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When Daddy envisioned a junior college for Sayre back in the 1940s, I thought it would never be more than a dream. But, in time, it has actually grown to four-year-university status.

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Mother and Daddy relaxing in the Will Rogers Airport in Oklahoma City, waiting for my flight to carry me back to California, April 1971.



In reminiscing about my father, George S. Jarvis remains in my memory as the completely well-rounded person, experienced in many trades—manual as well as business. The completely informed person who taught himself the subjects usually learned only in college—a man who would, during one winter, read all the books in a library.

The good citizen of a democracy—the kind of man who has made democracy work. An interested and concerned former member of the Sayre City Council—instrumental in obtaining a significant sewer facility for Sayre, long before the days of environmentalists.

The individualist who always preferred to work for himself—never to work for someone else who might be less equipped than he was.

The man who valued his leisure and who is universally recognized as “good company.” The good sport who appreciates a good joke—who mixed at all social levels—farmers, judges, merchants, bankers, oil men and preachers. He never met a man that he couldn’t learn from. The father who gave to his children his time, his companionship, his love of freedom, his wisdom gained from a life full of variety and pioneering.

Daddy died in the Sayre Hospital at 1:15 in the morning, Thursday, April 23, 1987. He was 94 years old. At his side were his wife of 66 years, Virginia; his daughter Georgia; and his granddaughter, Coreena.

Georgia called me in California 15 minutes after his death and she called his other daughter, Phyllis, in Texas. Georgia related that he had been lucid that morning and had told her in a weak and resigned voice that he felt very tired. In the afternoon he experienced a perceptible seizure which foretold that the end would come a few hours later. Finally, he breathed more and more softly until he just stopped breathing and quietly he slipped away. Even after death his great heart went on beating.

The many experiences and adventures in Daddy’s life all melded into his philosophy of life. He believed above all in self-reliance. He was truly a good man. He always provided for his family even though he was sorely tested during the Depression of the ‘30s when he lost nearly everything. Years later, after he had again become successful in his beloved oil business, he was very sparing in the use of money for himself, preferring to conserve his estate for the eventual care of his family.

He also gave of his time to his children. Many a long winter evening was spent playing dominoes to teach me addition and multiplication. And he taught me his favorite game, chess, so I could learn to concentrate and plan ahead as to the consequences of my moves, always having fun, but never forgetting the serious, fundamental issues of life.

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