Mary Lou Fowler was born February 23, 1937 to Lee and Louise (Johnson) Carpenter at Reed, Oklahoma and passed away at Tulsa, Oklahoma on April 4, 2012.
Mary Lou attended Lake Creek Schools in Greer County, Oklahoma from first through 12th grade. She graduated high school in 1955 and enrolled at Southwestern Oklahoma State University where she graduated with a BS degree in Elementary Education.
While in high school Mary Lou met the love of her life, George Fowler, at a basketball game. They dated while they were both in high school and were married in 1955 during Mary Lou’s freshman year in college. George graduated from Southwestern a year prior to Mary Lou and spent a year in the army while she finished her degree.
Mary Lou and George moved to Tulsa and began their careers in the Tulsa Public Schools after her graduation. Mary Lou’s first teaching assignment was at Paul Revere Elementary School where she taught first grade. When Revere closed, she was transferred to Waite Phillips Elementary School where she taught a semester and was then transferred to the new Francis Scott Key Elementary School where she spent the next approximately 30 years until her retirement.
After retirement Mary Lou taught in the adult education department of the school system for a short time and then began a long period of volunteer works, bridge playing and enjoying her many good friends. Mary Lou volunteered at United Way where she was a member of the “drivers club,” and at Assistance League of Tulsa where she especially enjoyed working in Operation School Bell. She was president of the Assistance League from 1995 to 1996. Mary Lou was involved in the Tulsa Retired Education Association and was President of that group. She was an active member of PEO until it became difficult for her to attend meetings.
Mary Lou also taught junior high girls’ Sunday school classes at Parkview Baptist Church for several years. She and George were active members of the Encouragers Sunday school class at Parkview.
Mary Lou was preceded in death by her father and mother; her brother; and her and George’s first infant son, Joe Wayne. She is survived by her husband of 56 years, George Fowler, their sons Jayme Fowler and Kent Fowler, Kent’s wife Kim, and their son Jackson, and Mary Lou's sister, Sue Stovall.
While Mary Lou’s interests were varied and significant, she possessed an everlasting love for children. Until her memory began to fail, she could recognize and remember the names of practically every student she had taught (and their parents). She always enjoyed meeting them and visiting about their times at Key. As Mary Lou’s memory failed, the one thing that would always bring a big smile to her face and place a special sparkle in her eyes was the sight of a child. She dearly loved children and was always so thankful that she had the privilege of spending such a significant part of her life with them.
Mary Lou’s family would like to express their deepest appreciation to those at the Sterling House/Clare Bridge Facility for the care, attention and love they provided her during the past two and a half years. They also appreciate those who provided care for her during her final weeks at Companions Specialized Care Center. Sojourn and Hometown Hospice provided excellent care and are also appreciated.
A memorial service will be held at Parkview Baptist Church for those who would like to express their loss and appreciation for Mary Lou Fowler.