Bill R. Retherford, founder
of Retherford Publications died early June 2 after a brief illness. Funeral
services are set at 2 p.m. Monday, June 6 at Eastland Church of the First
Born, 13140 East 21st St., Tulsa.
Survivors include his wife Mary of the home, a son Tim and daughter Lisa Walker,
two grandsons, William and Stephen Retherford, and granddaughter Alexandria
Walker; one brother, Orlo Retherford, and one sister, Bertha Greenfield. Burial
will be at Floral Haven Cemetery under the direction of Floral Haven Funeral
Mr. Retherford grew up in Cushing where he began his newspaper career selling
left-over copies of the Tulsa World from a brother's Cushing route and another
brother's Cushing route of the Daily Oklahoman. He also sold the Sunday Oklahoman
''Bulldog'' edition flown into Cushing by chartered Piper Cubs. Graduating
from high school in 1948, he attended Oklahoma A&M College for two and
a half years. He worked part time in the Cushing Daily Citizen's advertising
department, commuting to college from his Cushing home. He became circulation
manager of the Cushing paper in 1950, leaving college to wed Mary, his wife
of 54 years. He was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1952 and after his service,
returned to college, re-named Oklahoma State University, graduating in 1956.
He worked part time for the OSU O'Collegian and part time for the Cushing
paper during his final two years of college. Receiving a Business Journalism
degree, he became advertising manager and later general manager of the Broken
Arrow Ledger, Bixby Bulletin, Jenks Journal and Tulsa Southside Times.
It was in 1965 that he
purchased the Tulsa County News and Owasso Reporter, marking the beginning
of Retherford Publications. Since that time, he has purchased and started
19 newspapers to build the largest privately owned newspaper group in Oklahoma.
He has been active in the Oklahoma Press Association programs for more than
50 years, serving on committees, the board and as president. He also has been
state president of the Oklahoma Jaycees, National President of the American
Court and Commercial Newspapers and an active member of the Suburban Newspapers
of America. Publication titles owned and produced by Retherford Publications
Inc. are Bixby Bulletin, Broken Arrow Daily Ledger, Catoosa Times, Collinsville
News, Coweta American, Glenpool Post, Guffey's Real Estate Journal, Jenks
Journal, Mannford Eagle, Keystone Lake Marketplace, Owasso Reporter, Pennysaver,
Sand Springs Leader, Sand Springs Marketplace, Skiatook Journal, Tulsa Business
Journal, Tulsa County News, Tulsa Daily Commerce and Legal News and the Wagoner
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking that memorial contributions be made
to the Eastland Church of the Firstborn, c/o Dan Davis, 10619 S. Oxford Ave.,
Tulsa, Ok., 74137.