Marlynn Ann (Fleck) O’Keefe

Marlynn Ann (Fleck) O’Keefe
Marlynn Ann (Fleck) O’Keefe

Marlynn Ann (Fleck) O’Keefe, of Amarillo, TX was born on 17 December 1923 in Hobart, Lake County, Indiana.

She died at Ussery Roan, 1020 Tascosa Road, Amarillo, TX on March 31, 2020, after saying goodbye.

At age 19, she joined the U.S. Navy and became an aerial gunnery instructor.  While in the service,

she met her future husband Paul D. O’Keefe of Antlers, Oklahoma.  Their marriage lasted 56 years when Mr. O’Keefe passed away in July of 2001.  The marriage produced four children, three of whom survive her.  They are Paul Jeffrey O’Keefe of Sarasota, Florida, Dee Ann Cooper of Lumberton, Texas and Gail Antonucci of Amarillo, Texas with whom she made her home in the last years of her life.  Another child, James William O’Keefe passed away in 1998.

She was a Real Estate Broker for 10 years in Northern Virginia.  Later, she owned and was the broker of a real estate company in Fort Towson, Oklahoma.

She was instrumental in establishing the Choctaw County Oklahoma Genealogical Society and the Fort Towson Historical Society. She served eleven years as the President of the Historical Society.  She was an avid genealogist who had traced her ancestors and those of her husband back to the 1600’s.

She initiated the project of restoring the chapel at the Fort Towson/Doaksville Cemetery in Fort Towson, Oklahoma.  She was also instrumental in establishing the very fine museum in Fort Towson.

In addition to her efforts in the historical and genealogical areas, she wrote two books about the Choctaws, Chickasaws and the white man in Indian Territory.  These books can be seen at the Hugo, Oklahoma library.

Her other interests were in archaeology and travel.  She traveled to Egypt and many countries in Europe.

Other survivors include 8 grandchildren, 13 great-grandchildren, 2 great-great-grandchildren; and a number of nieces and nephews.

Private burial will be held at Fort Towson/Doaksville Cemetery at a future date. Arrangements are by Boxwell Brothers Funeral Directors, 2800 Paramount Blvd.

7 Replies to “Marlynn Ann (Fleck) O’Keefe”

  1. Aunt Marlynn was one of the more fascinating people in my life. Although I did not get to see her as often as I would have liked, I enjoyed every minute of the days I did get to spend with her. I always admired her drive and initiative: joining the navy, doggedly tracking down family history, writing books, having four kids in four corners of the US.
    Aunt Marlynn, you had a long and good life. You will be missed.
    Prayers to all.

  2. ADDENDUM to the announcement of the Memorial Mass on Palm Sunday. Due to the current health crisis, this service will be restricted to only the required celebrants.

  3. My Mom was a big part of my life since 2006 when she moved in with me, I cared for her since then. I was unable to be with her the last 2 weeks of her life because of the Coronovirus shutdown but she was surrounded by the people who cared for her at Ussery-Roan. I hired Hospice that morning in the belief the restriction could be lessened. I received a call at 3:48pm on March 31st from Hilda, she said to come they would let me in cause my Mom was saying Good-Bye. Just a few minutes later Hilda called back to tell me it was too late. My Mother called and asked for everyone to come in so she could say Good-Bye, I am so thankful to ALL of them for being a part of my Mother’s life and being there at the end.
    My Mother moved in with me January of 2006, so many things in my house belonged to her, the reminders are all around me. My Mom LOVED to shop, she was shopping up until about a month ago, she did her shopping all on Amazon. I could tell things were going downhill cause she wasn’t doing her normal amount of shopping.
    The hardest thing I had do with my Mom was take her car away, I agonized over this for 2 years. On 2/17/2011 I told her she couldn’t drive anymore, she pitched a fit and moved out 3/7/2011 to an Assisted Living Facility. She lived there until she moved into Ussery-Roan 10/23/2018. She loved playing Bingo, and the people there helped her get involved with the community.
    My Mom was a very demanding person and liked her own way. I remember her arguing with 3 Doctors telling them they were lying she had not had a stroke that she was just fine. I could tell something had happened but she was unaware.
    It is hard for me, cause the week before she died I was going through the thousands of pictures in my life trying to organize them, finding pictures of my Mom and Dad when I was young when they were young, some of the family gatherings we had yearly. I have pictures all over my house, still, reminiscing, all those times all those memories.

  4. “The boundaries which divide Life from Death are at best shadowy and vague. Who shall say where the one ends, and where the other begins?” … Stephen King

    A Memorial Mass has been arranged at St. Michael Church in Beaumont, Texas in honor of her Catholic upbringing. As it is on Palm Sunday, family has made an appropriate donation for both the Mass and the Palms and floral arrangements would not be appropriate. If you wish to give something in her honor, donate to your local Veterans’ Affairs Association.

  5. I am so happy that my son got to spend some time with Nana. I will, undoubtedly, be telling him more about her for the rest of my life. Kae and I have wonderful memories Nana flying here to meet him when he was born. Traveling even 7 years ago wasn’t easy for her. She called only a few days ago, intent on expressing her condolences because we lost Kae’s grandmother last week. I am very moved that she was thinking of others during some of her final hours. As far as her life goes, I would just say that anybody who knew her is aware that she was really a representative of a generation that knew great hardships, triumphs, hard work, and loss, and she experienced some of the most wonderful moments in American history. By any measure, she was an extraordinary person, and I believe we all had better hope that some of what Nana and Pappy experienced in their lifetimes will rub off a little bit on the rest of us as we look to the future. We love you Nana.

  6. So, here is a game I played with my mom all the time.

    We are walking down a gravel path and I look down and turn to my mom and say “mom” look at that, pointing to a normal piece of gravel. My mom says “why yes, that is fascinating, look at the colors and shape of that piece of stone” and then we go on with a discussion about gravel, stones, gems, etc. A few days later I might ask her about a leaf on a tree, or a piece of fabric in a store. It could be anything but for my mom it always opened up a world to her.

    Whether it was the Raphael Rooms in the Vatican, a Titian painting at the Galleria Borghese in Rome, a small ruined headstone in an obscure Irish cemetery, King Tut’s tomb in Egypt or a piece of gravel on a walkway mom was saw the beauty of the world and it’s people.

    We had many, many adventures all over the world together and I will always cherish them. She was from “The Greatest Generation” and I will always love her but I have my memories.

    Please share yours!

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