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Bryan County, Oklahoma

Highland Park Cemetery
Durant, Oklahoma

© Durant Daily Democrat

Dr. Donald A Parham

© Durant Daily Democrat

Monday, October 20, 2008

Submitted by: Jo Aguirre

Services for Dr. Donald A. Parham who passed away on October 17, 2008, will be Tuesday, October 21 at 10:00 a.m. in the First Baptist Church with James Robinson and Dr. Don Hazell officiating.

He was born in Atoka, Oklahoma, April 3, 1930, to Louella Mason Parham Prosper and Carl Albert Parham.

In December, 1954 he married Kay Baker in Janesville, Wisconsin.

He graduated from Atoka High School in 1948. He received an Associate Degree from Eastern Oklahoma State College in 1950 and a Bachelor of Science Degree from Southeastern State College in 1952. While there he played basketball under Coach Bloomer Sullivan, was vice-president of the Student Senate, became a member of Sigma Tau Gamma and Blue Key Honor Society.

During the Korean War he served in the US Army from 1952-54. He then returned to school and received his Master of Science Degree from Oklahoma A & M College {now Oklahoma State University} in 1955 and his Doctor of Education Degree from Peabody College {now Vanderbilt University} in 1959.

From 1956-59, he taught physical education at Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia, Arkansas, where he also served as Assistant Basketball Coach. In 1959 he returned to Southeastern where he spent the following forty-five years as Professor of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation. He also served as chairperson of the department from 1967-1995, as Director of Athletics from 1970-2004 and as head baseball coach from 1965-1980. In 2004 he retired as Emeritus Professor and Director of Athletics.

His honors include membership in the Southeastern Athletic Hall of Fame, the Eastern Oklahoma State College Hall of Fame, the NAIA Hall of Fame, and the Atoka High School Hall of Fame. In 2007 he was named to the Lone Star Conference Hall of Honor and received the Distinguished Former Faculty Award from the Southeastern Oklahoma State University Alumni Association. He was selected as Blue Key Teacher of the Year, 1961-62, and Professor of the Year, 1964-65 and 1979-80 by Alpha Sigma Tau Sorority.

He was Athletic Administrator of the Year- NAIA southwest region in 1995, Coach of the year in NAIA District 9 and Area 3, and was given the Robert R. Neyland Outstanding Athletic Director Award by the All-American Football Foundation in 2004. A life member of the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance, he also served on numerous NAIA committees and the NCAA Division II National Baseball Committee.

He loved fishing and quail hunting and in his later years became an avid golfer.

He was a member of the First Baptist Church and Adult III Sunday School Class.

He served on the Durant City Planning Commission from 1965-72 and was a member of Lions International, serving as Zone Chairman, 1964-65 and club president, 1967-68.

Preceding him in death were his parents, sisters, Ruth Gottfried, Eloise Bosher, Mary Bosher and Shirley Caldwell and a brother, Charles E. Parham.

He is survived by his wife; sons, David W. Parham and wife Shelley of Dallas, Brent D. Parham of the home, Warren G. Parham and wife Angela of Dallas; four grandchildren; M. William, D. Mason, Virginia, and Adeline Parham, all of Dallas; sister, Melody Bensley of Atoka; brothers, Paul D. Parham and wife Sue of Atoka, and Robert Parham and wife Ann of Tulsa as well as numerous cousins, nieces and nephews.

Burial will be in Highland Cemetery under the direction of Coffey-Murray Funeral Home. Pallbearers will be Brett Butler, Ernest Sturch, Harold Harmon, Gordon Wright, Wesley Smithart, John Wilmoth, Keith Baxter, and Mike Metheny. Honorary pallbearers will be members of the Southeastern Athletic and HPER Departments and former SOSU baseball players, 1964-80.

The family requests memorials be made to the Southeastern Oklahoma State University Foundation for either the General Athletic Fund or the Donald A. and Kay B. Parham Athletic Scholarship.


Thank You For Your Service!

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