A sad goodbye to long-time Ardmore resident, Monroe D. Rist, who died Friday, December 20, 2013, after a recent diagnosis of cancer. He is survived by his three daughters and their families. Ora Bell Rist, his beloved wife of nearly 50 years, and son-in-law, James Vanderslice preceded him in death.
Born January 31, 1931, in Erie, Pennsylvania, Monty spent summers working odd jobs at the local airpark, earning his private and commercial pilot licenses. Monty is a graduate of Duke University with a BA in Religion and further studies in Nuclear Physics from Arizona State University. He went on to fly for the United States Air Force for 20 years, retiring in 1973. Monty flew multiple planes while in the Air Force including the L-20 and C-47 in the Korean War. He was privileged to fly the very first C-130 ever built in the Vietnam Conflict. With over 3,300 flying hours, Monty become one of the top C-130 pilots earning many distinguished awards and becoming a Chief Standardization and Evaluation Pilot.
A member of the Retired Officers Association and member of the Board of Directors for Kiwanis, Monty also volunteered at Mercy Hospital where co-workers and hospital visitors alike loved his sometimes mischievous and always upbeat attitude. He enjoyed tinkering in his workshop and was an excellent woodworker and stained glass artist. His presence will be missed at Lake Ardmore, at Mercy Hospital and at the First United Methodist Church where he married his wife and raised his family. Perhaps he will best be remembered by those who knew him well as one of the last true gentlemen.
Services will be held Monday, December 23 at 1:30 p.m. at First United Methodist Church (McClure Chapel) in Ardmore, Oklahoma with the Rev. Tony Caro officiating.
In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Lake Ardmore Beautification Fund. Donations can be mailed to The Lake Ardmore Memorial Fund, c/o Johnny Taylor, 659 Ridgeview Road, Ardmore, OK 73401.
Online condolences may be made at craddockfuneralhome.com.