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Bobby Dal Lanier

Staff Writer
The Shawnee News-Star

Bobby Dal Lanier, 73, joined his parents, friends, cousins and other family members on May 23, 2020, after a long battle with prostate cancer.

Bob was born on May 18, 1947, in ACH Hospital in Shawnee to Blanche G. Parsons Lanier and Jonas Dallas Lanier. He was an only child who grew up with cousins and friends who were like brothers. He spent most of his young life in Shawnee, with a short time in Olney, Texas, and a year in Exeter, California.

He attended Jefferson Elementary, Central Junior High and Shawnee High School, graduating in 1965. He attended Oklahoma State University his freshman year. In August 1966, he along with two friends and one cousin joined the U.S. Air Force. He trained at Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio; Biloxi, Mississippi, and served most of his duty at Mather Air Force Base in Sacramento, California. He spent his last year in the service in Tuy Hoa, Vietnam. He was called home from Vietnam when his dad died in May 1970.

In the fall of 1970, he returned to school at OSU studying finance, then accounting. In May 1971, he married Karen Su Duvall and they lived in Stillwater a short time before moving to Edmond, where he finished his Bachelor of Science in Accounting in May 1973 at Central State University. His first job was with United Founders Insurance Company in Oklahoma City. He and Karen bought their first house in Warr Acres. He left United Founders and worked for Devon Energy. Whitney Blake Lanier was born in October 1977 while he worked for Devon. In 1978, he moved to Reserve Oil. In 1980, Reserve was purchased by Getty Oil and the Laniers moved to Houston where they stayed for the next five years. In 1985, Texaco bought Getty and the family moved to Midland, Texas, where they still live. As an oil and gas accountant with a specialty in joint interest accounting, Bob climbed the ladder and supervised a department of 20 employees. He enjoyed his work and his fellow employees. A jokester at heart, he tried to add some comedy relief at work … or anywhere else. He stayed with Texaco until his retirement in 2002 just as Chevron was buying Texaco.

He was active in the Petroleum Accountants Society of the Permian Basin serving as president. He also served on the national board of COPAS for three years and travelled to conventions all over the U.S. He was active with the United Way of Midland, first as a loaned executive and later as a member of the review and audit committees. He was on the board of Casa de Amigos serving as treasurer for five years. He also volunteered with the City of Midland and served on the TIRZ board.

An avid baseball player and fan, he collected TOPPS baseball cards and owned complete sets since 1954. Since 1972, at Christmas each year he received a complete, unopened, sealed set from Santa with the same decoration used on the package each year. He enjoyed watching the Midland RockHounds’ games during the spring and summer. He had seen all but one National League team play in person and several of the American League teams. He loved going to Fall Ball in Arizona in 2014, 2015, 2017 and 2018. He and Karen made trips to Phoenix to watch the Diamondbacks. In the summer of 2018, Bob and Karen went to California so Bob could see what Mather Air Base looked like now. They also enjoyed staying at the Mark Hopkins Hotel and watching a San Francisco Giants game. The family also enjoyed games at the Astrodome, Minute Maid Park, Globe Life Park in Arlington and SunTrust Park in Atlanta.

Another of his collections was 55 years of the National Geographic Magazines. He read each one; many of them multiple times.

He was both an Oklahoma State University and University of Oklahoma fan. He liked college football and basketball.

He enjoyed the Three Stooges, Laurel and Hardy, James Bond movies, World War II history and movies, building model cities and model railroading. In the last few years, the model railroading became even more fun as he built a layout of tracks, buildings, tunnels, bridges and raceways for and with his much-adored grandsons. His last years were made better spending time with “the boys” … playing, watching them play sports, walking, talking, listening and teaching.

Bob is survived by his wife of 49 years, Karen; his daughter, Whitney Blake Lanier Groves and her husband, Kyle Groves; grandsons Andrew Tyler Groves and Brandon Parker Groves; his mother-in-law Betty Duvall and brother-in-law Dean Duvall; his aunt, Donna Lanier; his cousins Mike Coker, Randy Parsons, Vickie Parsons Gibbs, Joe Rick Parsons, Kelly Parsons, Bill McClure, Brad McClure; Ann Lanier McDonald, Linda Lanier Robinson, Donald Lee Lanier, Duane Lanier, Darrel Lanier, Rozanne Lanier Holmes, Leslie Lanier Bilbrey and Steve Lanier.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Parsons’ and Lanier grandparents, father-in-law A.A. “Bud” Duvall, cousins Jerry Lanier and Merle Parsons, most of his aunts and uncles, and friends Jon Hart, James Lyon, Gary Van Antwerp, Alan Wallace, Don Green and his life-long “partner in crime” Terry Pritchett.

Although we are heart-broken, we know there is no more pain, and he is with so many loved ones who welcomed him home.

Celebrations of life will be held later in Midland and in Shawnee.

Donations may be made to the Pottawatomie Historical Society Museum, https://www.pottcountymuseum.org/, 614 East Main Street, Shawnee, Oklahoma, 74801, for the Lanier Family Library in honor of Bob.

Arrangements are under the direction of Nalley-Pickle & Welch Funeral Home & Crematory of Midland. Online condolences can be made at www.npwelch.com.