Zelpha Eldora Boykin, daughter of the late Clyde and Ola (Tate) Wilson, was born Feb. 27, 1932, in Graff, and went to her heavenly home Feb. 17, 2022, at her home in Dawson. She was 89 years, 11 months and 21 days of age. At Union Chapel, at age 9, Zelpha accepted Jesus as her savior and her devotion and faith would make her a guiding light for all who knew her throughout her many years. On Dec. 24, 1947, she married Donald Boykin, and from this union came their four children, Mike Boykin, Lavonda Eaton, Gary “Buck” Boykin and Roger Boykin. She was the rock and heart of her family, which grew much larger, spanning five generations and came to include Brenda Boykin Stoops as a permanent daughter. Her presence brought with it a peaceful feeling and her connection to God brought her through many trials, both her own, and those of anyone on which she shined her beautiful and bright light. Her life was spent joyously devoted to Jesus and her family. She showed her love by feeding her family and friends, both physically and spiritually. Selflessly caring for others was her life’s passion and work. She loved to cook, embroidery and quilting. She loved being involved in church and went as long as she was able. A perfect example of unconditional love, her walk with Jesus inspired all who knew her. Besides her parents, Zelpha was preceded in death by her husband, Don Boykin; two sons, Mike and Roger Boykin; and one sister, Maxine Hutsell. Zelpha is survived by one son, Gary “Buck” Boykin, of Mountain Grove; two daughters, Lavonda Eaton and husband, Glen, of Mountain Grove; and Brenda Stoops and husband, Chris, of Houston; one brother, Keith Wilson and wife, Fran, of California; one sister, Zelda Brazier and husband, Bill, of Springfield; seven grandchildren, Alisa Freeman, Aaron Smith, Jamie Green, Nick Eaton, Garrett Eaton, Courtney Boykin and Stephanie Boykin; eight great-grandchildren, Brandon Freeman, Taylor Vancil, Dylon Reed, Jayden Bain, Audrey Goodner, Colby Woods, Jonah Copeland and Spencer Eaton; one great-great-grandson, Kenneth Freeman; and a host of other relatives and many friends who will miss her dearly.
Visitation for Zelpha Boykin was held Wednesday, Feb. 23, 2022, from 10-11 a.m. at Crossroads of Faith church. Funeral services followed the visitation at 11 a.m., also at the church, with the Rev. Shane Nettleton and the Rev. Smiley Martin officiating. Vocal song selection was “Beulah Land” sung by Brenda Tate. Other special song selections were “I Can Only Imagine,” “Long Black Train” and “Thank You.” Delbert Tate, Nolan Tate, Dwaine Tate, Jessie Garrison, Gerald Bridges and Jeremy Starky served as pallbearers. Rick Hutsell served as honorary pallbearer. Burial was in Friendship Cemetery under the direction of Craig-Hurtt Funeral Home, Mountain Grove. Online condolences: www.craighurttfuneralhome.com.