The Norman Transcript


February 12, 2014

Doris Jean Gowin Kupka

NORMAN — Doris Jean was born Feb. 16, 1927, to Bill and Bessie Gowin. Her early years were spent at the home of her grandmother, Etta Lacy McLaughlin. Throughout her childhood, Doris developed her life-long love of travel by moving from place to place with her mother and her Naval officer stepfather. She lived in Boston, Norfolk, Va., and New Orleans.

She attended Mt. St. Mary’s high school in Oklahoma City. After graduation, Doris moved to California to attend college and to be closer to her father. Doris changed her address between Oklahoma City and the San Francisco Bay area several times while raising her family before settling in Las Vegas in 1978, when she married Andrew Kupka. They lived there more than 20 years before moving to Seattle to be closer to their children and grandchildren as Andy’s health declined.

Following Andy’s passing, she returned to Norman to be close to her daughter and great-grandchildren. In the interim, there were many Caribbean cruises, trips to Reno, Nev., Hawaii, Alaska and Mexico, with as many friends and family as she could convince to join her. She also traveled frequently to visit grandchildren and to meet her new great-grandchildren.

Doris enjoyed a crowd of admirers, a night out on the town or a good game of cards at home. She loved baseball and football and often hosted watch parties for her favorite teams, the Sooners, the Mariners, the Seahawks and the Dallas Cowboys. She also enjoyed crossword puzzles, Sudoku, classic movies and audiobooks.

Doris passed away in the early hours of Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014, in her Norman home surrounded in her last days by her son and daughter and all of her grandchildren.

Doris was preceded in death by her grandparents; her parents and stepparents; her first husband, George Smith; her second husband, Andrew Kupka; her aunts and uncles; her youngest son, John Charles Smith; her infant grandson, Joshua Charles Smith; and by her best friend, Fern Seikel.

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