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Notchie's Story

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Notchie Nelson Shoemake, 89 year old Checotah resident, passed away peacefully, surrounded by his loving family on Friday, January 20, 2017 in Muskogee. He was born in Porum on Wednesday, December 7, 1927 to John and Bithena (Radford) Shoemake. Nelson attended elementary school at Vann Schools and Porum High School. He enlisted in the United States Army and served faithfully during WWII. While in the Army, Nelson received the WWII Victory Medal and the Army of Occupation Medal (Japan) and was honorably discharged in 1947. On Friday, March 4, 1949 he married the love of his life, Joyce Pound in Ft. Smith, Arkansas. They would have celebrated 64 years of marriage this coming March. Nelson farmed a little before moving to Texas. While in Texas, they attended a Baptist Church and Nelson gave his heart to his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He began a career as an inspector of dairy processing plants for the Dept. of Agriculture. They moved to Checotah in 1961 where he began raising cattle. That same year he and his family joined the First Baptist Church of Checotah. Nelson went to work for Weddles Grocery in Muskogee as a butcher, later going to work at the Western Sizzlin Steak House in Muskogee for the Morrow Family as a manager. He retired in 1993 spending much of his time on the golf course and fishing at Lake Eufaula and working in his vegetable garden.
Nelson will be remembered as a loving husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather. He was also known to be a little sassy at times, but was the happiest when surrounded by his family. As you continue to honor the life of Nelson, in lieu of flowers, his family asks that memorials be made to the Family Life Center Building Fund of First Baptist Church 210 SW 2nd Checotah, OK 74426. He was preceded in death by his parents; three brothers, Herman, Carl and Frank; one sister, Ethel Frost.
Nelson is survived by his wife, Joyce of the home; daughters, Melissa Sawyer and her husband Charles of Mounds, OK, Judy Hesley of Broken Arrow, Kristy Von Dollen and her husband Anthony of Spring Hill TN; three granddaughters, Serena Rice and her husband Mike of Tulsa, Sylvia Von Dollen of Spring Hill, TN and Bailey Sawyer of Tulsa; three grandsons, Nelson Dillon Hesley and his wife Anna of Tulsa, Garrett Von Dollen of Spring Hill TN and Jake Sawyer and his wife Angela of Edmond; four great-grandchildren, Arianna and Lily Rose Hesley, Aaron and Logan Rice; one sister, Lois Shrum and her husband Donald, numerous nieces, nephews, other extended family and a lifetime of friends. Services celebrating the life of Nelson will be 11:00 AM Wednesday, January 25, 2017 at First Baptist Church of Checotah with Reverend Steve Dennis, officiating. A private family burial will be held in Greenlawn Cemetery. You may share online condolences with Nelson's family @ www.garrettfamilyfuneralhome.com.
The family of Notchie Nelson Shoemake entrusted his care, services and burial to John & Kim and Seth Garrett of Garrett Family Funeral Home & Cremation Service 311 SW 2nd Checotah, OK 74426 (918) 473-2244.
Published on January 23, 2017
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