Alta Evalee Givens Mears of Moore, Oklahoma, departed this life on January 30, 2022. She was born on the E. Givens Homestead east of Kendrick, Oklahoma, on July 29, 1920, to Lawrence F. and Carrie Jane (Osborn) Givens.
The youngest of three sisters, Alta lived a childhood in a home filled with love and laughter. As a child she lived in Kendrick, Depew, Shamrock, and Terlton, Oklahoma and Plains, Texas.
Alta was a determined, selfless, caring woman who, over the course of many years touched hundreds, if not thousands of lives. As a young adult, she traveled to Washington D.C. where she spent a year and a half working for the War Department following the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Upon returning home to Kendrick, she began a lifelong career in teaching, and community service.
Back in Kendrick, and despite not having a college degree, she obtained a job teaching business classes and was the senior class sponsor. Having identified her passion for the profession, she continued to teach during the day while simultaneously taking correspondence courses to obtain her bachelor’s degree in teaching. In the summers, she attended classes at Central State University. Her teaching career continued in Milfay and Chandler. In 1946, she began teaching at State Center in Oklahoma County where she met a charming superintendent, Boise C. Mears – her boss. They subsequently married on February 22, 1947.
Alta graduated from Central State University in 1947 with a degree in Business Education and English. In 1949, Alta and Boise had their only child, Janie Karen.
Alta and Boise continued their teaching and administrative careers together around central Oklahoma in school districts in Milfay, Mason, Choctaw, Prairie Valley, Graham, and Moore – touching the lives of countless students. After completing her master’s degree at Central State University, Alta taught part-time at Rose State College and Central State University during the summer of 1971. In 1973, Alta began teaching full time in the Business Division at Rose State College. Her teaching career ended there when she retired in 1980.
Alta was a longtime member of state and national business education associations serving in many different offices and receiving many awards for her work. For her outstanding effort in the field of business education, Alta was selected to receive the Outstanding Business Educator Award in 1979 presented by the Oklahoma Business Education Association. Alta was also a member of Moore First United Methodist Church, the Friendship Sunday School Class, Oklahoma Eastern Star, and a lifetime member of the Central State University Alumni Association.
After retirement, Alta volunteered at Moore High School in the counseling department with the registrar, at the church, and as an ambassador for the Moore Chamber of Commerce. She also enjoyed going to school events where her grandsons were participating, and she never missed a swim meet. She enjoyed reading, sewing, and traveling and was a phenomenal cook.
In 1999, Alta’s home at 400 Cedar Lane was destroyed during the May 3rd tornado. No tornado could stop Alta; she was undeterred. When her son-in-law, Clinton, told her the house was destroyed, the first thing she said was, “Will you build me a new home?” and added home-owner/homebuilder to her list of family relationships.
It seems fitting that her parents named her Alta – which means height, lofty, elevated . . . not because of her stature, but because Alta spent her many years supporting and elevating others. Whether it was the many students whose lives she impacted, the selfless gift of her time while volunteering, making meals and memories for her family over Sunday lunch or sending typewritten letters regularly to her grandsons in college so their mailboxes would not be empty, Alta gave to others her precious time and talents. Alta leaves a lasting legacy from a life well-lived.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the following:
·Moore 1st United Methodist Church, 201 West Main Street, Moore, OK 73160
·Aging Services, Inc., 1179 East Main Street, Norman, OK 73071
·Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, 3355 South Purdue, Oklahoma City, OK 73179
For donations please write Moore Public Schools on the check memo line
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