A loving Father chose a special soul from inventory on 09/23/1931 and placed it in a baby boy born to Clayton and Hazel (Elder) Amend in Tulsa, OK, where the child was baptized in the Presbyterian Church and given the name Billie Don Amend. On December 11, 2014, the Lord called out that name and Bill returned to his Heavenly Father. On his earthly journey, Bill lived in Tulsa, McAlester, Enid and finally, Oklahoma City, where he attended Central Presbyterian Church. It was there, at age 11, he confirmed his faith.
Bill served Christ’s church in many capacities; ordained deacon and elder, presbytery officer and nine years on the Board of the Presbyterian Foundation. Bill and his wife, Ellaine, for many years sponsored Presbyterian Youth Fellowships. They considered these teens to be their “church children” and have remained in contact with some of them. Bill and Ellaine are presently members of the Santa Fe Presbyterian Church in Edmond, where Bill was secretary of the organizing committee and a commissioner until Santa Fe was chartered.
Bill attended Monroe Elementary, Harding Junior High and Classen High School in Oklahoma City. He graduated from Classen in 1949. Bill began playing the B-Flat clarinet in elementary school and later played it in the Oklahoma University Marching Band. He also played the bass clarinet in the OU symphonic band. In the summer of 1950, Bill joined the 45th Division Band. When the 45th Division was called into active duty, Bill and his sweetheart, Ellaine Aikman decided to get married. They were married on September 30, 1950, in a chapel at Camp Polk. As the 45th Division left Camp Polk for Japan and later Korea, Bill transferred from the band to Division Headquarters where he received the usual service ribbons as well as the bronze star.
Bill returned home in 1952, to Oklahoma, Ellaine and OC, where he graduated in 1955 with a degree in business and his CPA certification. Home and family were the biggest part of Bill’s life. He and Ellaine have three beautiful daughters; Deborah Shackelford (Larry), Kathryn Velasco and Cynthia Sturm (Rusty). Four Grandsons and one great-granddaughter have brought him much joy in his later years.
Music has always been a favorite time for Bill and he contributed his bass to the choirs at Central, Westminster and Santa Fe Presbyterian churches. He assisted with the youth and children’s choirs. Bill worked for a CPA firm while attending OU. Later he was a partner in the firms of Billups, Arnn & Co.; Amend, Smith & Co. – CPA’s; and Ernst & Whinney, Tax Manager for Hogan & Slovacek. Bill was named an “outstanding accountant” by Money Magazine and received an outstanding services award from the OKC chapter of the OSCPA. Bill considered education to be a lifetime adventure and became a charter member of OSCPA Education Foundation which awards scholarships annually to aspiring CPA’s. He enjoyed interviewing prospective grads for employment. A life work philosophy of his was, “no one works for me-they work with me.”
Bill had prominent & philanthropic clients but he also did “offers in compromise” and assisted charities and school groups in establishing tax-free status. Bill played tennis and swam regularly well into his 80th year of life. He maintained friendships from his childhood and school years, participating in the Boulevard Boys and other similar organizations. He was a Chevalier degree DeMolay. At OU, Bill was a member of Alpha Sigma Phi Fraternity, Phi Eta Sigma Freshman Honor Society, Delta Sigma Pi Business Fraternity and the Accounting Club. He was a lifetime alumni of OU, the School of Business, AICPA, OKSCPA-OKC, OKSCPA, President’s society of OU and Touchdown and Sooner Clubs.
Bill is preceded in death by his parents, brothers Clayton and Chet, sisters-in-law Betty King and Jessica Amend, and a nephew David. Bill is survived by his wife of 64 years, Ellaine, 3 daughters, their spouses, grandsons David Hyde (Alexandra) of Olympia, WA; Ryan Sturm of Edmond, OK; Parker Sturm of Boulder, CO; and A.J. Velasco of Ada, OK; a precious great granddaughter Zoe Hyde. Also, sisters-in-law Alyce Amend of Tulsa, OK and Doris Wheeler of Bullhead City, AZ; brother-in-law Skip King of OKC, OK; as well as numerous nieces and nephews and their families.
Graveside Services will be held at 10:00 a.m. Monday, December 15th at Memorial Park Cemetery with Memorial services to follow at 11:00 a.m. at Santa Fe Presbyterian Church, Edmond, OK.
In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made to Santa Fe Presbyterian Church, 1603 N. Santa Fe Avenue, Edmond, OK 73003
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