, Muskogee, OK


June 22, 2014

Sylvester D. Stewart Jr.

1932 - 2014

It was on June 7, 1932 in Muskogee, Oklahoma, when Sylvester and Viola Stewart celebrated the birth of their first of three sons in their loving family. He was named Sylvester D. Stewart, Jr. He accepted Jesus Christ at an early age and became a member of Macedonia Baptist Church.

Sylvester grew up in Muskogee, where he attended Langston Elementary School and Historic Manual Training High School. He married his high school sweetheart, Bettye Davis after their graduation in 1951. Their love was blessed with five children. Mr. Stewart enlisted in the U.S. Marines in June of 1951.

He completed three tours of combat duty, one in Korea and two in Vietnam. Between those tours, Sylvester served as Primary marksmanship Instructor at Edson Range and promoted through the ranks to Gunnery Sergeant. His decorations include two Purple Heart awards, Presidential Unit Citation with 4 Stars, Navy Unit Commendation, Good Conduct Medal, 5th Award, National Defense Medal with 1 Star, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Korean Service Medal with 3 Battle Stars, Korean Presidential Unit citation, Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm, the United Nations Service Medal and the Vietnam Campaign Medal. GYSGT Stewart retired from the Marine Corps in August of 1973.

Sylvester returned to Muskogee to manage Stewart’s Drive In, which was founded by his parents. He also became active in his Church, serving the Lord in the Senior Choir, drove the Church Bus, and was a member of the Brotherhood until his health would no longer allow him to participate.

Mr. Stewart was also Civic minded, where he served as President of the Morning Optimist Club, was a member of the Rotary Club and the American Legion. Equally as important, he influenced the lives in a positive manner of many impressionable boys growing up in Muskogee. Mr. Stewart was active with the Paul Young Football league, where he coached the Bulldogs, who were sponsored by Stewart’s Drive In. The Team’s Purple Jersey reminded our community of the tradition rich Pride of Manual Training High School and at the same time, mentored and developed youth through participation in youth football and education in life. Many of his former players continued on to play high school and college ball and also quality fathers and husbands in life.

It was on June 17, 2014 when Mr. Sylvester D. Stewart, Jr., answered “HIS” call and gave his final salute. He was preceded in death by his wife, Bettye; a son, Lilton D. Stewart; his parents, Sylvester and Viola Stewart; and two brothers, Clifton Stewart and Vernon Stewart.

He leaves to cherish his memory; four children, Laura Stewart Martin, Tulsa, Oklahoma, Lenora Stewart Jackson [James], Sand Springs, Oklahoma, Lisa Stewart Coleman, Camp Zoma, Japan and Lawrence Stewart, Sr. [Andrea], Muskogee, Oklahoma; his grandchildren, his great-grandchildren; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.

The Hour of Tribute for Mr. Stewart will commence on Tuesday, June 24, 2014 at 11:00 A.M. in the Macedonia Baptist Church. Rev. Larry H. Smith, Sr., Pastor, will officiate. Burial will follow in the National Cemetery at Ft. Gibson.

You may visit Mr. Stewart, as he slumbers in peaceful repose at the Keith D. Biglow Funeral Directors, Inc., on Monday from 12 Noon until 6 PM.

Friends may convey condolences and sign the online register at

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