Born Friday, August 15, 1941
Died Sunday, June 21, 2020
Wayne Keith Felts, a man who knew food like very few people do. Always ready to astound and treat his friends to gourmet meals fit for kings and queens; which was how he felt about all his family and friends.
The eldest son of Clay and Kay Felts, Wayne was born August 15, 1941 in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. After graduating from Tahlequah High School in 1959, he joined the Army National Guard and was on active duty for 2 years, followed by non active duty for two more. After serving, he continued his eclectic education attending Northeastern State University, Southern Methodist University, Oklahoma City University, and Dallas College, majoring in marketing and business management.
While at Northeastern, Wayne met, fell in love with and married April Matlock and the two spent the next 57 years building a life together. Once his three sons came along, he became very active in the Boy Scouts of America, serving as a two term member of the executive board of the Eastern Oklahoma Council and district chairman of the Neosho District. He was Cub master of Pack 199, and assistant Scoutmaster of Troop 198 at Hilldale Schools, as well as an Explorer adviser for the Eagle Scout Post.
He was also one of the founding members of The Muskogee Little Theater, where he served one term as treasurer and three terms as a board member. An avid fan of the theater, he enjoyed performing in and producing many shows from the mid 1960’s until the mid 1990’s. One of his favorite times was being a cast member in the Muskogee Senior Follies.
Wayne spent many years helping lead businesses of various types in his roles as President, Secretary, Treasurer and board member. He was a part of the following: Wayne Company, a commercial property ownership and stock speculation company. Clyde Enterprises Inc., a real estate and money marketing speculating company. Felts Brothers Partnership, a large commercial property ownership and management company.
He owned and operated Felts Shoes in Muskogee, Owasso and Van Buren, Arkansas, and was secretary/treasurer for the Lakeland Merchants Association and a member of the National Shoe Retailers Association as well.
A voracious reader with books in his office numbering in the thousands, not counting the hundreds of books he also had on his Kindle reader, Wayne was a champion of continuing education and a member of the Alumni Board of Northeastern State University. At home in Muskogee, he worked with the public library in the following roles: a member of the Muskogee Public Library Great Decisions Planning Committee, chairman of the Muskogee Library Board of Trustees (1987), and member (1984 - 1987) and a board member for the Oklahoma Library Association (1987 - 1990) and program chairman for the Oklahoma Library Association Conference in 1990.
He was a member of the Board and Funding Chairman of the Muskogee Performing Arts, a member of the board of the Muskogee Knife and Fork club and a member of the board of the Green Country Mental Health organization. (1988 - 1989).
At the time of his death, Wayne was chairman of the board of W.C. Felts, Inc., a retail shoe stores and commercial property owner and management company. He was Vice President and board member of Felts Plaza, and Felts Star, both a large commercial property owner and management company. He was President and C.E.O. of W.K. Felts, Inc., a retail consultant service corporation.
Wayne attended St. Paul United Methodist Church with his wife April, and in all the years they attended he held many positions; he was a two term member of the board, and chairman of the commission on education. He was a historical Bible lecturer for the Montgomery Bible class at, where he regaled the members with stories about his three sons. He was a choir member and part of the “Perryman Four”; a men’s gospel quartet. Wayne loved to sing and it showed as he belted out hymns and songs of praise in his melodic tenor voice for all to hear.
He was a 30 year backgammon competitor with Mrs. Betsy Kennedy where they competed in local restaurants across Muskogee. Wayne was also a 40 year member of the “Kansas International Fishing Team” (The Boys) a fishing, drinking and lying company of “ne'er-do-wells”.
Wayne is survived by his wife April, sons; David and wife Cheryl of Sapulpa, Oklahoma. Mike and wife Barbara of Stem, North Carolina, Steven and wife Delores of Muskogee; grandchildren, Micah and Holly Felts of Sand Springs, Oklahoma, April Felts of Sand Springs, Oklahoma, Brandon and Hannah of Ticonderoga, New York, Ryan and fiancé Sophia Estes of Stem, North Carolina and Caitlin Felts of Tulsa, Oklahoma; one great-grandchild, Everly Felts of Sand Springs, Oklahoma; brothers, Doyle and Bryce Felts of Tahlequah, and many inlaws, great nephews and nieces, not to mention many, many friends.
Honorary pallbearers are Ken Beard, Martin Bebb, Larry Boling, Ben Robinson, Muriel Saunders, Ed Warren, David Russell, Jim Dryden and Don Holsinger.
A memorial service will be held for Wayne at 2:00pm, Thursday, June 25th, at the St. Paul United Methodist Church in Muskogee, Oklahoma. In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made to one of the following: Porta Caeli Hospice House https://portacaeli.org/ support-our-work/donate/ or the Muskogee St. Paul United Methodist Church Choir.
Funeral services are under the direction of Cornerstone Funeral Home, 1830 North York St, Muskogee, Oklahoma. Condolences may be made to the family online at www.cornerstoneofmuskogee.com.