James Forrest Mason - the fourth of five generations of James Masons - was born July 24, 1932, in DeQueen, Arkansas, to James Ivy and Bessie Mae (Forrest) Mason. His family moved to Oklahoma during his infancy. He attended Middleburg Elementary School near Blanchard and Crooked Oak Elementary in Oklahoma City. He graduated from Noble High School in 1951. That same year, he married his sweetheart, Anita Ruth Loveless on June 2, and they moved to the Maguire community east of Noble where they resided for 66 years.
James had a remarkable work ethic and a varied career he launched by driving a truck to collect milk from local dairies. For seven subsequent years he drove a delivery truck for Malone's Chili Company of Norman. From 1958-1971 he was an employee of the University of Oklahoma Physical Plant. From there he served at the company known as Westinghouse, BorgWarner, and York International as an invaluable industrial maintenance employee until his retirement in 1995. During those six decades he also put to use his expertise in soil conservation on his own 200-acre farm building ponds and terraces to preserve the land while also growing various crops and raising cattle. Twice he designed and constructed homes for his family from the ground up.
James's personal life was a bevy of activities shared with Anita and many friends. He was a long-time deacon at Maguire Baptist Church, his home church from his youth. Over the years he rose in the ranks to become a Master Mason of the Hampton-Noble Masonic Lodge #291 and received a 50-year service honor. He was a 32nd Degree Scottish-Rite Mason and member of the Shriners. He was an avid collector of antique tractors and member of the Sulphur Antique Tractor Club. He and Anita were active together in Eastern Star for more than 50 years.
From his retirement through 2005, James and Anita visited 27 countries. Many of these travels were mission trips. Among his favorite journeys were projects building roads and water wells in Peru and distributing Bibles in Russia.
James was preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by his wife, Anita, four children, James Edward Mason and his wife, Linda, of Siloam Springs, Arkansas, Marsha Blair and her husband, Jimmy, of Slaughterville, David Mason and his wife, Pam, of Slaughterville, Marian VanBuskirk and her husband, Jimmy, of Midwest City, as well as sisters Ivy Hotze Maddox, Bessie Carmack, and Francis Wyatt, nine grandchildren, four great-grandchildren, and many relatives and friends.
Visitation will be Sunday, November 5th from 3:00 - 5:00 pm, Monday November 6th from 10:00 am - 7:00 pm. The family will receive friends from 5:00 - 7:00 pm in Monday, November 6th. Services will be 2:00 pm Tuesday, November 7th at the Maguire Baptist Church with Pastor Mike Roberts and Rev. John Judd officiating, interment will follow at the Fairview Maguire Cemetery in Noble, OK. Arranged and directed by McMahans Funeral Home of Noble, OK.
Published on November 5, 2017