NORMAN — Jessie Cleo Tabor was born to Irvin Sanford Payne and Nettie Cleo (Chambers) Payne on July 9, 1934, and passed from this life Sunday, July 14, 2013, at the age of 79 years.
Jesse graduated salutatorian from Whitehall High School, Pine Bluff, Ark. She was All-County Basketball Forward and Homecoming Queen. She attended Arkansas A&M at Monticello, Arkansas. She became a ready-to-wear buyer for Federated Department Stores (John A. Browns). She enjoyed her many trips to the garment district in New York, Los Angeles and Dallas. She joined her two cousins, Harry and Danny Chambers, at Kettle Restaurants Inc., Houston, as corparate secretary and was on the board of directors. She assisted Danny in the Industrial Catering Division for Chemical Plants, Oil Refineries and Paper Mills.
In 1975, Jessie started traveling frequently to watch University of Oklahoma football, where her twin sons, Paul and Phillip, played for the Oklahoma Sooners. She attended every home game while her sons were playing and almost all the away games, including four Orange Bowls and one Fiesta Bowl. She continued her travels to watch her sons in their NFL careers with the Chicago Bears and New York Giants. One of the highlights of her travels, was a trip to Ireland and Scotland with her sister, Peggy. Her passion was restoration and she restored a 110-year-old farm house in Brenham, Texas, over many weekends and several years while living in Houston.
Jessie was preceded in death by her parents; her brothers Paul Payne and Robert Payne; and sisters Juanita “Johnnie” Dahlstrom, Grace Marie Payne Goggans and Ella Lena “Peggy” Payne Hardin Goggans.
Jessie is survived by two sons, Paul and wife Lee Ann of Norman and Phillip Tabor and wife Susie of Wynnewood. She is also survived by five grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
Memorials may be made to the Alzheimers Association, P.O. Box 96011, Washington, D.C. 20090-6011
Funeral services will be 10 a.m. Wednesday at the First United Methodist Church in Pauls Valley, with Rev. Mark Watson officiating.
Interment will be in the Elmore City Cemetery under the direction of Wooster Funeral Home.
You may send a condolence to the family at woosterfuneralhomes.com.
Norman Transcript, Tuesday, July 16, 2013