William (Bill) Larkin Strom
Bill Strom made a round in the feed truck with his son John on Sunday, February 11, 2018. The cattle content, the farm work progressing to his satisfaction, he came home to his fire and family and pulled off his work boots for the last time. At 9pm he gently went to pasture.
Bill was born in Dickinson, Texas to Frank Strom and Zelma Haley Strom on July 26, 1927. He was raised on a cotton farm near Snyder, Texas with his brother Hubert and sisters Frankie Beth and Carol. After graduating from high school in Ira, Texas he left to fulfill his duty to the United States by serving in the Army in Korea.
After returning from Korea, Bill left West Texas in search of greener pastures on which to farm and raise cattle. He found what he was looking for in North East Osage County, Oklahoma. Bill, along with his father, brother, and sisters, purchased the Valley View (VV) Ranch on Hulah Lake in 1952. Soon after he assumed sole ownership.
Bill’s next search ended when he found and married Nancy Nail of Foraker, Oklahoma in 1953. They made a home on the ranch and had three children: Jeanne Carol, John Larkin, and Marcy Lynn.
Bill and Nancy set about a life-long commitment to the land, livestock, and community. Bill’s service to the community included time on the Bowring School Board, the Farm Home Administration, and the Soil Conservation Service, including 8 years as chairman. He was a member of The Osage County Cattlemen’s Association, The Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Association, The National Cattlemen’s Association, The Texas & Southwest Cattlemen’s Association, and The Bluestem Cattlemen’s Association. He was an honorary and honored member of the Oklahoma and Osage County 4-H Clubs and a member of the Bluestem Farm and Ranch Club.
Bill’s livestock and land management practices earned him awards as Osage County’s Conservationist of the Year, Osage County’s Outstanding Young Farmer of the Year in 1969, and The Tulsa World’s Farm Family of the Year in 1976, a Certificate of Service from the United States Department of Agriculture in 1982, and the Oklahoma Governor’s Conservation Award for Land Management in 1983. Farmer-Stockman magazine named Bill Outstanding Farmer of the Year in 1963. He’s been cited on numerous occasions for his service to the Osage County 4-H Clubs and Osage County Jr Livestock Show. While he came from Texas, in 2002, for his service to the state, Bill was named an honorary ‘Okie’ by the Oklahoma Legislature. In 2009, the Osage County Cattlemen’s Association inducted Bill into its Hall of Fame.
Bill is survived by his loving wife of 64 years, Nancy, who still lives on the ranch.
Also surviving are his sisters Carol Hodge and Mike of Santa Fe, New Mexico, Mary Strom of Ft Worth, Texas, Don and Nita Nail of Kingfisher, Oklahoma, Frances and Hugh Griffith of Dothan, Alabama, daughter Jeanne Strom of Pawhuska, Oklahoma, son John Strom and Macy of Hulah Lake, Oklahoma, daughter Marcy Smith and Gary of Copan, Oklahoma; three grandchildren: April Strom of Tulsa, Oklahoma, Judd Strom of Hulah Lake, Oklahoma and Josh Strom of Pawhuska, Oklahoma. Bill has one great grandson, Cort Strom and a number nieces, nephews and extended family.
Bill is preceded in death by his brother Hubert (Hunky) Strom of Ft Worth, Texas, sister Frankie Beth Nelson of San Angelo, Texas, and Jim and Eileen Nail of Louisville, Mississippi.
Funeral services will be held Saturday, February 17, 2:00PM, at the Bowring School. Rev. James Hager and Rev. Bill Long will officiate. Interment will be in the Pawhuska City Cemetery.
Memorials in Bill Strom’s name may be made to the Hulah Volunteer Fire Department in order that he might continue to lend to the service and protection of his community.
HVFD – c/o Sharon Lockman, 1861 County Road 3575, Pawhuska, OK 74056
Kendrick McCartney Johnson Funeral Home in charge.