Raymond Curtis Sizemore, native of Ft. Smith, Arkansas, and resident of Claremore the past 40 years, passed away Monday, March 21, 2016 in Tulsa after a valiant 14-year battle with Multiple Myeloma and Leukemia. He was 71.
Services honoring his life will be 1:30 p.m., Saturday, March 26, at Rice Funeral Service. A reception will follow immediately at the Verdigris Fire Department Community Building.
Raymond was born Aug. 12, 1944 in Ft. Smith, the only child of Arthur Curtis Sizemore and Iris Adeline (Kelly) Sizemore. He was raised in Ft. Smith and graduated from high school there in 1962.
In high school, he played cornet and developed a love of tinkering with automobiles.
Fortunate enough to have his own vehicle in high school, one of his friends wanted to go on a date but did not have a car.
He offered to fix Raymond up with a blind date, if they could double date using Raymond's car. Raymond's date, Almetha LaBorde, became his bride after a three-year courtship. His wife of 51 years, she survives. He is also survived by his mother-in-law Josephine LaBorde of Claremore; aunt Dorothy Doerner of Indiana; daughters Andrea Lynne Feeback and her husband David of Verdigris, and Amy Leigh Kornahrens and husband Scott of Valley Center, Kansas; grandson, Thomas Kornahrens; step-granddaughters, Jenna Bearde and Michelle Penoyar; and extended family and friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents and beloved pets he had throughout his life.
Raymond studied drafting at Westark Junior College, and thirsting for knowledge continued his education throughout his life at various institutions. His constant search for knowledge made him a fierce competitor at trivia games.
The Sizemores' first child, Andrea, was born in Ft. Smith. They moved to Tulsa, where he began working at Crane Carrier Company as a draftsman.
Amy came along a couple of years later. In August of 1976, they moved to Claremore and his wife began a 35-year-career with the Claremore Progress.
Shortly after moving to Claremore, he became a volunteer with the newly established Verdigris Fire Department.
He enjoyed the training, camaraderie with fellow firemen and the ability to support the community.
He remained active 25 years and served on the board of directors for many of those.
Raymond advanced in his career at Crane and became a project engineer, working there 34 years.
He then combined his knowledge of automotive design with his communication skills and thrived as a salesman for Mack Truck Sales in Tulsa.
He and Almetha retired in March of 2012 and were able to travel often with close friends and family, his favorite activity.
He most recently was a volunteer with the Ropers (docents) at Will Rogers Memorial Museum and participated as often as his illness allowed.
Raymond made sure his daughters had opportunities to pursue their education and interests, always there to provide support to them. Dance and piano recitals, ballgames, band concerts, Girl Scout trips and moving during college and beyond they could count on him. He also took great joy in watching his young grandson grow.
Interests outside his devotion to family included cars, motorcycles, scuba diving, watching WWII movies, history, trivia, listening to music and visiting amusement parks.
A favorite in his extensive travels throughout the United States was the Smoky Mountains where the couple honeymooned and returned many times.
Those who wish to honor Raymond's memory can do so with a gift to the Myeloma Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, 3 International Drive, Suite 200, Rye Brook, N.Y. 10573, or a charity of choice.
Published on March 24, 2016