Edwin Dean Mitchell
February 23, 1935 – July 24, 2020
Edwin “Dean” Mitchell was born at home on February 23,1935, to Laura Belle Moad-Mitchell and Henry Walter Mitchell. He was the youngest and last surviving of nine brothers and sisters. He was seven years younger than his next brother, Roy Keith Mitchell.
He is survived by his beloved wife and companion of 35 years, Maria Mitchell, of the home in OKC, sons Kenneth L. Mitchell (Karla) of Mustang, Jeffrey M. Mitchell (Kara) of Guthrie, and Anthony C. Robinson (Angela) of Edmond; grandchildren Kristopher S. Mitchell (Amy) of Yukon, Jeffrey and Amanda Mitchell of San Diego, Karissa and Kylee Fiebiger of Guthrie, and Everly and Zoë Robinson of Edmond; great-grandchildren Jaxon and Austin Mitchell of Yukon, and Emma Smith of Yukon. Other survivors include: niece Terri Lynn Manos (Mark) of Okeene, Kathi Lempke of Albuquerque, Pamela Rogers (Jim) of OKC, Phyllis Rahill and Elias Rahill of OKC, James Corkill of Dallas, Alyssa Blum of Memphis, Skipper Mericle of N.C., and Patti (Delray) Sanderson of Provo, Utah. There are many more great nieces and nephews. He cherished each one.
His closest friends in life were Jim Kelley of OKC, childhood friend Jackie Horstkoetter of Nash, OK, and Linda and Elton Agee of Shawnee, OK.
Dean was born and raised in Western Oklahoma in the small town of Hammon during the Dust Bowl and Great Depression. As a five year-old child, he experienced two miraculous healings. One for a ruptured abdomen and the other a severe stomach ulcer. Both healed instantly through prayers. The minister, his mother, her friend and Dean prayed. He said it was the faith of a five year old child that believed Jesus would heal him.
He started 1st grade at age five when his brother, Keith, lied to the teacher about his age. Back then you had to be six years old to begin school. Dean was such a good student, that when the teacher found out his real age, she and his mother decided to let him stay in school.
As a kid, he worked at the town drug store as a soda jerk for his cousin Joe Frank. He graduated from Hammon High School in 1952, and in 1953 attended the School of Pharmacy at Southwestern State College in Weatherford on a scholarship. While in Weatherford, he worked for Albert Eaton Drug Store. After just one year in college, he traveled to OKC at the behest of his brother, Keith, who was a mortician at Street and Draper Funeral Home. There, he apprenticed as an embalmer for one year and assisted in the preparation of almost 300 bodies. He also worked at Fox-Vliet Drug Co.
Since the Korean War was on, his draft board learned that he had not returned to college, so he was drafted into the U.S. Army at Will Rogers AFB, which is the present home of the Federal Aviation Agency. After basic training, Dean was assigned to the Medical Corps at Fort Sam Houston, TX. In between duty stations, he married his first wife of 33 years, Leah Hensley (mother to Kenneth and Jeffrey). He was trained as a combat medic and was then sent to Fitzsimmons Army Hospital in Denver, CO. After several weeks more training, he was in a lottery to be sent to Korea. There were eleven students in his class and the Army needed eight in Korea. After drawing straws, he was fortunate enough to be sent to Fort Riley, KS. There he was assigned to an Infantry Company and sent into the field as one of two medics. Serving as a combat medic, he quickly reached the rank of corporal and was honorably discharged in 1956. Interestingly, Dean was baptized in five religions during his life. Methodist, Assembly of God, Baptist, Catholic and Mormon. He would joke about that getting him into Heaven. Dean was a founding father of St. Andrews Church in Moore, OK. He later was elected president of St. Peters Church in Lindsay, OK.
His favorite activities were: home building, gardening, reading, fishing and camping, Facebook, browsing the Internet and Toastmaster’s International public speaking. His thirst for knowledge was unquenchable. Family gatherings were always especially enjoyed.
His lifetime accomplishments were many. Earlier in his life, he drove a semi-trailer for Swift Meat Packers delivering meat, butter and ice cream. Later, he practiced as a licensed insurance and private investigator for a couple years. For a time, he even operated his own Gulf gas station. For ten years, he periodically worked as a mortician with his beloved brother, Keith Mitchell, at Street and Draper Funeral Home in OKC. But, he was most proud of attending Southwestern State College on a pharmacy scholarship, as well as the University of Oklahoma’s College of Pharmacy. In 1959, Dean took the government exam to go to work for the U.S. Postal Service. He aced the test and was hired on the spot. He worked at the downtown main office until the time he went to work for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) where he met Maria (mother to Anthony) and shared a life together for 35 years. He began his FAA career in the mail room and moved into the field of Data Processing where he eventually was promoted to a computer room supervisor and scheduler. After 33 years of Federal service, he retired.
Once retired, he continued to work for ten more years as a handyman for countless people. Lowes Home Improvement would provide the last five years of his employment until he could no longer work due to poor health conditions.
Dean’s passion for life and the search for truth have been an inspiration to many.
“Until we meet again, and we will.” Dean
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Edwin Dean Mitchell
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Kathi Melaine (Andrews) Lepley
August 3, 2020
Dear Maria and all family members,
I grew up loving my Aunts and Uncles and their Mom, who was "Momalee" to me and other grandchildren . They were a fun loving group and l remember family reunions with good food, rowdy card games and lots of laughter. Uncle Dean had been a source of comfort and a friend to me in recent years. I will miss that, but, his thoughts and words of wisdom will remain.
I wish all family and friends the best memories and love that came from being part of his well lived life.
Sincere regards, Kathi and children (Kevin,Laura&Audrey Ann)
With memories of Kenneth and Merle (Sister to Dean)Andrews & Judith Ann Woody (Niece)
July 30, 2020
Maria, I am so sorry to hear about Uncle Dean's passing. I have so many memories over the years but my favorite was how he often looked in on my mother (Vonda Mitchell) and the rest of my family after my father died.
I also had several wonderful exchanges with him over the daily Bible passages and commentary that I would pass his way. He was easy to talk to and often kept me in stitches with the humor he would pass on from his personal experiences or the internet.
Thank you for the opportunity to share,
Stephen Paul Mitchell, son of Uncle Dean's brother Bert Walden Mitchell.
July 27, 2020
Maria, please accept our sincere condolences. You and the Mitchell family are in our thoughts and prayers. Dean was a wonderful and kind man. We were so fortunate to have gotten to know him.
Vicki & Tom Rigley