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Elizabeth Peggy Bowen DeShields

The Shawnee News-Star

Elizabeth Peggy Bowen DeShields passed away peacefully on June 26, 2020. She was under the loving care of her family, Belmont Village San Jose Community, and Suncrest Hospice.

Elizabeth was born the only daughter in a sea of four brothers, on Nov. 11, 1928, in Ada, Oklahoma. She is the daughter of Simuel Archie and Etta Berthel (Flowers) Bowen. She graduated from Ada High School at the age of 15, and then from East Central Oklahoma University in 1947 at the age of 18, while also working as a legal secretary at C.F. Green Law Offices in Ada. Additionally, she was a reporter for the Ada Times Democrat and news correspondent for the Daily Oklahoma and the Oklahoma City Times.

After graduating from college, she met her husband, Amos Jack DeShields, on the steps of Bearden High School, where she held her first teaching position in business. They were married 65 years.

She taught third and fourth grades at Crooked Oak in Oklahoma City, at Will Roger’s School in Shawnee, at Castle and at Okemah. She also taught business and yearbook classes at Borger, Texas, High School and at Butner High School in Cromwell. Another position was assistant principal for Central Oak Elementary in Oklahoma City. Later, she obtained her Master of Education in counseling from East Central Oklahoma University, and became school counselor for seven years in Okemah schools. She received the Retired Teacher of the Year by Okemah Alumni Association.

When she retired from education at the age of 57, she worked full-time as co-owner and bookkeeper for DeShields Energy, LLC, Rainbow Hills Ranch, LLC, and DeShields Building Stone, LLC. Her other interests included choir member, church secretary, and Sunday School teacher at First Baptist Church of Cromwell. She was also a charter member of the National Museum of Women in Arts. Her other passions included painting, poetry, and gardening. She had three art shows in San Jose, California. Her last show “Strokes after Strokes,” in May 2019, celebrated her acrylic paintings made after her four strokes. 

As part of Elizabeth’s legacy, she is survived by her two children, son Dennis Jack (Janice) of Pea Ridge, Arkansas; and her daughter Sheila Beth (David Hildreth) of San Jose, California. She had four grandsons, Dennis Alan (Misti) of Fairborn, Ohio; Jared Matthew (April) of Tulsa, Oklahoma; Ian Andrew DeShields (Ahalya) Hildreth of San Francisco, California; and Taylor Bryn DeShields Hildreth of San Jose, California. Also, she had five great-grandchildren: Liz, Matthew, Jordan, and Aidan DeShields, and Isla Nilani Hildreth.

Elizabeth was pre-deceased by her loving husband Jack; her parents Archie and Berthel; and her four siblings Alvise, Sam, James, and Simuel.

In lieu of flowers, please make any donations to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), searching for a cure for Type 1.

She will be laid to rest next to her husband Jack at Little Cemetery at a date to be determined. A celebration of her life will also be held later, in California.

All arrangements were handled by Parks Brothers Funeral Home, Okemah, Oklahoma.

Online condolences may be made at www.ParksBrothersFuneralhome.com.