Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Jane Herde Best Russell (1922-2012) obituary

Jane Herde Best-Russell, 89, passed from this life on March 12, 2012 in Stillwater, Oklahoma. Her funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, March 15, 2012 at the First Christian Church of Stillwater with Reverend Owen Cayton officiating. Burial will follow at Fairlawn cemetery. Strode Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

She was born September 22, 1922 near Macomb, Oklahoma to August L. and Susie (George) Herde. She was the seventh child in a family of eight children. The family moved to Billings soon after her birth. She graduated from Billings High School and attended Northeastern State University and Northern Oklahoma Junior College. World War II took her to Wichita, Kansas where she was employed by the War Manpower Commission. In the fall of 1945, she entered Oklahoma A&M College and worked in the A&M Alumni Office in Old Central. Upon completion of her BS Degree in business in the spring of 1948, she was employed for eight years as an Executive Secretary at Gulf Oil Corporation in Tulsa.

Mutual friends introduced Jane to Ted Best who was teaching in the Broken Arrow High School and they were engaged within six months. She and Ted were married July 13, 1952 in Billings, Oklahoma. While living in Broken Arrow she was a member of the Christian Church, President of the Jaycee Janes, President of American Legion Auxiliary, and a member of Beta Sigma Phi.

Jane and Ted moved to Stillwater in 1956. In Stillwater, she was a member of First Christian Church, American Legion Auxiliary, Child Study Club, Alpha Belles, F.C. E., Phi Mu Alumnae, and Payne County Retired Educators Association, life member of OSU Alumni Association and secretary of the Stillwater Christmas Store charity for fifteen years. She was employed in the office of the Dean, College of Business at OSU from 1976 to 1985, when she retired.

After Ted’s death, Jane married an Oklahoma A&M sweetheart, Charles Clark Russell, on September 3, 2004. Jane loved music and art of all kinds. She was a generous, loving, and caring wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother.

Survivors include her husband, Charles of the home; daughter, Jan Courtright, and husband, Terry, of Stillwater; son, Alan Best of Tulsa; son, Larry Best, and wife, Gwen, of St. Charles, MO; granddaughter, Erin Courtright Renollet, and husband, Jeremy, of Purcell; Dara Courtright of Stillwater; and Eva Best of St. Charles, MO; grandson, Devin Best of St. Charles, MO; great grandson, Daxon Renollet of Purcell; one sister, Doris Ratcliff of Savannah, Georgia; and a number of nieces and nephews.

She was predeceased by her parents, August and Susie Herde; brothers, Francis, Victor, Arnold, Edwin and Karl; and one sister, Marie Bryant.

Memorials may be made to First Christian Church, 411 W. Matthews, Stillwater, OK, 74074.
Condolences may be emailed to the family and an online obituary may be viewed by visiting

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