The Duncan Banner


October 19, 2013

James Edward Rawls

April 19, 1929 — Oct. 18, 2013

DUNCAN — James Edward Rawls, resident of Duncan, passed away at his home Oct. 18, 2013.

Born April 19, 1929, in Temple, Texas, he was the only son of Ed and Billie Rawls. Ed James Edward Rawls, resident of Duncan, passed away at his home Oct. 18, and his wife, Sally have been residents of Duncan since 1968.

He attended Lamar High School in Houston, Texas, and graduated from Wentworth Military Academy in 1947. Two years were spent in Red River New Mexico where he worked at the Monte Vista Lodge that his parents owned and managed. It was there that he met his love and future wife, Sally Lou Jones.

He began his college years at the University of Texas where he studied architecture. He began taking geology classes and realized that was his strongest interest.

Ed pursued geology and transferred to Oklahoma A & M (Oklahoma State University) where he earned a bachelor’s degree in geology in 1953. Petroleum Geology continued to be his profession and passion for more than 50 years.

He was employed by Sinclair Oil and Gas in 1953, and continued with that company until Ed and his family relocated to Duncan in 1968. He was employed with Perkins Energy for two years, after which he became an independent geologist.

Throughout his career he had discovered many renowned oil fields. Among his many discoveries were the Newman (Swastika) Field and PF Reef field in Nolan Co., Texas; the Lost Soldier Field in Sweetwater Co., Wyoming. He was instrumental in the discovery of the Healdton (Arbuckle) Field in Carter Co., OK while with Sinclair in Ardmore.

As an independent he is credited with many successful wells in Love, Stephens, Marshall, Harmon and Jefferson Counties, as well as Grayson, Cooke, Clay, Nolan and Montague Counties in Texas. As an independent he also generated large exploratory ventures in southern Oklahoma and north Texas.

He was a member of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists as well as the Ardmore Geological Society and Oklahoma City Geological Society.

He found great pleasure in collecting numerous life interests. He was an avid fossil collector, specifically trilobites that he enjoyed looking for with his children. He loved nature and continued to watch nature shows until his final days. One of his interests was collecting, working and building HO model trains. He donated his large collection to help fund the restoration and relocation of the Rock Island 905 Museum in Fuqua Park located in Duncan.

He had a love for art and music. Traveling to Taos and Santa Fe, NM was one of the things that Ed and Sally cherished which began a love for collecting art in 1975, and continued throughout his life.

He is survived by his wife, Sally Lou; three children and their families: Gay Faulkenberry and husband Roger, Mark Rawls and wife Diana, and Amy Miller and husband Wes; seven grandchildren: Garrett and Kali Rawls, Kari and Brandon Riedel, Hunter and Andrea Harris, Guy Faulkenberry, Peyton Miller, Preston Miller, and Casey Miller; six great-grandchildren: Kane Rawls, Maddox Rawls, Addison Riedel, Branson Riedel, Halli Harris and Hudsyn Harris.

He was pre-deceased by his parents, Ed and Billie Rawls; his father and mother-in-law, Ray C. and Sally Jones; and a son, Guy Preston Rawls.

His family would like to express their appreciation and thanks to the caregivers at the Chisholm Trail Hospice and Duncan Regional Hospital.

Memorials or contributions may be made to American Cancer Society, the Chisholm Trail Hospice, 2000 W. Elk, Duncan, OK 73533 or the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History

“…. As for man, his days are like grass; as a flower of the field, so he flourishes; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place is acknowledged no longer.” Psalm 103. 15-16.

A celebration of life is planned for a later date.

Online condolences may be made to the family at

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