Billy and Wilma Pittman will be honored as Pioneer Recipients to kick off the 2022 Watermelon Festival.
Billy Pittman and Wilma Ogle Pittman were married December 25, 1948 and will be celebrating 74 years of marriage, December 25, 2022.
Wilma was raised in the Tabler, Oklahoma area on the family farm attending Middleburg School.
Wilma could be found working in the fields and the dairy, as well as enjoying basketball and soft ball and being very good at both.
Billy was raised in the Sulpher/Millcreek, Oklahoma area on a cattle ranch most of his life until he quit school in the 5th grade to begin working area ranches. His family decided to move to the Apache, Oklahoma area in 1946.
In October of 1948 his work led him to meeting Wilma as one day he saw Wilma plowing broom corn in a field across from a gravel pit he was hauling gravel out of.
A week later, Billy purposely attended her church at Tabler to meet and talk to her, which was a success. A week later, they accidentally saw each other in Chickasha and drove around awhile.
The next day, he was suppose to call before coming to her house, but he came without calling because he did not know who to ask for, he didn’t even know her name.
Their dating consisted of going to church and when he decided to propose to her, he pulled to the side of the road while taking her home one night.
A Christmas day wedding was decided upon since all the family was coming to the brides home for Christmas.
Their first home was in Ninnekah, Oklahoma until they began following construction work until settling down northwest of Rush Springs in 1957. Here they began a dairy business and continued that until 1978 and changed to stock cattle, which they continue to do so today.
Billy and Wilma raised their four boys on their farm in Rush Springs, Stanley, Rockey, Brent and Kim. The oldest three still live in Rush Springs and Kim lives in Colorado.
Brent started growing watermelons when he was in high school. He and his daughters, Ashton and Lauren continue to grow watermelons today.
Along with four sons, they gained three daughters-in-law. The Pittman’s have 8 grandchildren, 15 great grandchildren and 1 great great grandchild. They love spending time with their family.
Billy and Wilma start each day together and spend a good majority of their days side by side, checking and tending to their 300 head of mama cows, working in the hay, or just about whatever needs to be done on the farm. Wilma said, “there is always something broke down and we have to get it fixed.” Billy says he never plans to retire.
When Billy and Wilma aren’t ranching, they can be found at church or watching a ball game.
The Pittmans have attended the Assembly of God Church in Rush Springs for 70 years.
Congratulations to Billy and Wilma and the entire Pittman family.
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