Edward Lloyd (Doc) McKinney passed away on November 25, 2019 at his home in Durant, Oklahoma. He was preceded in death by his parents, his older sister, Kathryn Lee Parrish, his wife, Virginia Catherine (Richardson) McKinney who died in 2011, and ten months later, his daughter, Karen Sue Baker Sanders, in 2012. He is survived by his daughters Glenda (Benny) Smith of Plano, TX, Paula Laxton, and Pamela McKinney both of Durant, Ok, his sister, Almetta Sue Clark of Edna, TX, brother-in-law, Leon Richardson and his wife, Dot of Madill, Ok. Also surviving are his grandchildren, Michelle White and husband Daniel Smith, of Incline Village, Nevada, Jeramy Smith of McKinney, TX, Jason Smith of McKinney, TX, Brandon (Miranda) Laxton of Calera, Ok and Jenilee Smith (Jon) Lee of McKinney, TX. Also surviving are his great grandchildren Taylor White, Trevor White, Maddox Brady Smith, Maren Catherine Lee, Benton Thomas Lee, Brody Laxton, Lakelynd Laxton, and River Laxton, as well as two great-great grandchildren Karen White and Ryder White. As an uncle to almost thirty nieces and nephews; he was the favorite uncle and Catherine was the favorite aunt to many of them.
He was the only son born to Edward Lee and Ruby Kathryn (Brown) McKinney on August 15, 1928 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Growing up with an older and younger sister, he often entertained his family with his boy antics and pranks. He was not particularly fond of milking Betsy, his cow, twice a day, but it’s one of the stories he loved to tell. He’d talk of how cold the winter mornings were, and how tired he’d be after school, and he’d have to go to the barn in the dark and milk that cow! He attended public schools in Madill, Oklahoma, Murray State College, and Carver Chiropractic College in Oklahoma City, graduating in 1951. While home one week end, he saw a pretty girl standing in line at The Ritz Theater and asked one of his buddies who was that pretty girl? Why it’s one of my sisters was the reply he was given. He pursued one of the prettiest girls in Madill and won her love and affection! His daughters and extended family heard him tell this story over and over throughout the years.
After graduation, he was asked to come to Durant and take over the chiropractic practice of Dr. Evans, who had become ill. In 1952, he, Catherine, Glenda, and Karen moved into a small duplex near the corner of 5th and Evergreen Street. Half of the duplex was his chiropractic office and the other half was home. It was a great situation for the young doctor and parent to be so close to work and home. It served the young family well until they outgrew the space. In 1955, a new, bigger home was found with an extra-large lot adjacent to the property. Doc McKinney and his father, E.Lee McKinney, helped construct an office at the corner of 12th and Evergreen. Soon after the completion of the office the family was completed with the birth of twin daughters, Pam and Paula. He never had to travel to work except for walking a few steps getting to work and back home again. His loss of hair came at a pretty early time in his life…living with five females was a challenge, and he loved every minute, however, it’s pretty well known that by the age of 28, he had lost all the hair on top of his head!
Looking back, we don’t believe our dad ever woke up unhappy when we were children. He was happy, and felt if he were up early happy, then the rest of the house should be, as well. He loved waking his girls up singing! He had many songs he’d sing each day and night. Later in life he would sing along with television shows that Pam and Paula recorded for him. He loved hearing Judy Garland sing and dance. He loved every western show that cable had to offer….many of the shows he watched the past few years were shows his daughters grew up watching, but this time around, he thought he was seeing them for the first time!
For 53 years, his goal was to give the greatest care to his family, patients and friends, and he did. He loved them and the love was reciprocal. Throughout his 53 years in practice, his office was staffed with caring folks. His favorite bookkeeper was his wife, Catherine, and when the girls got older, she helped manage the office. We fondly remember Cora, Reba, Lori, Michelle, and especially the twins, Pam and Paula, who are trained massage therapists, who worked with him for over 20 years. After his stroke in 2005, they continued their massage business. Still today, patients ask about Doc and comment they wish he were still in practice. Doc lived a life of caring for others, while enjoying his off time with family and his love of playing golf. For many, many years he played in men’s foursomes, while Catherine stayed at home. Once she got the golfing bug, she was also playing the game, and loved playing partners with him. He was a proud member of the Choctaw Tribe, a charter member of the Durant Elks Lodge and the Durant Country Club.
For his 90th birthday in August 2018, his family hosted a party for family and friends. Everyone watched as he swiped the icing off his cake, again and again, enjoying every bite! He was a man of kindness, a man who loved his family and his occupation, and a man who truly loved mankind. It’s been said, he never met a stranger. For more than half of his life, he lived to care for the many patients in southeastern Oklahoma, and beyond the surrounding area. The stroke he suffered in 2005 took away his short term memory and ability to work, but not his fondest memories. Most days, in his mind, he continued to go to work and play golf; we all should be so lucky! His family is thankful for his memory loss, as it shielded him from the devastating loss of his wife and daughter. After Karen passed away, we found caregivers for dad who would not only provide care, but also be a companion to him. We are thankful for those who served him the past eight years. For several years, Trevor, his great-grandson, was his first (and last) caregiver and did a wonderful job. We are thankful for Brian Harvey, Joan Davis, and Sandy Kelly for their care, love, and support to our dad. A special thanks to Elara Hospice, Alyssa Grogan, and Shauna Gillis for their love and care of a very special man.
Services were held in the chapel at Holmes Coffey Murray Funeral home in Durant, Oklahoma on November 29. Burial at Highland Cemetery followed the service. His pallbearers were Jeramy Smith, Brandon Laxton, and Jason Smith her grandsons, Robby Heinz her first cousin, and Taylor White, Trevor White, Maddox Smith and Brody Laxton her great grandsons. In lieu of flowers, donations would be appreciated to the Alzheimer’s Association, alz.org; The Salvation Army, salvationarmyusa.org; or any organization of your choosing.