Print this page


Place of Birth:
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Place of Death:
Tulsa, Oklahoma
Retired Judge
View Map - Get Directions

William Judson Whistler

William Whistler died on April 21, 2013 after a short illness. There will be a service held in his honor at 1:30 on Saturday, April 27th at Inverness Village in Tulsa.

William Judson Whistler was born October 9, 1928 in Oklahoma City to Don Whistler and Alice York Whistler; he was the second of their five children.

In July of 1946, having not yet graduated from high school, he joined the army to take advantage of the G.I. bill. He was discharged just before Thanksgiving in 1947 and enrolled at the University of Oklahoma.

In August 1950 he was called back into the army to serve in the Korean War. He went to Ft.Sill and was enrolled in Officer Candidate School. His father died in June of 1951 which precipitated his return from a tour of duty in Korea to help at home. He was discharged in November 1951.

Without benefit of a high school or university diploma, he enrolled in the University of Oklahoma, College of Law. While at law school he was the associate editor of the Law Review, on the honor council, and was the chairman of the honor counsel his senior year. He was the president of his law fraternity, Phi Alpha Delta. He graduated from law school in June 1955 and joined Robert L. Cox as a collection attorney.

He married Orcella Ford on January 7, 1956. In June, of that year, they moved to Vinita where he joined a private law practice. Teresa, Christine, and William Gregory were all born there.

In 1967 he ran for and was elected as Associate District Judge of Craig County and in 1974 as District Judge of the 12th Judicial District. While District Judge, he was elected as District Judge of the Northeastern Section of Oklahoma which included seven counties in northeastern Oklahoma. He served on the Judicial Counsel for Southern Oklahoma and two terms on the Court of the Judiciary including two years on the Appellate Court of the Judiciary. During his years on the bench he tried many cases, with and without a jury, including one death sentence and the famous Gene Leroy Hart Case. He retired in 1991. He lived at Inverness Village where he was a regular at the bridge table and played competitive pool.

He is survived by his wife, Orcella and his daughters and their spouses, Teresa Whistler and David Adair and Christine and Steve Savage. His two grandchildren were both married in the fall, they are Ford and Deidra Savage and Meredith and Clark Thomas.

Condolences may be sent through the guest book on this page.

Service Information

Time: 27-Apr-2013 1:30 pm
Location: Inverness Village
Address: 3800 West 71st Street,Tulsa,OK


We offer our deepest sympathies on the loss of William Judson Whistler. Please offer a favorite memory of William on this memorial to share more of his life experiences with family and friends.