James Richard Key, 72, of Chouteau, passed peacefully at home surrounded by his family on Saturday, June 13, 2020. He was born on March 15, 1948 in Pryor, Oklahoma; the son of Daniel Kenneth and Gertrude Nola (Blackwell) Key. He married the love of his life, Sharon Kay Raper, on March 19, 1966 in Claremore and have celebrated 54 years of marriage. He worked for many years as a carpenter and pipefitter and was a member of the Plumbers and Pipefitters Union Local 430. He also owned and operated Key Lawn and Garden in Chouteau for many years. James earned his Master’s Degree in Education from the University of Oklahoma, which was something he was very proud of. He coached little league sports, and also coached Elementary and Junior High athletics in Spavinaw. He looked forward to attending TU Football games, traveling, family gatherings, going to flea markets, and watching and participating in drag racing. Above all, James loved his family. When he wasn’t traveling to the beach, his favorite activity was watching his grandkids and great grandkids play sports and attend their school functions. He was their #1 fan. Many will fondly remember James from his favorite sayings, “Get the Chip Off Your Shoulder.” And “Plan Your Work, Work Your Plan.” He was a loving husband, wonderful father, and exceptional grandfather and leaves behind a legacy for his family to follow.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Wednesday, June 17, 2020 from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m., at Shipman’s Funeral Home. To leave his family a message, please visit his Tribute Wall at www.shipmansfuneralhome.com. Cremation arrangements are under the direction of Shipman’s Funeral & Cremation Service.
James is survived by his wife, Sharon Key of the home; sons, Ted Key of Chouteau, Oklahoma and Jon Key and wife Desi of Owasso, Oklahoma; daughters, Patricia Bartee and husband Chris of Pryor, Oklahoma and Shari Krager of Tulsa, Oklahoma; 9 grandchildren, Ryan Krager, Danielle Applegate, Sara Roberts, Kristin Williams, Stephanie Bartee, Elizabeth Bartee, Braden Key, Ethan Bartee, and Kami Berry; 8 great grandchildren, Carter Williams, Hudson James Williams, Aiden Timoteo, Scarlet Krager, Avery Applegate, Liam Roberts, Tate Roberts, and Arrow James Edward Krager; nieces and nephews, Annie Ledoux, David Key, Stephen Key, Mark Key, and John Darrick Key; special friends who are family, Emalyn and April Hubbard, Eddie Krager, Marshall and Shaunna Crawford and the Mike Walters Family. He is preceded in death by his parents, Daniel and Gertrude Key; and brothers, Kenneth Key and John Key.
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