Bobby Joe Qualls

November 16, 1939 - January 17, 2014

Bobby Joe Qualls, 74, of Jefferson City, passed away Friday, January 17, 2014, with his family at his side, after a three year battle with cancer. He was born November 16, 1939, in Paden, Okla., a son of the late Elzie David and Wilma Fern (Vanzant) Qualls. He attended Shawnee High School in Shawnee, Okla., and was a 1957 graduate of Crooked Oak High School in Oklahoma City, Okla. Bobby went on to graduate in 1966 from Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Okla., where he earned his degree in fire protection technology. On November 11, 1983, Bobby was united in marriage in Oklahoma City, Okla., to Arla Baclesse, who survives at their home. Bobby was an EMT and Captain with the Oklahoma City Fire Department until 1981. Bobby earned many awards for his selfless valor during his 20 year career as a Oklahoma City firefighter. He also worked for the Department of Corrections as Fire and Safety Director from 1983 until 1991. He established the St. Anthony's Mobile Coronary Care Unit. Bobby was a member of the Oklahoma City Retired Firefighters Association, the Fraternal Order of Eagles, Sons of the American Legion, the Missouri Republicans, the Red Knight Motorcycle Club, Lions Club, and Wesley United Methodist Church. He loved motorcycling, fishing, traveling, and spending time with family. Along with his wife Arla, Bobby is also survived by a son: Zane Qualls (wife Linda) of Shawnee, Okla.; three daughters: Robin Stigall of Jefferson City, Mo., Jennifer Qualls of Oklahoma City, Okla., Shari Crawford of Oklahoma City, Okla.; one brother: Bill (Cecil) Qualls of Muldrow, Okla.; two sisters: Nelma (Johnny) Young of Prague, Okla, and Connie (Harold) Haas of Oklahoma City, Okla.; a sister-in-law: Arden (Lynn) Steele; nine grandchildren: Lucas (Jennifer), Zachary, Brandi, April (David), Douglas (Kassy), Derek, Kara, Cole and Dane; a great-granddaughter: Kamiree; and a great-grandson: Sullivan. Friends will be received from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., Monday, January 20, 2014, at Wesley United Methodist Church, 2727 Wesley Street, Jefferson City, MO 65109. Funeral Services will follow at 1:00 p.m. Monday at the Wesley United Methodist Church with Rev. Tom Vansant officiating. Bobby will take his last ride on the Old American LaFrance Fire truck to his final resting place at Hawthorn Memorial Gardens. Expressions of sympathy may be made to the Missouri Cancer Associates Chemotherapy Department. Arrangements are under the direction of HOUSER-MILLARD Funeral Directors, 2613 West Main Street, Jefferson City, MO 65109. (573) 636-3838. Condolences may be left for the family online at

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