A service honoring the life of Wanda Oneda Marrs will be held at 2 PM Wednesday, April 15, 2020, at Bixby Funeral Service. The service will be limited to immediate family only. Friends may view the ceremony on the Bixby Funeral Service Facebook page. Wanda passed away Sunday, April 12, 2020. She was 84.
Born September 8, 1935, in Webbers Falls, Oklahoma, Wanda was the daughter of Earl and Augusta “Jackie” (Reese) Stevens. She was also welcomed by two older siblings: a sister, Lillian, and a brother, “E.” The Stevens children would accompany their parents out in the fields as they worked tirelessly to provide for the family. Their time would be split between the Webbers Falls area and also Maricopa, Arizona.
As it was, Wanda attended various schools while growing up. No matter where she spent time in school, she was sure to involve herself in athletics playing basketball, softball, and volleyball. There was a story that Wanda used to tell, which involved her team, coming from a small farming community, going to a much larger school for a game. As it turned out, her team upset the larger school. This was a surprise to many, however, not to Wanda. She would say farm girls knew how to play hard! Harder than those city girls. Later in life, Wanda would even play volleyball in a church league. She certainly had fond memories of her athletic years, and she enjoyed reminiscing about those fun times with her classmates during school reunions.
While living in Arizona, Wanda was crowned the ‘Cotton Queen’ of a local festival. Even from an early age, Wanda learned to save her money for the important things in life. While her siblings or friends were trading their hard-earned money for cokes and candy, she saved until she could afford lipstick, make-up, and nail polish. There was a time when you’d be hard-pressed to find Wanda without painted pink nails and bright pink lipstick. She was more than serious about this for quite some time as she even kept a tube of her lipstick in her fishing tackle box!
Her stunning looks are what ignited a meeting between, then grocery store cashier, Wanda, and a young man/grocery shopper named Richard (Dick) Marrs. He would roll into the grocery store’s parking lot in his white Lincoln Continental convertible, and he bought an awful lot of crackers, bologna, and cheese. He kept going to the store to purchase those items until Wanda finally gave in. It might have been under one condition that she didn’t have to eat his groceries!
Once married, Wanda and Dick made their home in Tulsa. When they started their family, Wanda was able to stay home – a task she took very seriously. She would vacuum, do laundry, clean the windows and screens, and she even cleaned her washing machine! This, in addition to being involved in both of her son’s activities as Wanda had been a Cub Scout Leader (Den Mother), with meetings held in her garage and with many of the cubs going forth to become Eagle Scouts. She also was the backyard baseball coach and President of the PTA.
At home, the boys had many wonderful memories. These ranged from simple things like enjoying the air conditioning when Wanda decided it was time to turn it on, and the process they all had to go through to get the most efficiency out of that decision, to the many wonderful holiday gatherings including gifts, food, and fun, but more importantly the presence of love and family.
When the time was right, which was almost any time, it was not uncommon for the Marrs family to head to Lake Eucha. There were even seasons where it might have been more appropriate to say that they lived there – bug proof kitchen and all! Wanda’s sons have so many wonderful memories of their time on the lake. This started early enough that they remember being given their baths, put in their jammies, placed in the bottom of a boat, and falling asleep looking at the stars and listening to their parents share stories while mom and dad enjoyed her favorite catfishing on the flats at night. There is no doubt that these boys were loved.
Wanda’s love did not end or stop with her children. It was only strengthened with the birth of her beloved grandchildren: Richard, Randall, Sarah, and Jacob. And isn’t it funny how time changes people? As her grandchildren grew, after they would spend time at Grandma’s house, they would return home and tell their parents what all Grandma let them do. Randy and Scott’s reactions were that of utter shock, saying, “She let you do what?”
Grandma’s house was certainly fun. It was the venue for many a sleepover for the cousins. It was where they read books, did crafts, watched movies, and baked. However, the fun didn’t occur until after the chores were finished. Once completed, Grandma would pay accordingly. It is safe to say that Grandma’s house is where these four learned about love, hard work, family, and faith.
Described as: particular, meticulous, and determined, those who got a long best with Wanda were those who didn’t question her, but merely did what she asked! In all honesty, she was a woman who loved her family and loved her Lord. A woman who made a lasting, positive impact on those she knew and loved. Wanda was a strong woman. She passed that strength on to her sons. She survived skin cancer, breast cancer, and heart disease. And she still made it to the wonderful age of 84.
Wanda’s family will always remember her sweet little sayings like: “Let’s make snick snacks,” “This too shall pass,” and “Thank you, Lord, thank you, Lord, thank you, Lord.” And because of their healing powers, her family is always sure to stock a big jar of Vaseline and the biggest bottle of Campho-Phenique they can find.
It is fitting that Wanda passed from this life on Easter Sunday – her favorite holiday. A holiday where, through the years, she welcomed her family for dinners, egg hunts, and to share in a rabbit cake to conclude the festivities. Indeed, all one has to do is take a walk down her picture-filled hallway to see numerous Easters that she shared with her family.
This last Sunday might have been her favorite Easter as she was called home to spend it with her Risen Savior.
Wanda was preceded in death by her parents, her siblings, and her husband.
She is survived by her sons: Dr. Randy Marrs and wife, Chris and Scott Marrs and wife, Angela; brother-in-law Roger Riddell and his wife Phyllis from Irvine, KY; four grandchildren: Richard Marrs and wife, Brittany, Randall Marrs and wife, Karissa, Sarah Marrs, and Jacob Marrs; two great-grandchildren: Zariah and Honor; a sister-in-law, Pat Stevens along with other relatives and friends.
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