Doyle “Dean” McElvany


Doyle Dean McElvany (Baba) was welcomed into heaven on February 9th, 2021 following a long battle with chronic lung disease.

He was born September 7th, 1945 in Oklahoma City to Doyle Dean Gruver and Jeanette (Swain).  His father died when Dean was five.  Jeanette married Paul McElvany who adopted and raised Dean and his sister Vicki alongside his brothers Rocky and Matt.

Dean excelled in baseball, football, and swimming as a youth.  He attended Heronville Elementary, Capitol Hill Junior high, and Capitol Hill High School where he began dating his sweetheart Linda.  He graduated high school with perfect grades.  From there, they went to Stillwater where Dean studied Chemistry, worked in the Chemistry lab, and enjoyed college life with Linda and the Beta Theta Pi fraternity.  Upon graduation from Oklahoma State University, they moved to Kansas City where Dean completed his doctorate in Dentistry.  He recalls Kansas being so cold that each night he had to park his car at the top of the hill so that the following morning it could roll downhill to jumpstart the ignition.

They returned home to Edmond in 1971 to begin their family and where Dean established his dental practice.  Dean was well-respected as a dentist, receiving recognition as the Best Dentist in Edmond by voters at the Edmond Sun newspaper.  But more importantly, he served his patients faithfully for 42 years as a caring and humble dentist while staying mindful of an appropriate work-life balance.  From the very early stages of his career, he volunteered his services to children of the Boys Ranch of Edmond, a group that recognized him directly for these efforts later in his career.  Dean was an active member of the First Christian Church of Edmond where he led Bible study classes.  One thing that stood out about Dean was that his office never displayed the merits of his successful academic studies. Rather, he was much prouder of his family, of volunteerism, and of his studies of the Bible.

Although an OSU graduate, he was a Sooner when it came to Bedlam, and he absolutely loved watching sports.  Some of his fondest memories include traveling with the entire extended family to cram into a small trailer nearby Lake Murray for long summer days of relaxing, skiing, fishing, and cooking out. He was a perfectionist – loved studying fitness and exercise physiology with Julie, taking video analysis to an extreme at times.  He always volunteered to ride the extreme rides at amusement parks.  He enjoyed coaching Mac in baseball while studying Gary Ward’s hitting techniques in detail, built a batting cage in the backyard with his brothers, and loved seeing the Braves make it to the World Series.

As his disease progressed over 22 years, it slowly robbed him of his physical fitness and ability to be active.  Nonetheless, he continued working through 2013 and always found additional things to satisfy his natural curiosity.  He was a man of varied interests, diving deep at times into random and unconnected subjects of bass fishing, handicapping horse races at Remington Park, DIY chemistry experimentation at home, and gourmet cooking which also brought out his meticulous personality.  He couldn’t get enough gaming (preferably game night with family around the table, but also on the computer), and later enjoyed precision pellet-gun marksmanship.

Until he was physically bound locally, he traveled often to see his children and grandchildren exploring the country and enjoying the natural landscape.  During these times, he also grew fond of a saying (which he stole from a TV show) in which one would use the term “MORE” rather than “goodbye” or “I love you” when time with loved ones was coming to an end.  This demonstrated his desire to simply say he wanted more time with us.

Dean consistently demonstrated values of compassion, curiosity, humility, and service to others.  He was also a believer: For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.  (John 3:16)

He was preceded in death by his mother Jeanette.

He is survived by his wife Linda (Lee) McElvany of 53 years, daughter Julie and Ronnie Witherspoon of Houston, TX, son Matthew and Juliette McElvany of Santa Rosa, CA, his sister Vicki (Puckett), brother Rocky and Carol McElvany of Edmond, brother Matt and Shelly McElvany of Edmond, OK, his father Paul McElvany of Edmond, OK.  He is also survived by his nieces and nephews Robin Puckett (Turnbull) of Frisco, Johnny Puckett, Jessica McElvany (Hendrix), Alyssa McElvany, Logan McElvany, and Lauren McElvany, all of the Edmond/OKC area.

Baba will be especially missed by his seven grandchildren Ella, Ava, Drew, and Hadley Witherspoon of Houston, TX and Charles, Isla, and Colette McElvany of Santa Rosa, CA.

In lieu of gifts or flowers, the family requests that interested parties visit and consider a donation dedicated to the Boy Ranch Town of Edmond.  Alternatively, donations may be sent to Boys Ranch Town, 5100 East 33rd St, Edmond, OK 73013.

Services will be held at 10:00 a.m., Saturday, March 20, 2021 at Matthews Funeral Home Chapel.

We will be live streaming this service in an effort to accommodate those people that wish to attend but feel they should not due to health regulations.  To watch the service CLICK HERE to go to our YouTube page. Click on ‘Videos’, then ‘Live Streams’.


  1. Dean was our family dentist for for almost 40 years until he retired. He was a fisherman. My husband and him kept up with bass fishing. Our kids loved going to the dentist.
    He will be missed.

  2. So sorry to hear of Dean’s passing Linda. Please know that you and your family are in my prayers. 🙏

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