Wayne's Story

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Services to honor and remember the life of Wayne Melvin Dennis will be 1 p.m.Thursday, Jan. 12, 2017 in the Chapel of the Garden at Rice Funeral Service, Clarmeore. He will be laid to rest in Owalla Cemetery. Wayne passed away Sunday in Tulsa. He was 91.
Born May 2, 1925 in Collinsville, Okla., Wayne was the son of Andrew Jackson and Nancy Ethel (Epps) Dennis. He grew up and went to school in the communities of Collinsville and Claremore. Wayne also grew up hunting and fishing to provide food for his family as, after he lost his mother at an early age, he helped to provide for his family of 12 children. Wayne became a United States Merchant Marine at a young age and sailed to many foreign ports as he served during the war. A few years later, he was drafted into the United States Army where he proudly served his country.
Following his honorable discharge, Wayne married Geraldine Griffin, a nursing classmate of one of Wayne's younger sisters. Geraldine always referred to Wayne as her 'Lil Abner'.
The two made their home near Tulsa as Wayne began work for the McDonnell Douglas Corporation. He was very active with the UAW. Additionally, Wayne achieved his mechanic's certification by attending Okmulgee Tech.
Away from work, Wayne enjoyed nature. Much of his life was devoted to hunting and fishing. He was also an accomplished gardener and took pride in growing fruits and vegetables for his family and his friends. Wayne knew about all the trees in the woods and was especially fond of his papa trees. For a time, he had several bee hives and taught his grandsons about bee keeping. Wayne was always happiest when walking through the woods or on his way to his favorite fishing hole.
This veteran and loving father, grandfather and brother will certainly be missed by those family members who survive. They are: his children: daughter, Cynthia Dennis; daughter, Vicki Dennis and her husband Mike Henley; son, Raymond Griffin and son, David Griffin. He is also survived by his grandsons: Jon, Jeremy and Josh Griffin; two sisters: Zella Catlett and Margie Parks along with numerous nieces, nephews, cousins, other relatives and friends.
He was preceded in death by: his parents; wife, Geraldine; brothers: William, Clyde, Lavell and Lloyd and sisters: Marcella, Wilda and Ermalee.
Published on January 11, 2017
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