NORMAN — On Sunday, Aug. 4, 2013, the world became a less interesting place with the passing of Roger Owen Housley, 68, due to an undetermined lung condition. He died as he lived, with honor, pride and fervor. He was truly one of a kind, in many ways larger than life, and will be missed. Let this serve as his family’s futile attempt to represent his life in a few paragraphs.
Roger was born April 10, 1945, to George Owen and Thelma Housley. He was primarily raised in Cushing. He was president of the Cushing High School class of 1963 and right tackle on the football team. At the University of Oklahoma, he received his bachelor’s degree in 1967 and was a proud member of the Sigma Chi Fraternity, where he made many life long friends. Roger attended the University of Oklahoma College of Law from 1968 to 1970, graduated No. 1 in his class and was Order of the Coif. He was also named Editor of the Law Review.
After graduating, he moved to McAlester, where he practiced law until 1978 and served as the President of the Pittsburg County Bar Association. However, most importantly, while living in McAlester he met the love of his life, Karen. Roger and Karen were inseparable ever since.
In 1978 Roger, Karen and their family moved to Norman, where he worked in private practice. He took pride in being a zealous advocate for his clients and maintained the honor and integrity of the profession. In short, Roger wanted to help people in need. He did an excellent job. Above all else, Roger loved his family and took an active part in their lives. He coached his children’s little league baseball teams and became President of the Norman American Legion Baseball Association. His children are indebted to him and Karen for the sacrifice, love and guidance that made them the men and women they are today.
Roger had an adventurer’s spirit. In his younger days he was an avid water and snow skier and was a black belt in Tae-Kwon-Do. Later in life he discovered a love of SCUBA diving. He traveled to the ends of the earth with Karen and his family in search of “undiscovered” diving sites. All along the way he made lasting friendships with fellow travelers and locals alike who were drawn to his infectious enthusiasm for life.
For the past 17 years Roger and Karen spent their weekends at Lake Tenkiller. Throughout this time he had the honor of befriending numerous like-minded individuals who provided him with more joy and happiness than they will ever know.
Roger was preceded in death by his father, George Owen Housley, his mother, Thelma, and his brother, Steve.
He is survived by his wife, Karen; his sister, Linda of South Dakota; his son, Casey Owen and wife Jenny Housley of Prairie Village, Kan. and their children Austin Owen and Allie Kate; his son, Shawn Michael and wife Sara Housley of Spring, Texas and their children Kate, Maggie and Thomas; his daughter, Alexa Jeanne and husband Billy Gray of Edmond; his son, Spencer Bowen and wife Courtney Housley of Oklahoma City and their children Quinn Roger and Claire.
The family would like to give special thanks to Dr. John Randolph, Dr. Derek Norman, the Oklahoma Heart Hospital nursing staff and Roger’s best friend of over 50 years, Dr. Marvin Peyton. Your dedication to Roger was valiant and will not be forgotten.
Per Roger’s request, a celebration will be held Aug. 16 at the Railhouse Banquet Hall, 102 W. Eufaula St., Norman, from 4 to 8 p.m. All friends of Roger are welcome to join the celebration of a life well lived. Dress will be business casual and guests are welcome to come and go as they please. In lieu of flowers, Roger requested that contributions please be made to a charitable organization of the giver’s choice.
Norman Transcript, Saturday, Aug. 10, 2013