Harold Arthur Loch
June 09, 1952 – October 10, 2012
On June 9th, 1952, Harold Arthur Loch blessed the lives of Harold R Loch, Jr. and Patsy Jean Loch (Clayton) in San Antonio Texas. Harold lived most of his 60 years in Oklahoma City, OK. Harold attended Putnam City Schools and was involved in Putnam City United Methodist Church Youth activities.
Harold was always an easy child, eager to please and in school, had a genuine joy of learning and pride of achieving high grades. His favorite subjects were the sciences and history, and favorite personal activities were roller skating. Harold's first summer job was with his adoptive father, "Tiny" Clayton of Clayton Installations, along with Harold's best friend Joe Brantley. Later, Harold worked at Comet Skating Rink, and pursued his love of speed skating. Harold proudly saved his own money to buy a Honda motorcycle.
October of 1969, during Harold's senior year of high school there was an unfortunate car accident that would forever squelch the traditional dreams and ambitions of young adults. With severe brain damage and after multiple resuscitations, 3 months at Baptist Hospital, and 2 more years in Children's Convalescent Center in Bethany Oklahoma, Harold was pronounced comatose with no discernible prognosis for recovery.
His recovery did evolve but by increments so small and slow the recognition of his awareness could not be specifically pinpointed. He did become able to respond but was permanently disabled with use of only 1 arm, uncorrectable vision impairment and labored cognitive response time.
Harold accepted his lot with inspiring grace of demeanor. He relentlessly persevered in relearning the basic skills of eating and speaking that most of us, very much take for granted. His earliest attempts to communicate were eye blinks and then later to verbally form letters to spell out words, before he was able to form full words, then sentences. He seldom showed even the slightest frustration, only some fatigue from the grueling effort itself.
The social network of the 1970's--CB Radios--assisted greatly in Harold's speech and socialization. He was known on the airwaves as "Wheelchair." Together with "Papa & Mama Wheelie" and little sister "Sweet & Sassy", he attended CB "coffee break" meets at local restaurants. Some CB friends came to the house to visit him there when weather was inclement. The CB radio was the vehicle for a newfound freedom for Harold. There he enjoyed the company of warm and accepting individuals, gracious enough to seek him out on regular nights and hours. Many were protective of his right to enjoy this pastime when an occasional rude remark was made of his slower speech transmissions.
Harold came to enjoy activities of watching television programs of Nova and NASCAR. WWF Wrestling was his surrogate to enjoy classic male physicality. Harold would spend hours playing solitaire, at one time owning up to 20 decks of cards-or parts thereof, as they were all cherished well past legibility. Later when a computer was obtained, the cards went to live on a farm where they could run and play.
But Harold's favorite activity of all was to enjoy family gatherings, preferably the ones that included an abundance of food! Luckily, the Clayton family includes many good cooks and plates were seldom empty. Although Harold's selections were not allowed to touch each other on the plate, their solitude did not last long.
In August of 2011, Harold suffered a stroke, which caused him a steady decline. On October 10, 2012, Harold's loving spirit was freed of his mortal bonds.
Harold was preceded by: Grandparents-George & Leola Davis, Harold & Janice Loch, Father-Harold R. Loch, Adoptive Father L.L. Clayton, Uncle Glenn Davis, and Nephew Bryan C. Grant.
Harold is survived by: Mother, Pat Clayton, Sisters--Donna Eddy, Susan Clayton, Kelly Mayes, Brother-Bob and Sister In-law Laura Clayton, Nieces-Deannie Heckert, Sara Mayes, Nephew Scott Grant, 2 great nieces and 1 great nephew. Harold will be greatly missed by family, friends and acquaintances, all of whom were deeply touched by his perpetually sweet nature and gentle spirit despite his considerable limitations.