Celebrating the life of Gladys Reba O'Neal
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She attended grade school at Prairie Home and Olustee, later graduating from high school at Porter High. She attended college at Oklahoma College for Women in Chickasha, Oklahoma, and was a graduate of Altus Junior College and Southwestern State College at Weatherford, Oklahoma. She also did graduate work in her field at the University of Oklahoma in Norman and the University of Denver in Denver, Colorado.,
Gladys taught school thirty-two years in Altus Public Schools. She taught one year at Porter High School, twenty-nine years at Washington Elementary School, and two years at Booker Kindergarten. She also taught in the Altus Head Start, Adult Education, and after-school tutoring programs. She was a member of Oklahoma Education Association, Retired Teachers' Association, American Legion Auxiliary, United Methodist Women, Church Women United.
An active member of the First United Methodist Church of Altus, having joined in 1940, Gladys served in many areas of the church. This included United Methodist Women, Country Kitchen Project, Council on Ministries, and the Official Administrative Board. At one time she helped with the layout for the weekly church paper, The Bellringer. She also helped document for printing The Historical Events of the United Methodist Church History. Gladys had the honor of being chosen by the Museum of the Western Prairie as one of the Living Legends of Jackson County. She was given the honor of being selected as 2001 Older American of the Year. In 2010, she was honored as the Western Oklahoma State College inductee to the WOSC Alumni Hall of Fame.
She was married to her high school sweetheart Jack O'Neal on December 5, 1926, and they farmed for thirteen years before moving into Altus. After Jack's return from service in World War II, he operated O'Neal Hardware with his brother Sam, and Gladys pursued her teaching career. They were privileged to spend 61 happy years together.
She was preceded in death by husband Jack O'Neal and her parents; four sisters, Eunice McCormick, Berthelle Coe, Winnie Kidd, and Betty St. Dizier; brothers-in-law Robert Kidd, Lonnie Coe, Norbert St. Dizier; a niece Mariesta Kidd Obenhaus, and nephews Tommy Obenhaus, Joe Bob Kidd, and Arvil Wright.
She is survived by five nieces, Debby and Lloyd Mullican, Amarillo; Sherri and Alvin Knight, Altus; Marion and Roy (Pee Wee) Cary, Duncan; Diane Landers, Altus; and Jo Dean Stephenson, Houston, TX.
Nephews surviving are Charley Kidd and Angela, Altus; Mike and Barbara O'Neal, Altus; Randy and Lynette O'Neal, Garland, TX; and Jack Copeland, Dimmitt, TX.
Other survivors are great nieces Stacy and Darrell Dixon, Boerne, Tx; Melanie Kidd, Altus; Jennifer and Greg LeMay, Weatherford; Amy and Kirk Estes, Canute; Kayla and Roger Brooks, Arizona; and Jamie Landers, Altus. Great nephews are Keith and Ricki Knight, Perry; Kevin Obenhaus, Oklahoma City; Scott Cary, Duncan; Sean and Jill Mullican, Flower Mound, TX; Shane and Elizabeth Mullican, Grand Prairie, TX; Tyler and Jennifer O'Neal, Todd and Becky O'Neal, Trey and Shera O'Neal, all of Garland, TX; Travis and Jennie O'Neal of Florida; Justin and Jamie Landers, Altus.
Other survivors are sisters-in-law Betty and Orley Tipton and Martha Raley, all of Altus.
Her pride and joy were her great-great nieces and nephews; Kylee, Tucker, and Quaid Dixon, Boerne, TX; Chesley Kidd, Altus; Aaron and Ryan LeMay, Weatherford, OK; Kyle Knight, Stillwater, OK; William, Shana, and Annabell Rose Cotton, Enid; Jake and Colton Estes, Canute; Malia and Madison O'Neal, Florida; Maggie, Saylor, Tag, Addison, Troop, Tate, Trott, Colby, and Avery O'Neal, Garland, TX; Zachary, Jordan, Daniel, and Bethany Brooks, all of Arizona; Bridgett Mullican of Grand Praire, TX; and Makena Mullican of Flower Mound, TX.
She affectionately called all her former students "her kids", many of whom survive her. She will be greatly missed by the many family, friends and students whose lives she touched and who loved her dearly.
Funeral arrangements are with Lowell-Tims Funeral Home and services will be held at the First United Methodist Church, Friday, December 3rd at 2:00 pm. Interment will follow in the Altus City Cemetery.
The family will receive guests at Lowell-Tims Funeral Home from 6:00 until 7:00 pm Thursday evening, December 2nd.
On-line tributes can be made to the family at www.lowell-tims.com
First United Methodist Church
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