bmonthly April 2024

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April 2024
2 bmonthly | APRIL 2024 stridebank .com 1415 SE Washington Blvd., Bartlesville, OK 74 006 918-333-0380 We greatly appreciate your trust in us! Happy Easter to you and your loved ones.
APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 3 Join your local Wells Fargo Advisors for a special day of Spring Cleaning! Bring up to 50 lbs. of shreddable materials and enjoy a hotdog or two while you’re at it! Event open to the community 4160 SE Adams Rd Suite 102 Bartlesville, OK 74006 TUESDAY APRIL 30th, 2024 2:00-4:00 PM Wells Fargo Advisors is a trade name used by Wells Fargo Clearing Services, LLC, Member SIPC, a registered broker-dealer and non-bank affiliate of Wells Fargo & Company. PM-09142025-6480762.1.1 *Canned food donations being accepted for the Lighthouse* Investment and Insurance Products: NOT FDIC-Insured/NO Bank Guarantee/ MAY Lose Value
5 Upfront 6 Profile: Rick & Rhonda Yocham 11 Feature: Best of Pets Contest 2024 A Look at the Contestants 22 Feature Sponsor Story: Around Town With Edgar Weston 24 Kids Calendar 26 Chick-fil-A Events Calendar 30 Now You Know: Superior Welding 33 Business Spotlight: Neal’s Homestore... A Legacy of Community and Quality 35 Looking Back: Kate Barnard A Good Angel, but 90 Pounds of Human Dynamite 4 0 Out & About: Photos From Around Town 4 3 Education: STEAM Summer Camp 4 5 Hall of Fame: BPS Foundation HoF Inductees 46 Funny You Should Ask: Use Your Words 49 Local Legends: Two REO Speed-Wagons 51 Inspirational Stories: Finding Faith 53 On the Road: Has John Boy Been to Buck-ee’s? 55 Unsung Heroes: Dr. Forrest Lawrence Pearl Harbor Attacked Prompted Military Service 57 Everyday Adventures: A Snowbound Adventure 58 Health & Wellness: A New Type of Primary Care 61 A Good Word: A Short Story & a Lesson 63 Worship: Alleluia! 7 1 Entertainment: Anything Goes 75 A Fresh Perspective: Keep Reaching for the Stars 7 7 Healthcare: Respite at DayBreak 82 Let Freedom Ring: Looking Back at the FX-12 APRIL 2024 11 6 22 33 35 43 40 46 51 45 49 55 53 75 58 82 71 57 77 61 63 4 bmonthly | APRIL 2024 WHAT’S INSIDE
what’s inside...


Welcome to April friends. Happy Anniversary to bmonthly and us! It was April 2017 when Brian Engel asked us to sell advertising for a new magazine he’d just purchased called Bartlesville Monthly Magazine. The magazine was first published in 2011 but beginning in 2014 the readership had declined. The magazine really was on life support. In February of that same year, Christy and I sold our Joplin magazine. We started that magazine from scratch, but after a little over two years, it was time to let go and find something new. But what we didn’t know (but God did) is that the little Joplin coupon magazine was our training to do bmonthly. The biggest benefit is for Christy and I to work together every day. We are proud to say bmonthly has become the largest media in Bartlesville. Today we have over 20,000 readers and over 150 locations in 4 counties where you can pick up the magazine. bmonthly Magazine has subscriptions delivered to more than 25 states. We have over 50,000 people who follow the magazine on our social media platforms from all 50 states and 15 countries around the world. We are so proud to be able to brag about the people, the history, and the places that makes Bartlesville and the area such an incredible place to live, work, and play.

Every April we do the ‘Best of Pets” issue, which has become one of the largest pet contests in the country. This year was a record-breaking year for the contest. We had 103 pets registered in 38 minutes which is a crushing record from the previous years. We had over 75,000 people view the pet album and that album was shared over 300 times. We had votes from 42 states and 7 countries. We want to congratulate Sierra Dunkle and her family for being the Facebook People’s Choice Winner with her beautiful dog, Nellie. What a picture they submitted and what a beautiful dog she is!

This year’s Judges’ Choice winner is Boomer. Nine judges voted on the top 10 pets, and Sooner came out with the most votes. It was close, but he won by just 2 votes. Christy and I don’t vote because between the babies and the pets, we are all a little biased. We leave it up to others to choose. This year for the cover we took Sooner to Woolaroc. We want to thank Kevin Hoch, CEO of the Frank Phillips Foundation, for allowing us the opportunity to photograph Sooner at such a historic place. This photo was taken at the Frank Phillips Lodge on the

front porch where so many famous people once sat in these same chairs looking out at Clyde Lake. Thank you Woolaroc!

I always want my Upfront to be real and upfront. You will always know what’s going on with us and the magazine. I want you to know we are just as real as you are…we have troubled times and we have loss. Some months we cry, we laugh, and we pray to God to give us one more day to make a difference. Just the other night a mother messaged us on Facebook about the loss of her daughter. After more than 10 years, she is still lost. The mother read my story I wrote in the January issue called “One more day”. Her daughter, who died in a car accident, is buried about 75 feet from Tyler. I wish I could share with you the pain she still feels today about the loss of her only child. Gone! Everything she knew and loved was stripped from her. Today she struggles with the WHY? There are many who have lost a child who will always ask “Why, God?” We still ask today after almost 14 years. We are comforted to know that our God also sent HIS only son for all of us to die an unimaginable death, so we may not be separated by this world but to live together for eternity. That is why we have Hope and Faith, so we all have that peace beyond any understanding that only HE can give us.

Finally, I want to say a very Happy Birthday on April 8th to my best friend, my soul mate, and the best thing that has ever happened to me…Christy. Happy Birthday beautiful! You have helped me become the man, the father, and the husband I am today. Now my life has meaning. You never let go, never gave up, and never raised the white flag and surrendered us or our love! God bless, Keith

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 5 UPFRONT
ABOUT THE COVER Meet Boomer, our Best of Pets 2024 Judges Choice Winner! Photo by Chance Franks, taken at Woolaroc. Creative concept by Keith and Christy McPhail Design by Copper Cup Images Volume XV Issue IV Bartlesville Monthly Magazine is published by ENGEL PUBLISHING Offices located in Downtown Bartlesville in the historic Price Tower 510 Dewey Ave, Suite 400, Bartlesville, OK 74003 P.O. Box 603, Bartlesville, OK 74005 Publisher Brian Engel Graphics Copper Cup Images Director of Sales & Marketing Keith McPhail Community Liaison Christy McPhail Project Manager Andrea Whitchurch Administration Shelley Greene Stewart Delivery and Distribution Tim Hudson Calendar/Social Media Contributing Writers Debbie Neece, Kay Little, Kelly Hurd Aaron Kirkpatrick, Jay Hastings, Michael Thompson Brent Taylor, Keith McPhail, Jay Webster, Jody Burch Joe Todd, Joe Colaw, Maria Gus, Lori Just Contributing Photographers Bartlesville Area History museum Chance Franks, Cindy Lynne Alba Candice Van Photography Kids Calendar Jessica Smith All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, copied or otherwise, without prior permission of Bartlesville Monthly, Inc. Publisher & Editor of Bartlesville Monthly Magazine reserves the right to reject any content or advertisement in this publication. bmonthly Managing Editors Keith and Christy McPhail.

Rick & Rhonda Yocham

Love Story Began

Decades Ago

In the heart of our community lies a love story that began at a young age that budded into a lifelong pursuit of their talents, partnership and devotion. This local couple, whose paths first crossed at rodeos in their tender youth, have since grained their lives together in marriage, family and a business in leatherwork. Rick and Rhonda Yocham’s story is not just a tale of romance, but a testament to the power of perseverance through God and chasing passions together.

Growing up, both Rick and Rhonda were around each other a lot when their dads would practice roping calves for the local rodeos in Copan, Pawhuska and Kansas.

“We didn’t like each other,” laughed Rhonda. “He shot me with a BB gun, but then I married him. And we’ve been married over 50 years. It’s amazing when God writes your story because he has a sense of humor.”

Rhonda recalls a horse named Nelly Bell that Rick owned that was so swayed back they could fit 5 to 6 neighborhood kids on her back. As time went on, Rick stopped shooting Rhonda with his BB gun, and they started a courtship in high school. Rick went to Bartlesville and Rhonda went to Dewey. Since DHS had an ag program, Rick transferred schools his sophomore year, and they grew closer. In 1972, they got married in Coffeyville, KS. And starting out as a young couple, they continued the rodeo habit. Rick roped and Rhonda rode barrels.

“You know how most kids play ball, well, we grew up in the rodeo arena,” she explained. “We didn’t know anything different.”

The business into leatherwork, Yocham’s Custom Leather Saddlery, just started to naturally progress alongside the rodeo events.

“I’ve always liked leatherwork from a young age,” said Rick “It was profitable back them because when I started learning in grade school, my dad purchased all the materials for me. So, I just continued to pursue that.”

The Yochams opened their business in 1973, or so they say that’s the date they go with because they argue which month

and year it was. They didn’t have to file taxes then because there wasn’t enough to file, so they have no way of knowing for sure. They occupied a space on Rick’s parent’s 75 acres on Highway 60 east of Bartlesville. Rick’s brother had a cabinet shop and his parents owned a convenience store. Rick’s parents had moved to Bartlesville to open the Tastee-Freez and sold that to open the Yocham’s Family Restaurant which was next to the Hilltop DriveIn (which is now occupied by Pop’s Daylight Donuts). They had bought this acreage in the 60s and Rick grew up in a Don Tyler poured cement protype home on the land.

The western end of their hobbies carried over into their business, and they express that by the grace of God and His hand over them were they able to stay in business this long.

“We’ve had our fair share of tests and trails, but through each one we have seen God turn it around for His glory,” Rhonda said. “I’m so thankful that in 1980 we started going to church. When your burn down twice and come back it’s a miracle.”

The first time was in October 1990 during the John Travolta urban cowboy phrase. They carried clothes, hats, boots and business was really booming at that time. The fire started from a faulty bracket on the wall that was near flammables that caught on fire and exploded. They lost everything by the one machine they started the business with. Even though the storefronts were all connected in the one building, the other businesses were not impacted.

“After that and when the economy in Bartlesville was being impacted by Phillips, the Lord impressed upon me that we needed to add on home décor in the rebuild,” said Rhonda. “We’ve always been ahead of the fad because God is all knowing and let us get a jumpstart.”

The home décor really took off and wholesale stores in Arizona, California, New Mexico, Texas and back East were calling for

6 bmonthly | APRIL 2024 PROFILE

their items. The Yochams really enjoy going antiquing and came across a mission-style rocker in pieces. After sitting in their shop for over a year, Rick finally through of what he could do with it, so they started making custom furniture that included Rick’s signature tooling.

By 2013, they bought out their family’s storefronts and expanded their business. They built on a 2-story, 6,000 square foot showroom that displayed high end furniture that Rhonda had started to develop that became award-winning in national shows. It housed mounts, antler chandeliers, Navajo rugs, furniture, leather couches, bedding, carved wooden Indians and more.

“We always said ‘come see us, we have everything for your house and your horse,” said Rhonda. “And we told our customers that you come as front door guests but leave as back door friends.”

On the leatherwork side that would custom orders for local customers as well as out of town clients that included a few celebrities. The Yochams would go to design conferences with their furniture pieces. In 1998, they went to Cody, WY to an invite-only conference where they were selected by jurors to attend. They won the Switchback Award which is the highest award given there. The conference then buys that piece and permanently displays it in the Buffalo Bill Cody Museum there in Wyoming. After that, they started to sell their furniture as wholesale to locations across the United States and started to get recognition.

“We had a call from Nike and they told us Mrs. Nike liked one of our sofas and wanted a complete set, but wanted to ensure that all the cowhide would match exactly,” Rhonda chuckled. “I told them we could get hides in the same color to match, but I can’t find 10 cows that are marked exactly alike. I think she thought you could just order cowhide by the yard.”

end home décor or furniture that was the biggest loss.

“Rick and our daughter had won trophy saddles from roping the same year and they were on display in that space, it’s stuff that like that that you can’t replace,” Rhonda said. “No one was hurt so we were thankful for that.”

Yet again, their perseverance came through as they rebuild their business after the second fire and transition with the widening of the highway. They also have two cowboythemed Airbnb’s onsite for rent. Rick continues to make custom orders and reupholsters cowhides and Pendletons. Rhonda said, “if you have an idea in leather, Rick can do it.” And everyone keeps asking when they are going to stop.

“I’ve thought about retiring,” Rick said. “I event went to a financial planner where he asked me my vision of retirement. And I didn’t have an answer, so I said, I’ll have to get back to you. And that was ten years ago. So I guess that’s it, one day if I decide I’ve had enough, I just won’t be here anymore. But I love it, and I still enjoy it. And I worry that when I retire there just won’t be anyone around that does what I do. There are fewer people that work with their hands. And if it wasn’t for our people in our community, we never would have stayed in business this long. The thing you miss when you retire is the people. People make the business and people who work for you make the business, like Randy Robinson who has been with us 47 years; him and his boys are like family.”

And the secret to making a marriage and a business here you work with your spouse day in and day out for over 50 years together is a simple one according to Rick.

“God first,” he said. “You have to put everything into perspective. A wife can’t do it all. Sometimes she thinks she can. But I wake up in the morning and say to myself ‘how can I make this woman happy today.’ Bam, it will come to me - we have to work together. And that will test you”

Other prominent clients include George Strait, belts for Reba McEntire and a rope bag for football player Walt Garrison. They continued to win awards at shows

The day the shop burned the second time in 2018, it had been a stormy night when the Youchams were home with their grandson. They said they felt something hit close to them but didn’t know it was their shop.

“There was a banging on the door,” said Rhonda. “Then we went outside to see the fire on the two-story section of our business. The roof had been blown off into the highway in two pieces so traffic would get by. The amount of help we received following that was amazing. The hardest part about this second fire was learning how to receive.”

Family and friends showed up with trailers to load what they could salvage and take away all the damaged wood. The twostory display warehouse was a total loss, but it wasn’t the high-

Rhonda quickly added, “I tried to quit. There was a season I wanted to so watch my soap opera and so around 11:00 a.m. each day I’d try to make him mad so I could go watch it. But then he’d tell me ‘you can’t quit because I never hired you.’”

When they aren’t busy loving each other, worshiping God and running a full-time business, the Yochams enjoy time “junkin’” and spending time with family.

“Anytime my daughter, Rikki and her husband, TC and grandson, Timber, are with us, I don’t care where we go, just that they are with us. We also have our bonus granddaughter Teaghen. We still have horses and longhorn cows and it’s fun to watch them have babies and see what color they will be. I’m happy with what we do.”

Then Rhonda chimed in that they plan to “let God have the pen and write the rest of the story and not try to write our own.”

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 7 PROFILE

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Around Town with Edgar Weston

Welcome Back…This month we visit Bartlesville’s Neo-Classic RevivalStyle Civic Center at the northeast corner of Johnstone Avenue and Seventh Street, renamed Adams Blvd.

As early as 1919, Bartlesville’s civic leaders saw the need for a large meeting hall; however, the election to issue the bonds to pay for the $300,000 construction was not called until April 5, 1921. With bond approval of Bartlesville citizens, a committee of nine was selected from different civic organizations to appoint an architect. In short order, three lots on the east side of the 600 block of Johnstone were cleared of homes and construction began October 1922. For months, the dust flew as concrete, brick, limestone, marble, tile and steel joined forces to create Bartlesville’s three-level “ahead of its time” architectural marvel…the Civic Center.

The building served as the community’s cultural center while generously offering ample space for offices of various civic organizations such as the Red Cross, Boy Scouts, Musical Research Society and American Legion. An October 1927 extensive remodel enabled the Carnegie Library to be relocated to the ground floor of the north wing; then, growing pains necessitated a 1960 library expansion and, in 1965, the Historical Commission established a history room on the second floor, above the Bartlesville Public Library.

In 1932, City Hall moved from Fourth Street and Dewey Avenue into the south wing of the Civic Center to greatly reduce building maintenance costs of operating two structures. City Hall remained at the Civic Center until the building was condemned in 1976. CONDEMMED, YOU SAY?

The building’s cornerstone was laid January 1923 and construction was completed mid-September. The bowl-shaped cantilevered balcony created an unobstructed view from the 1,150 auditorium seats and 700 balcony seats, with frontstage seating for a 24-piece orchestra and seventeen dressing rooms surrounding the 72’x38’ stage. The Civic Center’s Grand Opening celebration was highlighted by the November 12-14 “Oklahoma” pageant performed by a host of over 500 locally talented individuals.

The Bartlesville Little Theater performed at the Civic Center from 1926-1976, joined by Ziegfeld Follies, John Phillip Sousa, U.S. Navy Band, Oklahoma’s legendary cowboy-humorist Will Rogers, indoor circuses, sports activities, and more. Youngsters of the time remember “Uncle” Frank Phillips being present at the annual Christmas party distributing sacks of hard candy and shiny silver dollars.

The building remained vacant, except for the library, while the 1990 demolition faced controversy as citizens petitioned to save the 67-year-old structure. In 1989, Bartlesville resident, Carlos Melton, was successful in getting Bartlesville’s Civic Center recognized by the National Register of Historic Places for its outstanding historic significance. In addition, longtime resident Preston Gaddis appealed to the Oklahoma Supreme Court to acquire an emergency stay of demolition, overriding the citizen’s approval of a new library. In the end, some justice seemed to be served as the walls came tumbling down… the one fixture that gave the most fight was the cantilevered balcony which had been deemed a danger and structurally unsound. Moral of this story is never underestimating the strength of Portland Cement and a little extra rebar.

To Be Continued…with our Central Fire Station.


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APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 23
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Bruin Varsity Baseball vs Owasso

6PM; Doenges Stadium

OKWU Softball vs Evangel

2&4PM; OKWU Softball Fields

Varsity Bruin Baseball vs Coweta

6PM; Doenges Stadium

Bruin Soccer vs Sand Springs

4:30PM; Custard Stadium (JV)

6PM; Custard Stadium (G)

8PM; Custard Stadium (B)

OKWU Baseball vs Bethany

1&4PM; OKWU Baseball fields

Varsity Bruin Baseball vs Norman North

6PM; Doenges Stadium

OKWU Baseball vs Evangel

3PM; OKWU Baseball fields

OKWU Baseball vs McPherson

2PM; OKWU baseball fields

Bruin Soccer vs NW Classen

4:30PM; Custard Stadium (JV)

6PM; Custard Stadium (G)

8PM; Custard Stadium (B)

OKWU Baseball vs McPherson

12&3PM; OKWU baseball fields

OKWU Softball vs Tabor

12&2PM; OKWU Softball fields

Varsity Bruin Baseball vs Jenks

6PM; Doenges Stadium

Wizard of OZ presented by Bartlesville Civic Ballet

7:30PM; Bartlesville Community Center

Prepare to be swept away by the timeless tale of Dorothy and her adventures in the land of Oz, as interpreted through the exquisite artistry of the Bartlesville Civic Ballet. Join us for an enchanting evening filled with whimsy and wonder, as we bring to life the beloved characters and iconic moments from L. Frank Baum’s classic story. Under the creative direction of choreographer Joy Delaney Capponi, our talented dancers will transport you to a world where dreams take flight and anything is possible. Featuring the remarkable Daniel Baudendistel as Oz, prepare to be mesmerized by his spellbinding performance and the captivating choreography that will leave you spellbound. With stunning costumes, enchanting music, and a talented cast, The Wizard of Oz Ballet promises

to be an unforgettable experience for audiences of all ages. Showtimes on Saturday at 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m. also.

Varsity Bruin Baseball vs Muskogee

6PM; Doenges Stadium

Every Saturday

History an Haunts at the Dewey Hotel Museum

8PM; Dewey Hotel and Museum

Spend an evening at the Dewey Hotel. Experience some of the hotel’s unique histories and take a lantern guided small group tour. This tour will take you into some of the rooms, usually blocked off access to guests.

All Month Animal Barn

10AM; Woolaroc

One of the most popular spots for children at Woolaroc is our Animal Barn— originally used as the official Dairy Barn for Frank Phillips’ prized herd of cows. Now, the Animal Barn houses some of our favorite furry friends – which include but are not limited to rabbits, chickens, goats, and donkeys.

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Sat, Apr 6

1 PM

45th Annual Operation Pow Wow

Washington County Fairgrounds

1 pm Crowning of Prices Shaylee

Williams and Gourd Dancing, 4:30 Dinner Break, 6 pm Grand Entry and Competition Dancing. Contests will feature Junior dancers ages 7 to 17, adult dancers ages 18 +. Cloth, Buckskin, Jingle/Fancy Straight, Fancy, Glass/ Traditional, Head Lady Special Contest

Women’s Golden Age. Bring your lawn chairs.

Tue, Apr 9

5:30 PM

Guitar for Dummies (Adults)

Pioneer Dream

214 SE Frank Phillips Blvd.

Sat, Apr 13

7 AM

Big Country Breakfast to Benefit


Elks Lodge 1060 Swan Dr.

All Day

4th Annual Car Show

Dewey Church of Christ 1313 N Osage Ave, Dewey

Sun, Apr 14

12 PM

Jaws Lunch Party

Remi’s Arcade & Bistro

622 SE Frank Phillips Blvd.

Fri, April 19 7:30pm

Wizard of OZ presented by Bartlesville Civic Ballet

Bartlesville Community Center

300 SE Adams Blvd.

Prepare to be swept away by the timeless tale of Dorothy and her adventures in the land of Oz, as interpreted through the exquisite artistry of the Bartlesville Civic Ballet. Join us for an enchanting evening filled with whimsy and wonder, as we bring to life the beloved characters and iconic moments from L. Frank Baum’s classic story. Under the creative direction of choreographer Joy Delaney Capponi, our talented dancers will transport you to a world where dreams take flight and anything is possible. Showtimes on Saturday at 2 & 7:30 p.m. also.

Sat, Apr 20

9 AM

3rd Annual Bike & Car Show

Humble Road Church

304 S Seminole Ave.

Food, corn hole, axe throwing, disc golf. Event held rain or shine. For more information, call 620.688.0302 or 620.515.9916.

Tue, Apr 23

2 PM

Adult Craft Class

Bartlesville Public Library

600 S Johnstone Ave.

Fri, April 26

7 PM Anything Goes Spring Musical

BHS Fine Arts Center 2401 SE Fox Hollow Ct.

26 bmonthly | APRIL 2024
CALENDAR Know of an upcoming event you would like to see on our calendar? Visit us at for a free listing! Music and Lyrics by Cole Porter Original Book by P.G. Wodehouse & Guy Bolton and Howard Lindsay & Russel Crouse New Book by Timothy Crouse & John Weidman April 26-28 April 26-28 Bartlesville High School Bartlesville High School Fine Arts Center Fine Arts Center Buy Tickets @ BARTLESVILLE HIGH SCHOOL VOCAL MUSIC DEPARTMENT PRESENTS Still Open for You Monday - Thursday 8:00am - 5:00pm Friday 8:00am - Noon "Building a Healthy Community One Individual at a Time." Elizabeth Sherrock, MD Ellen L. Conn, APN, APRN-CMP William Davito, DO Amanda Gutierrez, LPC Se Habla Español 918-331-9979 Mark Erhardt, DO
Holdman, MD
Ryan Vaclaw, MD
9:00am - Noon
APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 27 Bartlesville’s Premier Magazine delivered monthly to Your Front Door! Just $48 a year Subscribe Today



Superior Welding

...A Century Old Trade

On the hem of Bartlesville’s historic downtown business district, just west of the railroad tracks, lies an area designated as the first industrial park. When the original Bartlesville townsite was surveyed by the Henry Dawes Commission in 1902, 16.64 acres of land was plotted as a City Park. The park was bound on the north by First Street, renamed Hensley Blvd., on the east by Park Avenue, on the south by Third Street, renamed Frank Phillips Blvd., and on the west by Santa Fe Avenue. This area became the roots of Bartlesville’s original industrial business district.

In 1918, the partnership of Oscar Dempsey, Fred Dempsey. J.E. Woods and Leslie Kelly operated the Superior Welding Company at 500 W. Third Street, offering oxy-acetylene welding and metal cutting. The termination of the partnership came in


David Stokes moved his family to Bartlesville in 1918 and bought a home at 316 S. Delaware. He worked odd jobs until becoming a Superior Welding partner with Leslie Watters in 1922. That year, Superior Welding operated at 500 W. Third Street, the Auto Welding Shop at 415 W. Third and H.C. Price’s Electra Welding Company entered the welding field at 118 E. Second Street.

From 1923-1924, David Stokes was the sole operator of the oxy-acetylene welding and cutting, oil field specialty company. In 1925, he purchased the Imperial Welding Shop in Pawhuska, equipped the business with electric and acetylene welding machinery and hired Jack Shepard as the head welder. That year, Glenn B.

with Leslie Kelly and Fred Dempsey assuming the business.
30 bmonthly | APRIL 2024 NOW YOU KNOW

Webster joined the Bartlesville Superior Welding team as a welder.

In 1930, Stokes installed equipment to do auto spring repair, axle straightening and general blacksmithing, which allowed him to construct automobile trailers in addition to his electric and acetylene welding. In 1937, Superior Welding built a $3,000 brick building at 111 N. Johnstone Avenue, moving to that location in October. At that time, Stokes and Webster became partners and modernized their business offerings to include “automobile ailments” like wheel alignment and balancing. They even made and sold clothes line posts.

In 1940, Superior Welding was host of the National Defense Machine Shop classes under the instruction of Woody Conover and Glenn Webster. Participants received experience on drill presses, lathes, a bolt threading machine, a planning shaper and an internal cylinder block grinder. Although the students were not promised a job after the eight-week class, they were prepared to fill any machinist position available.

Beginning in 1942, Glenn Webster assumed the reins and David Stokes stepped down a notch to become a company welder, easing his way into retirement.

products. Beginning in 1969, Superior participated in the fabrication of ground-air support equipment for the U.S. Government. Obtaining a government contract proved to be a huge advancement to Superior Welding’s business and building footprint.

In 1974, Superior Welding Sales joined the Superior team at 112 W. Hensley Blvd. offering welding supplies, Victor Regulator, Linde Industrial and Medical Gases, Puritan, Bennett Therapy Apparatus, Regulator repairs, and they became a Lincoln Distributor. From 1979-1991, Jim Gardner became the manager of Superior Welding Sales at 112 W. Hensley and continued as manager at their new 212 W. Hensley Blvd. location, a block west, from 1992-1994. In 1995, Steve Webster became the Superior Welding Sales manager adding Wolverine boots and Carhart clothing to the lineup.

The turn of the century brought a change for Superior. February 1999, Tulsa based Judd & Judd, Inc., owners of the Bundy Bumper Co., purchased Superior Welding, Superior Sales and Superior Manufacturing, changing the name to Superior Companies.

In 1958, traffic on Frank Phillips Blvd. was diverted to make way for the Superior Welding 111ft-long “I-Beams” traveling to the Madison Junior High School construction site; the treacherous trip took 2-hours.

During WWII, government contracts poured into Bartlesville, employing every able body at Superior Welding, Metal Goods Manufacturing and Reda Pump. Two key secret weapons were almost wholly made in Bartlesville with Reda making castings of bronze, steel, aluminum; Superior and M.G.M. doing machine work and finishing various parts; and Multiscope of Coffeyville finishing and shipping the products. The sight synchronizing “gun directors” and automatic steering devices for landing barges and ships were so secret that even employees working 54 hours per week to make the special parts were clueless.

By 1948, Glenn Webster totally assumed the company, changed the name to Superior Welding & Machine Company and expanding services to include complete brake service, Raybestos lining and Wagner Lockheed hydraulic parts. As business grew, so did the size of the building and soon the address was listed as 111-113 N. Johnstone Avenue.

Beginning in 1961, Superior Welding Inc. became a family business with Glenn Webster as president, later retiring about 1977; E. Benjamin Webster, vice president; and Preston Scott, Don Grogan, and Don L. Webster holding various officer positions. Still located at 113 N. Johnstone Avenue, service expanded to include manufacturing pipeline equipment and structural steel fabricators, and being a distributor of Linde Air

“Supco” was a full-service company where no challenge was too grand. Beyond sandblasting, machining and fabrication, they proudly made boat frames for U.S. aircraft carrier ships, military bomb trailers and more. In 2020, Supco and the Examiner Enterprise partnered in Project 20/70 and created a “10-foot-tall steel hourglass-shaped time capsule made of 836 carbon steel.” Filled with donations representative of 2020, the time capsule resides at the Bartlesville Public Library and will be opened in 2070.

Company president, J.R. “Jack” Judd died 2002 followed by his wife Billye Jeanne Judd in 2006 and their son Randy in 2011. Their grandson, Jack H. Judd became the company president from June 2007 until closure in May 2023.

Now, the hollow buildings at Supco stand idle and void of equipment. At the height of operations, the company had an annual revenue of just shy of twenty-five-million dollars with approximately 150-200 employees.

Did You Know?

Glenn Webster operated an automobile parking lot at 100 S. Johnstone Avenue from 1965-1987, when he died. At that time, his wife Eudora Webster operated the parking lot rental until she retired in 1990.

Now You Know *

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 31 NOW YOU KNOW
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Kate Barnard

The Good Angel, But 90 Pounds of Human Dynamite

Kate Barnard was born May 23, 1875, in Nebraska. She was known as “black Irish”, with striking blue eyes and black hair, inherited from her Irish father. She grew to be only 5 feet tall, weighing only 90 lbs.

When Kate was two years old, her mother died, which affected her greatly. Kate was left in others’ care while her father traveled to other jobs. She felt like an orphan most of her life. This caused her to have intense sympathy for hurting children and animals.

In 1891, at the age of 17, Kate and her father moved to Oklahoma Territory. She vowed to never marry, which she kept. After attending St. Joseph’s Academy, she became a school marm. She was not happy there, as it was too confining and not a big enough platform for her. She then obtained several clerical positions in the Territorial government. It was boring work for her. She realized she liked to take charge and she had power as a public speaker.

She observed the legislators and realized she wanted to be involved in politics, but women could not vote, so she had to figure out how to be involved and still make a difference. In 1904, a few years before Oklahoma Statehood, she became a hostess for the Oklahoma exhibit at the St. Louis World’s Fair. While there, she noticed urban poverty and listened to discussions by social science experts who were suggesting solutions.

When she returned to OKC, she started noticing similar situations, so she began a career in charity work. She believed women had political potential, so she entered politics in 1906, and was able to help adopt two reform measures: the

prohibition of child labor and the establishment of the office of Commissioner of Charities and Corrections, in which she was elected, being the first woman to be elected to a state office in the new state of Oklahoma, before women were able to vote.

In her new job, Kate was to examine not only child labor, but also prisons, schools, hospitals, orphanages, asylums and several other institutions. She traveled all over the state and other parts of the country “preaching” against child labor, talking about the horrid conditions. Most women did not understand why she was so intent on this subject. She replied, “all the world suffers when a little child suffers.” She refused to wear lots of jewelry and fancy clothes. She felt that she could not wear diamonds while there were children starving.

Kate finally left office in 1915, but continued to fight for orphans, this time it was the orphaned Indians, who had dishonest guardians. She was appalled at the way the guardians would steal from the Indian children and were getting away with it. All these years of fighting corruption left Kate very sick and depressed. She went into seclusion and died a lonely woman in 1930, at the age of 55, but was honored with flag at half-mast and a governor’s proclamation praising Kate. She was eulogized as dedicated to suffering humanity and for being so unselfish.

Kate made many enemies within the state government, but she was able to make people aware of the plight of the less fortunate and the fact that women were important in politics. She was inducted in the Oklahoma Women’s Hall of Fame in 1982. If you visit the State Capitol, you can sit on a bench next to a sculpture of Kate.

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 35 LOOKING BACK

85th Anniversary Truity Credit Union

A Better Way to Bank

Early History

In spite of the lack of financial freedom women faced in the United States during the 1930s, 137 members of the Jane Phillips Sorority banded together to form a financial institution, resulting in the financial liberation of all stakeholders in the credit union in April 1939. In just six months, they jointly saved $425.

The Jane Phillips Sorority organized its first chapter in Kansas City in 1937 and expanded across ten states with more than 1,000 members in just a few years. The matriarch of the foundation, Jane Phillips, was the wife of the prestigious oil tycoon, Frank Phillips, who co-founded the Phillips Petroleum Company in 1917 in Bartlesville, Oklahoma.

Because the Jane Phillips Sorority was comprised only of female employees of Phillips 66, or Phillips Petroleum Company, their employer was the sponsor company of the credit union. In 1941, due to increased demand from employees, the credit union name changed from Jane Phillips Sorority Credit Union to 66 Federal Credit Union.

The bylaws were then amended to accommodate all employees of Phillips 66. The expansion of the membership profile set the stage for expansion opportunities worldwide. The credit union began as an opportunity for its members to gain financial independence and thus was considered a savings community rather than a borrowing community.

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Jane Phillips Sorority Members
66 Federal Credit Union branch at 4th and Keeler
1939 EST.

66 Federal Credit Union

In 1977, a new building was constructed at 4th and Keeler in Bartlesville, Oklahoma to make credit union services more accessible to members. Bylaws were then amended to include daughters-in-law, sons-in-law, and grandchildren of members in the field of membership; meaning members’ family members were eligible to join the credit union by association. The charter was also amended to expand the field of membership, offering services to Phillips 66 employees worldwide. This decision impacted the scale and legacy of the credit union as they were no longer seen as a small institution in a single community, but rather a global financial institution.

In 1980, the Depository Institutions Deregulation and Monetary Control Act was passed, which led to significant change in the complexion of the credit union. This act removed limits from all financial institutions in regards to their deposit instruments and allowed federal credit unions to offer checking account services to members. The 66 Federal Credit Union checking account was quite literally the gateway to providing innumerable, diverse products and services in the future.

The years 1986 and 1987 were pivotal for the development and diversification of the credit union’s products and services. The deregulation of interest rates was fully phased in and market interest rates dropped to their lowest point in years. The credit union seized the opportunity to introduce the 66 VISA Credit Card Program and the 66 Equity Line of Credit during this time, resulting in more than 3,200 card signups in just a year. In addition, mortgage loans, refinancing, and home improvement loans were introduced and loans began to increase. Due to the economic instability in the United States, banks and S&Ls (savings and loans) were closed in record numbers while the credit union continued to see record growth amongst its membership.

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66 Federal Credit Union lobby at 4th and Keeler in Bartlesville Phillips Petroleum Executives including Frank and Waite Phillips Phillips66 offices in Bartlesville, OK

Very shortly after the start of 1990, 66FCU acquired the Kansas University Credit Union in Lawrence, Kansas. The acquisition of KUCU opened a door into the Lawrence market and has been a point of stability ever since. Following a pattern of growth, the credit union opened a branch in Bellaire, Texas to better support and serve the needs of Phillips Petroleum Company employees. In the years following 66FCU would open the first ever Houston branch in the ConocoPhillips metroplex and create the market trinity. For more than two decades the credit union has serviced three primary markets that are still thriving today: Bartlesville, Lawrence, and Houston.

66FCU later introduced a program in 1994 which allowed members to utilize a VISA check card, or debit card, to access their checking account through participating merchants and ATMs worldwide. They were the first financial institution in Bartlesville, OK to offer such a service. At this point the credit union became a comprehensive financial source for its members just in time for the startup of the new affiliate, Tyson Credit Union. Tyson added over 9,000 new members pushing the membership base count to more than 42,000. This strategic move caused growth despite the sponsor company’s workforce instability. This was the cause of the branch openings in Springdale, Arkansas and Wilkesboro, North Carolina. These branches were opened to better serve Tyson employees on a larger scale.

Truity Credit Union

The credit union’s efforts to diversify its membership proved to be successful, while over the next several decades, its membership and asset portfolio grew to record numbers. They added a variety of new, innovative products and continually made technological advances to improve member services and products. In 2013, 66 Federal Credit Union rebranded and was renamed Truity Credit Union, the credit union’s current identity. Truity stems from the words trust and integrity; two things they felt should be embodied in their institution. The name change was essential because it housed all of the credit union fiduciaries under one name and created a simpler and more seamless experiences for its members.

Because of the vast history and important changes made to the credit union structure, they’ve been able to better serve the communities in which they reside. Truity Credit Union emphasizes a community mindset and prioritizes the financial well-being of each person in them. They’ve introduced a multitude of products and services to promote inclusivity; such as checking accounts, savings accounts, credit cards, and educational opportunities for those in the community who are seeking knowledge and financial health. In addition, the Truity Education Foundation was created in 2009 and exists to support local, public education in each serviced market. Their spirit card programs are available for members who choose to participate and in addition to a sign up incentive, a percentage of each transaction is donated to the school of their choice. They have donated more than $1,000,000 to local schools since the creation of the foundation fifteen years ago.

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Member using the ATM in branch Lisa Wright, MSR, assisting a member

Truity employees are encouraged to participate in fundraising efforts by deducting donations from their payroll. They often donate their time to volunteer at public events to increase Truity’s presence in the community. A new charity or organization is decided on each year by an employee vote and payroll deductions are appropriately allotted to each market. For instance, the 2024 Community Cares partners are Hopestone Cancer Support Center in Bartlesville, Family Promise in Lawrence, and Melissa’s Second Chances in Olathe. At the forefront of Truity’s priorities is member service and experience, but also the financial health and wellness of each community. Truity has also been recognized as the Best Credit Union, Best Place to Work, Best Benefits in Bartlesville and Best Credit Union in Lawrence because of their impact in each community.

Construction in Johnstone branch lobby in 1990

Johnstone branch lobby in 2024

Truity Credit Union Headquarters

The headquarters of Truity Credit Union is located in Bartlesville, Oklahoma in the 500 block of S Johnstone Avenue. In the past year the credit union has opened two new branches, one in Lawrence, KS in August 2023 and one in Olathe, Kansas in November 2023. The expansion into the Olathe market has opened the door to endless opportunities for expansion in Johnson County and bordering counties and areas surrounding the already established Lawrence market. Now with nine branches in four markets and further plans for expansion, they are a financial institution with a membership base of more than 72,000 and have assets exceeding $1.5 billion. Because of the bravery and innovativeness of the Jane Phillips Sorority 85 years ago, Truity Credit Union is able to serve its members and positively contribute to each community impacted by their presence. They have programs to support public education, non-profits, and small business owners. The ultimate goal of the credit union is to serve their members’ interests. The best way to do that is by providing exceptional service and making contributions to serve the greater good of their communities.

Truity Credit Union serves over 72,000 members worldwide and has assets of more than $1.5 billion. Truity offers personal checking and savings accounts, auto and home loans, as well as competitive business loans for almost any purpose. Visit to join the movement for better banking.

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 39



40 bmonthly | APRIL 2024 OUT & ABOUT


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Do you know a high school student who wants to be a teacher? How about a pilot, a machinist, or work in the energy & power industry? We have the perfect opportunity! We’re looking for students to fill spots in our Early Care & Education, Precision Machining Operations, Drones & Aviation, and Energy & Power programs! Time is running out, acceptance begins in April! If you know someone who may be interested, send them the QR code below to apply!

The Next Step Conference is tailored for undecided high school seniors, providing insights on the benefits of CareerTech attendance and the positive impact of program certifications. Prospective attendees are encouraged to register today!



Attention future Paramedic students! Do you still need to take Anatomy & Physiology? Our Paramedic A&P course starts on April 8 and is included in the cost of our Paramedic program! Time is running out and spots are limited! Apply today!


The deadline to apply for the June CNA program is May 20, 2024. Individuals can start their career as a Certified Nurse Aide (CNA) in just a few short weeks. Nursing homes, hospitals, adult daycare centers, personal homes, and assisted living facilities all require nursing aides to act as a helpful liaison between the RN or LPN and the patient. On average, CNAs earn *$23.94/hour upon entering the workforce.



Mark your calendars! Tri County Tech’s Commencement Ceremony is right around the corner. Join us on Thursday, May 16, 2024. We are so proud of our graduates and would love for you to celebrate with us.


Did you know that Tri County Tech is more than just a school? We also offer low-cost quality care in a state-of-the-art dental clinic, in partnership with the University of Oklahoma College of Dentistry. You receive a FREE screening appointment to identify any service you need. Treatments are provided by students and are supervised by our faculty and a licensed dentist. Use the QR code or call 918.331.3218 to learn more and schedule your FREE screening today!

Paramedics are advanced emergency medical care providers and are highly educated in anatomy and physiology, cardiology, medications, and medical procedures. They build on their Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) education and learn more skills such as administering medications, starting intravenous lines, providing advanced airway management for patients, and learning to resuscitate and support patients with significant problems such as heart attacks and traumas.


Have you signed up for STEAM Summer Camp? For one week, campers can spend every day doing what they love! Spots are filling fast! Registration closes May 24 and spots are filling fast! Learn more and register using the QR code.

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STEAM Summer Camp

Bringing Your Child Hands-On Summer Educational Fun

Imagine your child learning through trial and error to build a robot out of metal and hardware. Or your budding filmmaker taking an idea from concept to completion, then showing off their final project at a film festival filled with their friends and family. Or maybe your future scientist will dive into the fascinating world of bacteria and DNA in a safe, supervised environment.

It’s the perfect time to start making summer plans, and registration is now open for Tri County Tech’s highly-anticipated STEAM Summer Camp in June.

The adventure begins with current seventh to ninth graders leading the charge from June 3-7, followed by the third and fourth graders on June 10-14. Finally, from June 17-21, fifth and sixth graders embark on their STEAM journey, discovering their passions and potentials in a supportive and inspiring environment. STEAM Summer Camp is from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. daily, with lunch and snacks provided. Campers will also receive a fun T-shirt and water bottle.

Whether you have an aspiring chef, mad scientist or artist, there’s an option that will appeal to everyone. The youngest campers, currently enrolled in third or fourth grade, will experience all themes for a well-rounded experience. Fifth and sixth graders can choose two themes, while seventh through ninth graders can choose one theme to explore throughout the week. Each activity is adjusted to be appropriate for the different age levels.

Campers will get to experience hands-on learning with each theme. Drones and Aviation Instructor Brandi Peace plans different activities for her students year-to-year. This year, her campers will answer the question: will it fly? All ages will experiment with boomerangs and propeller sticks, while older campers will test out kites, drones, simulators and more.

“One of the activities I love the most is when students get to experiment with hot air balloons,” Peace said. “They learn that warm air is less dense—lighter—than cold air, so it causes the

balloon to go up. They have a great time with it!”

Some campers will get to explore the possibilities within the medical field through Health Quest. Instructor Natalie East will guide campers in studying the human body, immersing themselves in the world of healthcare simulation, and participating in hands-on experiments.

“I’m excited this year to have career-focused activities,” East said. “I’m hoping that students walk away inspired to pursue a health career that they were unaware of prior to this! We will even have an actual EMT come in to teach many of the emergency response skills.”

For those with artistic aspirations, STEAM camp offers a variety of fun activities as well. In the art theme, campers can play with painting, printmaking, paper-mâché, fiber arts and more. In Science & Photography, campers can let their imaginations run wild.

STEAM Camp Instructor Amanda Stratford loves seeing how students see the world so differently.

“You can have them all photograph the exact same thing and they will each create an image that’s unique,” she said.

From experimenting with a shoebox camera, to learning how to develop a photo to incorporating AI tools, campers are sure to learn something new.

“I hope [the Science & Photography theme] inspires curiosity and creativity!” Stratford said. “Phone cameras are such an integral part of life that we don’t spend any time wondering how they work—how a picture is actually possible. This class gives them answers to questions they didn’t even know they had and will hopefully make them curious about other technologies as well.”

Registration is open for STEAM Summer Camp, and spots are filling fast. The cost is $325. Explore the camp theme options at

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 43 EDUCATION
44 bmonthly | APRIL 2024 *See office for details. **After you complete your hearing assessment, you will receive an e-gift card for $20.00 from a limited selection of retailers. All product and company names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them. Offer not available to any consumer who has private or federal health insurance coverage. Private pay purchases only. Limited to consumers who have not had a hearing assessment within the past 12 months. Completion of hearing assessment required. Offer expires 5/31/24. 2230 SE Washington Blvd., Ste. 101 Bartlesville, OK 74006 918.876.3154 Mention code AG60-11 when calling Life-changing hearing care starts here We offer the following complimentary services: ● Hearing assessments* ● Cleaning of your hearing devices ● Hearing aid demontrations HearingLife is a national hearing care company that operates more than 600 hearing care centers in the U.S. Revolutionary new hearing devices may improve speech understanding and the ability to remember more. Enjoy the convenience of rechargeability and Bluetooth® connectivity. Complete your complimentary hearing assessment* and receive a $20 GIFT CARD** Gift$20Card** Tiffany Broughton, Hearing Instrument Specialist

BPS Foundation Hall of Fame

Four Retired Educators to be Honored

This April, the Bartlesville Public Schools Foundation will host its 14th annual Educator Hall of Fame, honoring four retired Bartlesville Public Schools educators. It will take place on April 4th at 4pm at the Bartlesville Community Center. The Foundation is inducting Sue Reynolds, David Boone, Vickie (Barthelemy) Droz, and Paula (Pitchlynn) Steeper.

If you took home economics in Bartlesville, Sue Reynolds was your teacher. She taught home economics throughout most of her fifty-five year career in education, covering topics like finance, housing, and food preparation. Outside of the classroom, she served as club advisor for Future Homemakers of America and Chair of the Vocational Home Economics Department. Reynolds invested in her students’ lives and regularly attended their athletic events and fine arts performances. She was named Bartlesville Teacher of the Year in 1989. Upon retiring, after thirty-three years as a full-time teacher, Reynolds served as a substitute teacher for another twenty-two years, often spending one hundred days a year in the classroom.

David Boone started as a teacher at Ranch Heights Elementary, but spent most of his career as an elementary school principal. Enjoying the challenge that comes with experiencing different school cultures, and believing that his teachers regularly needed new perspectives and leadership styles, Boone moved between schools more than most administrators. Over his twenty-six years as a principal, he led Lincoln Elementary, Wayside, Washington, Oak Park, and Hoover - serving two stints at Wayside and Oak Park before retiring in 1993. Regardless of the school, Boone recognized

that all students were capable of learning and deserved respect. He consistently provided individual support to his teachers and students.

Raised by a single mom, Vickie (Barthelemy) Droz developed a strong work ethic at a young age. She paid her own way through college before starting her career in 1968 as a student teacher at Wayside Elementary. She taught briefly at Caney Valley then returned to Wayside under the leadership of fellow inductee, David Boone. After twentyone years teaching first grade at Wayside, Droz transitioned to Hoover to teach fourth grade for another fourteen years before retiring in 2011. Droz had high expectations for herself and her students. She would often be the first to arrive in the morning and last to leave in the evenings. She poured all of her energy into her students to ensure they would reach their full potential.

Although the fourth inductee, Paula (Pitchlynn) Steeper is unable to attend the event due to health issues, her former colleagues at Ranch Heights Elementary will recognize her twenty-eight year career with Bartlesville Public Schools and induct her into the Hall of Fame as a legacy inductee.

The Bartlesville Public Schools Foundation has been investing in Bartlesville students and staff since 1985, funding over $3.8 million in innovative projects. Proceeds from the Educator Hall of Fame event will support the Foundation’s programs.

Tickets are available for $35 through the Foundation’s website. It will be catered by the Eatery and feature music from the BPS Orchestra.

Sue Reynolds David Boone Vickie Barthelemy Droz Legacy Inductee
APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 45 HALL OF FAME
Paula Steeper

When our daughter was born, we were faced with so, so many decisions. Everything was a choice: pacifiers, breastfeeding, vaccines, swaddling, kinds of shampoos, sleep schedules, screens, schools, diets, what should be her first rock album . . . It was exhausting frankly.

We did our best.

We researched. Interviewed. And planned. Then we just faked it and hoped we weren’t breaking her somehow.

I’ve often thought that having a kid is the longest gift unwrapping ever. Ever so often something happens and you peel back a little more of the paper and you see - Oh, this is part of who you are.

One Saturday morning, when our daughter Evanjalyn was roughly a year old (or 12 months if you’re of that persuasion) we were downstairs playing. Something on the wall caught

her attention and she made a move for it. She reached out her stubby little fingers to touch an open outlet. I quickly stepped into Dad mode, pulled her hand back, and said “No” in my best authoritative voice.

She was unimpressed.

She pulled her hand out and reached for the outlet again like I was withholding a Twinkie from her. Now I had to step up my game. I took her toddler’s hand, smacked it lightly (but just hard enough to get her attention), and gave a stronger “No.” Her eyes welled up. But the rest of her face contorted into what can only be described as an emoji for “Go fluff yourself.” I didn’t know 12-month-old faces were capable of that level of vitriol.

She pulled her hand back again.

Then, without breaking eye contact with me, she reached

46 bmonthly | APRIL 2024 FUNNY YOU SHOULD ASK

her red patted hand directly for the 120 volts of ouch. She was calling my bluff. I had no choice (I thought). I laid my cards on the table in the form of a heavier hand. The tears grew, but so did her anger.

I quickly realized I was in a “pissing match” with a oneyear-old, as the local cowboys would say.

Some of the wrapping paper peeled back on the package.

I may have been brought up with spankings and other physical deterrents, but my daughter isn’t me. Those tactics weren’t as effective for her. Discipline is an absolute if I want to keep her alive and give her some chance at being her best self, but discipline comes in lots of colors. Our job was to find the things that spoke to her.

Our diabolical plan became to raise our daughter as a mini-adult. It works for horses, whales, and unicorns. Why not a kid?

We took her places. Introduced her to people. Traveled with her. Kept her in school scenarios that would further her education but also her social awareness. As a result, she has taken each step forward in school and life without being caught off guard.

We never did “kiddie” talk with her (though we have always showered her with affection). That may seem noble, but allowing her to be the only kid in a room full of adults at times offered her an education we didn’t always plan for.

One afternoon when she’d been running errands with her Mom, Evanjalyn found me working on a deck in our backyard. She assessed the situation and then announced that the board I was working with was “sh!t.”

I looked at her for a moment, trying to determine if I had misheard my seven-year-old. But the look on her face was of someone who’d just put a paper boat on the water to see if it would float. “Are we all on the same level here? Can we all use these words, nail-gun man?”

Flash forward a couple of wrapping paper peels, and who our daughter is continues to take shape.

She’s funny, smart, respectful (outside the home), talented, intuitive, and maybe most importantly… kind and empathetic. She sees needs and she helps. She sees pain and she wants to make it better.

Part of the gift that is Evanjalyn is something she got from her Mom. She has a great ear for music. It’s helped her to find her own voice, even as she recognizes the brilliant voices of others.

When she hears a song that moves her she can usually “figure it out” on the piano (sometimes with a little assistance from my wife…though my daughter will undoubtedly announce she already knows.)

A couple of weeks ago, we heard a really moving song by an amazing performer, Olivia Rodrigo. Evanjalyn tracked down the lyrics online and then began to play it . . . relentlessly. It’s not always easy to hear a twelve-year-old sing a devastating breakup song on repeat for 72 hours straight.

At one point, we were in the room together and I caught some lyrics I hadn’t heard at first. Adult words.

“Uh, hey…honey…your Mom and I aren’t really comfortable with you singing those words. Why don’t you download the radio version of the song.”

“I know, Dad.” Not my favorite repeated, compulsive response. “I’m just getting ready to do that.” (After three days of practice.)

“Well, it’s just I guess . . . you sorta have to earn the right to say those words. You have to live long enough to know what those words mean, what they illicit, and the proper time to use them. (Without being used by them.) There are experiences and situations when those words might be the exact right words . . . a completely appropriate response, but you’re not there yet. Maybe even bigger than that though is the way our words impact us. I know that when I am in a bad place, going through tough times, maybe not being my “best self”my words can reflect that. And then those words… when I use them over and over again, begin to sort of harden me, they harden my heart. They deaden a bit of my sensitivity. I don’t want that for you. Does that make sense?”

“I know, Dad . . .”

Heavy sigh.

But she does know. And instead of me just saying “No,” I think she has some understanding now. And so do I.

Words matter.

They influence the receiver and the speaker. The harshness of my words not only reflects what is going on in my heart at a given moment, but in a kind of cyclical way, they also feed and reinforce those sentiments in me over time. When I choose to soften my words or speak with gratitude or project happiness, it’s not a matter of just “faking it.” It’s simply me trying to protect my heart from the onset of hardness that happens with the prolonged use of hard words.

To me (big qualifier) it’s not so much about banning certain words. It’s about knowing words, their meaning and impact, and their time. It’s an awareness of what those words are doing to others and myself. There are words that sting and arrest on purpose. There are hard words that save lives and call us to honesty. Some words act like a pressure valve. But as The Birds sing, “To everything . . . there is a season.” We choose not to live in the hardness for fear that the hardness might overtake us.

All words have their meaning. But on their own, they are neutral. It’s the one who wields them that bears the responsibility. Did my words help or hurt? Did I speak what I wanted or what was needed? It all matters.

As we unwrap the gift (slowly) that is my daughter, I want to make sure the present isn’t ruined before it gets realized. I guess that I should govern all my words.

See you next month, friends.

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 47 FUNNY YOU SHOULD ASK

Choose the team that provides physical, emotional, and spiritual support to you and your loved ones.

Locally owned and operated. Serving the Bartlesville area for 15 years. 918-331-0003

Charity Wing, Administrator

Affordable apartments where you can enjoy new friends and feel right at home!

We have independent living apartments available to rent for those ages 55 or older.

All apartments are unfurnished, 1 bedroom, $950 per month and include:

• All utilities paid; including basic cable

• 24-hour emergency response

• Fully equipped kitchen

• Patio with sliding glass door

• Restaurant-style dining or you can have meals delivered directly to your apartment

• Planned activities; to include regularly scheduled happy hour

• Scheduled transportation for shopping

• Housekeeping

• On-site laundry

• On-site beauty shop

• Daily exercise classes offered

• Year-round building & grounds maintenance

• Interior maintenance

• Pet-friendly 3434 Kentucky Place • 918-333-9545

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Two REO Speed-Wagons...

And a Few Trucks

R ansom E li O lds’ automotive interest began when he partnered in his father’s machine shop, manufacturing gasheated steam engines; a passion that led to pioneering the Oldsmobile in 1897. This forwardthinking entrepreneur sold his Oldsmobile company in 1904 and established the REO Motor Car Company in Lansing, Michigan. Olds was recognized as an automotive genius, responsible for creating the moving assembly line; and, by 1907, before automotive competition became a reality, REO grossed $4.5 million in sales. Two well-known vehicles from that company were the REO Speed-Wagon and Diamond REO Truck.

As Indian Territory began to transition from horse and buggy to automobiles, local businesses shifted from horseshoes and wagon wheels to auto sales and parts. When you need auto parts in today’s world, your mind turns to Auto Zone, B&C or O’Reilly; however, a century ago, C.S.&P Motor Sales Company at 325 Johnstone Avenue was the “go-to” for REO Automobile and Speed-Wagon sales and parts (19191922). And, O.F. Siekman sold Willys–Overland touring cars and REO Motor Cars at 315 Keeler Avenue (1917-1933).

Spring was in the air on March 21, 1921 with a Fashion Show for the ladies and an Auto Show for the gents. Third Street (renamed Frank Phillips Blvd.) between Johnstone and Dewey Avenues showcased Bartlesville’s finest automobiles in grand splendor, supported by Bartlesville’s Auto Dealership Association. Among the autos on display were the REO Six Roadster and REO Speed-Wagon, which traveled “35 m.p.h. with a one-ton load.”

Since its 1915 introduction, the REO Speed-Wagon became recognized as the gold standard for light and heavy-duty truck construction. Its appeal grew due to its durability and customization as the Speed-Wagon manufacturing easily transitioned to firetrucks, school busses and “woody” station

wagons. REO ceased manufacturing automobiles in 1936 to concentrate on truck-based operations; then Ransom Olds died in 1950. Between 1957-1958, Diamond T and REO Trucks were combined to form the Diamond Reo Trucks Division of the White Motor Corporation.

Enter two musically inclined University of Illinois electrical engineer students, Neal Doughty and Alan Gratzer, who “jammed” in their dormitory basement in 1967, with visions of forming a rock band. Doughty’s History of Transportation class led him to select the name REO Speedwagon as the band’s name and they began playing campus bars, fraternity parties, and university events. In 2021, REO Speedwagon was inducted into the Hall of Fame at the Illinois Rock & Roll Museum with more than 40 million record sales and thirteen Top 40 hits. Although the band members have changed over the past 57 years, the band plays on…REO Speedwagon and Rick Springfield have scheduled 2024 tour dates from MarchOctober.

Nashville’s Opryland country band, the Tennessee River Boys evolved to Diamond Rio in 1989, a play off the Diamond REO trucks. They momentarily danced on the side of Christian music before returning to their roots and have sold more than 6.8 million albums. 2024 tour dates are scheduled on their website through August.

Preserving the history, the R.E. Olds Museum in Lansing, MI is one of the top-rated automobile museums in the United States and houses over a century of “automobilia” including representatives of Olds’ work since his originally designed 1887 steam carriage.

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 49 LOCAL LEGENDS
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Finding Faith


Journey with a Stray Dog

It was a quiet day in the Dallas-Fort Worth area when Stacie Sauber happened to see what she thought was a loose dog in the neighborhood. That was the first encounter before Stacie Sauber’s life took an unexpected turn. What was seemingly just an ordinary day became the moment that would change her life forever.

Sauber had never owned a dog before, and never wanted to own a dog. She noticed the dog limping back into the woods. He seemed to be on a mission, so Sauber went along her way. “I didn’t think a lot about it,” said Sauber. For the next year, she’d see him occasionally, but when someone told her the dog was still limping, she began to worry.

In the winter of 2021, Dallas-Fort Worth was having a terrible winter with over a foot of snow. “I started panicking about this dog,” said Sauber, “it was very unusual, I cared about the dog, I became obsessed!” Sauber’s thoughts filled with wondering where the dog was taking shelter, how it was eating, if it could survive the cold. So she made it her mission to find the dog, tracking paw prints, leaving water, straw and blankets. Never knowing if the dog was going to be seen again.

As the days turned into months, Stacie’s determination never wavered. She tracked the dog’s movements, set up game cameras, and spent countless hours patiently trying to coax him closer. Through rain and hail, she persisted, finding solace in the connection she felt with this creature who seemingly wanted nothing to do with humans.

The stray dog had fully captured her heart despite his initial fear and reluctance to trust.

Despite the initial wariness, Sauber’s unwavering love and care slowly began to break down his barriers. By the following Thanksgiving, the dog’s hesitant barks of excitement marked a turning point in their relationship. Over time, he allowed his human friend to pet him, scratch his belly, and eventually, follow her into the warmth and safety of her home. She decided to name the dog Clovis, even after she discovered Clovis was in fact, a girl!

Clovis’s journey mirrored a spiritual awakening for Sauber, too. Through her bond with this stray dog, Stacie learned profound lessons about compassion, patience, and the unconditional love that she believes God extends to all beings. As she poured her heart into gaining Clovis’s trust, she realized that her efforts reflected the way God patiently waits for us to come to Him.

Sauber said she could hear it so clearly, almost as if a voice was speaking to her, that there was a lesson in all of what she was doing. “It was such a moment for me,” said Sauber, “God was just saying, all this time you’re putting in to him, to get this dog to come to you. There are also people out there that need help.”

Sauber gave Clovis a loving home for 18 months. Once the dog finally became acclimated to the house she would even greet people as they arrived. Tragically, their time together was brief. Despite Sauber’s efforts to provide Clovis with a loving home, she discovered that Clovis was suffering from cancer. Although this was a devastating blow, Sauber realized exactly where the emotional journey was leading her. In hindsight, she recognized that Clovis’s presence in her life had opened her eyes to a greater purpose.

Inspired by her experiences with Clovis, Stacie embarked on a new mission—to extend kindness and compassion to those in need. She is now partnering with B the Light mission and has pledged the proceeds from her book, “I Never Wanted a Dog,” to support their work. Through her encounters with the homeless community, Stacie discovered a newfound empathy and understanding, recognizing their shared humanity and struggles.

Sauber’s journey continues, guided by the lessons she learned from Clovis and the spiritual insights gained along the way. As she reflects on the past four years, she sees how each step led her to this moment of purpose and service. And in the faces of those she helps, she sees echoes of the love and compassion she once shared with a stray dog named Clovis.

In the simple act of reaching out to a stray dog, she found not only a faithful companion but also a deeper connection to the divine presence that surrounds us all.

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Has John Boy Been to Buck-ee’s?

May Your Life be Filled with Detours of Divine Design

We were driving back from Walton Fest, one of Oklahoma’s best photographers and me, late one Sunday afternoon in March. (Confession: I didn’t really watch The Waltons much growing up, but like everyone else, I knew who John Boy, Elizabeth, Mary Ellen, Ben, Erin, Jason and Jim Bob were – but never in a million years did I figure I would be marketing their fan events across the country and be invited down to host a podcast with them!)

Nevertheless, there we were – all together – sitting around a table visiting like old friends, with three microphones spread out to capture it all, when, to my surprise, as I was closing the podcast down - Kami Cotler (Elizabeth) decided to add her own ending to the recording and called out a, “Goodnight, Kelly,” as the other siblings followed suit. They touched my heart –but, back to me and my favorite photographer on the freeway headed north…

We pulled into a Buc-ee’s convenience store once we finally cleared the I-635 traffic nightmare. With a parking lot the size of a Walmart parking lot we found ourselves searching for a parking spot. I had never seen a convenience store so packed!

Upon entering, we told each other we’d go our separate ways and gave ourselves a 10-minute time limit to explore the vastness of the chipmunk’s kingdom. I picked up some ovenwarmed glazed pecans, a bag of caramel popcorn, and a bottle of water then met Cindy Lynne at the check-out counter. In record time, we headed back across the parking lot (after going out the wrong door and having to search for where we parked) to the little Rafter H white Mazda I’m sporting around in these days.

I needed to open up a cup holder caddy for my bottled water so I opened my door to pour out the remainder of a caramel frap (almond milk, no whip) that had been making this journey with us for far too long, when I looked up as a car stopped right behind my car and a lady rushed out of it and came striding

up to me, driver’s side, and said, “Have you ever felt like or been told that you were called to minister?”

Not the intro I had expected… You might say she got right to the point.

She went on to explain that she had spotted us walking across the parking lot and saw God’s hand and even a small part of His plan on our lives. (This is what you’d call a prophetic word.)

Now, she could have been a kook – because there are kooks out there – but she wasn’t because she nailed it in some of the things she said during our 10 minute visit…

We ended our to-the-point encounter in prayer then she got in her car and drove off.

Hmmm… unexpected to say the least, but - I’ve been thinking about it ever since.

Let me ask you, would you be bold enough to approach a complete stranger in a crammed Buc-ee’s parking lot somewhere between Green Country and Mesquite Country to have a get-to-the-point conversation - if so prompted?

Well, the fact that she did, affected the content of our conversation the remaining drive home – and I was encouraged in my own life not to brush off the gentle promptings of the Holy Spirit that I get from time to time. You know those promptings to encourage someone, give generously, love extravagantly, call to the good in others, and yes – even speak prophetically if the Lord so prompts like He undoubtedly did an older lady in a convenience store parking lot one particular Sunday in March…

It’s those little things that can make the biggest difference in someone’s life.

May your life be filled with detours of Divine Design - and thanks for taking a pit-stop with me On the Road this month!

Oh, and if you’d like to check out the podcast with the Waltons, search for the Along the Gravel Road podcast on all major podcast platforms.

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 53 ON THE ROAD

MAY 11 • 6PM





Dr. Forrest Lawrence Pearl Harbor Attack Prompted Military Service

Dr. Forrest Lawrence was Born 27 August 1917 in Bradleyville, Missouri. He graduated from Springfield High School in 1935 and attended Southwest Missouri State College. He passed the Medical Aptitude Test and entered the George Washington University Medical School in St. Louis and received his MD in 1943.

He was walking down the street in St. Louis when a classmate told him of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. His whole medical class volunteered for the Medical Corps Reserves while still in college with the promise they could finish their education.

He was commissioned and called to active duty 5 January 1944 and sent to Camp Polk, Louisiana and assigned to the 52nd Armored Battalion, 9th Armored Division as Battalion Surgeon. His unit was sent to Camp Kilmer, New Jersey and went aboard the Queen Mary 15 August 1944. The ship landed at Glasgow, Scotland and put on the train to Tidworth Barracks, 60 miles west of London. The whole Medical Detachment was put on a Liberty Ship, crossed the English Channel and landed at Omaha Beach 90 days after D-Day.

They drove to Paris in the rain and on to Luxembourg. They set up on the Front lines and nothing was moving. He went to Battalion Headquarters to see what was going on. The 9th Armored Division had been pulled off the line and replaced by the 106th Division, the Golden Lions. In two days, units from the 106th were running through the lines of the 9th Division, retreating from the Germans in the Battle of the Bulge. They retreated and ended up in Bastogne and the Germans had the town surrounded.

About 100 members of the 9th Armored Division were captured and the Germans didn’t know what to do with them and shot them at the Malmady Massacre. The Malmady Massacre incensed everyone. A company commander in the 9th Division had 20 German prisoners and he sent them down the road with a lieutenant and told him not to bring them back. The division went to Metz, France and he was transferred to the 14th Tank Battalion and had 18 medics. The unit headed

north and marched into Aachen, Germany. The city was completely destroyed and took bulldozers to get through.

He headed toward the Rhine River and the Germans put up a desperate fight because this was their last stand. His unit advanced to the town of Remagen and the Ludendorf Bridge was still intact over the Rhine. Later the Bridge was renamed the Remagen Bridge.

The Germans were trying to blow the bridge but the TNT they were using would not explode and learned later the slave labor sabotaged the TNT. He crossed the Remagen Bridge 8:00 on the morning of 8 March 1945 and set his aid station up in a church in the town of Erple, on the east side of the river. Chose the church because it had walls 2 feet thick.

The Germans began shelling the town of Erple and he and his medics sat in the church for 10 days under fire. He was on the east side of the Rhine River with his medical detachment and rest of the division was on the west side, afraid they would be captured. The Germans sent jets to attack the bridge and those were the first jets he saw. The Germans Planes were trying to destroy the bridge, but the Americans had no anti-aircraft guns. When a German plane approached the bridge, every weapon on every vehicle opened up and no German plane survived. An artillery round was fired and the bridge swayed and collapsed into the river. The Pontoon Bridge took 10 days to build and the rest of his unit crossed.

From Remagen, the unit advanced into Central Germany to Bamberg. Toured Buchenwald and the local citizens were brought in to see the camp. Advanced to the Elbe River and met the Russians then went to Cheb, Czechoslovakia and the war ended.

There was no celebration on V-E Day, everyone was tired and glad the war was over. Returned to St. Louis after the war and was told a good place for a doctor was Bartlesville and he moved here in 1947 and set up his medical practice.

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 55 UNSUNG HEROES
56 bmonthly | APRIL 2024 918-213-5943 Wishing you all a Happy Easter! — We’re hiring great people like YOU ABB is an EOE including disability vets

A Snowbound Adventure

Reaching Williams Lake in New Mexico requires a long hike at altitude, but the pristine setting is worth the effort. Once my kids were old enough, I was excited to introduce them to this alpine gem.

When we arrived at the mountain, we learned the trail was still covered by late-season snow. Hiking was a treacherous slog of slippery terrain, cold fingers, and wet pants. When one child lost a shoe, their numb feet didn’t even register it was missing for several steps. Before long, my wife looked at our exhausted, half-frozen children and declared, “I think this is far enough for me. Who wants to go back to the car?” Three little hands shot up immediately, leaving my 10-year-old son and me to soldier on by ourselves.

Eventually, we emerged into a gorgeous valley which marked the final ascent to the lake. The right side of the trail was full of snow-covered boulders, creating a picturesque field of drifts and hollows. The trail divided the boulders from a steep incline to our left. Seeing the hill, my son asked if he could slide down. Seizing the chance to catch my breath, I agreed.

He climbed up the snowy hill, and as he turned to face me his feet suddenly broke through the crust, sinking through the snow up to his waist. Annoyed, he began to struggle, but his legs were useless, encased in snow. As his annoyance gave way to frustration, he said “Dad, I can’t get out. Come help me.”

Knowing he was not in danger, and seeing a chance for him to overcome a challenge, I dusted off a rock, reclined, and said “Nah. You’ve got this!”

He strained against the snow, making no progress, his frustration turning to anger. “Dad, I can’t do this. You have to help me!”

I snapped a picture and encouraged, “Come on! You are smart enough and strong enough to do this on your own.”

Now furious with me, he pounded the snow, demanding help and becoming more upset each time I refused. Soon, he began to panic. With tears in his eyes he screamed, “DAD, MY LEGS ARE GOING NUMB! WHY WON’T YOU COME FREE ME?”

“SON!” I yelled back, grabbing his attention with my new tone, “I am not doing this for you, because you don’t need me. You are stuck because you are scared, and you aren’t thinking. You have tried the same unsuccessful method for 10 minutes, and you have gotten angrier each time it hasn’t worked. Instead of being upset with me, think through WHY you are stuck. Work to undo that problem, and you will free yourself.”

“NO!” he wept, “You HAVE to help me.”

“I am. Now take a deep breath and figure it out.”

The look of betrayal in his eyes broke my heart, but finally, with tears and determination, he began to strategize. Slowly, he rocked, scooped, and wriggled, until at last, with a mighty heave, he threw himself to one side, prying first one leg and then the other out of the snow.

Elated, I cheered for him. “You did it all by yourse-”

But instead of smiling, his young face contorted with rage. “YOU SHOULD HAVE HELPED ME!” he screamed, charging down the hill at full speed.

For the first time since he crashed through the snow, I became afraid. My son was sprinting down a slippery hill toward a field of buried boulders, and he was now one wrong step away from crashing head-first into the rocks. As I registered this concern, his numb legs failed to keep stride, and his face morphed from fury to fear as he lost his balance.

Instantly I was on my feet sprinting in his direction, oblivious to my own footing. As the ground flattened where the hill met the trail before transitioning to the rocks, he began to topple. As he fell, I dove at him. I wrapped him in a side-long tackle and rolled onto my own back so he would land on my chest instead of the ground.

Locked in my arms, he and I both wept. “Dad, why didn’t you help me?” He implored.

“You needed to conquer that challenge on your own.” I answered.

“But I was in pain, and I was afraid!”

“I know.” I said. “And I’m proud of you overcoming that pain and fear. You were never in danger until you lost control of your emotions and charged down the hill. As soon as you actually needed me, I was there.”

After a pause he asked, “Dad, why are you crying?”

“Because that was really scary.”

“Yes it was. Thanks for catching me.”

“That’s what dads are for.”

Another pause.

“Son?” I whispered.

“Yes, Dad?”

“Don’t tell Mom.”


A New Type of Primary Care

PCA Starting a New Primary Care Venture

Five Bartlesville physicians, who operate Primary Care Associates PC, are starting a new primary care venture focused on delivering personalized care, while offering conveniences not typically available in traditional practices.

Drs. William Davito, Mark Erhardt, Daniel Holdman, Elizabeth Sherrock and Ryan Vaclaw have recently partnered with MDVIP, the national leader in personalized healthcare, and will open their new practices on April 30.

The doctors will each see fewer patients, giving them more time to focus on prevention, answer questions and develop meaningful doctor-patient relationships that can lead to better outcomes.

They have been operating their current practice in Bartlesville for more than 20 years.

“We’re very excited about this change,” says Dr. Mark Erhardt. “We want to focus on personalizing our approach to care with our patients. Unfortunately, when you see thousands and thousands of patients, it’s very hard to do that.”

In the new program, patients will take part in an annual wellness program similar to an executive physical. Advanced diagnostic tests and screenings in the program are designed to help doctors identify health issues earlier.

In addition, the doctors will offer longer

58 bmonthly | APRIL 2024 HEALTH & WELLNESS

appointments when needed and will be able to schedule same- and next-day appointments that start on time. They will also be available to patients after hours for urgent matters.

“When you can have longer appointments, you can spend more time talking to patients, answering questions and coaching,” Dr. William Davito says. “It’s like medicine used to be — we’ll have time to really sit down, have a conversation and dig deeper into health and lifestyle challenges.”

MDVIP is a national network of primary care physicians, with doctors in 45 states. Physicians in the network operate their own practices and make their own decisions about care, but MDVIP provides services to both doctors and patients.

MDVIP has 11 peer-reviewed, published studies, that show better outcomes for patients in the model, including 70 percent fewer hospitalizations and utilization of emergency departments and

urgent care; better management of chronic illnesses like type 2 diabetes and hypertension; and fewer heart attacks and strokes among patients at high risk. Patients in MDVIP-affiliated practices are also more satisfied with their primary care experience (97 percent versus 58 percent) than patients in traditional primary care practices.

The doctors are currently accepting patients in their new practices from their current patients as well as members of the community. The doctors will continue to operate as Primary Care Associates PC and will stay in their current office at 4150 SE Adams Road in Bartlesville.

Existing patients who do not wish to participate in the new program will be able to see medical providers at the same office. EPIC Health, who will offer primary care services, specialty care, including same-day appointments, telehealth services and preventive care.

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 59 HEALTH & WELLNESS

ForrestManor Nursing Center

“Caring is our Tradition”


Forrest Manor has a long track record of providing premier, skilled care for its residents. Trusted by individuals and their families to continue recovery when leaving the hospital and to enhance residents’ lives by promoting independence and safety. Forrest Manor provides rehabilitation services by caring, licensed therapists. Forrest Manor offers:

• Physical Therapy

• Occupational Therapy

• Speech Therapy

• Restorative Therapy

• Personalized Care

• Social Services Social

• Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation

• Planned Activities

• Skilled Care Skilled

• Respite Care

• Short & Long Term Care

• Hospice

• Senior Fitness Center Senior

• Theater Room Room

• Private Party Room

• Elegant Private Dining Room Elegant

• Meals planned by a Registered Dietician

• Complimentary transportation to Complimentary doctors’ appointments

• Highest wages in the area based on a survey with nursing homes a

• Cigarettes included in per diem

• Transportation to Owasso & Tulsa

• And much more!

60 bmonthly | APRIL 2024
Transportation to Owasso & Tulsa for acute care hospital services. Highest wages in the area based on a survey completed with all other area nursing homes.
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A Short Story & a Lesson

“I Almost Sold Your Son for a Quarter”

The story is told of a preacher who moved to Houston, Texas. Some weeks after he arrived, he had an occasion to ride the bus from his home to the downtown area. When he sat down, he began to count the change the driver had given him, he quickly discovered that the driver had accidentally given him a quarter too much change.

As he considered what to do, he thought to himself, “you better give the quarter back, it would be wrong to keep it.” Then he thought, “Oh, forget it, it’s only a quarter.”

“Who would worry about this little amount of money? Anyway, the bus company gets too much fare, they would never miss it.” In his pondering, he even considered, “I should accept it as a gift from God and keep it.”

When the bus stopped at the preacher’s destination, he paused momentarily at the door, then handed the quarter to the driver and said, “You gave me too much change.”

The driver, with a smile replied, “Aren’t you the new preacher in town? I’ve been thinking about going to worship somewhere. I just wanted to see what you would do if I gave you too much change. I’ll see you at church on Sunday.”

When the preacher stepped off the bus, he literally grabbed the nearest light pole, held on and said, “O God, I almost sold your Son for a quarter!”

Most of us recognize that the new preacher was reflecting on how he almost sold out the Son of God, Jesus Christ, for a measly quarter!

This unique life story can be a microcosm of life choices today. Throughout the ages, people have been faced with the dilemma of either doing the right thing or simply pleasing their own selfish desires. We have, too often, concluded that doing the “right thing” is not really a big deal. We may even say to ourselves; “Who decides what is right? I have the right to choose my own “right!””

Throughout centuries, countless numbers of people, in their search for Truth, have embraced the holy scripture, as the inspired and revealed Word of God. They believe it sets the standard of right living.

For example, biblical right living, includes how we should treat one another by loving our neighbor as we love ourselves (Leviticus 19:18; Matthew 19:19). The Bible also teaches us to forgive and love those who mistreat us (Matthew 5:43-48; 6:14). It says we are to care for the needs of widows, orphans and aliens (Malachi 3:5). We are directed to be “wise about what is good and innocent about what is evil” (Romans 16:19).

God’s Word even provides instruction about when to stay silent and when to speak up (Proverbs 12:18, 21:23; Psalm 141:3; James 1:26). The Bible is a valuable source of wisdom, offering healthy guidelines for life and how to respectfully live life with others.

With countless opportunities, challenges, temptations, even selfish desires, coming our way, we are tempted to create our own self-defined “right way”. Too many times we yield to what seems pleasing to self or to what may bring on the applause of society. We need to choose God’s ways, His ways are right and His ways are higher than our ways (Isaiah 55:8-9).

The temptation, to hold on to the quarter, rather than holding on to timeless Truth, can subtly tug on our hearts and twist our thinking. When we want to reimagine truth, to be what we personally prefer, have we lost sight of God’s Truth? Could it be we have sold the son for a quarter?

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 61 A GOOD WORD
62 bmonthly | APRIL 2024 2024 is our 17th year! Where: Frank Phillips Park, 222 SW Frank Phillips Blvd. (Just South of the train depot) When: Every Saturday, May 4 - Oct 12 • Time: 8-11:30 am Live Music + FREE Bingo Making life work is our life’s work. • Skilled nursing • Physical therapy • Occupational therapy • Speech therapy • Medical social work • Transportation • Home-health management • Personal care, hygiene • Companionship • Assistance with errands Free consultations, call 918.333.8500 918.333.8225 1501 SE Bison Rd, Bartlesville Now Leasing: 1, 2, & 3 Bedroom apartments

Alleluia! Praise Gathering for Believers at First Baptist Church

The First Baptist Church of Bartlesville, OK will be presenting “Alleluia! A Praise Gathering for Believers” by Bill and Gloria Gaither on Sunday evening, April 28th at 6 p.m. The combined choirs of FBC Bartlesville and FBC Collinsville and a few other guest singers from area churches will comprise the 100 voice choir that will be accompanied by full orchestra, solos, and drama under the direction of Wade Daniel, Minister of Music at FBC Bartlesville.

The musical presentation, featuring the inspirational music of Bill and Gloria Gaither, was premiered in 1973 and recently celebrated its 50th anniversary with new orchestrations and vocal arrangements. The panoramic scope of the musical presents God’s creation, the fall of man, the redemption through Christ, and the victory believers have through Christ’s resurrection as expressed in the iconic song “Because He Lives, I Can Face Tomorrow.”

For more than 50 years, Bill and Gloria Gaither have shared a mutual dedication to combining great art and great theology. As a result, they have created a lasting legacy in the field of gospel music and beyond. Together they have written more than 700 songs, created hundreds of awardwinning recordings and a dozen timeless musicals that have been sung for decades. In recognition of Gloria and Bill’s vast

contribution to the gospel music industry, they were named ASCAP’s Christian Songwriters of the Century in 2000. Also on their long list of special honors with Grammy Awards and Dove Awards, is their induction into Gospel Music Hall of Fame.

In addition to his work with the music ministry at FBC, Wade serves as Minister to Senior Adults. The “Third Monday Big Event” luncheon, that takes place every third Monday at First Baptist features a catered lunch ($10) and an inspirational program that is open to anyone in the community 55+. The 12 noon luncheon is preceded by 10 a.m. Fun and Games for anyone wanting to come early for fellowship. Upcoming programs feature Wade Burleson, (speaker), Doug Anderson, (comedian magician), Kay Little (historian), Everett Piper (OKWU president emeritus/county commissioner), Paul Vick (Prison Chaplain/Singer/Evangelist), Linda Barton-Paul, (inspirational harpist) and much more. For more information check out the church website at: or call the church office at 918.336.6172.

Wade Daniel has served as Minister of Music for the past 40 years and is approaching 15 years as Minister of Music and Senior Adults at First Baptist Church. Active as a concert pianist, accompanist, piano and voice teacher, and piano tuner, Mr. Daniel has appeared twice as guest soloist with the Bartlesville Symphony Orchestra (February 2019 and 2024).

Before moving to Oklahoma in 2009, Wade served as Minister of Music at North Orange Baptist Church and during that time served as piano accompanist for the Singing Men of South East Texas and a vocaistl/accompanist for the Centurymen choir of which he toured both nationally and internationally. He has produced 10 cds and has served as adjudicator for the Federation of Music Clubs and National Piano Guild. For more information, contact Wade Daniel at 918.977.0004.

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 63 WORSHIP
commitment to service is
commitment to you!” 37 Years of Real Estate Knowledge Jeff Hall, Broker/Associate (Licensed Broker in OK and NC) 124 SE Frank Phillips Boulevard, Bartlesville, OK 74003 918.440.9199
APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 67 Stay. Enjoy. Repeat. Follow us on Facebook Book an Event at Price Tower! We are teaming up with The Eatery to cater your perfect party! Call today! Call Price Tower for more info! (918) 336-1000 Coming Soon to the Gallery! by Jon Lindblom MAR 30 - APR 28
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APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 69 111 SE Beck, Bartlesville 918-333-3248 OPEN: Mon - Fri: 8 am - 5:30 pm, Sat: 9 am - 4 pm @EvansNursery Customer Appreciation Sale April 11-13! OKWU.EDU/GPS 918-335-6856 ApplyToday! RN-BSN, MSN, DNP Advance your nursing career 100% online with degrees from Oklahoma Wesleyan University. The Baccalaureate, Master's, and Doctorate degrees in nursing at Oklahoma Wesleyan University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education www.aacn.

Anything Goes

The Bartlesville High School Vocal Music department presents their Spring Musical, ANYTHING GOES, April 26-28.

This Cole Porter musical, set in the 1930’s, begins when Billy Crocker learns his love interest, debutant Hope Harcourt, is onboard the S.S. American, he stows away to try and win her back, not knowing that Hope is heading to England to marry the very wealthy Lord Evelyn Oakleigh.

Meanwhile, Billy’s friend, evangelist-turned-nightclub singer Reno Sweeney, sets her sights upon Lord Evelyn Oakleigh. To remain on board the ship, Billy borrows an unused ticket and passport from incognito gangster Moonface Martin, a.k.a Public Enemy Number 13. Will Billy get Hope? Will Reno get Lord Evelyn? Will Billy be taken into custody, along with Moonface? This madcap romantic comedy is filled with music, dance, mistaken identities, and hilarity.

“I am most excited about seeing our kids with so much enthusiasm. They love to share their talent with others”, states Tamara Walker, BHS Vocal Music Chair. “This musical has so much to offer from building a giant ocean liner on the stage, to fancy vintage costumes from the early 30’s, to jazzy music, comedy, love triangles, and even gangsters. There’s something for everyone to love, or laugh about and a way for every student to shine no matter where they are on stage.”

Debuting in 1934 in the midst of the Great Depression, Anything Goes was an instant success, starring Ethel Merman, establishing her place in American musical theater history. This timeless shipboard musical comedy has been entertaining audiences worldwide for over 80 years, including two Tony Award-winning revivals. The musical also introduced several songs that have become legendary standards, such as “Anything Goes,” “It’s De-lovely,” “Friendship,” “You’re the Top,” “Blow, Gabriel, Blow,” and “I Get a Kick Out of You.

Walker, a 23 year veteran with the Bartlesville High School music department is stepping into her first year as Vocal Music Chair and director of the Spring Musical.

“It takes a whole village to put on a musical and many people who specialize in multiple areas,” says Walker. This year Walker is helped by current BHS staff Chelsea Arnold, vocal teacher and champion ballroom dancer, Jan Watt, accompanist, Heather Koehn, BHS Band Director and conductor, Allis Roddy, drama teacher and backstage crew manager, and Seth Weimer, Fine Arts Center manager. Walker enlisted Chapman Shields, theatrical director/designer with vast expertise in the arts industry, through a BPSF grant, to host a student workshop, “Careers behind the Curtains”. He spent time working with tech and backstage crew and will also continue student enrichment with future visits and will be designing the lights.

Walker states that “directing and planning a musical is a very creative right-brained activity. Managing and organizing one is very left-brained. So, switching back and forth quickly is a difficult but fun challenge! But loving our students makes that all worthwhile.”

“This is the perfect storm of a cast,” Walker proudly beamed, “This is one of the all-around most talented and self-motivated group of students I have had the pleasure of working with in years. We always have shiny, amazing kids but here, there are so many in the same show.”

When asked what she was most excited for, Walker said, “I am excited about seeing our kids with so much enthusiasm. The look on their faces when they see their costumes or master a super fun dance move is priceless. They love to share their talent with others. It is an awesome time to watch them grow and shine.”

Walker added “I can’t wait to sit in the house and watch the audience reaction when the curtains open.”

Performances are April 26 and 27 at 7PM and April 28 at 3PM at the Fine Arts Center of Bartlesville High School. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students. They are available for purchase online at .

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 7 1 ENTERTAINMENT
72 bmonthly | APRIL 2024 Angels Care Home Health Here is what we can do for you! WHAT WE DO • Skilled Nursing • Wound Care • Falls Prevention • Disease Management and Education • Medication Management and Education • Blood Glucose Monitoring Education • Restorative Therapy (Physical, Speech and Occupational) • Blood Draws in the Home for any Labs Needed • Anodyne® Therapy for Neuropathy and Pain • Communication Between You and Your Doctor • Behavioral Health at Home • Alzheimer’s & Dementia • Skin & Wound Care • Anxiety & Depression Chronic Care • Take a Breath Respiratory Program • Pain Management • Care Connections Pre-Palliative Care Call us today for more information about how we can help you stay healthy at home! Care Home Health An AngMar Managed Company 100% medicare coverage SPECIALTY PROGRAMS GENERAL SERVICES Serving: Bartlesville & surrounding areas 918-333-3755 May E N S T U D I O E A C H W E D N E S D A Y 1 PM to 4 PM 217 S. Comanche Ave.• Bartlesville, OK 6 Beginning Colored Pencil - 2:30 - 5 P.M. with Valerie Unruh 13 Paint Your Pet Party - 2 - 5 P.M. with Valerie Unruh 15 Pastels - 6 - 9 P.M. with Anne Spoon 18 Watercolors “Apple Basket”- Noon - 3 P.M. with Jim Buchan 19 ArtWalk Downtown - 6 - 9 P.M. 22 Pastels - 6 - 9 P.M. with Anne Spoon Class schedules are subject to change BARTLESVILLE ART 4 Jewelry - 10 A.M. - Noon with Livi Diaz 18 Photography-Planning the Shot - 4- 6 P.M. with Mike Bryan 28 ART NIGHT (Free & Open to the Public)- 7 - 9 P.M. with John Reger 30, 31 & June 1 Drawing Workshop - 9:30 A.M. - 4:30 P.M. Summer June 3-28 DRAWING• PAINTING• SCULPTURE• PRINT MAKING Registration Opens March 25th Art for Everyone! ART 101 ART 101 Classes are free to BAA Members Register Online at: ART 101 ART 101 2024 Art Camp Collateral.qxp_Bmontly Vertical 3/13/24 7:02 AM Page 1

Exceptional Senior Living

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Green Country Village has helped seniors in Bartlesville enjoy private, maintenance-free residences with exceptional services and great hospitality for the last 30 years. Whether you or someone you love is considering independent living, assisted living or memory care, Green Country Village is the place to live, connect, grow.

Green Country Village has seniors in Bartlesville enjoy and great more than 30 years. Whether you or someone you considering memory care, Green Country is the to connect, grow.

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APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 73
Not-For-Profit Organization

Green Country Pet Cremation Service offers private pet cremation with timely return of ashes in your choice of a decorative wooden urn with an engraved nameplate. If no return of ashes is requested, the ashes will be gently scattered on a beautiful pastoral/garden property.

We are located in Bartlesville, Oklahoma and gratefully serve pet owners from a wide area surrounding Bartlesville, Dewey, and Northeast Oklahoma.

For our fee schedule, please feel free to call us at any time.


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74 bmonthly | APRIL 2024
a downtown nexus 215 E. 2nd Street
coffee food fun Happy Easter! Try one of our BIG Plates for BIG Appetites! cocktails

Keep Reaching for the Stars

Remembering That First Date

It was our first date and we stared at a piping hot large pizza, while pretending to have manners. But, there would be no first date gravitas, no dainty presumption of you go first or fiddling around with the reality of what we normally would consume absent the presence of one another. Normal food consumption on dates is somewhat unique for each dating experience, but generally, a red-bloodedAmerican male is entitled and sometimes the table just slants that way. We were circling the 8 slice pizza and doing math. I was thinking 5 to 3. But then, I noticed with slice 3 in hand, that she also was munching on slice 3, and my heart sank. She was going pepperoni to mozzarella, belly to belly with me. It was a dead heat, 4 to 4. I’ve never been quite the same after that pizza date.

I love to find hole-in-the-wall eateries when traveling. Once while standing in the order line at Pat’s Steaks in Philadelphia, and I noticed a guy who looked like Salvatore Tessio in The Godfather (Abe Vigoda of Barney Miller fame). He was staring at me with a steak spatula leveled in his right hand as cheese and beef painted his white apron like a counterfeit Monet. You order quickly or risk the disdain of the King of Steak, not to mention the withering stares of South Philly veterans. “I guess I’ll have a…umm…a cheese steak. Oh, and provolone cheese.” I might have mentioned something about how every other SUV in Oklahoma has an, “Eat more beef” license plate, which invoked only a haughty stare cast down upon my midwestern awe shucks attempt at humor. I threw a twenty-dollar bill on the counter and slid down past the order window. “Keep the change,” I mumbled, leaving a 100% tip.

I’m a recovering food junkie who grew up munching Lucky Charms cereal, tossing aside the spoon after the cereal was gone and drinking the sweet colored milk with the gusto of a nomad drinking oasis water. Food makes me crazy sometimes, and if it really tastes good, I make soft but audible yummy noises, while Karen likes to sing and dance while binging, which makes me uncomfortable in fancy restaurants.

The hunger for food can make you do crazy stuff and sometimes you steal to eat. Not so much in the vein of petty

French bread theft, but rather, the Finnish sort of larceny. As in the notorious Finnish man, Rosov Ronkainen, who was known for stealing food and women from nearby villages. He required his accomplices to go through an obstacle course while carrying something heavy on their backs to be sure they could handle the stolen bounty of body and sustenance. Finland even has a word and a competition for it: Eukonkanto, or the wifecarrying tournament. People must carry their partners on their backs and complete an obstacle course without dropping them. The winner receives enough beer to match the weight of the wife. Beyond my imagination is the quantity of vittles required by a Finn who drinks enough beer to offset the weight of his bride on a teeter-totter. Nonetheless, I admire the gusto of Rosov, the beer swiller and wife toter.

Karen and I are 38 years happily married, but we are not necessarily perfect soul mates. Although, there are moments when we sing the same song. Like when we travel and eat, and share music that is laden with that same sugar and fat. If we leave on Saturday, we time travel with an assist from Casey Kasem and replays of his American Top 40. Nowadays, you can summon whatever song you desire on Spotify, but in the Seventies, you counted down songs from 40 down to 1.

Karen and I now eat two slices instead of four. We shop for groceries at Sprouts and the local farmer’s market, and try to make up for all that cheese steak, tiramisu, and fettuccine alfredo from the Seventies. But our music binging rolls on, Springsteen, Eagles, JT, Three Dog Night, Stevie Wonder, Boston, Billy Joel, and yes, even Barry Manilow. That music was heavy, like our food, sentiment by the glow of the dashboard radio. This then is life, to travel and share food, and on Saturdays, travel back in time with Casey Kasem to days when our hearts were full and our arteries were clear and the number one song could only be found on the radio. It makes me hungry thinking about our next road trip. Until then, keep your feet on the ground, and keep reaching for the stars.

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 75 A FRESH PERSPECTIVE
76 bmonthly | APRIL 2024

Respite at DayBreak...

Benefits the Caregiver and the Participant

Every person needs a break. As America’s population ages, demands and obligations can weigh us down to the point of exhaustion, especially if we have a family member – a parent, spouse, or friend – who has dementia or Alzheimer’s.

DayBreak – one of Elder Care’s flagship and primary programs – offers multiple avenues for improving seniors’ well-being. One avenue is respite care.

Imagine this: you know someone is experiencing memory or cognitive decline. Their husband or wife is uncomfortable with going to a retirement community or turning to expensive medical venues. Still, nearly all their attention is spent accommodating and caring for their loved ones. Elder Care offers solutions to such a scenario that involves respite care solutions that relatively few know about.

One recent visitor to Elder Care, Sarah, expressed enormous relief for herself and her husband, who has dementia, when she realized that respite care wasn’t so far from home. “My husband was diagnosed with dementia,” Sarah revealed. “It’s been difficult for us – on him and me. I love my husband more than anyone, but we never envisioned our golden years would be spent like this. The progression of Nick’s disease means that I need someone to care for him while I take care of daily household tasks, and that’s where Elder Care comes in!”

As an adult day health center, DayBreak allows seniors to participate in social activities, meals, exercise, or cognitive games while their family attends to personal needs or essential tasks. Respite care is a proven relaxation for seniors and their families. It boosts social health, promotes better relationships, and provides assistance and care to those who need it.

Some DayBreak participants attend DayBreak for their benefit and pleasure. Diana believes DayBreak helps her remain physically and socially active. “DayBreak expands my ability to speak and to have social interactions. Physical exercise keeps me moving, and the games and cognitive activities help keep my mind sharp. Without DayBreak, I think I would be sitting at home all day and probably just watching TV. I am social and want to be with others my age. DayBreak provides that for me.”

Diana enjoys riding the DayBreak bus to and from Elder Care each day. “All the riders know each other, and we look forward to finding out what’s going on in everyone’s life. People are very friendly, and we enjoy being around one another.”

Elder Care has prioritized providing resources that help aging adults remain happy, healthy, and independent in their home environments for forty years.

For Sarah and her husband, DayBreak provides respite care so she can be the refreshed caregiver to care for Nick at home. For Diana, DayBreak provides daily therapeutic activities that keep her social with others her age, active through exercise, and happy, healthy, and independent!

Who doesn’t want independence as we age? Aging happens to all of us, and loving every moment is a priority for Elder Care and its DayBreak program.

Elder Care is the only organization in northeast Oklahoma that has an inclusive program such as DayBreak for adult day health purposes. According to Genworth’s 2019 Financial Study, adult day health is the most economical choice for longterm care. DayBreak is a private pay program available Monday through Friday between 7:30 am – 5:30 pm and includes transportation, meals, therapeutic activities, group exercise (seated), socialization with peers, and more. The average cost for an individual to attend DayBreak is approximately $10/ hour (on average) and can be conveniently billed in half or fullday increments. Some costs may be covered by The Veterans Administration, Advantage waivers, DHS block grants, individual long-term care insurance, or other grants for those who qualify.

Contact Shelia at (918) 336-8500 for a high-quality adult day health program, or visit AboutElderCare. org/daybreak for more information.

APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 7 7 HEALTHCARE

Women Artists of the West

The Woolaroc Museum is honored to host Women Artists of the West (WAOW) Invitational Exhibition and Sale where 37 nationally award winning artists will present fine art paintings and sculptures. As American museums are diversifying acquisitions seeking greater gender parity in collections, the Woolaroc Museum in partnership with WAOW plows groundbreaking progress for women Western artists through the offering of this show.

May 4th will kick off with a 10 a.m. open-to-the-public demonstration by artists. Over 30 artists will be present from across the U. S., Australia and Canada to discuss their work. At 1:30 pm, Shiloh Thurman,Woolaroc Director, Dr. Emily Burns, Director of the C. M. Russell Center and professor of art history and Lisa Staudohar, Art of the West Magazine, will convene to discuss women Western artists and trends in Western art collecting. For additional events on May 4th, see www.

The May 4th ticketed party from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. will bring collectors and artists together where artwork may be purchased through Fixed Price Draw. For those interested in attending the ticketed event or in purchasing artwork long distance via draw proxy on the 4th, visit “Events” tab or contact the Woolaroc Museum, 918-336-0307.

After May 4th, artwork may be purchased directly through Woolaroc Museum until the show closes on August 4th. Preview of the artwork will be available through digital catalog at and events tab.

WAOW is a non-profit organization in its 54th year of promoting women painters and sculptors. Woolaroc, also a non-profit, is nestled in the Osage Hills of northeast Oklahoma and is known for its remarkable Native and Western art and artifacts collection as well as its 3700 acre wildlife preserve. Support women in the arts and come celebrate with us!

Leslie Kirchner, Signature Missed Opportunity-Red Fox, Oil, 12x24 J. M. DeLipsey, Master Canones, Oil, 25x40 Amanda Cowan, Signature Timeless Friendship, Oil, 24x18 Margaret Drake, Signature First Saddle, Bronze, 15x18x9 L. J. McLoughlin, Associate A Working Man’s Tools, Acrylic, 14x18 Laara Cassells, Associate The Morning Shift, Acrylic, 24x20 Carolyn Mock, Signature Wary Wanderers, Oil, 24x18 Cheryl Harley-Volz, Master Sweet Nothin’s, Graphite, 16x25 Syri Hall, Signature Her New Bunny Bed, Bronze, 11x8x13 Pamela Winters, Signature Heartbeat of the Prairie, Bronze, 23x9x12 Carol Amos, Master The Red Cactus, Oil, 20x16 Judy Fairley, Signature All Butt One, Pastel, 19x27 Lori Kiplinger Pandy, Master Bareback Bookworm, Bronze, 17x21x11

Looking Back at the FX-12

In 1943, an American company named Republic set out to create a reconnaissance aircraft that would fly so high and fast nothing would be able to catch it. Boeing and Hughes had made similar attempts but had failed to achieve the goal. Republic was confident in its efforts, however, as it had previous success with producing the P-47 Thunderbolt used in World War II.

During World War II, the United States realized its need for a high altitude, high speed, reconnaissance aircraft equipped to secure aerial photos. To that time, the U.S. had been relying on modified versions of aircrafts originally designed and built for other purposes. The smaller planes had limited range and speed, and could not carry much camera equipment or reach high altitudes. Republic placed a major emphasis on making an aerodynamically flawless aircraft for the express purpose of securing military intelligence through aerial photographs. It would be called the XF-12, the Rainbow.

The XF-12 carried several cameras near the rear of the fuselage, arranged to take photos vertically and to either side at a 30-degree angle. The images could then be overlayed and combined together. Each camera lens was electronically heated to prevent them from freezing over. The planes also had dark rooms on board to allow for development of photos while in the air.

The planes were equipped for night photography through use of photoflash bombs, which the planes carried in a dedicated bomb bay. The photoflash bombs were air dropped canisters filled with brightly burning materials, like magnesium. They were set to detonate above the ground, releasing an extremely bright flash, millions of candlepower bright. The flash would briefly illuminate the ground below allowing the reconnaissance aircraft above to take a picture.

A crew of seven operated the XF-12. No armament was carried on the aircraft since its speed and altitude put it out of reach of the enemy. The fuselage was pressurized, allowing the crew to operate normally without need for bulky flight suits or oxygen masks, even when operating at an altitude of 40,000 feet.

The XF-12’s first flight was on February 4, 1946. Even though the war had ended, there was continuing interest in the aerial reconnaissance aircraft. The first prototype used

by the Air Force, then still the Army Air Force, was heavily damaged when its landing gear collapsed.

In September 1948, the second prototype XF12 demonstrated just how capable the aircraft was at aerial reconnaissance when it crossed the entirety of North America at 40,000feet, snapping 390 photos of the ground below. The plane took off from Edwards Air Force base and flew nonstop coast to coast. Along the way, it made a 352 feet long film strip recording of its entire path across the continental United States. Traveling at an average speed of 360mph, the aircraft completed the flight in just under seven hours. The photographs were developed and presented by the Air Force as a complete and continuous strip of film – all incredibly impressive by 1948 standards.

Sadly though, the second prototype would crash just a few months later after an engine failure. Two of the seven crew members were killed, and the aircraft was lost at sea. The first prototype was eventually repaired, but by that time the Air Force showed little interest in the XF-12 project. Budgets were being cut with the end of the war, and developments with jet aircraft were soon going to make planes like the XF-12 obsolete.

While it was the fastest four-engine piston aircraft ever built, the XF-12 was simply beaten by bad timing. The lonely first prototype was retired in 1952 and transported to the Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland, where it was later used for target practice.

82 bmonthly | APRIL 2024 LET FREEDOM RING
APRIL 2024 | bmonthly 83
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