ELGIN - A celebration of life graveside service for Mary Alice Harl, 93, was held Tuesday, April 2, 2019, at the Masonic Cemetery in Temple, with the Rev. Dale Nease officiating. The service was under the direction of Elgin Funeral Home.
Mrs. Harl passed away on Sunday, March 31, 2019, in Elgin, at the age of 93.
Mary Alice was born Aug. 25, 1925, in Heavener, to Roy and Josie Knecht. She grew up in Heavener, where she graduated from Heavener High School in 1943. She attended the University of Oklahoma, Eastern Oklahoma in Wilburton, Poteau Junior College, and Oklahoma State University and was working in a grocery store when she met her future husband Robert H. Harl.
Bob and Mary were married in the First Presbyterian Church on June 12, 1948, in Tulsa. They spent their first year in Heavener, where Bob was teaching after he was recently discharged as a World War II Veteran.
In 1949, they moved to Stillwater, where they both attended OSU. In 1950, Robert Randall was born, so Mary didn’t finish school, but Bob did. With the outbreak of the Korean War, Bob returned to his country’s service, completing two years in the United States Navy, and Mary returned to Heavener to live with her parents.
When Bob was discharged from the Navy, they returned to Stillwater where he earned his master’s degree in Agriculture and received his certification to teach Agricultural Education. Bob’s first teaching job took them to Leon, where Bob taught Vocational Agriculture and Mary was a housewife.
While in Leon, two daughters were born, Carly Jo and Cynthia Louise. They moved to Temple, Lone Grove and then to Denton, Texas, where Mary attended Texas Woman’s University.
While in Denton, a son, William Roy, was born in 1960. From Denton, they moved to Calvin, and while Bob taught school, Mary raised the family and attended East Central University in Ada, where she graduated with a bachelor of science degree in Education in 1962. Mary’s first teaching job was in Cement, followed by assignments in Temple, Idabel, Marlow and Clinton Public Schools where she retired.
She and her husband, children and grandchildren celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in San Antonio, Texas, in June 1998.
She was a member of Cumberland Presbyterian Church in Clinton, N.A.R.F.E., C.P.W. and the Retired Teachers of Oklahoma. She volunteered with the Literacy Program, Meals on Wheels, The Route 66 Museum, the Mission Store and taught a Sunday School class.
She is survived by her son, Randy Harl and his wife Cassie, of Houston, Texas; daughter, Carly Douglass and her husband Herschell, of Elgin; daughter, Cindy Powell and her husband John, of Bray; son, Bill Harl and his wife Shannon, of Tomball, Texas; 10 grandchildren: Robert Douglass and his wife Jennifer, of Fort Worth, Texas; Brandi Douglass and Roni Finch, of Katy, Texas; CJ Powell and his wife Whitney, of Bray; Carly Beth Messersmith and her husband Wilson, of Duncan; Grant Harl, of Houston; Bobby Harl, of Houston; Brecca Dressler and her husband Mark, of Comanche; Allison Harl, of Tomball, Texas; Daphne Harl, of Tomball, Texas; and William Harl, of Tomball, Texas;
Nine precious great-grandchildren; her sister, Joanne Fischer and her husband Tony, of Prescott, Ariz.; numerous nieces and nephews; and many special friends who took care of her over the years.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Robert Harl; her parents, Roy and Josie Knecht; and her brothers: Don and Gilbert Knecht and their wives: Josie and Clarice.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to the Cumberland Presbyterian Church in Clinton or to medical research.