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Karen Ione (Carver) Ailey

Thursday, May 26, 2022
Karen Ione

Karen Ione (Carver) Ailey passed away May 21, 2022 in Ponca City. She was 79.

Karen was born on September 22, 1942 to Charles “Chuck” Carver and Georgia (Coursey) Carver in Hominy, Oklahoma. Karen attended Hominy schools, graduating in the top of her class in 1960. After high school, Karen met her future husband, Cecil J. Ailey, during a football game between Tonkawa and Hominy. Cecil and Karen were married on July 9, 1961. Tonkawa became the family home where they would live and raise their three children, Duane, Scott and Kara. During this time, Karen continued her education, first at Northern Oklahoma College, then completing her Bachelor’s degree in Education at Central State University in Edmond, Oklahoma.

Though Karen worked several jobs in her life, none filled her heart as much as teaching. Upon graduating, she began her career with Tonkawa Public Schools where she remained until her retirement in 2001. During her years as a teacher, first in kindergarten and then later in fifth grade, she touched hundreds of young lives. It was her compassion and genuine love for her students that helped her nurture and guide them, not only with practical knowledge but also to be honest and true to themselves. Her love of children was limitless, and each child that passed through her doors was one of “her kids.

Karen was a generous giver, helping those in need with whatever they required. She gave lovingly of herself expecting nothing in return. She touched countless numbers of lives and was loved and admired by many for her kindness and beauty, both inside and out.

Karen spent her time at home doing the things she enjoyed most. She followed the lives of her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and numerous friends through social media, rejoicing in their accomplishments and sharing in their sorrows. She was an avid reader, spending hours living vicariously through the written word. She also loved watching her favorite television shows, often planning activities around those set schedules.

Music had a special place in Karen’s heart, and it filled her with joy to hear her children and grandchildren singing or playing an instrument. She never missed attending a performance in support of their activities.

Karen spoke often of her love of listening to the birds singing outside her window and the music of her wind chimes blowing in the breeze. She also loved to laugh, recalling memories of the beloved family dog, Frisky. Karen had a strength of spirit; her love of God and his promises assured her of her place in Heaven.

Karen was preceded in death by her parents, her dearest Uncle Harmon and Aunt Pearl Gibbs, her child, Richard Ailey, and her brother, Charles Carver. She is survived by her husband, Cecil Ailey; her children, Duane Ailey and wife Johnna of Jonestown, TX, Scott Ailey and wife Sandra of Tonkawa, OK, Kara (Ailey) Fagan and husband Keith of Ponca City, OK; her siblings, Brenda (Carver) Mahan and Riley Carver, both of Hominy, OK; her grandchildren, Cierra Ailey of Spring,TX, Dalton Ailey of Seattle, WA, Amber Ailey of Del City, OK, Holly (Ailey) Thompson and husband Kyle of Mustang, OK, Jacob Ailey of Tonkawa, OK, Kyle Ailey and wife Ashley of Tulsa, OK, Joshua Ailey of Tonkawa, OK and Tessa Fagan of Ponca City, OK; and 8 great-grandchildren with another arriving in July.

Viewing will be held on Thursday and Friday, May 26 and 27, 2022 from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. both days at the Trout Funeral Home Chapel in Tonkawa. Her memorial will take place at the Trout Funeral Home in Tonkawa on Tuesday, May 31, 2022 at 10:00 a.m.

Arrangements under the direction of Trout Funeral Home of Tonkawa, 505 Thunderbird Rd, Tonkawa, OK 74653.