Emily Gresham

1923-2017Gresham, Emily

Emily Davis Gresham, born December 1, 1923, went home into the arms of her Savior on November 20, 2017. Emily was born in Kansas City, MO, the second of three siblings in her family. Her parents, William Ward and Eva Davis, were home on furlough from their calling as Presbyterian missionaries to China, at the time Emily was born. When Emily was 4, her family moved from China to Oklahoma City, as a result of the political upheaval in China at the time. She, her brother and sister had a wonderful childhood in Oklahoma City. Emily graduated from Central High School in Oklahoma City and went to Park College in Missouri, following her brother, Hal, to the College. Even though WWII was raging, Emily was able to graduate from college with a degree in English Literature.

Emily was the secretary to the pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Oklahoma City after she graduated from college. During that time, she was introduced to William (Bill) Gresham through a blind date. After a 6-month courtship, they were married in a grand wedding at First Presbyterian Church, presided over by her dad. Bill and Emily settled in Oklahoma City where they bought a home and started a family. For many years, Emily was busy raising four children and working alongside Bill in his business. Emily always loved to read books and passed that love to her children. She was a member of PEO for 65 years. Much of Emily’s life was spent serving others, her family, working with her husband and volunteering for many activities at her church. Her Sunday School friends were near and dear to her and she treasured them.

Emily had a gift for writing poetry-her specialty was what she called “doggerel”. She wrote birthday poems for all members of the family, as well as for her friends, for many, many years. Her poems were cherished by her family and friends and were always the hit at any family birthday party!

She had a sweet, gentle spirit that drew people to her. Her compassion and love for others came through in all her interactions. People always commented that Emily was “the sweetest person they knew”! Emily exemplified the Proverbs 31 Woman- “Her children rise up and call her blessed, and her husband also and he praises her.”

Emily is preceded in death by her husband Bill and her brother Hal. She is survived by her sister, Audrey (husband-Norman) Hardwicke and leaves behind a lasting legacy in her family through her sons Henry (wife-Mary Lou) and Lowell (wife-Jane) Gresham, and her daughters, Sara (husband-Ron) Gonzales and Janet (husband-David) Sloan, as well as her beloved grandchildren, Emily Gresham, Amy (husband-Jeff) Gilmer, Stephanie Gonzales, Nathan, Gonzales, Leah (husband-Joel) Riffle, James Gresham, Tori (husband-Andrew) Hanks and two great-granddaughters, Lily and Aubrey Hanks.

Graveside services will be held at 12:00 p.m., Wednesday, November 21, 2017 at Waurika Cemetery in Waurika, OK.  A Memorial service will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Friday, November 24, 2017  at Matthews Funeral Home Chapel.


  1. Sara and family,

    So sorry for your loss. May you be comforted by the peace your family member now enjoys.

  2. Sara and family,
    Wishing you peace to bring comfort, the courage to face the days ahead and loving memories to forever hold in your heart. Thinking of you.

  3. My condolences to your family. May God’s promise of the resurrection bring you comfort and hope. (Acts 24:15)

  4. Dearest Sara and family, I’m so sorry for you loss. Your mother sounds like an amazing and very strong women. Memories and love will help you through this and give you comfort.

  5. Dear Family,
    What a beautiful tribute to Aunt Emily and the beautiful caring person she was! I have many happy memories of her from my childhood. Mother (Emily’s sister) was so close to her and would be there if it were at all possible, as would I. May the Father’s peace and comfort be with you all during this time of great loss.

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