Cover photo for Joe Ethridge's Obituary
Joe Ethridge Profile Photo
1931 Joe 2019

Joe Ethridge

January 12, 1931 — January 11, 2019

Worley-Luginbuel Funeral Home, Grove, Oklahoma, 918-786-2261. Joe Edward Ethridge passed away, January 11, 2019. Joe was born in Leonard, Oklahoma, January 12, 1931 to Si Ethridge (deceased) and Betty (Salmon) Ethridge (deceased). He attended high school in Pryor, OK and earned his Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Education at Northeastern State University.

Joe was active in athletics throughout his high school and college years. Soon after graduation from college he served two years in the armed forces. Upon his return, he coached athletics for 14 years. As a result of his accomplishments he was inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame at Northeastern State University.

Joe was a lifelong learner who took graduate courses in counseling and school administration. He was a coach, teacher, counselor and Assistant Superintendent in Wagoner, OK for a total of 27 years. He then moved to Grove, Oklahoma as Superintendent of Schools in 1986 and retired in 1992.

He spent his retirement serving as interim Superintendent at Turkey Ford and Jay Schools, playing golf, and extending a generous spirit to family, friends, and acquaintances.

At the age of 80, Joe was elected to the Grove School Board where his steadfast dedication to education shined bright. Even in death, he is promoting education by donating his body to the OU Willed Body Program.

Joe married Joyce Ann Smalley (deceased) from Wagoner, OK, on June 2, 1952. They had two daughters, Gaye Smith (deceased) and Libby Ethridge, two granddaughters, Paige Blevins and Shannon Smith, and three great granddaughters Graci Jo Blevins, Brookelyn Blevins, and Kennedy Blevins. After Joe was widowed, Shirley Watts was a dear companion to him for fourteen years.

Joe Ethridge left a legacy of making a positive difference in the lives of many through his intellect, compassion, and loving spirit. He especially delighted in young children and dedicated much of his life to Early Childhood Education. He will be greatly missed!

Friends and family are invited to attend the memorial service officiated by Pastor Jim Paisley with a reception following on Wednesday, January 16, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. at First Baptist Church, 501 E. 13th. St., Grove, OK 74344. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the Joe Ethridge Memorial Fund in care of Grove Public Schools, 310 S. Broadway, P.O. Box 450789, Grove, OK 74345. Arrangements are under the direction of Worley-Luginbuel Funeral Home, Grove, Oklahoma. Online condolences can be left by viewing Joe's Book of Memories at or on their Facebook page.
2019-01-16 14:00:00
Grove's First Baptist Church
GROVE, OK 74344
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