December 16, 1947 - April 12, 2020
On Easter Sunday, April 12, 2020, Laurel Ann Kelsey Wells, beloved mother and grandmother, passed away at the age of 72 due to complications from multiple sclerosis. Laurel was born on December 16, 1947 to Lester L. Kelsey, Jr., and Grace Elizabeth "Betty" (Armstrong) Kelsey. She often reminisced of her loving home and happy childhood, and adventures she and her brother, Howard, would have with their many aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends. Laurel loved to dance, nurturing her talent with dedication and dreams. Her friends talk of her as their own version of Audrey Hepburn - polished, graceful, elegant, and magnetic. She brought her humor and spark to activities at Will Rogers High School - journalism, homecoming court, spirit club, and many others. She went to Northeastern State University to pursue journalism, joined Sigma Sigma Sigma sorority, and felt the calling for what would become one of her great legacies - the field of education. Laurel's heart for children began with her daughters, Katy Beth Shaddock and Kelsey Suzanne Holder. She was a devoted and loving mother, mentor, friend, and cheerleader. Laurel's girls grew in the warm sunlight of her love. She rejoiced in guiding us to our savior, Jesus Christ, teaching us to see beauty and possibility in the world, and challenging us to achieve our potential through education and hard work, the keys to our dreams of building rewarding careers while growing our own families. She cherished her grandchildren, Kyler, Cole, Jacob, Sara, Elijah, Hawkins, Mimi, and Miriam, treating each individually as a priceless and irreplaceable jewel, which she polished and shined with love and support for every endeavor and achievement. Laurel would light up with joy and love as she regaled friends and family with stories of her girls, her grandchildren, and her sons-in-law, David Shaddock and Brandon Holder, and stepdaughters Jennifer and Lindsay. Laurel was an outstanding teacher, and while earning two masters degrees, touched the lives of so many, from her early teaching career in Catoosa and McAlester, then to Broken Arrow Public Schools, teaching at Arrowhead and Vandever, a counselor at Leisure Park, an assistant principal at Park Lane, and then Tulsa Public Schools where she was Principal of Park Elementary, adjunct professor at Tulsa Community College and Langston University, and for the last ten years of her career, at Starrett Elementary in Arlington, Texas. After retirement, Laurel worked as an educational leadership consultant, and throughout her career, the stories of how she mentored and encouraged countless people are inspiring evidence of her true servant leadership. Katy and Kelsey would like to give special thanks to David Shaddock for his love and support as Laurel's caregiver and friend, Grace Hospice for the miracles they worked to bring Laurel home to be with her family in her final moments in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, and Redeemer Church for embracing Laurel as part of our congregation.
On Easter Sunday, April 12, 2020, Laurel Ann Kelsey Wells, beloved mother and grandmother, passed away at the age of 72 due to complications from multiple sclerosis. Laurel was born on December 16, 1947 to Lester L. Kelsey, Jr., and Grace Elizabeth... View Obituary & Service Information
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