Obituary for Reitagae Wilkerson
Ponca City Now - July 26, 2021 7:43 pm
January 30, 1931 – July 23, 2021
Reitagae Wilkerson went to sing in the heavenly choir on Friday, July 23, 2021. Born to Sidney Orester and Bessie Pearl Gunn Barksdale on January 30, 1931 in her beloved Ponca City, Oklahoma. She graduated from Ponca City High School Class of 1949 and later that year married her husband of fifty-two years, Philip B. Wilkerson. They began their home in Marland, Oklahoma without electricity or running water, yet she became a farm / ranch wife learning to live a “pioneer” life quite unfamiliar to a “city girl,” with the locals taking bets as to how long she would last on the farm. Those same neighbors worked tirelessly to help Reitagae assimilate into the life she learned to love.
Reitagae was an avid reader, loved her flower and herb gardening, music, traveling and most of all, entertaining many friends and family. She had a gift for always making people feel welcome. She also had a heart of service and volunteered in many ways in the community through Extension Homemakers, where she also served as an Officer on the state level for Oklahoma Home and Community Education. She was a twenty-five plus year member of Sigma Phi Gamma International Sorority; lifelong membership with The Order of Eastern Star, first in Marland, and later with Red Rock, and Ponca City Chapters. She served as the Eastern Star Grand Representative to Novia Scotia, Canada. Her beautiful penmanship facilitated the card ministry she enjoyed and blessed countless people through the years. Reitagae was a woman of patience and grace, who blessed many who called her mother, aunt, sister, mother-in-law and friend.
She was preceded in death by her parents, her brothers, John William Barksdale, William Sidney Barksdale, and her husband Philip. She is survived by her children, Cheryl Robinson (Sara Sandy) of Muskegon, Michigan; Linda Short (Chris) of Marland, Oklahoma; Amy Bidnick (Jonathan) of Grove, Oklahoma; Janell Harman (James “Hat”) of Marland, Oklahoma and David Wilkerson (Susan) of Marland. Reitagae is also survived by 12 grandchildren and 24.5 great grandchildren, multiple nieces and nephews, cousins, and a special “daughter of the heart,” Barbara Chermack. She was a long-standing member of the Marland Methodist-Christian Church.
Memorials may be made in her name to the above Church at PO Box 486, Marland Oklahoma 74644 or to Hospice of North Central Oklahoma, 445 Fairview, Ponca City 74601. The family would like to express their gratitude to the caregivers at Via Christi and Hospice of North Central Oklahoma for soothing the final weeks of Reitagae’s life here on earth.
Service will be held Tuesday, July 27 at 10:00 am at the Marland Methodist Christian Church with Pastor Chris Short officiating. Graveside interment at Odd Fellows Cemetery in Ponca City, Oklahoma. Arrangements are under the direction of Trout Funeral Home & Crematory, 505 W Grand Ave, Ponca City, OK 74601.
Source: Trout Funeral Home