Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma

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Elma Severn

Born: 01/12/1918 Died: 10/31/2011 Maiden Name: Whitfield Honorific: n/a

Elma Severn, 93, of Valliant, passed away on Oct. 31, 2011. She was born on Jan 12, 1918, in Glover to Oliver Clinton Whitfield and Ida Mae Merry Whitfield, original Choctaw enrollee. Elma was a graduate of Southeastern State Teachers College. She was an avid educator for 30 years in Oklahoma and New Mexico schools. She served as a teacher, basketball coach, 4-H Leader and principal during this time. She was an employee of the Department of Human Services for seven years. For five of those years she worked with the elderly. The last two years were spent working through the court with delinquent children, foster homes and adoptions. Her training and schooling for this work were at Hissom School for the Impaired and Oklahoma University. She was a member of the National Retired Teachers Association and Oklahoma Education Association. She was a longtime member of Sothern Baptist Churches in which she served as a Sunday School teacher, Training Union Director, Sunday School Superintendant and Women’s Missionary Union Director. She was also a member of the National Association of Baptist Senior Adults. According to her, there were no duties or work; everything was a God given privilege. Elma leaves us with these words, “Love one another, let not your hearts be altogether lonely. Now that the last reluctant words are said, I take away my body and voice, but leave my hears with you instead.” She is survived by a son, Gene Henry with wife Sarah of Valliant; daughter Marcella Dent with husband Tony of Stafford Va.; 10 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; five great-great-grandchildren; and many cousins, nieces, nephews and her church family. She was preceded in death by her parents; husband, Mark Severn Jr.; son, James E. Henry; grandson Randall Henry; granddaughter, Tanya Henry; two great-granddaughters, Trista and Kayla Henry; two brothers, Lewis and Omagene Whitfield; sister, Oulda Whitfield Carroll; and aunt May Gimlim.