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Clara Word
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Clara Elizabeth (King) Word, 85, died Friday, June 5 of natural causes surrounded by her family in Turlock.
She was born in Spiro, OK on October 12, 1923, the oldest daughter of five children born to Hallie and Ida King. She graduated from Spiro High School in 1942. During high school, she lived with husband and wife teachers, Mr. and Mrs. Terry, to care for their children when they both were teaching. The Terrys imparted the importance of education on her life.
After high school, during World War II, she moved to Coffeeville, KS to live with a widowed aunt and her children. There, she worked as a waitress and also worked for the local radio station writing commercials.
In 1946 she married Joe L. Word, a childhood friend and returning Navy war veteran from Spiro. After their marriage, they moved west to Ventura where some of the Word family had relocated. She worked in retail there. Their children were born in Ventura.
In 1958 the family moved to Simi Valley for her husband’s work in aerospace at the Rocketdyne test facility in the Santa Susana mountains. In 1970, with one remaining child at home, they moved to Oakdale to live near family and enjoy the more rural area and lifestyle.
Mrs. Word continued to live in Oakdale after her husband died in 1985. She was involved in the First General Baptist Church of Oakdale. She taught the adult Sunday School class and was involved in the Women’s Missionary work. Her middle daughter then lived with her for two years to return to school at CSU Stanislaus.
She is survived by her daughters, Carol Ann (Bob) Eaves of Simi Valley, Janice Husman of Turlock; son, David Word of Houston, TX; brothers, Mitchell and James King of Oklahoma; grandchildren, Amanda (Scott) Skellenger, Lisa (Zachary) Peterson, Andrew and Grant Word; great-grandchildren, Aidan and Tyler Skellenger; and many nieces and nephews.
Viewing will be from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, June 12 at Oakdale Memorial Chapel. Private graveside service and burial are at 10 a.m. on Saturday, June 13 at Oaklawn Memorial Park, 421 No. Sierra Ave., Oakdale.
Celebration of Life will be at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, June 13 at First General Baptist Church, 122 Ash Ave., Oakdale. Rev. Jim Simmons will officiate. Reception to follow, 847-3593.
In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be made in her name to Hospice of Emanuel, 825 Delbon Ave., Turlock, CA 95382; or to First General Baptist Church, P.O. Box 488, Oakdale, CA 95361.
The Oakdale (Calif.) Leader
June 10, 2009