Claremore Daily Progress


December 30, 2013

Jerry Donald Fisher

CLAREMORE — I was born in Harrah, Okla. on Dec. 14, 1934. My parents were Claude Fisher and Florence Moody Fisher. My big brother James was already two years old. My family would be joined by my little brother Chuck two years later. Then in 1939 my family was completed when our favorite sister Dorothy was born.

We moved around some finally settling in south Oklahoma City. I graduated from Capitol Hill High School in 1953. When I signed up with the Army the Korean War was going on. I spent three years stationed in New York and Texas learning what would turn into my life’s career. I learned to work on the electronics of radar and computers. I often wondered how my dad, Claude, learned so much while I was gone for those three years.

Meanwhile, back in OKC my sister Dorothy had become friends with Lavinia Archer. Dorothy had made plans to get two of her brothers to marry two of her friends. Lavinia was not Dorothy’s first choice for me but near Christmas of 1957 that changed. Lavinia needed a date for the big Christmas party and she wrote me an invitation to be her escort. As they say, the rest is history, and we were married on Aug. 30, 1958.

Lavinia and I first became parents in 1960 when our son, Mark was born. Then in 1962 my second son, Mike was born. Finally in 1966 a daughter Karen was born. I am so proud of my family. Mark earned a PhD in math; Mike earned his degree in Land Surveying, and Karen a degree for kindergarten teaching.

Most of my working life I worked for the Federal Aviation Administration. I had assignments in California, Nevada, Arizona, Texas and Oklahoma. I retired in 1989 after 38 years of Federal Service.

After I retired I spent a lot of my time caring for my first grandchild, Brittany. I also continued building computers. I built at least one for almost everyone I knew. I loved to make plans. I also enjoyed dogs, very much. I had Dava, she was my special dog. She loved for me to take her on walks along with the grand dogs, Tim and Jello. If my very special dog Dava is not where I am going then I would rather just go to her. Over the years I babysat many of my other grand dogs and loved them all.

By 1997 my years of smoking had caught up with me. I quit smoking but my lungs were badly damaged. I had cancer removed from my nose a couple of times. As my COPD worsened over the next 16 years, I spent a lot of time fighting to just keep breathing. When my grandson Zack was born I wasn’t able to play with him much. Walking around the neighborhood became much too difficult. Walking to the mailbox would get me out of breath. Brittany is my artist and Zack is my athlete.

I did get fired once, by my own son. He fired me and Renn on the same day.

I am very proud of all of my children; Mark found a wonderful companion Sharon. They are able to share so much of each other in California. I am so thankful that Mark is not alone out there away from the rest of the family. I look so forward to him coming home for visits and bringing Sharon back with him. She is very sweet. I appreciate my son-in-law Greg who along with Karen brought me two of my greatest joys, my grandchildren, Brittany and Zack. My daughter claims I corrupted Greg by introducing him to horse races. We enjoyed talking about Zack’s sports also. My son Mike married Renn. I appreciated all that she has done for me and my family. I truly loved her.  She was special.  I cannot express how much I appreciate all that she has done. Renn was one of the most important people in my last 15 years of my life. She helped make the most out of all that I as capable of doing. She help me accomplish some of the last few things that I was able to do. I had hoped to stay around long enough to pick a winning horse in the Kentucky Derby in 2014, but that did not happen. So now Renn you have to do that. Renn, that is my flower pot and I want my Rose Moss planted.

I want to express one last time, just how important my family is to me. They mean all the world to me. I hope they all live their dreams and be all that they can be.

I’ll see you later,


Private family Services will be held.

Text Only
  • Leon Phillips Semkoff

    A celebration of the life of Leon Phillips Semkoff will be 10:30 a.m., Friday, Aug. 1, 2014 at the Chapel of the Garden at Rice Funeral Service.

    July 30, 2014

  • Florence Lorene Wolfington

    Graveside service for Florence Lorene Wolfington will be 10 a.m., Wednesday, July 30, at Woodlawn Cemetery with Pastor Charles Ragland officiating.  Burial will follow under the direction of MMS-Payne Funeral Home & Cremation Service.  Visitation will be held at the funeral home Tuesday 1-8 p.m.

    July 29, 2014

  • Donald Henry Secondine

    A celebration of the life of Donald Henry Secondine will be 10 a.m., Monday, July 28, 2014 at Verdigris Assembly of God Church. Burial will be 2:00 p.m. at Nowata Memorial Cemetery under the direction of Rice Funeral Service. Visitation will be Sunday from 1-5 at the funeral home with family receiving visitors from 2-4. Don passed away on Tuesday, July 22, 2014. He was 84.

    July 27, 2014

  • Sherry Dawn “Redbone” Ralston-Gropp

    Private family services are scheduled for Sherry Dawn Ralston-Gropp. Visitation was Friday, July 25, 2014 at Rice Funeral Service. Sherry passed away on Sunday, July 20, 2014. She was 54.

    July 27, 2014

  • Tommy Joe Russell

    Graveside service for Tommy Joe Russell will be 10 a.m., Tuesday, July 29, at Highland Cemetery with Luther Martin officiating. Burial will follow under the direction of the Inola Funeral Home & Crematory. Visitation will be held at the funeral home Monday 1-8 p.m., and family will greet friends 6-8 p.m.

    July 27, 2014

  • Jonathan Ashford “J.J.” Sluka

    Funeral service for Jonathan Ashford “J.J.” Sluka will be 2 p.m., Wednesday, July 23, at River of Life Assembly of God with Pastor Rodney Wilborn officiating. Burial with military honors by the U.S. Army will follow at Highland Cemetery under the direction of the Inola Funeral Home & Crematory.  Visitation will be held at the funeral home Tuesday, 1-8 p.m., and family will greet friends from 5-8 p.m.

    July 22, 2014

  • Doris Ann Chafin

    Funeral service for Doris Ann Chafin will be 10:30 a.m., Friday, July 18, at Verdigris Assembly of God with Brother Harold Brannon officiating. Burial will follow at Lone Elm Cemetery under the direction of MMS-Payne Funeral Home & Cremation Service. Visitation will be held Thursday 1-8 p.m., and family will greet friends 5-7 p.m.

    July 18, 2014

  • Patricia (Pat) D. Nickerson

    Graveside service for Patricia (Pat) D. Nickerson will be held 10 a.m. Friday, July 18, 2014 at Oakhaven Memorial Gardens in Claremore. Pallbearers will be Roy Rollins, Rob Rollins, Ron Rollins, Wayne Allen, Kelsey Wells, Angela Nowlin, Amber Holinsworth, and Maegan Gardner; and honorary pallbearer will be Rev. Joey Bentley. Visitation will be held on Thursday, from 1-8 p.m. with family greeting friends from 6-8 p.m.

    July 17, 2014

  • Jewel S. Starr

    Funeral service for Jewel S. Starr will be 1 p.m., Friday, July 18, at the MMS-Payne Funeral Home Chapel with Pastor Paul Simpson and Chaplain Bishop Bell officiating. Burial will follow at Wann Cemetery. Visitation will be held at the funeral home Thursday 1-8 p.m., and family will greet friends 6-8 p.m.

    July 17, 2014

  • Mildred Warden

    Mildred Warden was the mother of three and surrogate mother to hundreds.
    She operated one of Claremore’s first daycare for children. She died Friday, July 11, 2014 at the age of 86.

    July 15, 2014