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1938 Ora Lee Wilson 2023

Ora Lee Wilson

January 11, 1938 — September 1, 2023

Kansas City, Missouri

Jan 11, 1938 - Sep 1, 2023

Ora Lee Wilson (Salley) was born on January 11, 1938, to Austin and Hazel Salley in Little Rock, Arkansas. She lived her early childhood life with her grandmother and 4 of her siblings, Emma, Alex, Levi, and, Abe. In her own words, she loved the sweet and simple country life with her grandmother.

After the passing of her grandmother, she and her siblings moved to live with their older siblings. Her life at this time was not easy but true to her nature, she persevered. Ora loved traveling, she would often tell of her trips to some of the nation’s most famous cities.  Later, she moved to Kansas City, Missouri where she married Elmer Wilson. Ora became a mother to 8 children: Morris, Deborah, Steven, Angela, Elmer Jean, William, Beverly, & Brenda.

Her training in the medical field led her to a long career at Saint Luke’s Hospital where she was a well-known and admired phlebotomist for many years. Dr. K. Steven Braton, D.O., who spent time with Ora as a medical student, recalls that “she was a wonderful woman, we use to call her “The Big O!”” Likewise, Jim Nunnelly, retired Jackson County COMBAT Administrator (also known as Granddad), had this to say about Ora Lee: She was one of the very first employees of the Wayne Miner/Rodgers Health Center, back in the 60’s. She helped shape how community commitment must be a priority if an organization is to achieve any kind of health equity. I will always remember her one-woman outreach efforts that got many of her family members & neighbors to accept the health center as their regular source of healthcare. She had a heart of gold, and she shared it; generously. Proud to have known you, Ora Lee. You were a solid "tone-setter" for your children!

Remarkably, she had a keen love of nature, she could tell you about nearly any flower, plant, or bird. Through-out her life she cultivated many gardens, and she made it a point to always keep a bird-bath in her front yard.

Surprisingly to some, but well-known to those who knew her, Ora Lee absolutely loved old western movies.  She could tell you about every western classic by name and actor. It was something about her that was so unique and is a fond memory her family will carry with them always.

Later in life, Ora Lee retired and became affectionately known as Granny to her grandchildren and great-grand-children. Often, her family gathered to enjoy her delicious cooking and her sure-fire comedic wit. Ora’s sharp wit and comedic timing was spot on until the very end. Her honesty and boldness were sure to get a heart-felt laugh from anyone.

More than anything in this world, Ora Lee loved her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Even amid her health battles, with a fire from deep within, she would tell anyone who would listen about the goodness and faithfulness of her God. On the days when life seemed too tough, it was her enduring faith that kept her through it all. Her family rejoices that she is now healed and whole in the presence of the Lord. For many years she was a member of St. Mark’s Presbyterian Church in Kansas City. Ora Lee became a member of Harvest Church International Outreach (Bishop Steve & Dr. Donna Houpe) where her faith-walk continued to flourish until she went on to be with the Lord.

Ora Lee was preceded in death by her parents, her siblings, her daughter, Elmer Jean Wilson; son, Morris Wilson; and grandson, Auston G. Blanks. She leaves to cherish her memory, her children, Deborah, Steven (Chico), Angela, William, Beverly, (Arthur) and Brenda; her grandchildren, Raymond, Royce, Kenyana (Mike), William Wilson, Dustin, Wesley, Leo, Angelina, Bianca, Nicholas, and William Casselle; along with host of great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and cousins.

Funeral services are scheduled for 11:00 AM on Friday, September 8, 2023 at Park Lawn Funeral Home, 8251 Hillcrest Road, Kansas City, MO 64138. A visitation will be from 10:00 - 11:00 AM prior to the service at the funeral home.  Burial will be in Memorial Park Cemetery, Kansas City, Missouri.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Ora Lee Wilson, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, September 8, 2023

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

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Funeral Service

Friday, September 8, 2023

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

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Friday, September 8, 2023

Memorial Park And Green Lawn

8251 Hillcrest Rd, Kansas City, MO 64138

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