Funeral services for Al Cherry will be held on Wednesday, June 5, 2013, at 2:00 p.m. in the First Baptist Church of Hugo, OK, with Pastor Doug McClure and Pastor Dick McClure officiating, and burial following in the Mt. Olivet Cemetery, with Military Honors. Al went to be with his Lord peacefully at home with his family on Monday evening at the age of 88.
Albert A. (Al) Cherry Jr., a loving and kind husband and father, was born in Holdenville, OK on September 14, 1924, the son of Albert A. Cherry and Ida Pearl Leewright Cherry. As a young lad he lived in the OK communities of Wilson, Yeagar and Marland where his father was superintendent of schools. On August 11, 1943, Al married Lucille Martin of Marland, Oklahoma. They were married 53 years. Two daughters, Janece Kay Rankin and Christie Sue Rankin were born of this union.
Al served four years in the United States Air Force during WW II. After his honorable discharge from the service he moved to Blackwell, OK where he received his Dry Cleaning training. Later, he owned dry cleaning businesses in Billings and Hugo, OK. When he moved to Hugo in 1952 he purchased the City Cleaners. This business was family owned and operated by 3 generations serving the Hugo community for 58 years. He was an active member of First Baptist Church in Hugo since 1952. Civic affairs were a large part of his life, serving as president of the Chamber of Commerce and Rotary Club. In addition to being a Past-President of the Hugo Rotary Club, Al received his 50 Year Award and served as the Club’s longest standing Sergeant of Arms. He also enjoyed being a member of the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority for 7 years and the Oklahoma Alcohol Beverage Law Enforcement Commission for 4 years and serving on the Hugo City Council. He also served on the Board of Directors for Choctaw Memorial Hospital and the Golden Age Home. In 1998, Al received the A.L. Fountain Award for outstanding community service. In 2009, Al received the Pride of Hugo Award from the Chamber of Commerce for giving of himself, loving people, and for being a good ambassador of Hugo.
Al enjoyed fishing and lazy days on Lake Raymond Gary. He loved a good joke and pulling pranks on others. If you slowed down to listen, he always had a tall tale to tell. He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife of fifty-three years, Lucille Cherry; his grandson, Nicholas Eric Flowers; his son-in-law, Randy Rankin; brother, Richard Cherry; and sister, Martha Stillman.
Al is survived by his two daughters, Janece Rankin of Ft. Towson, and Christie Rankin, and husband Rusty Rankin of Ft. Towson; grandson, Michael Dean Rankin of Sawyer, and two granddaughters, Denise Nicole Hack of Winchester, OK and Victoria Dian Rankin of Ft. Towson; 8 great-grandchildren; and 4 great-great-grandchildren; as well as his loving care givers, Melba Cloud and Sammie Davidson.
The family will receive friends on Tuesday, June 4, 2013, from 6:00-7:00 p.m. in the First Baptist Church Fellowship Hall. Family and friends are also invited to sign the guest book or send private condolences to the family at www.praterlampton.com