Willie Walley

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Tuesday August 19, 2014 Willie Walley (Papa) started a new journey in life with the Lord. Willie passed away at his home in Bennington with his family by his side.

Willie Walley, a full blood Choctaw, was born at home on August 28, 1928 in Bennington, Oklahoma to Milton Walley and Georgia Dryer Walley. He was raised and attended school in Bennington. One of six children he helped out by hunting and fishing after school to aid in feeding the family. He rode a horse to school and later managed to get a bicycle and was able to make the 3 mile trip to town. He attended his graduation ceremony by horseback.

While in school, Willie joined the Forty-Fifth Infantry Division of Oklahoma National Guard. After graduation, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps, which later became the United States Air Force. His service was from October 10, 1948 to 1971 giving over 20 years of service, including active Federal Military Service. During his service, he was part of the then greatest Technological advance in the history of aviation and aerospace power. Many changes he witnessed.

During service, one of his primary duties was in communication and handling highly sensitive information, which restricted him from discussing his job. He was in service during the Korean War and Vietnam. In addition to state side duties, he served overseas tours to Germany, Italy, Pakistan, the Aleutians and Alaska. Honors included Air Force Good Conduct Metal, Army Good Conduct Metal with 5 Bronze Loops, Army of Occupation medal, National Defense Service Metal with 1 Bronze Service Star, and the Air Force Longevity Service Award with 4 Bronze Oak Leaf Clusters.

On July 1, 1960, he married the love of his life, Ella Edel Walley his best friend, companion and business partner. Together the two journeyed through this world as one for 47 years during bad and good times, but he always had a smile and a sparkle of love in his eyes. Later they made their home in Bennington where they raised two wonderful children.

Willie was a wonderful person inside and out; it was evident that he was content with what the Lord allowed him to have and he was always ready to go an extra mile for anybody that needed him. He never met a stranger, was respected and admired for his lifetime achievements of being a "good man".

Survivors include daughter, Diana and husband Johnny Bundrant, Jr. of Bokchito; son, Eddy and wife Chrestena Walley of Bennington; thought of as a son, Wayne Minyard of Bennington; grandchildren, Angela and husband Elgin Cross of Bennington, Willie Ray Minyard of Bennington; plus six other grand kids; great-grand children, Jacob Cross, DeAnn Cross, Hunter Minyard and Rowdy Minyard.

Activities include being a member of the Choctaw Nation Wellness Center and Coordinator of the Choctaw Senior Activities and assisting in the Choctaw Nation Nutrition Center and exercise program, Bryan County RSVP and the Instructor of Exercise at the Choctaw Community Center weekly sessions. Willie was a Deacon of the New Bennington Presbyterian Church. He was active at the Choctaw Seniors of Durant Community Center and was the Chairman of the highly successful "Going Green Garden". He also served as Sgt.-at-Arms. Willis was twice voted Outstanding Elder in District 9 and voted Choctaw Distinguished Elder.

Family hour will be from 7-8:00 PM Friday, August 22, 2014 at the Holmes Coffey Murray Funeral Home in Durant. A service in his honor will be held at 10:00 AM Saturday, August 23, 2014 at the Bennington First Baptist Church with Minister Olan Williams officiating with the Choctaw Honor Guard as pallbearers. Burial will be at the Old Church Cemetery with honors delivered by the Air Force Honor Guard.

Family and friends may send online condolences and view tributes at

Services are under the direction of Holmes-Coffey-Murray Funeral Home, Durant, Oklahoma.

Funeral Home
Holmes~Coffey ~ Murray Funeral Home - Durant
121 N. 5th Ave.
Durant, OK 74701
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Published in Durant Daily Democrat from Aug. 22 to Aug. 23, 2014
bullet Korean War bullet U.S. Air Force bullet U.S. Army