Funeral services for Melva Dean Drywater-Gourd will be conducted on Tuesday, March 25, at 10 a.m. at the Johnson Prairie Baptist Church with Pastor Fox Blackfox officiating.
Visitation will be held on Monday, March 24, at Reed-Culver Chapel from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. with a wake service from 5 until 7 p.m. Interment will be held at New Hope Cemetery near Hulbert.
Online condolences for the family may be left at www.reedculver.com.
Pallbearers for Melva Dean include Damon Gourd, Cameron Drywater, Isaiah Gourd, Ryan Girty, Derek Girty, Jason Gann, Tyler Gourd, and Gaylen Smith. Honorary pallbearers include Stacy Wacoche, David Foreman, Jerry Girty, Dennis Gourd Jr., Jess Robbins and Jayson Robbins. Her flowergirls include Sierra Gourd, Taryn Foreman, Braylynn Proctor, Makeile Smith, Caitlin Smith, Makynna Girty, Jaeden Robbins, Mandy Bark-Smith, Stephanie Turner, Maleah Wolfe, and Narsisa Ramos.
Melva Dean Drywater-Gourd was born on Dec. 22, 1954, in Tahlequah, the daughter of Elizabeth Drywater and Jackie Dale Gritts.
She attended school in Tahlequah and completed her bachelor’s degree at Flaming Rainbow School.
On Jan. 17, 1977, she married her best friend, Ross Gourd. Theirs was a relationship that spanned 37 years, five children, as well as many memories and sweet laughter. Melva worked as a teachers assistant at Shady Grove School, near Hulbert. Her favorite hobby was keeping up with her husband, children and especially her grandchildren. Melva was happy to spend an afternoon fishing with her family.
She enjoyed cooking big meals for her family and made wonderful frybread, brown beans, fried potatoes and wild onions.
She always found time to go to her sister’s house to sit outside and share a cup of coffee and some conversation.
She had a great sense of humor and a laugh that lit up the room. She was kind, gentle, and a friend to anyone that knocked on her door.
A Baptist by faith, she was a member of Johnson Prairie Baptist Church. She loved to go to church and listen to the singing or her husband, Ross, as he sang the old fav-orites.
She made time to cuddle with her favorite canine companion, Phatty. She was witty and enjoyed verbal banter with Ross every chance she got. Her grandchildren were her pride and joy. She never grew tired of their visits and all the wonderful times they shared.
Her health was failing her and on Thursday, March 20, she left this world for her eternal home. Melva was 59 years old. She will be greatly missed by her family and her many friends.
Melva is preceded in death by her mother; her father; and her brother, Wilburn Sequichie, who passed in 1981.
Those left to cherish her memory include her husband, Ross, of the home. She leaves her five adored children, Beth Drywater Foreman and husband David of Tahlequah; Lawanna Gourd and companion Stacy Wacoche of Tahlequah; James Gourd and companion Stephanie Turner of Pryor; Ross Gourd Jr. and companion Cherice O’Fields of Tahlequah; and Haley Gourd, also of Tahlequah. She leaves one sister, Donna Girty and husband Jerry of Tahlequah; and one aunt, Nanita Wolf of Garnet, Texas.
She leaves seven grandchildren, Damon Gourd, Cameron Drywater, Isaiah Gourd, Sierra Gourd, Taryn Foreman, Braylynn Proctor, and Samuel Powell. She also leaves nine stepgrandchildren, Alexander Foreman, Raedawn Foreman, Trifton Wacoche, Kristen Wacoche, Jessica Wacoche, Shelby Backward, Deanna Backward, Erin Deitrick, and Maleah Wolfe; and her niece and nephews, Ryan Girty, Derek Girty, and Makynna Girty; as well as many cousins and a host of friends and loved ones.
Reed-Culver Funeral Home, 117 W. Delaware, (918) 456-2551.