Born January 1st, 1933 in Salt Lake Prairie, between Monroe and Poteau Oklahoma, to Russell & Cora Mackey. She left this earth on April 3rd, 2019 surrounded by her family.
She was preceded in death by her parents Russell & Cora Mackey, Sister and Brother in law Betty & Carl Durant, brothers James Mackey and Vernon Mackey, and Great Grand Daughter Makayla Stanton.
She is survived by her husband Leroy Kilpatrick, Brother Don Mackey, Sister and Brother in law Agnes Mackey Kersh and Rufus Kersh, Children Robert (Bobby) Norton & wife MareAnn, daughter Lynda Kaye Norton Brown and husband Bill Brown, Grandchildren April Bridgewater and husband Jeremy, Rebekka Owens and Husband Nick, Jeffrey McElroy and wife Abby, Jessica Smith and Husband Billy, Elizabeth Kelly and husband Forrest, Laura Seltmann and husband Mike. Lots of great grandchildren and more family than one could imagine.
Grace; unmerited divine assistance given to humans for their regeneration or sanctification: a virtue coming from God; enjoyed through divine assistance. Bernice is the epitome of grace.
She was the oldest daughter of 6 children, which meant she would take on rolls that many would admire. She has lived her whole life taking care of others, spreading the word of god, and enjoying every moment. She worked as a program Director for Community Integrated Services, Inc., where she provided vocational services to persons with developmental disabilities, emotion and physical problems.
Bernice was a supervisor at Lloyd E. Rader Children’s Diagnostic and Evaluation Facility in Sand Springs. This is where her love of helping people really bloomed. She Supervised many areas, including Social, Medical, Psychological, Dental, and Educational units. She was a born leader, and people took notice. She soon took a State Board and was promoted to Eligibility worker, and then Food Stamp Supervisor.
She attended college at ECU, obtained Bachelors in Human Resources/Psychology with a minor in Social work, while working in the Financial Aid Office. She then moved to OSU and obtained a Master’s Degree in Psychology/Rehabilitation, all while providing tutoring for Master’s Degree Foreign Students through the Work Study Program.
She was a Counselor for Tulsa Senior Services, where again, her talents were used for good. She would help Elders arrange for needed services and make sure they were taken care with medical and homemaker needs.
Bernice served as a Counselor in Vocational Rehabilitation. She would help people with handicaps, disabilities, and developmental delays where they were economically/educationally deprived. She helped develop programs and services designed to prepare her clients with employment, health care needs, and even made sure the clients were meeting their optimal potential.
She joined the Coast Guard Auxiliary, where she found herself on patrol saving property, assisting in marine safety and environmental protection, educating the public in boating safety and much more. She was called to serve, and she did so in many ways.
Bernice loved to entertain, and some of her favorite hobbies included; visiting with friends and family, walking, gardening, sewing, studying the bible, watching documentaries, cooking, and of course, her favorite, attending church.
She would make it her life’s mission to help others, a mission and vision that would pass on to her grandchildren and even great grandchildren. Many people have had the benefit of knowing Bernice, and she has touched more lives than we will ever know. Her memory will live on through the work we continue to do for others, and she will be so proud once we too have the homecoming that she so desires for us all. One of the last things Bernice would say is that she is ready for her homecoming, and how beautiful it would be.
Services will be 9:30 am Saturday, April 6, 2019 at Harvest Time Assembly of God, 1511 S. 81st Ave., Tulsa, OK and 3 pm, at Evans Chapel of Memories, Poteau, OK with interment following at Slatonville Cemetery.
You may leave an online message at www.evansandmillerfuneralhomes.com
The family has chosen to entrust the care of the services to Evans & Miller Funeral Home, POTEAU, OK