Wanda Jean Billman, 89, Altus, passed away on Thursday, May 28, 2020 at the Jackson County Memorial Hospital. Graveside services will be 2:00 PM Monday, June 1, 2020 at the Mount Olivet Cemetery, Fort Worth, TX. Local arrangements are under the direction of the Kincannon Funeral Home and Cremation Service. The family will receive friends from 2:00 – 4:00 PM Sunday at the funeral home.
Jean was born in Fort Worth, Texas July 30, 1930 to the late Edgar and Jewel (Harston) Smith. She was raised in the Riverside neighborhood and was a 1948 graduate of Amon Carter Riverside High School before attending Texas Wesleyan University. She met Joe Billman there after he came back from the war. They were married September 10, 1949.
In their early married years Joe & Jean lived in Dallas, Texas where Joe Sr. was finishing his master's degree in education while he taught junior high science. Joe Jr. was born during this time. The family then moved to Amarillo, Texas where Joe worked in civil service. Jeannette and Bill completed the family while in Amarillo. Jean then made loving homes in Abilene and Del Rio, Texas before settling in Altus, Oklahoma where Joe served as the Education Officer at Altus Air Force Base. In January 1967, Jean packed up the family again for a year-long adventure and moved to the island of Guam, where Joe served in the same capacity at Anderson Air Force Base. She was always up for traveling and enjoyed the two R&R trips to Japan. Through the years, Jean enjoyed many camping trips in the summer with family and friends. She loved dishes and took advantage of the Japanese style china and decor. Those pieces are family treasures to this day.
Jean volunteered by working in the hospital snack bar, delivering meals for Meals on Wheels, reading books to school children, and helping with Cub Scouts. She later worked tirelessly with Habitat for Humanity helping to construct the building of several houses in Altus. She served on the election board and was awarded a medal for 50 years of service. The Altus Kiwanis Club recognized her as Mother of the Year. Jean was a dedicated member of the English Village Owners Association, serving in many roles. One of her passions was working with the Southwest Oklahoma Republican Women and their many activities. She was recognized as SWOKRW’s Woman of the Year and also by the Oklahoma Federation of Republican Women. Beans & Baskets was one of her favorite evenings.
After Joe's passing in 1978, she attended WOSC and earned her Associates Degree. Jean worked at Terri's Dress Shop, The Booterie, and as financial secretary at the First United Methodist Church. She enjoyed her work and made lasting friends at each location.
Jean’s last years were blessed by living at Tamarack Assisted Living. She enjoyed teasing the staff by introducing most of them as “Trouble” and they gave it right back! Friends were always near and she was usually ready for any activity.
Her passions were her children, grandchildren, church, including the United Methodist Women's Circle group, the Literary Guild, photography, and knitting for her family.
Jean is survived by her sons, Joe Billman, Jr. and Bill Billman; daughter, Jeannette and husband, Eddie Diffendaffer; grandchildren, Pat Billman, Mike Billman, Tim Billman and wife, Jamie, Chip Diffendaffer and wife, Megan, Waco Diffendaffer and wife, Natoshia, Casey Billman and Winona Billman; and great-grandchildren Brooklyn, Jack and Bridget Billman.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers please make a donation to the First United Methodist Church Country Kitchen or youth group or the charity of your choice.
Online tributes may be made at kincannonfuneralhome.com