Memorial services for Albert Porter Stover Jr. will be on Tuesday, July 29, 2014, at 3 p.m. at Marvin United Methodist Church in Tyler.
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Albert Porter Stover Jr. died on July 21, 2014, of natural causes. He had been cared for by his loving wife, Nancy, and his three daughters while also receiving exceptional care from the physicians, nurses, and staff of The Hospice of East Texas.
Al, also known as "Smokey" or simply A.P., was born on Sept. 8, 1926, in Weatherford, Okla. He graduated from Weatherford High School in 1944 and attended Southwestern University and the University of Oklahoma, where at both schools he played football as an offensive and defensive tackle. The Philadelphia Eagles of the National Football League drafted Al in 1948. After suffering a spinal injury, he returned to Oklahoma to coach football and to teach American History at Elk City High School and at Anadarko High School.
After serving in the National Guard for several years, he was called to active service in early 1950 and joined the U.S. Air Force. He served in Special Operations and set up the recreational athletic program at the newly created US/RAF collaboration at Mildenhall, England. The servicemen formed a football team, and in 1952, Al was the player-coach in the first official game of American football played in London.
Following his honorable discharge from the Air Force, Al returned to Oklahoma and soon thereafter met his future wife. He and Nancy were married May 29, 1953, in Edmond, Okla. As newlyweds, they moved to Norman, Okla., where he enrolled in the University of Oklahoma School of Law. Upon completing his juris doctor in 1956, Humble Oil & Refining Co. (ExxonMobil) hired Al to join the Exploration Division in its Tyler office. He made Tyler his home for the next 58 years.
In addition to being a licensed attorney, Al was a certified petroleum landman, a member of ETAPL and AAPL, president-elect of Exxon Annuitants of East Texas (2005), a member of the Tyler Petroleum Club, a former director of the Tyler Tennis and Swim Club, and charter member of Hollytree Country Club. He was a lifelong Methodist, primarily at Pollard United Methodist and Marvin United Methodist churches. He was also a Mason. Al was a dedicated supporter of higher education, giving generously to the University of Oklahoma (undergraduate and law), Southwestern University, Weatherford, Okla., and to The University of Texas at Tyler, and Mary Baldwin College, Staunton, Va.
Al was a prolific reader and an avid watercolorist. He loved nature, particularly camping in the Rocky Mountains, skiing in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, and later in life, enjoyed spending time with extended family at his other home in Taos, N.M. He enjoyed the fellowship of others, whether at work, church, or at family gatherings. Al loved adventure, having traveled extensively throughout the world. A great storyteller, he could often be found recounting an episode from his boyhood in western Oklahoma, or from his time as a teenager when he spent summers with the National Forestry Service manning a fire watch solo in the wilderness of Idaho, or a story of intrigue from his college years when he worked for the Santa Fe Railroad traveling on trains throughout the Southwest. Funny and animated, he was certainly known for his long stretches in the sun reading a book or the sports page, boating on Lake Tyler, or visiting with good friends.
Al was preceded in death by his parents, Albert Porter Stover Sr. and Jessie B. Miller Stover of Weatherford, Okla.; his sister, Imogene Stover Tonkinson and brother-in-law, Earl Tonkinson, of Albuquerque, N.M.; his sister, Helen Gay Stover Rizley Armstrong, and brothers-in-law, Honorable Carl Rizley, of Sayre, Okla., and Ralph Armstrong, of Oklahoma City, Okla.
He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Nancean Hufford Stover; daughters, Cynthia Marie Stover Miller and husband Daniel Timofte, of Dallas, Laura Gay Stover Sasser, of Houston, Susan Ann Stover and Amanda Josephine Whilden, of Brooklyn, N.Y.; grandchildren, James Stover Sasser and wife Elizabeth Quimby Sasser, and Jonathan Holden Sasser, all of Houston, William Porter Stover-Whilden and Ansel Oliver Stover-Whilden, and their father, S. William Oliver III, all of Brooklyn, N.Y.; as well as three nephews; two nieces; and many grandnephews and grandnieces.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorials be made to The Hospice of East Texas Foundation, 4111 University Blvd., Tyler, 75701; Marvin United Methodist Church; The Salvation Army; or to a
Arrangements are with Stewart Family Funeral Home, 7525 Old Jacksonville Highway in Tyler.
Stewart Family Funeral Home
7525 Old Jacksonville Highway Tyler, TX 75703
Published in Tyler Morning Telegraph from July 27 to July 28, 2014