Peaceful 09

Lesteray Kooken

February 15, 1937 ~ November 2, 2021 (age 84)


Lesteray (Les) Kooken passed Tuesday, November 2, 2021, at the age of 84, after a life well lived. A graveside celebration of his life will be held where his family and friends will honor and remember him.
Les was born February 15, 1937 in Moundridge, Kansas on his grandpa and grandma Terry’s farm. His parents were Lester Gifford Kooken and Rita (Terry) Kooken. Les spent much of his childhood on the family farm in Manchester, OK. He attended primary and middle school at Eureka School in Alfalfa County, Oklahoma from 1943 to 1950. He attended high school at Westwood Highschool in Westwood, MA from 1951 to 1954, graduating with a high school diploma.
After high school, Les joined the US Air Force where he spent four years as a Jet Fighter Instrument and Autopilot Repairman and his life-long passion of aeronautics began. After serving his country, Les enrolled in East Coast Aerotech in Lexington, MA and completed his certification as an Aeronautical Master Technician from 1959 to 1960. He started his career with American Airlines in 1960 at JFK International in Jamaica, NY as a mechanic. This career would show his skill, passion, and loyalty and would be where he ultimately retired as the Managing Director of Aircraft Base Maintenance in Tulsa, OK in 1992, 33 years later.
Les was married to Alice (Spiers) Kooken from 1957-1998; the two share four children, Karen Lynn On-The-Hill, Lesteray (Ray) Kooken Jr., Leoline (Lee) Edith Dunn and Douglas Scott Kooken. The family began in Madison, WI and made their way across the country, residing in Massachusetts, New York, and California. Their final move would be back to Oklahoma in 1968 where they ultimately planted roots in Oologah in 1972. This is where he would raise his family and years later retire. Les married Linda Snow in 2000.
Les enjoyed an active and involved life; he was a 32nd degree Mason, Shriner and proud member of the Akdar Shriner Mounted Patrol. He also enjoyed many hobbies and interests during his life; especially in retirement. Some of his favorite pastimes included flying and restoring classic and antique private aircraft, horseback riding, hunting, camping, fishing, 4-wheeling, and traveling. But what he would tell you he was most proud of was his family; he was the patriarch of a legacy, with many children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
Les will be remembered by his family as a hard worker, a provider, a patient teacher, a lending ear, and friend. He loved the Lord and he loved his family. He was a steadfast and strong presence that will be greatly missed.
Les was preceded in death by: his parents, Lester Gifford and Rita Lila Kooken; his step-mother, Leolene Adeline Kooken; his grandparents, Lester J. and Rose Kooken and Ray and Ruby Terry; his son, Lesteray (Ray) Kooken Jr.; and his brother, Wendall Cloys Kooken.
He is survived by: his children, Karen On-The-Hill and husband Steve of Claremore, OK, Leoline (Lee) Dunn of Collinsville, OK, Douglas Kooken and wife Mechele of Oologah, OK; his wife, Linda Kooken of Silverthorn, CO; his grandchildren, Summer Spurlock and husband Jason, Steve On-The Hill Jr., Erin Yeager, Caleb Dunn and wife Abby, Chase Qualls, Ashley Sharp and husband Jason, Dr. Douglas (Scott) Kooken II and wife Ashley, Kelsey Tevebaugh and husband Larry, 23 great-grandchildren with the 24th on the way, and his faithful Maltese, Bubba.

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