I Would Rather Be Lucky Than Smart.
This simple statement has has a profound impact on my life. It began when my beautiful, smart, funny and supportive mother, Hazel Marie Pond Minter, gave birth to me on July 29, 1943 in Anadarko, Okla. The next bit of luck was immediately moving in with my grandparents, Fred (whom I was named after) and Effie Pond. My father, Ira, was away at war. I lived with my grandparents off and on for the next five years and they had a big impact on my life.
My mother was the rock in my hectic life. She supported everything I wanted to do in life include high school and college football and a lifelong fascination with Trucks beginning with Bekins Van Lines. I was 14 years old, my mother told them I was 16 (we needed the money) and I was driving a tractor and trailer at age 16. She supported me when I bought, at age 21, the Cock of the Walk Bar and Grill even though I never saw her take a drink of alcohol in her entire life. She supported my career as a Commercial Real Estate Broker, Securities Broker and as an Investor.
Luck played such an important role in my Commercial Real Estate career that, in nearly 50 years, I may have had a total of five listings. Deals seemed to fall into my lap.
Luck introduced me to many wonderful clients, friends, partners including, Jim Williams, J. Ted Bonham, Ed Mills, John Massey, J.R Fulton, Pat Barry, Scott Conner, Gary Rosenhamer, Lisa Shipman, Scott Woodard, Tom Knott, Jerry Hassler and the rest of my golfing buddies in Scottsdale, Rex Smith, Danny Rotelli, Jim Rice, Abbe Owens, Tony Lombardi and Jay and Terri Snow.
Ron Wigington and I have been in business together for over 40 years. We owned 5 Allied Van Line Agencies, American Capital Group Securities and Investments in oil and gas. In those years, I never remember us having a single argument.
Hawthorn Farr, Bob Vanhorn and I spent many months running around Europe after we graduated from Harding High School. Hawthorn, Bob Moore and I later spent time playing in Mexico, South and Central America.
Clark Nye provided years of entertainment on our many trips (unscheduled) while we tiptoed through life. He could keep me laughing 24/7.
Don Zachritz started out as a business partner and ended up a lifelong friend. We shared many lunches together where he provided all the entertainment, a very funny guy.
I want to thank some other friends that have tried their best to intro me to a more civilized lifestyle including, Glen Johnson and all the wonderful people involved with Oklahoma State Regents of Higher Education, Mark Stansberry and all the wonderful people involved with the Regional University System of Oklahoma.
Bob Byers has been a business partner and has spent his life trying to save my soul. (I hope he has been successful).
To all that I have not mentioned, you know who you are, and I love every one of you.
The luck involved with my Harding High School buddies is that they are still alive, and we can enjoy each others company one night a month for dinner. This group includes, Steve Saul, Bob Vanhorn, Hawthorn Farr, George Crenshaw, Ed Mitchell, Farrell Roper and Bruce Holmes. After many long hours of deep philosophical conversation, it seems the majority of our focus is on three topics; lies, recent surgeries and erectile disfunction.
Without a doubt, the two luckiest days in my life were (1) when my son Michael was born and (2) when John Massey introduced me to my wife, Ann Holloway, the love of my life. Ann and I were only able to spend a short time together, but we packed a lot of living into those years and it gave me time to meet her incredible family.
My son, Michael, has provided me a lifetime of wonderful memories (if I ever had a single problem with Michael, I do not remember it) and three beautiful grandchildren, Avery, Charlie and Hayes. I love them all very much.
Along the way I acquired a stepdaughter, Megan Robinson, sent from Heaven. I jokingly tell friends that she was so perfect, you would have thought I was her father. Megan gave me three beautiful and athletic grandchildren, Dakota, Emma and Jade.
Ann Holloway came late into my life in 2007 and we married in 2016. She introduced me to a very large and loving family that taught me how to hug. I had never been in a family environment before and discovered I liked it. Ann brought many new things to my life including her love of animals and rural living. She also brought Rico into our family, a dog I could not imagine living without.
This obit is meant to suggest that luck may come from the many people who have helped me along the way and influenced me one way or the other. I also believe that the harder you work, the luckier you get. Having said this, I sincerely believe I have had far more than my share of luck.
I want to thank all you that have helped me enjoy this wonderful life and I hope my presence has not caused you too many problems or burdens.
I want to thank all the great people at Mercy Hospital in OKC and those at Mayo Hospital in Rochester, Minn. They kept me alive long enough to write this obit.
Closing in on the end of my life, I am holding out for a final piece of luck clearly stated in an old Irish proverb:
May my soul be in Heaven 30 minuets before the devil knows I am dead.
A celebration of of life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, please donate to the American Cancer Society, or a Animal Shelter of your choice.