Valentino William Synar, better known as Val, passed away on Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018 at the age of 90.
Born on April 8, 1927, in Warner, Okla., he was the sixth son of Frank Joe Synar and Adelaide Peterson.
His grandparents emigrated from Poland in the 1880's. The family settled in the Polish Catholic community of Harrah, Okla. where brothers Joe, Stanley and Harry were born.
Later they moved to Warner, Okla. where Steve, Edmond and Val were born.
Val and his family farmed along Dirty Creek outside of Warner during the 1920's and 30's.
Life during those hard depression years would affect him for the rest of his life. Like his brothers, Val also attended the one-room Lone Star School run by Mae Davis just south of Dirty Creek. Val and his brothers shared a lifelong love of 4-H.
They participated in livestock judging and meat judging as well as many speech and demonstration contests where they won many awards.
Val was one of several brothers that served as State 4-H presidents.
He graduated from Warner High School and then on to Connors State College.
There, he met the one and only love of his life Agnes Abbott from Trousdale, Okla., but their romance was delayed on Dec. 5, 1946. Following his brother's footsteps Val signed up for the military as an Army Paratrooper for the 11th Airborne Division.
He served in the military occupation of Japan after World War II.
Upon his Jan. 10, 1948 discharge, he returned to Agnes who was working for the highway department in Oklahoma City.
They got married on Nov. 20, 1948. They moved to Miami, Okla. where he attended Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College for two years then moved to Oklahoma A&M College (later OSU) in Stillwater where he received his degree in Animal Husbandry & Agricultural Economics in 1953.
During his time at OSU he coached various 4-H livestock judging teams across the state as well as the Kansas City Royal's Livestock Show where he and his brothers took many awards with their judging teams.
In 1951, while at OSU, Val and Agnes welcomed their first son Glenn.
When his college education ended Val and Agnes moved to Pryor, Okla. where he served as the Mayes County Agent and continued with his 4-H work. In 1954 they both welcomed their second son Larry into the world. Unfortunately, tragedy struck in July 1955 when Glenn died in a livestock equipment accident.
After the birth of their third son David in 1956, Val & Agnes left Pryor and moved to a house in the western part of Tulsa, Okla.
There, Val started the National Livestock Commission Company at the Tulsa Stockyards that was located off Charles Page Boulevard where Yaffe Metals now stands.
In 1957, after a year of living in the city, Val and the family rented a small farm west of Owasso, Okla. In 1959, Val left his commission company at the Tulsa Stockyards and bought the beginnings of his ranch west of Oologah, Okla. There he raised Herford and Angus cattle.
Early in 1964 he used the ranch as collateral and bought 30 acres at what is now 1103 N. 161st E. Ave., Catoosa, Okla. to build his dream and change the cattle industry in the north eastern state of Oklahoma.
In September 1965 after a year and a half of challenging work drilling into the limestone of the Verdigris soil The Tulsa Cow Palace was created.
Here, Val took all his knowledge and observations of other livestock auctions at that time to introduce a modern livestock auction house. New closed-circuit cameras on sale tickets and public observation of the livestock weigh station provided a transparent process for the buyer and seller.
The Tulsa Cow Palace offered livestock sellers amenities like fresh continuous water and hay.
The modern facility of that time provided office space for commission companies, a western store and a restaurant with a large dining room that could seat 100 people.
Val worked diligently in the surrounding Tulsa and Oklahoma areas to promote the facility as "The Place" to sell livestock.
The Cow Palace was home to many outstanding horse sales and farm equipment sales as well as the famous Cross Bell Ranch sale following the death of E. C. Mullendore, III in 1970.
In 1973 Val sold the Tulsa Cow Palace which has become the Tulsa Stockyards. After the sale of the Cow Palace, Val continued as a cattle rancher and commercial real estate developer. In 2007 Val retired and turned the Oologah ranch over to his son David where it is still in operation today.
Val was the last of the 6 brothers who were major figures in the Oklahoma agriculture business and Democrat politics during the past 50 years.
Today he is survived by his wife of almost 70 years Agnes, his two sons Larry and David, David's wife Terry and his grandchildren Rachel and Evan.
Anyone who knew Val would tell you that he was one of a kind whose upbringing modeled the man he became.
You knew where you stood with Val. People would say "There was the right way, the wrong way and then there was Val's way."
His knowledge of cattle, their breeds and beef were unsurpassed at the height of his career. In many ways he was ahead of his time about the future of the cattle industry.
Val's family would like to extend their heart filled thanks to St. Cecilia Catholic Parish, Rice Funeral Home, Compassus Hospice and the loving homecare from Diana Dickinson, Laura Kuehn and Misty Moore.
Funeral services will be Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018 at St. Cecilia Catholic Church, 1304 N. Dorothy, Claremore, OK 74017.
Viewing & social will be held from 10-11 a.m., Services from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m., followed by a trip to Warner Memorial Cemetery, Warner, OK for burial.
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to the Oklahoma 4-H Foundation in Val Synar's name.
Published on February 16, 2018