Jim was born April 27, 1933 in Clayton, Oklahoma to James H. and Zora L. (Bray) Wadley. He was raised and attended school in the Talihina area. June 9, 1956, Jim married Elna (Peggy) Adams in Wilburton, Oklahoma. On July 12, 1956, he was inducted into the United States Army where he proudly served his country. On June 30, 1962 he was honorably discharged. Jim returned to Wilburton where he was employed by Burke Jones Funeral Home and Hardware Store. The family moved to Texas, where Jim worked as a police officer for Waxahachie. They returned to McAlester, Oklahoma where Jim and Peggy founded Wadley’s EMS in 1967. He also worked for Holsom Bread Company and as a McAlester Police Officer. In 1974, Jim moved his family and business to Purcell. He worked as a Lexington Police Officer for a few years. Between 1967 and 1981, Jim opened services in Quinton, Ada, Durant, McAlester, and Noble. Through out his time in EMS, Jim was the president of the Oklahoma Ambulance Association, and served under 3 Governors on the State EMS Board, was honored as a Territorial Marshall in 1981, presented by Governor George Nigh. In 1991, Jim and Peggy founded Wadley’s Funeral Service. James volunteered as an Investigator for the Medical Examiners since 1999. They retired from EMS in 1994. Of all the awards James has received over the years, he was proudest of the Lifetime achievement award given by the Oklahoma Ambulance Association earlier this year. James was a Mason.
James H. Wadley, Jr.
Wadley's EMS #30
Elna, better known as Peggy, was born October 19, 1936, to Earnie A. and Vina Ideal (Hartley) Adams in Wilburton, OK. She graduated from Wilburton High School in 1954. She attended Eastern Oklahoma State College, earning her Associate of Science in Home Economics degree in 1956. June 9, 1956, Peggy Adams and James Wadley were united in marriage in Wilburton, OK. In the 1960's Peggy and James Wadley founded Wadley's Ambulance Service in McAlester, OK. They went on and opened services in Quinton, Ada and Durant before moving to Purcell in 1974. In the 1980's they opened a service in Noble and also reopened their McAlester service. Peggy has been a Nationally Registered Emergency Technician since 1972 when Oklahoma started certifying through the National Registry. She was in one of the first two EMT classes taught in Oklahoma and is one of the first 50 to be licensed in this state. In June 1991, Peggy and James purchased property in Purcell and opened Wadley's Funeral Service. Feeling like it was time to retire from the Ambulance business, in 1994 they backed out and allowed their children to take over. In April 1996, Peggy and James assisted thier son, David in the purchase of Wadley Care Center. Peggy was of the Assembly of God faith. She has had many interests over the years which include, reading, crochet, hand work, puzzles, cooking, being with her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren, and spending time with friends as well as helping people in need. She never met a stranger.
Elna L. Wadley
Wadley's EMS #37