John Levis Caddel, 71, formerly of Stillwater, passed away March 16 at his home in Oklahoma City following a lengthy illness.
A memorial service is planned for 2 p.m. March 25 at Concordia Life Care Community in Oklahoma City. An additional memorial will be held in Sinton, Texas, April 26.
John was born Feb. 24, 1943, in Sinton, Texas, to Levis Caddel and Kathryn McWhorter Caddel.
He attended elementary and junior high school in Mathis, Texas, until the ninth grade when he enrolled in school in Sinton, Texas. John was active in sports and lettered in football and basketball. He graduated from Sinton High School in 1961. He continued his education at Iowa State University before finishing his undergraduate studies at Texas A&I University, Kingsville, Texas, with a bachelor’s of science degree in 1966. In 1967, he entered the graduate program at Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, earning a doctorate of philosophy – crop science (plant breeding and genetics) in 1971.
As a boy, John cultivated his love for agriculture. He was raised and worked on his family’s farm in the west Sinton area on which he observed farming techniques practiced by his father, Levis Caddel, who had a keen interest in soil and water conservation to improve crop production. These practices helped John formulate his professional interest in agricultural research and teaching which he practiced throughout his career.
John married his high school sweetheart, Ann Giebel Caddel, on May 29, 1965, and they moved to Stillwater in 1966.
They lived with their children, Kristen and Joseph in Rabat, Morocco, from 1971-77. John worked with the University of Minnesota to help establish a graduate school in a new agricultural university in Rabat. The family traveled throughout Morocco and made several trips to Europe during the stay in Africa. John accepted a job with Oklahoma State University in 1977 as a professor in the plant and soil sciences department and the family moved back to Stillwater. In 1987, John took a leave from Oklahoma State University and he and Ann moved to Tunis, Tunisia, for two years. In 1989, they moved back to Stillwater where John worked at Oklahoma State University until his retirement in 2008.
John loved to work in his yard, take pictures and travel. He became an accomplished photographer for both his work and personal life, never passing up an opportunity to take a good picture. Since retirement, John spent many hours working on his family tree; he sometimes referred to research of the family tree as his new full-time job.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Ann of 42 years, son Joseph John Caddel and his sister Carolyn Caddel Plocek.
Survivors include his daughter Kristen Caddel Latham and her husband Tracy Latham of Edmond, his brother Joseph Caddel and his wife Janet Ermis Caddel of Corpus Christi, Texas, a niece, nephews and many wonderful friends.
In lieu of flowers the family asked that memorials be made to the charity of your choice, American Hospice Foundation of Oklahoma City, Judith Karman Hospice of Stillwater or Benevolent Care Fund at Concordia Life Care Community of Oklahoma City.