U.S. Navy veteran R. C. "Joe" Koller, Jr. passed away Monday, Feb. 24, 2020, at the Ardmore Veterans Center at the age of 93 years, ten months and 22 days of age. Joe was born April 2, 1926 to the late Rufus Carl Koller, Sr. and Dollie Ann Brooks Koller in Sulphur.
At the age of 16, Joe joined his father, working in the Houston shipyards and when he attained the age of 18 he enlisted in the U.S. Navy. During his WW II service he was stationed at Pearl Harbor and was a Photographer's Mate Third Class when honorably discharged in 1946.
Joe returned to southern Oklahoma and while a student at the Ardmore Business College he met and fell in love with his future wife, Diane Marie Owens. They were married June 2, 1948. He and Diane had a caring relationship that was based on mutual support and a deep love for each other. The parents of two daughters, Patricia and Terese, they had celebrated 65 years of marriage when Diane preceded him in death, on March 2, 2013. In addition to his parents and wife, Joe was also preceded in death by a sister, Rubena Nelms.
A kind and gentle person who loved spending time with family and friends, Joe will be forever remembered by his two daughters, Patricia Koller and Terese Adams; and his granddaughter, Hannah Adams.
A member of the First Avenue Church of Christ, Joe was a long time employee of Montgomery Ward's, where he was a Department Manager. An avid car-guy, Joe had raced and enjoyed them all of his life. After retiring he and Diane traveled throughout the country, first camping in tents, then campers and finally their R.V. All of his life, especially during his naval training, Joe had a passion for photography, taking lots of pictures on his many hikes and walks. The legacy of Joe's kind spirit, his love of reading, and zest for life will live on.
The family invites all to join them at 10 a.m. Friday, Feb. 28, in the Centennial Chapel of Harvey-Douglas Funeral Home for funeral services conducted by Mr. Sean McCallister, First Avenue Church of Christ. Military Honors will be provided by the U.S. Navy. Burial beside his wife, Diane, will be at Rose Hill Cemetery.
Words of comfort may be sent to the family online at www.hdouglasfuneralhome.com.