Leslie E. “Les” Farris of Miami, Okla. passed away peacefully on January 23, 2018 at the age of 76. He was born on January 25, 1941 in Fulton, Ark., to Elbert Jackson and Maurine Cecile (Cochran) Farris. Following World War II, his family settled in Hooks, Texas where Les grew up loving all things outdoors and sports.
He graduated from Hooks High School in 1959, lettering in football, basketball, baseball, and track. Les continued his love of sports and science at Texas A&M University and East Texas State University, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and Physical Education in 1964.
Following graduation, Les married his college sweetheart, Ruth Ann Ayres, in Athens, Texas, on July 25, 1964. During the next three years, while teaching biology and coaching high school athletics in Hot Springs, Ark., Les earned a Master of Science degree in Biology from Henderson State University in Arkadelphia, Ark.
In 1967, Les entered the Federal Bureau of Investigation as a Special Agent. After training in Washington, D.C. and Quantico, Virginia, he was assigned to the Denver Division of Colo. He later transferred to the Oklahoma City Division, and eventually to the Miami, Okla. Resident Agency, where he enjoyed and appreciated the fellowship and cooperation developed with all law enforcement agencies in northeast Oklahoma. To that end, Les organized annual law enforcement/businessman golf tournaments and cookouts at Shangri-La Resort on Grand Lake. As he used to say, “With golf, it’s all about the fellowship and camaraderie”.
Following a 30 year career with the FBI, Les was employed as Director of Security and Surveillance at The Stable Casino in Miami, Okla. Upon his retirement in November 2017, he was proud to be made an Honorary Member of the Modoc tribe by Chief Bill Follis.
After his pancreatic cancer diagnosis in June 2015, Les especially appreciated the compassion, generosity, and support shown by Chief Follis, Butler National President Clark Stewart, Stable Manager Mark Whiteley, and the entire Stables staff.
Les was preceded in death by his parents, E.J. and Maurine Farris, and son Derek Blaine Farris. He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Ruth Ann Farris; son Brandon Farris, daughter in law Melissa, grandsons Jackson and Benjamin, all of Huntersville, N.C.; sister Kathrine Mueller, nieces Cathey and Lori Mueller, nephew Leslie Paul Mueller, all of Texarkana, Texas; and niece Tammie Moore of Highland, Ill.
A Celebration of Life service will take place at 1 p.m. on Friday, February 2, 2018 at Miami First Baptist Church with a reception to follow in the church parlor. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to be made to the First Baptist Church Vision Fund, P.O. Box 1030, Miami, OK 74355, or to M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, P.O. Box 4464, Houston, TX, 77210-4464.
Online condolences can be made at www.thomasfuneralhomewelchok.com. Services have been entrusted to the Thomas Funeral Home, Welch, Okla.