- 86 years old
- Date of birth: Sep 12, 1930
- Place of birth:
Wellington, Kansas, United States
- Date of passing: Sep 15, 2016
- Place of passing:
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States
|Let the memory of Mead be with us forever - beloved by his family and friends, a caring husband, loving father and grandfather, savvy business man and pillar of the community.|
This memorial website was created in memory of our beloved father, Mead Ferguson, 86, born on September 12, 1930 and passed away on September 15, 2016. We will remember him forever.
Mead Ferguson of Woodward, Oklahoma, died peacefully on September 15th, three days after his 86th birthday, in the Oklahoma Heart Hospital, Oklahoma City, surrounded by family.
Mead was born in Wellington, Kansas to Elizabeth and Dwight Ferguson and moved to Woodward, Oklahoma when he was 6 weeks old. He attended the Woodward schools through his early High School years until he went to Taft School in Connecticut. He graduated cum laude from Yale University with a BS in physics and math in 1953. He then spent two years in the U.S. Army Artillery from 1953-1957, assigned to the Atomic Energy Commission at Aberdeen Proving Ground to work on sound waves from nuclear explosions at Nevada Proving Ground. After serving in the Army, he graduated from Harvard Business School with an MBA in 1957. He was a Baker Scholar (top 10 in his class).
He began working for Esso at the Baton Rouge refinery followed by assignments of increasing responsibility at Humble Oil in Houston (Supply and Transportation), and at the corporate headquarters in New York City (Coordination and Planning). He then spent 11 years in London, England with the Esso Middle East Office. After retirement in 1980, he returned to Woodward, Oklahoma to operate a cow/calf ranch and to partner in cow/calf and stocker operations in the Kansas Flint Hills. These operations have expanded and continue today.
Mead was active in many organizations. These include: serving as an elder and session member of the First Presbyterian Church in Woodward, Oklahoma, friend of St. John's Episcopal Church in Woodward, Oklahoma, Director and President of the Woodward Arts Council and the Plains Indians and Pioneers Museum in Woodward, Oklahoma, Director of the Oklahoma Humanities Council, President and Director of the Great Salt Plains Boy Scout Council, President and Director of the National Oklahoma Cattlemen's Association and Oklahoma Angus Association, Chairman of the Woodward County Conservation District, Director of the Oklahoma Economic Development Association and of the Resource Conservation and Development Group. He was a member of the Woodward Elks and of the Woodward Rotary Club where he served as past President, and was on the board of the Woodward Hospital and Health Center. He was a board member and past Chairman of the Security State Bank in Wellington, Kansas and was enthusiastically supportive of Friends of Historic Fort Supply. An Eagle Scout himself, he was a Scout leader in Houston, New York City and London.
An ardent sports fan, Mead was proud to be on the Woodward state champion football team in 1947 that went to the Super Bowl. While at Yale he was on the wrestling team where, after a tough match that Yale won against Army, he was described as "the gritty little blue" in the New York Times sports section. Since returning to Woodward, he has enjoyed attending many wrestling matches at OSU. An avid tennis enthusiast, he was thrilled to be able to attend many Wimbledon matches while living in London, where he coached both of his sons' Little League Baseball teams.
Mead is survived by his wife of 56 years, Mary Tally Ferguson, three children, Elizabeth, Tally and Christopher, their spouses James Stoeffel, Noreen Casey and Christina Ferguson, and grandchildren Price and Christopher Stoeffel, Casey and Mikey Ferguson and Nicola Ferguson. He was preceded in death by his parents Elizabeth and Dwight Ferguson, and by his brothers Deems, William and David.
Mead will be missed by all.
The funeral service will be held at 2:00 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church in Woodward, Oklahoma with interment following at Elmwood Cemetery. A reception will be held afterwards at the church. Pastor Ann Wasson and Rev. Mary Davis will officiate. In lieu of flowers, please consider a charitable donation in Mead's honor to either the First Presbyterian Church of Woodward, Oklahoma, St. John's Episcopal Church of Woodward, Oklahoma, or to a charity of your choice.
"Mead was a stalwart friend, advocate, and supporter of the museum. This was how I first met Mead, he came to be a person I could call on anytime, and ask for his advice, consul and he was never to busy to take the time and help me. I will never forget his enthusiasm, and passion for the projects he was involved in. I will miss him very much."
"Mead will be missed. I considered him a friend. He cared about education and history which are my two great loves. What an Intellect he had and shared. I have had several calls from students that received his scholarships expressing their condolences. He gave back to the community he loved in so many ways. There will always remain a spot at our Rotary table and in our hearts for Mead. Thank you, Mead, for making a difference for the betterment of our community."
"Mead was always "out there" at Harvard or in London when I was young, someone to be admired but not known except on incredible Christmas evening open houses. Only in the last few years did Rob and I have the joy of having being with Meade and Mary when they came to events in OKC, always stretching us to do more with the arts. Who would have thought 86…he seemed younger than we. Loved his smile. Love the memories of his mom, playing duets on piano and organ when I was a teen. The Fergusons are a huge picture in my childhood. Mrs. Ferguson loaned copies of Meade's valuable Wizard of Oz books. Christmas displays on Hillcrest with live organ music. Oh my…thanks and love Mary to you and your family. karen cullen luke"
"Mead was such a role model in all aspects. I'm grateful that he and my dad, Harold Lowrey, were good friends their whole life. This relationship led me to be great friends with all of the kids: Lisa, Tally Mead and Chris. When the Ferguson's would come to Oklahoma for their annual visit from London, it was always exciting and I got to host Lisa at school. As a high school senior, I was invited to London for 10 days. The whole Ferguson family was welcoming and loving to their young country bumpkin friend; I had a quite the experience. Mead would quiz us at the end of the day of sightseeing to reinforce what we had learned; this was new to me, but appreciated. As others have noted here, Mead was a man who had a lust for life. His laugh was unique & boisterous =) His singing in the church choir, and really his enthusiasm, will be missed greatly. His love and appreciation of all of his passions: The First Presbyterian Church of Woodward, his parents' home which he added on to and renovated when he and Mary moved back to Woodward, ranching, LEARNING, Native American history, Oklahoma & Kansas, tennis, the City of Woodward and many more - was wonderful! Bright blessings onto the Ferguson family! Love, ~jl"
"Gracious Lord, Comfort us in our sorrows at the passing of our fellow Episcopalian; Let our faith be our consolation, and eternal life our everlasting hope."
"Mead was such an ongoing part of the Ferguson Ranch. Meals were a special time of sharing the history of all the details both in the past and currently.Loved sharing the family hours with all.He will be so missed.We know how much he loved his family. That will he will forever be in that love."
"Mr. Ferguson will be missed here at the Hilton Garden Inn where he stayed with Mrs. Ferguson. Memory eternal and best sympathies to the family.
"I had the pleasure of working my first job for Mead and Mary. When I was 12 and 13 I worked as the yard boy doing various tasks. They instilled in me a sense of work ethic and responsibility that I still carry today. No matter how small the task, I always wanted to preform it efficiently and accurately so that I impressed them. I will always carry with me the lessons Mead and Mary taught me at a young age."
"My heart is greatly saddened by Mead’s passing. He always seemed up for an adventure and every day was a chance to learn something more or share something great with someone else. With child like joy and intellectual wisdom rarely matched, Mead made an impact on Woodward and on the entire world if you read his obituary. He truly was a renaissance man. He will be missed."
"From Mig Whipps:
I have so many happy memories of my valued friend, Mead, He was a gracious host, sharing special dinners with him and Mary and listening to his interesting stories . He visited my 7th and 6th grade classes where he entertained and educated them about the Middle East. He will be remembered for his community service. his leadership in our church, the museum, the Woodward Theater, and too many other
places to mention. Mead was a leader in conservation of our natural resources and in the improvement of ranching and cattle raising. Mead was a dear friend who will be remembered fondly and missed by all."
"Richard and I met Mead when he married Mima, my (Grace's) long-term friend from boarding school. Mima was so special that we doubted that any man would be good enough to deserve her - but, after getting to know Mead, we agreed that he qualified. And now, after reading his history above, we realize he did many more amazing things than we ever knew about - so modesty was one of his many virtues. We enjoyed many happy times with Mima and Mead and have many happy memories. Mead was always so upbeat and joyous that having him along made it party time. He was loving and beloved and will be missed by so many - and we are among those many.
Love, Grace and Richard Gentry"
"Mary: you and Mead have been in my prayers. I will always remember the Sunday Mead served as St.Nicholas at the museum's Christmas open house.This was just hours after he had learned of his brother's passing. I will long remember the talk he gave at St.John's one Sunday about the trees mentioned in the Bible. I enjoyed Mead's sense of humor and his hearty laugh."
"Being in a book discussion with Mead was a great adventure. If I thought I had the basic themes and concepts well in hand, a smiling tutorial was in store. I think it must have been three years before I dared to say, "Mead, I don't agree."! What fun. My heart hurts for you, his family."
"My admiration and love for Mead Ferguson are twofold. Growing up around the exciting "Oklahomans from England" with their Boxing Day celebrations and worldview was a true joy that I hold dear in my heart. As an adult, serving on boards with Mead and knowing the difference that Mead's brilliance and caring brought to things like history, conservation and the arts.....I am in awe intellectually to think of his impact. Neither the Prairie Chicken nor the Theatre would have been the same without the 'Renaissance Man' impact of Mead Ferguson. I thank God for the train that broke down and required the Ferguson cattle to winter on the buffalo grass of Northwest Oklahoma ultimately leading to Mead impacting my life, my community and my children's lives. His conservation sermon was their favorite yet! My family's love and prayers are with you-Mary, Tally, Lisa and Chris."
"Probably the most influential person in my spiritual journey was our NJ rector Orion Davis. He and Mead had at least two things in common: Neither could hold a tune and neither cared! I wil never forget the 1st time we heard Mead sing in the choir. Lisa, Chris and I could barely contain our laughter, which was actually a difficult thing to do in a church service (we were scolded by the priest afterwards). I think it is a wonderful testament to Mead's zest for life that he was so willing to make such a joyful noise onto God, melody be damned!"
"I've known Mr. Ferguson for over thirty years, but I am learning more about him recently. I was so surprised to know he was 86 years old because he was, even two days prior to his passing (the last time I saw him at Rotary), so full of life. Reading his obituary I learned of his many accomplishments, and just how distinguished his history is. Personally, I have always appreciated Mead's genuine interest and concern for me, always greeting me with that infectious smile, always asking about work and family and sharing the latest about the Ferguson kids and grandkids. I have learned more about Mr. Ferguson lately, but I have always known two very important things about him: he was devoted to his family with all his heart, and he was committed in every way to make the world around him a better place. What a great mentor and role model; I consider myself blessed and perhaps a better person for having known him."
"Mead lives on through everyone he touched. He's always in our thoughts, and he's smiling on us as we think of what he would want as we make our decisions."
"Please know that you, Mima, and your family are in our thoughts and prayers. We are indeed saddened to received this news. Bob and Polly"
"Fong will order Talipia and Icecream at MOA CAFE next time.
Those are Mead's routine order.
When we go to Classics and POPS Symphonies, we sure will miss him."
"Mead was one of God's best blessings for me and Fong, a dear friend, a wise counselor and a brother in heart and spirit. We shall miss Mead forever."
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