Cover photo for Walter Earl McElhannon's Obituary
1939 Walter 2023

Walter Earl McElhannon

February 27, 1939 — November 29, 2023


Walter Earl McElhannon was born near Henryetta, Oklahoma on February 27, 1939 to Rev. Marvin and Rosetta (Been) McElhannon; he was the third of their four sons.  Walter passed away on November 29, 2023 in Henryetta at the age of 84. He was a resident of Seminole where he and his wife Barbara attended the First Assembly of God church.

Walter’s great-grandfather Rev. John McElhannon came to Indian Territory in 1889 as a Methodist Episcopal missionary. His Been great-grandparents also settled in Indian Territory, providing Walter with a rich heritage as a son of Oklahoma. Raised in the Wilson community of Okmulgee County, he was in the fields working with his Dad and brothers and was known for his work ethic from a very young age. When he was nearly 14, the family moved to Council, Idaho. He often worked long hours in the orchards helping the family meet their needs.

After his schooling at Wilson, in Council and Homedale, Idaho, and the high school division of what is now Southwestern Assemblies of God University in Waxahachie, Texas, he joined the Air Force. He was a proud veteran and was very grateful for the services he received from the VA in recent years.

Walter was skilled in many fields of labor, but spent a significant portion of his career with Otis Elevators in the New Orleans, Louisiana area. He later retired to Oklahoma where he met his wife Barbara; they were married on October 4, 1995.

Walter loved spending time in the outdoors hunting and fishing, was a skilled craftsman, and was an avid participant in the family pastime of playing dominoes.

In addition to being survived by his wife Barbara, Walter was the father of three children: Rev. Charles McElhannon and wife Bonita of Canton, Texas; Rev. Chris McElhannon and wife Donna of Hammond, Louisiana; and Dianna Cristaldi and husband Michael of Gulfport, Mississippi. He is also survived by Barbara’s son and daughter: Dewayne and Jackie Wood of Seminole and Yvonne and Robby Williamson of Seminole. Walter was a grandfather of 24 and a great-grandfather of 25 with two more on the way.

He is also survived by his brother Rev. Edgar McElhannon and wife Ruth of Springfield, Missouri,; sister-in-law, Gwen McElhannon of Jonesboro, AR and many nephews, nieces, and extended family members.

He was pre-deceased by his parents; Yvonne McElhannon, the mother of his children; his brothers Marvin Lee and Rev. James Robert McElhannon; his sister-in-law Nadine McElhannon; his nephew Rev. Rick McElhannon; and his granddaughter Jude Renee Wood.

Those serving as casket bearers are Dewayne Wood, Jimmy Wood, Robby Williamson, Colby John, Devon Bonner and Phillip Kowena.

Visitation will be held Monday, December 4 from 1:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Swearingen Funeral Home in Seminole with a funeral service at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, December 5, 2023 at Swearingen Funeral Home Chapel. Burial will follow at the Salt Creek Cemetery in the Wilson community northwest of Henryetta.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Walter Earl McElhannon, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Monday, December 4, 2023

1:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

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Funeral Service

Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Starts at 10:00 am (Central time)

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