Cover photo for Charles Wesley "Wes" Thurman's Obituary
Charles Wesley "Wes" Thurman Profile Photo
1941 Charles 2023

Charles Wesley "Wes" Thurman

March 4, 1941 — July 3, 2023

My friend George says that the last goodbye is the hardest one to say and this is where the cowboy rides away. Wes was born in a 2 story farmhouse in Alva Oklahoma on March 4, 1941 to his parents Louie Herbert Thurman and Ellen Hada Thurman. He often said that his birthday was special because it was the only day of the year that was used as a command to move forward. He attended Greenleaf Country School and was the only person in his grade until his eighth grade year. He attended high school “in town” and was very successful in FFA, showing animals and scholastics. He attended Oklahoma State University for his BS and MS degrees studying agriculture, soil science and animal science. He met the love of his life, Sharon Anne Jacobs, at Oklahoma State and they enjoyed spending time training and riding horses. After they married in June 1964 they moved to Starkville Mississippi where he attended Mississippi State University where he received his PhD in Ranch and Range Crop Management. He loved conducting research and was nationally known for his work. He was the youngest department head that MSU had ever had. Wes and Sharon welcomed their first child, Stacy Renee’ Thurman on July 15, 1966 while in Starkville, MS. Wes agreed to a new job opportunity in Poplarville Mississippi where the young family developed lifelong friendships where people lovingly called him “Doc”. It was here that their family grew and their second daughter, Jonnell Lynn Thurman was born on October 6, 1970. He was the president of the Mississippi Cattlemen’s Association and grew the chapter to record numbers. Wes continued his research in crop management at experiment stations in Poplarville and Aberdeen MS. In 1974 he and his family returned to their native state of Oklahoma where he helped his aging father maintain their Alva farm/ranch. Wes performed custom farming and ranching for many years in Perkins, OK and surrounding areas. He often introduced himself in Perkins as Wes Thurman on the Cimarron. He gave too freely and loved fiercely. If you were in his circle you knew it; if you weren’t in his circle you knew it too. He loved to tell a good story with friends around a ceremonial fire and partake of a cold beverage. He had a brilliant mind and was as smart as he was stubborn. He lived his life on his own terms. He was the epitome of “don’t judge a book by it’s cover” as most people did not know of his academic/career success and that he was a published writer. Everyone that knew him will be forever be able to tell their own “Wes story.”

He is preceded in death by his parents, Louie and Ellen Thurman, sister Mary Lou Thurman Bryan and his beloved wife Sharon. He is survived by Jonnell Thurman (daughter), Stacy Lacy (daughter), three grandchildren, Tylan Lacy, Kelbi Lacy and Weston Lacy, David Bryan (brother-in-law), Katie Bryan (niece), and Ken Bryan (nephew). Wes, may your trail always be smooth as you ride a swift horse and the wind always be at your back. As you always said, “Check ya later.”

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