Gladys Marie Chidester, a beloved mother, grandmother, and member of the community, passed away at 90 years of age on January 26, 2024, in Salina, Oklahoma. She was born on March 30th, 1933, in Fort Smith, Arkansas.
Gladys was raised near Fort Smith, Arkansas and moved to Pryor, Oklahoma in 1949. She graduated from Pryor High School in 1950 and married the love of her life, Dean Chidester, on May 1, 1951, at St. Mark Catholic Church in Pryor and they were the first couple to be married in this church. Gladys and Dean started their dairy farm Northeast of Pryor and raised 5 children together. Gladys always had a large garden and canned vegetables to help feed her family. She also cooked many good meals for Dean, the children and many hired hands. Gladys also liked to bake, especially pies and cakes. During the family’s younger years, they enjoyed family picnics and spending time at the creek in Spavinaw. Gladys was very creative and was a very talented seamstress, making clothes for her kids, as well as barbie and doll clothes for her daughters. Gladys also liked to crochet and do embroidery. Gladys had an artistic talent, which was expressed through her painting of landscapes in oils. She had numerous paintings that she gave to her children and to friends. Many of her skills in the kitchen and at the sewing machine were taught to her daughters and she also passed on her love of reading to her daughters. Gladys was a former member of the Church's Ladies Club, formerly known as St Mark Altar Society and a former member of the local Cole Extension Club.
Left behind to honor the memory of Gladys are her children, Teresa Thompson and husband Von of Adair, OK, David Chidester and wife Mary of Adair, OK, Sharon Shive and Darrell Roberts of Adair, OK, Angie Brannon and husband Steve of Chouteau, OK; she is also survived by eight grandchildren, sixteen great-grandchildren, and two great-great-grandchildren. She is preceded in death by her husband, Dean Chidester; son, Alan Dean Chidester; granddaughter, Danya Guinn Shafer; and sister Stella Fortney.
Visitation will be held from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., Thursday, February 1, 2024, at Shipman’s Funeral Home in Pryor. A Funeral Mass will be held on Friday, February 2, 2024, at 11:30 a.m., at St. Mark Catholic Church in Pryor, Oklahoma, with Father Ken Harder officiating and Kelly Shive, Steve Brannon, Travis Brannon, Kyle Brannon, Ken Bray, and Adam Snyder serving as casket bearers and Seth Line, Wes Martin, and Dominick Snyder serving as honorary casket bearers. Burial will follow at Graham Memorial Cemetery. To leave her family a personal message, please visit her guestbook at www.shipmansfuneralhome.com. Arrangements are under the direction of Shipman's Funeral & Cremation Service of Pryor.