Obituary of Betty Jo Gilleland
Betty Jo Gilleland, born May 21, 1925 as a twin to Mona Jean. Betty Jo’s early years found her running the city of Sperry with her brother and sisters while trying to avoid the watchful eyes of her parents and everyone else in that small Baptist town. When her family moved to Jenks in 1942, she and Jean stayed behind, living in a bedroom that was being watched by her neighbors in order to finish school at Sperry High in 1943. After high school she and Jean attended Business school in Tulsa and worked at several local businesses while attending classes.
She married Orv in August of 1946 and they resided in Miami, OK where Orval went to NorthEastern Oklahoma Junior College and graduated with his Associates Degree while she worked at Goodyear. In 1948 Betty Jo and Orval moved to Tulsa and began their careers and eventually their family.
Betty Jo loved traveling and shopping, shopping while traveling, and shopping for outfits in which to travel. Her journeys with Orv took them all across the United States with the Indian Nations Ramblers and the Holiday Ramblers and all over the world thanks to Carrier Air Conditioner Systems. Typically on each trip she would pick out one special piece of jewelry, or furniture, or vase, or salt and pepper shaker that would often end up in the no-no room or as most people would call it, the Formal Living Room. When she wasn’t traveling with Orv, she was going on trips with her sisters and friends and buying Precious Moment Figurines.
Betty Jo had an eye for the finer things that were always displayed by her trips to her ‘Dress Shop’. For any new (or old) occasion you would find her working with her sales team over on Lewis picking out the perfect dress or business suit for the occasion. Of course even more important than her dresses were her shoes where, oftentimes, Orval would request that she “show me the bottom of your shoes”, to see if they were new or worn. She would grin and wink and never show him.
Betty Jo took pride in her homemaking. Her needlework was second to none and we all have a stocking, or kleenex box or toilet paper doll, or a coaster made from yarn and plastic canvas.
Betty Jo had many highlights in her life. But none as important as watching her sons, Donnie and David, play football, baseball, and wrestle. And then her Grandkids, Jeff, Sarah, Greg, Cody, and Katie, play football, baseball, basketball, softball, and swimming, and golfing, or her granddogs play in the water and snow.
Her faith and her church have always been an important element in her life. Many of her dear friends came from her relationships that were developed from her Sunday School class at Southwood Baptist Church. Her favorite phrases were, ‘Give everything to the Lord’ and ‘We just have to trust God’.
She is preceded in death by her parents, Harve and Nola Edens, husband, Orval Ray Gilleland, brother Earl Wayne Edens, and grandson Greg Gilleland. She is survived by her sons, Donnie Gilleland and wife Gloria, David Gilleland, her sisters Mona Jean Cooper, Mary Ann Stearns, and Patty Sue Bennett, she was a wonderful Nanaw to 5 grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren. She was also a wonderful Aunt Jo to many nieces, nephews, grandnieces, and grandnephews that she often spoke about and covered in prayer.
Ninde Brookside | 918-742-5556