Floella Wofford Swimmer, 86, passed on to her heavenly home on Friday, June 28, 2013, at Tahlequah City Hospital. She was born Oct. 21, 1926, in Stilwell, to Levi and Martha Hawk Wofford Seabolt.
Floella attended elementary school at Dahlonegah and graduated from Union Grade (now Cave Springs) High School in 1946, in Stilwell. She was a U.S. Air Force military wife, living in Kansas, Missouri, Texas and Puerto Rico, during which time she made several lifelong friends.
After returning to Stilwell, she was employed at Stilwell Memorial Hospital as a nurse’s aide and ward clerk, and earned numerous training certificates and awards for her service. In the later 1980s, she moved to Tahlequah and worked for Davis Nursing Home on Shawnee Street until her retirement.
In 2009, Flo became a participant in Cherokee Eldercare’s PACE program, and through their program, managed to live independently until 2012 when she moved to GoYe Village Assisted Living.
Floella loved and served her Lord all her life. She was a member of Elm Tree Indian Baptist Church in Tahlequah. Throughout her years, she served in different capacities in the church. Flo was proud of her Cherokee heritage and shared her knowledge of the language through the church’s New Tribes Mission Program by teaching families from the U.S. and other countries. Many of them continued to keep her updated on their family and mission work.
Flo was a very friendly, outgoing, and loving lady. She loved making quilts and giving them to family and friends, a craft that was passed down from generations. She also looked forward each year to hosting family luncheons during the Cherokee National Holiday. The luncheon was always followed by evening powwow festivities.
She enjoyed cooking meals for visitors in her home. Flo enjoyed driving her friends on many shopping trips and having lunch with them. She was always the chauffer for several ladies who did not drive or have transportation. Flo was a fun loving lady who loved to dress up every Halloween, usually as a man or a ghost. She looked forward to attending the annual Seabolt family reunions on her father’s side. She often talked about the fun she had participating in activities at the Senior Citizens Center. Also, being a cancer survivor, she was involved with a local cancer support group.
Most of Flo’s activities in recent years were within the Eldercare and GoYe Village programs, Friday and Saturday outings with family, and Sunday church services.
Flo’s surviving relatives include three brothers and their spouses, Levi and Mildred Wofford, Thomas and Sara Wofford, all of Stilwell, and Clayton and Louise Wofford, of Claremore; two sisters-in-law, Joanna Wofford of Stilwell and Mary Jo Wofford of Tulsa. She also leaves behind several nieces and nephews, all of whom she loved dearly and who cherished her, as well as many friends and loved ones.
Flo was “like a mom,” a friend, a confidante, always someone you could go to and depend on. She will always be remembered for her constant answer to concerns discussed with her. Her answer was always, “Let’s pray about it.” She had great faith in her Lord. Flo’s favorite poem was “Footprints.” She knew that in the most difficult times, her Lord would carry her.
Flo was preceeded in death by her parents, Levi and Martha; four sisters, Clara May and Lucille in infancy, Josephine Chuculate, and Viola Brown, all of Stilwell; four brothers, Robert in infancy, Charley Wofford of Stilwell, and Jack Wofford and Ralph Wofford of Tulsa; one brother-in-law, Duggie Chuculate of Stilwell; a beloved nephew-in-law, Mike Feary of Tahlequah; and several very dear friends, whom she has joined in her heavenly home.
Flo requested nephews Jerry Brown, Mike Brown, Brandon Wofford, Brant Wofford, Vince Wofford and Eric Wofford to serve as pallbearers with all others serving as honorary pallbearers and all nieces to serve as flower girls.
Visitation will be held at Hart Funeral Home Chapel in Tahlequah on Tuesday, July 2, 2013, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. The family will be receiving guests from 5 to 8 p.m. The service will be held on Wednesday, July 3, 2013, at 10 a.m., with Pastor D. J. McCarter officiating. Interment will follow at Feathers Cemetery in Stilwell. Funeral services are entrusted to Hart Funeral Home in Tahlequah.
Hart Funeral Home, 1506 N. Grand, (918) 456-8823.