William Edward “Eddie” Bigbie was born to Noah Bigbie and Mozella Fielder Bigbie on Nov. 5, 1917, at Olive Hill, Tenn. He died at his home in Ardmore, on Sunday, May 15, 2016, at the age of 98 years, 6 months and 10 days.
Eddie was the oldest of five, with four beloved sisters born after him: Marguerite, Lois, Marie and Barbara. Being the only male of the five, he took on all aspects of farming with his parents that would provide for the family. This strong sense of independence and responsibility, together with his love for family, helped him live life with a zeal that was apparent to all who met him.
Although he attended Lambeth College in Tennessee for only one year, due to the great depression, he knew a good education was a key factor to success and never stopped learning. He was an avid reader and traveler until his sight began to fail him in the nineties.
Eddie moved to Oklahoma in the early 1940s to learn from his uncle, John, the ins and outs of banking through work at Southwestern Stationary and Bank Supply. Here his new life began after excelling at garnering many new accounts.
When World War II began, he immediately joined the Navy and became a recruiter. While stationed in Muskogee, Okla., he had a date with Miss Dorothy Elizabeth Heard, who was to become the love of his life. She became his wife on April 3, 1943. In the next 10 years they became the parents of five children, Biff, Basil, Debbie, Judy and Kathy. It was during this time Eddie started his own business, National Office and Bank Supply. He served city and county offices as well as banks in southern Oklahoma.
Eddie and Dorothy scrimped, saved and worked hard to make sure their children were given a good education. They were both proud to say that all five graduated from Oklahoma University.
Biff and Basil married and both had a son and a daughter. Now grandchildren and great--grandchildren have become a part of the ever-branching Bigbie Tree.
Eddie was a highly intelligent, mostly self-taught, savvy businessman. But his strong personality and responsible nature masked the fact that in his heart, he was still just a little farm boy trying to do his best for his family, and he did.
A member of the First United Methodist Church of Ardmore, where he was the oldest living member, Eddie is survived by his five children, Biff Bigbie and wife, Eleanor, Basil Bigbie and wife, Suzanne, Debbie Bigbie, Judy Bigbie and Kathy Bigbie; his grandsons, Brian Bigbie and wife, Amy, and Evan Bigbie; granddaughters, Brooke Marshall and husband, Bryan, and Allison Bigbie; and great-grandchildren, Sebastian Bigbie, Rowan Bigbie and Kennedy Marshall.
Memorial services will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 21, in the Centennial Chapel of Harvey--Douglas Funeral Home officiated by the Rev. Dan Patman. A reception will follow.
A time of visitation and support for family and friends has been scheduled from 5:30 to 6:30 Friday evening at Harvey-Douglas Funeral Home.
The family suggests that memorial gifts be made to the Seminary Scholarship Program of the First United Methodist Church.