PO Box 26 Purcell OK 73080

Betty Little August 9, 1936 - November 20, 2020

Betty Little, age 84 of Purcell, passed away Friday, November 20, 2020.

Betty Jo Thornton was born August 29, 1936 in Bixby, Oklahoma, the middle child of Reeder Sr. and Velma (Caperton) Thornton.  Betty, a majorette in the band, met a young man who on a dare, asked her for a date.  His name was Wendell Little, and she eventually accepted his invitation.  Betty graduated from Heavener High School in 1954. Wendell and Betty were married March 4, 1956 at the First Methodist Church in Heavener.  Three months later, Wendell shipped out for an 18-month tour in France.  During this time, Betty attended Draughn’s Business School in Oklahoma City. After returning, they made their home there and Wendell began taking classes at the University of Oklahoma, until Wendell started mortuary school in Dallas.  They first made their home in Heavener, before moving to Stigler.  It was here that they added baby girl Wendelyn in 1961 and a son, Kevin Eugene in 1963.  Followed by short stints in Poteau and Magnolia, AR, and in Norman, the Little’s settled in Purcell.  Wendell and Betty purchased the Conner-Sparlin Funeral Home, and in 1977, Little’s Funeral Home was established.  Right by Wendell’s side, Betty served Purcell and the surrounding communities for more than 20 years.  She was the epitome of grace and served with kindness and compassion.  In the late 1980’s, they oversaw the completion of a new chapel, it still stands today, serving families in their time of need.  Betty remained active in her community, serving in many capacities, and wherever needed.  Betty was first and foremost a woman of faith and lifelong United Methodist. Throughout her adult life she was involved in the former Women’s Society of Christian Service and after that the United Methodist Women where she served at the Oklahoma Conference level, district, and local communities. She was a faithful member of Trinity United Methodist Church here in Purcell where she served as a member of Rotary Cooks and participated in the organization of bereavement dinners. She was an active member of the Okeya Mother’s Club, the Gladiolus Garden Club and volunteered at American Red Cross Blood Drives for many years.  Betty cherished her family, and especially her grandchildren, and she looked forward to visiting family and friends.  Most importantly, she was a child of God, and leaves a great legacy for us all.

She was preceded in death by: Her husband, Wendell Delano Little; Her parents, Reeder Sr., and Velma Thornton; Sister, Faynelle Johnson and brother, Reeder Thornton, Jr.

Betty is survived by: Daughter, Wendelyn Little DeMoss of Edmond; Son, Kevin Eugene Little of Wilsonville, OR; 7 grandchildren; 6 great grandchildren, and a host of other family and friends.


  1. REPLY
    Alan Little says

    Her video was a wonderful tribute for a beautiful person. She was a great and loving Aunt to me.

  2. REPLY
    Melissa Eulberg says

    That was precious and priceless. Thanks for sharing. She was always smiling such a beautiful smile!

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