The Woodward News


December 23, 2013

Vester Smith

Woodward, Okla. —

Higgins, TX: (Special) - Memorial service for Vester Smith, 91, of Higgins, TX will be at 2:00 p.m. Monday, December 23, 2013 at the First United Methodist Church in Higgins with Rev. Don Travis, officiating and Rev. Blake Durham, assisting. A private family burial will be in Higgins Cemetery under the direction of Hughs Funeral Home of Canadian, TX.

Vester, cherished husband, father, grandfather and friend, was welcomed into Heaven Friday, December 20, 2013 in Amarillo, TX.

Vester, who was born July 20, 1922 in McLean to Verna and Vester Smith, graduated from McLean High School in 1939. He attended Texas Tech University and graduated with a degree in government in 1943. While at Tech he met the love of his life and devoted partner of 71 years Martha Price of Pampa. Vester served in the Army Air Corps during World War II. He and Martha moved to Higgins with their three children in 1950 where he was engaged in ranching with his father-in-law Willis Price. He never lost his passion for ranching and the beauty of the Texas panhandle. Vester loved people! He was a member of the Kevin Stout American Legion Post 509 in Higgins and served as president of the Tri State Seniors Golf Association who honored him with the Colonel Bogey Award in 1994. He served as an honorary director for the Texas Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association. In 2005 the American Quarter Horse Association presented Vester with the Legacy Award for 50 consecutive years of horse registration. Vester found great joy in participating in the Golden Spread Emmaus Community and treasured the relationships he developed while serving in Kairos Prison Ministry. As an active member of the Higgins First United Methodist Church he served on numerous boards and committees.

Vester was preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Nerine.

He is survived by his beloved wife, Martha; sons, Willis Smith and wife Joanie of Higgins and Steve Smith and wife Janice of Chickasha, OK; and daughter, Kay Guleke and husband Jim of Austin. He adored and would certainly brag to you about his nine grandchildren and their families who affectionately called him “Dad”: Leslee Holliday and husband Matt, and their children Jackson, Ethan, Gracyn and Reed; Stephanie Brownback and husband Cody, their children Ella and Crew; Matt Smith and wife Kimberly, and their children Aven and Sutton; Martha Hansen and husband Brendan, and daughter Charlotte; Cole Smith; Zac Smith; Elizabeth Guleke; Margaret Galton and husband Noah; and James Guleke.

The family suggests memorials to the Higgins First United Methodist Church Memorial Fund, 220 North Main St., Higgins, TX 79046 or to the Clements Kairos Prison Ministry, c/o Dean Cook, 300 Inverness, Borger, TX 79007.

You may send condolences online at





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