Madalyn Starr Lester (Riggs), 83, of Stillwater, Oklahoma, passed away on September 5, 2020, after a brief illness. Funeral services will be held on Friday, September 11, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. at Strode Funeral Home, 610 S. Duncan, Stillwater, Oklahoma. The service will also be livestreamed on her personal page of strodefh.com for those who are unable to attend in person.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Madalyn Starr Lester, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.
For those who would rather join an outdoor service, there will also be a short graveside service directly following at Sunset Memorial Gardens 6500 S. Perkins Road, Stillwater. Seating will be very limited but there is ample standing room.
The family would also like to invite attendees to Cimarron Valley Church, 801 N Sadler Rd, Perkins, OK 74059 for a reception with loved ones.
Born May 11, 1937 in Drumright, Oklahoma, Madalyn attended Oklahoma State University and Northeastern State University, graduating from the latter with a bachelor’s degree.
While attending Oklahoma State University she met Charlie Lester. In spite of the fact that she had, at first, turned down his offer to dance, Charlie went home and told his mom that he had met the woman he was going to marry. On June 18, 1960 in Claremore, OK, he did just that. For 39 years thin or flush, up or down they brought their children into the world and created a love and light that inspired all who knew them.
Though the dark raven hair that initially caught Charlie’s eye would gracefully transition to a beautiful silver, there were other qualities that Madalyn maintained until the day she passed.
In both her personal and professional life, she was dedicated to a life of service to others. She spent 42 years working for the Department of Human Services and the Department of Rehabilitation Services improving the lives of those in need. Amongst family and friends this same sense of service was apparent in her unfailing generosity and giving heart.
In fact it was this commitment to loving family that convinced Madalyn that Charlie was the one for her. She loved her children and family ferociously and if you were one of Madalyn’s people, whether directly related or one of her many “adopted grandkids”, you knew it and so did everyone else.
Lastly, along with her quiet intensity it should be noted that she also kept her ornery, whip-smart sense of humor right up to the very end.
Madalyn Lester faced many challenges in life but she did so on her terms and through it all remained a bright light for others to follow.
She is survived by her daughter Melissa Lynne Lester, son Charles “Chuck” F. Lester, Jr., daughter-in-law Jessica Novak, sister-in-law Harriet Riggs, sister-in-law Polly Taylor and her husband Robert, and brother-in-law David Lester and his wife Karen.
In addition to her immediate family, Madalyn was supported in love by many nieces and nephews: Melanie Modine (Lloyd), Mikeal Hagerdon, Mark Hagerdon, Bryan Hagerdon (Janet), Madalyn Kunow (Mike), Martin Riggs (Meg), Robert Kevin Taylor, Charles David Taylor (Shelly), Kimber Taylor, Scotte Lester (Carla), Dean Lester (Tonya), and J.J. Lester (Tommie Lee); and great nieces, nephews and their families: Matt Bolding (Tiffany), Dr. Michael Bolding (Mary Jane), Amy Hagerdon, Cassie Hagerdon, Megan Hagerdon, J Rehm, Courtney Holton (Garett), Spencer Riggs, Carly Riggs, Jacob Taylor, Annie Taylor, Hannah Taylor, Taylor Swanek, Lauren Gattis, Daryn Gattis, Cale Lester (Kendall), Laiken Holzer (Chris), Tyson Lester, Jordan Lester, Casen Lester, Halle Lester, and Jevyn Lester.
She is preceded in death by her beloved husband Charles “Charlie” F Lester Sr., parents Oowala Bushyhead Riggs and Hammond Greenwald Riggs Sr., sisters Wahleah Riggs, Betty Faye Hagerdon, Sally Ann Hagerdon, and brother Hammond “Hank” Riggs Jr.
While her presence here will be greatly missed, her heavenly return to the love of her life and her loving family is a source of great joy and peace.
She will live on through the stories and the beautiful memories that she has been a part of for many years. The family would love to share and read these memories as a part of her funeral service. For those wishing to share may do so by submitting their story on her personal condolences page at strodefh.com.
In lieu of flowers and in honor of Madalyn’s passion for paying it forward memorial contributions can be made to Our Daily Bread, P.O. Box 1721, Stillwater, OK 74076, via their website ourdailybreadstillwater.org, or to the charity or cause of your choosing.
Memories to be shared during the service or condolences for the family may be left online for the family at www.strodefh.com .