David Lee Autry passed away December 17, 2010, at home in Oklahoma City. He is survived by his wife, Loretta, of the home; his sons and their wives: David B. Autry, of Oklahoma City, Eddie and Vicki Autry of Norman, Joel and Jennifer Autry of Choctaw, Ray and Emily Brown of Norman; his grandchildren: Elizabeth Roberts; Alexandra Coor; Alex, Ashleigh, Cooper and Kallen Autry; Hailee Cooper; and Zachariah and Ella Ruth Brown; step-grandchildren: Sarah Brown of Tulsa and Kelsey Majors of Norman; his sister, Peggy Stafford of Norman; nephew, John Brannan; and nieces: Susie Brown, Linda Grotte and Claudia Price-Decker. He was preceded in death by his parents, Maggie B. and Omri Oral "Bud" Autry of Marietta, OK; sister, Jane Brannan of Marietta; and only daughter, Anne Lawlor. He also leaves behind an extended family and many, many friends. David was born October 18, 1930 in Marietta, Oklahoma, and graduated from Marietta High School. An accomplished baseball pitcher, he was drafted by the Cleveland Indians, but instead chose to join the military, serving in Korea as a Sergeant with the United States Air Force. He attended Texas Christian University and graduated with a degree in Physical Education from the University of Oklahoma, where he served as a student manager for the football team during the Bud Wilkinson era. A career educator, he obtained a master's degree in education from East Texas State College in Commerce. He coached high school football and baseball in Brush, Colorado, and Terrell, Texas. He then entered administration and became a longtime school principal in Lubbock, Texas, and Moore, Oklahoma. He retired from the Oklahoma State Department of Education. In retirement, David was an enthusiastic and dedicated volunteer at the Oklahoma City Zoo and a member of AZAD. He was a member of the Disciple Christian Church of Newcastle, OK, where he had served as an elder and Chairman of the Board. A lifelong fan of his beloved Sooners, he attended his first OU football game in 1938. He attended all the home games and traveled with the Sooner Club to many other games, including OU-Texas weekend for decades. He was a staunch supporter of The Pride and the University. He was known for his irreverent sense of humor and generosity and will be fondly remembered by his family, friends, and the several generations of teachers whom he mentored during his years as a school principal. In the midst of our celebration of the birth of Jesus, we will gather to celebrate the life of David on December 23, 2010 at 2:00 P.M. at the First Christian Church of Moore. The family will greet friends following the ceremony. To share condolences, please visit: www.ResthavenOKC.com
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Published in The Oklahoman from Dec. 21 to Dec. 22, 2010