Funeral service for Watha Darlene Shanks, age 84, of Frederick, Oklahoma, will be held at 2:00 p.m. Saturday, January 7, 2023, at the First United Methodist Church of Frederick, with Rev. Lisa Beavers, pastor, officiating.
Watha passed away Wednesday, December 28, 2022, at a Norman assisted living facility.
Burial will be in the Frederick Memorial Cemetery under the direction of Orr Gray Gish Funeral Home.
She was born December 26, 1938, at Duke, Oklahoma, to Hubert Clarence and Ida Ileen (Green) Wright. She was affectionately nicknamed and referred to as “Sue” by her family and later developed the byname of “Watha Jean” as well. She attended and graduated from Duke Schools. She was a fanatic lover of all sports and excelled in basketball, playing for Duke. She met and was courted by Cullen Ray Shanks while he was in the military. They were united in marriage on December 27, 1956, at Duke. They owned and operated C & W Machine Shop in Frederick. She later worked for Bell Telephone, as a clerk for the City of Frederick and in 1980, began working for Tillman County, serving as the Tillman County Court Clerk, retiring in 2004. Watha was an avid community volunteer. She served on the Frederick City Council for eight years, board member for ASCOG (Association of South Central Government); volunteered for the Tillman County Historical Society, Friends of the Library, and delivered meals on wheels for the Nutrition Center. She was awarded the Lions Club “Most Useful Citizen” in 2006. She enjoyed reading, playing dominoes as well as canasta with the Country Club Ladies. She was a 66 year member of the Eastern Star where she had dual membership in Texas and Oklahoma. She served in every capacity in the local lodge including Worthy Matron. She also served as a State Officer as Warder and traveled all over the state with the Eastern Star dignitaries. She was a longtime member of PEO (Chapter AS). She was a very active member of the First United Methodist Church and United Methodist Women.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband: Cullen Ray Shanks on January 27, 1997; brothers: Buddy Wright, Hubert Wayne Wright, and Bill Wright; sisters-in-law: Janelle Wright, Ida Marie Fox and husband Ray; and Nan Wright.
Survivors include two daughters: Denise Kunselman and husband Kevin of Noble, and Laura Watts of Austin, Texas; two brothers: Wilbur Dean Wright of North Carolina and Alvin Wright of Edmond; three grandsons: Joseph Quinton Hendrix of Frederick, Carter Ray Serage and wife Kylie of Ft. Smith, Arkansas, and Garrett Lane Miller and wife Iceece of Hamlin, Texas; four great-grandchildren: Connor, Graceland Hazel, Zander “Hoot”, Grayson Kai; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Orr Gray Gish & Tipton Funeral Homes
111 N. 11th Street
Frederick, OK 73542
"Service Beyond Expectation"