Helen Pickens (Meek)
A service celebrating Helen’s life will be held Saturday, July 7th at 2 p.m. at Grace United Methodist Church 6316 N. Tulsa Ave., Oklahoma City. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Boy Scouts of America (Last Frontier Council), or the Muscular Dystrophy Association (ALS) of Oklahoma City.
HELEN MARIE PICKENS
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK
SEPT. 8. 1927 - JULY 3, 2018
Helen Marie Pickens passed away Tuesday after a brief illness. Her unshakeable Christian faith and cheerful, loving nature uplifted her family, friends and everyone she met.
Helen was born in the small town of Gravette in the northwest corner of Arkansas. Riding in the rumble seat of the family Model T she moved to west Texas and graduated from Sylvester (Texas) High School as valedictorian (in a class of 10 she would point out). She later attended business school in Abilene on a $20 “scholarship” and then relocated to Lubbock, Texas, where she met the love of her life Clyde Harold Pickens, who had served in the Navy during WWII and had just graduated from Texas Tech University (geology) on the GI Bill. They married in 1949 in the house of a local minister.
After living in Midland, Texas, for the oil business, Helen and Clyde eventually were transferred to Oklahoma City in 1963 by Sunray DX Oil Co. and lived there for the rest of their lives raising three children and attending Grace United Methodist Church where they were early members. Helen worked briefly in the administration office of Central Junior High but was primarily, and happily, a homemaker her adult life.
She taught 2nd grade Sunday school and volunteered for “Meals on Wheels”. She volunteered at Deaconness Hospital and served on the PTA of her children’s elementary school. She followed politics and was a Bellmon Belle. She enjoyed Lyric Theater and was an avid OU and Thunder basketball fan, caring more about the outcomes than anyone else in the family. She was a devoted, and competitive, bridge player, playing the game until the very last week of her life. Nothing thrilled her more than taking home the pot of a few cents in some of her weekly games.
Finally, and most of all, Helen enjoyed her children, their spouses, her four grandchildren and three great grandchildren. Helen is survived by her devoted children Janet Martin (Denis) of Houston, and Travis Pickens (Lynn) of Oklahoma City, her grandchildren Selena Martin Brinegar and Ethan Martin (Hong) of Houston (great grandchildren Olivia and Callie) and Emily Nelson (Kyle) of Oklahoma City (great grandchild Everett), and Alison Pickens , of San Diego. Helen’s brother Charles Meek (Norma) survives on the family farm near Sylvester, Texas. Helen’s husband Clyde died in 2005 and her son Clyde Douglas Pickens died in 1989.
Helen was lovely in every way. Her simple but fervent Christian faith saw her through the Great Depression, the rigors of growing up poor on a small Texas farm, and personal family tragedies. Her uncommon and unflagging optimism and kindness will be keenly missed, every day.
The family wishes to thank the staff and residents of Concordia Life Care Community, Helen’s personal physicians, and the medical staff and physicians at Mercy Hospital for their recent kindnesses and compassion.