Arline Francis Kephart
Arline Francis Kephart was born to Ira and Ethel (Mikles) Foster on June 6, 1921 at Colony, Oklahoma. She was born the 6th of nine children. As a young girl her family moved to Eagle City, Oklahoma where she attended school. Arline’s mother left the family when she was 11 years old, making her the cook and caretaker for her 2 younger brothers. She stayed with her Grandmother & Grandfather Mikles to finish 8th grade in Clinton, before returning to Eagle City to care for her siblings.
She met Willis Kephart at the Longdale Dance and danced to Bob Wills, Ernest Tubb, and many others. Willis and Arline loved to dance, whether it was to the Waltz or the fast ones, they were always on the dance floor. Willis and Arline married on June 1, 1937 in Watonga, Oklahoma. They started their marriage with 35 cents and a flat tire.
Willis and Arline had 5 children Shirley, Jess, Eloise Marie, Patricia and Ginger. Their daughter Eloise Marie passed shortly after her birth in 1948. They raised their family near and around the Southard area. They milked cows by hand and raised stock cattle. Arline was one of the very few women that would go to the cotton patch and pick cotton for them and others. Arline ran the Watonga Sale Barn Café for a short time, cooked at Roman Nose Lodge, ran the Southard Café, and worked at Hollytex Carpet Mill. She continued her ranching operation with the help of her son, Jess, for over 40 years. At the age of 93 she sold her cattle and retired.
Arline joined the First Christian Church and was Baptized in 1957. She was a member of the Ladies Aide Quilting Club of Southard. She enjoyed cooking and canning with her sisters. She was always proud to work the election board at Southard. She was never idle, always kept her hands busy doing embroidery, sewing, and crocheting.
After the passing of Willis, Arline enjoyed going with her lady friends to dances and the casino, always having a good time. The highlight of her life was traveling far and near to watch her grandchildren in any activities, which brought lots of happiness to her life. She loved cooking for her family and was famous for her cornbread dressing and pies. Arline was able to remain in her home with the help and care of her family, until moving to the Garland House for a short time before her passing.
Arline left this life on July 10, 2019 at the age of 98 years old in the nursing home, surrounded by her loving family. Her spunky and charismatic personality will be missed by all. Arline is preceded in death by her husband Willis, infant daughter Eloise Marie, and her siblings.
She leaves behind daughter Shirley Garrett of Enid, son Jess Kephart and wife Judy of Watonga, daughter Patricia Kephart of Southard and daughter Ginger Spencer and husband Terry of Sapulpa. Also 9 grandchildren, 13 great grandchildren, and 7 great, great grandchildren, and many other relatives and numerous friends. Arline is survived by one brother, Dewey Foster of Jacksonville, Florida.
Funeral services were held at Saturday, July 13, 2019 at the Canton Christian Church with Steve Driskill and Lloyd Lance officiating. Interment will follow in Canton Cemetery under the direction of Pierce Funeral Home, Canton. Memorials may be made to the Canton Senior Citizens or the Canton Christian Church with the funeral home acting as custodian at P.O. Box 36, Canton, OK 73724. Condolences may be made online at www.piercefuneralhomes.com.