Cover photo for John Thomas Perkins's Obituary
John Thomas Perkins Profile Photo

John Thomas Perkins

September 13, 1935 — July 20, 2021

John Thomas Perkins

John Thomas Perkins was born on September 13, 1935 in Oklahoma City, Ok to Cecil and Emma Lou (Tullock) Perkins. He passed away July 20, 2021.John was a proud Classen Comet and then chose Oklahoma State University over OU only because they started classes later and he didn't want to give up any summer activities. Soon after graduating in 1958 with a degree in Industrial Engineering he began his service in the Army. He completed his service as a Captain in the Army Reserves.John worked at AT&T and Southwestern Bell Telephone for 32 years including time spent in Texas, Kansas, California and Oklahoma. Although he began his career as a supervising engineer for circuit provisioning (including all special equipment needed during the aftermath of the assassination of John F. Kennedy) he ended his career doing what he loved most—budgets and financial planning. After retirement in 1990 he worked 7 more years doing income taxes for firms in Edmond and Oklahoma City.John was an athlete. He played football, baseball and wrestled. But it was in college that he was introduced to his true love, handball. Many of John's closest friends are people he played handball with for 40+ years. He hated running, but trained and ran a marathon (and was secretly proud) so Dena would have a training buddy. He was an avid skier and held every office for the OKC Ski club. He loved skiing with his children and grandchildren, and did so until he was 76! John and Dena met at Southwestern Bell and married in 1980. When asked why she married John, Dena replied he was the nicest man she ever met. That's what most people thought about John. John was not happy with that answer and said why didn't you say I was the smartest, or most handsome, or sexiest? He always knew how to make Dena laugh.John's greatest love was his family. He was an incredible father to his children Chris, Clark and Jennifer. He was the true role model on how to be a father and a gentleman and a servant to others. He particularly loved watching his children play any sport and took great pride in coaching Chris, Clark and other Belle Isle Lakers. To be loved by John was to know real love. But it was being a Papa to his six grandchildren and seven great grandchildren where his skills really shone.John was preceded in death by his son Clark Perkins and his granddaughter Jentry Perkins, his parents Cecil and Emma Lou Perkins, and his sister and brother-in law Mary Joan and Ed Jeffries. He is survived by his wife, Dena Jo of Edmond, OK; his son Chris and Charlotte Perkins of Austin, TX; daughter Jennifer Perkins of OKC; daughter-in-law Ginny Perkins of Tulsa, OK; grandchildren Jordan and Kat Perkins of Denver, CO, Garrett and Emmy Perkins of Fayetteville, AR, Connor Perkins of Austin, TX, Hannah and Peyton Lunsford of Midland, TX, and Maddie Perkins of Tulsa, OK. Great grandchildren Campbell, Riley, Hadley, Ryker, Banner, Norah and Charlotte; brother Ron and Edie Perkins of Heath, TX.A special thanks to Integris Hospice and especially Stacey, Janna, Carol, Lisa, Walker, Jerry and the compassionate caretakers at Integris Hospice House. Your kindness meant so very much. In lieu of flowers the family asks that memorial gifts be made to Integris Hospice or the Alzheimer Association.
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