon-Winters Funeral Home of Okmulgee.
Memories, condolences, photos and videos may be shared with the family on Virginia’s Tribute Page of our website at www.mcclendon-winters.com

Rev. Otto L. Goins, 104, Assembly of God Minister/Pastor, died Tuesday, September 23, 2014. Services were held at  11:00 AM, Friday at the Hayhurst Funeral Home Chapel, Broken Arrow. Hayhurst, Broken Arrow, 918-258-9623.
Lorene Bird Jones
Lorene Bird Jones, 88, a resident of Okmulgee, died September 23, 2014 in Glenpool. A funeral service was held Saturday, September 27, 2014 at  11AM at the Greater Jones Chapel AME Zion Church (1226 E. Smith St. Okmulgee, OK). Arrangmeents were under the direction of the      Keith D. Biglow Funeral Directors, Inc.-Okmulgee Chapel