Opal was born on October 30, 1932 in the family farmhouse outside Weatherford, Oklahoma and was the eighth child born to John and Helena (Thiessen) Dick. She developed a strong work ethic on the farm south of town where she helped with butchering and gardening. She remembered strolling in the yard with kittens and cats in her doll buggy, and she attended Normal View School through 8th grade. Her faith began with praying at meals as a child and grew through her teen years at Bethel Mennonite Church in Hydro. She graduated from Weatherford High School, and then joined sister, Gertrude, in Hinton working at the Hinton Hospital where she trained as a lab and x-ray technician. She met future husband, Paul Hampton at the First Baptist Church where they married in 1951. When Paul was called to the ministry, they moved their young family to Fort Worth, Texas to attend Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. During their years in Fort Worth, Opal was a working mother and lab technician. From 1963 through 1975, Opal was a pastor’s wife at churches in Loco, Graham, Verden, and Sterling, Oklahoma. In 1975, Opal and family moved back to Hinton and eventually lived back on Clark Street where Paul and Opal had begun their marriage. After 35 years of marriage to Paul, she became a widow at 54 years of age.
In 1970, she completed her Bachelor’s degree in Education from Oklahoma College of Liberal Arts in Chickasha, OK and began her teaching career in grades 7 and 8 at Friend School. In 1975, she completed her Master’s degree from Southwestern Oklahoma State University with additional certificates in Library Science and Administration. During her teaching career she taught in grades 3, 6, 7 and 8 and as Hinton’s librarian. As the first female administrator in Hinton, she served as principal at the elementary school for eight years. She then joined the staff at Southwestern Oklahoma State University where she served as adjunct professor and taught Reading and Education courses. Sharing her passion for reading, after retirement she began teaching adult literacy courses as well as English as a second language until 2021. Through her over 50 years in teaching, she touched the lives of many students.
In 1990, she married Lamar Crall (from her high school class in Weatherford). Through her 29-year marriage to Lamar, she renewed an interest in farming and purchased some farmland. As a child of the Depression, Opal was always thrifty with herself; but as a child of God, she was a regular tither and was always generous with others. After Lamar passed away, neighbors Karen and George adopted her and treated her as family throughout her final years (bringing food, working jigsaw puzzles, talking and laughing several times almost daily).
Often sharing her faith as a dear friend, counselor, college advisor and mentor, she also served as a teacher in Sunday School, with Girls in Action and at Falls Creek Baptist Assembly. Most recently she taught the Vota Vita (devoted life in Latin) class at First Baptist Church in Hinton. She was a prayer warrior and read through the Bible many times throughout her life. She loved her family and was Oklahoma Mother of the Year in 1986 in recognition of family, career and community service, demonstrated an affinity for reading (fiction, non-fiction, biographies, science, history, wheat-farming literature) and started libraries at several of the churches. She shared cooking and baking with almost everyone she knew and enjoyed flower and vegetable gardening (occasionally growing more rabbits in the garden than vegetables). Early memories included listening to opera on the radio, often singing while playing as a child. Opal began singing solos and in church choirs publicly as a young adult. She was an excellent seamstress, making most of the clothes for herself and her daughters. Later in life, she made beautiful quilts for each of her grandchildren.
Left to cherish her memory are, her children Dick and Phyllis Hampton of Garden City, NY, Kaye and David Burlison of Yukon, OK and Terry and Rick Franz of Rochester, MI; her brother-in-law David and Linda Hampton, her grandchildren Doug and Elif Hawkins, Scott and Katie Hampton, Allison and Brandon Williams, Alex and Amy Hampton, and Rachel Hampton; her great-grandchildren, Penny Hawkins, and Parker and Otis Williams; step-sons and Ed and Debbie Crall of Thomas, OK and Les and Laurie Crall of Weatherford, OK, and step-grandchildren, Erick and Shellie Franz, Maria Hawk, Krysta and Chris Schuler, Ty and Danielle Crall, and Wade Crall, Carlie Wood; several step-great grandchildren; and a host of other dear family and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents, husbands, Paul Hampton and Lamar Crall, infant son, Clark, her siblings and their spouses Johnny and Minnie Dick, infant brother, Carl Dick, Arthur Dick, Gertrude Dick, Elmer and Flossie Dick, Freda and Elmer Randol, and Roy and Virginia Dick.
Opal died July 13, 2022 at her home in Hinton. In lieu of sending flowers, please contribute in Opal’s honor to the Opal Hampton Memorial Scholarship Fund. Memorial donations may be sent to: Legacy Bank, PO Box 1038, Hinton, OK 73047. Visitation will be held from 9 am to 9 pm on Friday, July 15th at Turner Funeral Home in Hinton. A Celebration of Life service will be held at First Baptist Church, Hinton on August 6 at 11 am under the direction of Turner Funeral Homes, Hinton, OK. Condolences may be sent to the family at firstname.lastname@example.org, turnerfh.net, or you can find us on facebook.com (Turner Funeral Homes).