A memorial service celebrating the life of Stella Marie Olson will be 2 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013 in the Chapel of the Garden at Rice Funeral Service. Following the service Marie will be laid to rest beside her husband, Carl, at Woodlawn Cemetery.
She passed away at her home Sunday morning, Feb. 17, 2013 with her family by her side. She was 90.
The daughter of an oil field worker, Marie was born on Aug. 10, 1922, at Apperson, Osage County, Oklahoma in what would have been known as a tent city in those days.
Her parents were Gertrude (Maish) and Robert Lee Walters, Sr. She spent her childhood years in both Talala and Claremore. Following her graduation from Claremore High School, Marie used her musical gifting to continue her education—earning a degree from Tulsa University.
With Oklahoma offering a job opportunity to a young man from Indiana, Marie and Carl Raymond Olson seemed destined to meet.
Having been accompanied to a local dance by one another’s best friends, all four soon learned for whom they were better suited — two committed marriages resulted from that chance meeting.
On Aug. 15, 1942, Marie and Carl Olson married in a Claremore ceremony. Their first three years were spent in Michigan City, Indiana, Carl’s hometown. Then they came to Oklahoma for a visit and remained, making Claremore home through the remainder of their lives.
Marie and Carl shared a rich and full life—both hard workers, passionate community volunteers and devoted parents to their daughter. And when daughter, Cheryl had her own family, Ma-Moo became music to Marie’s ears when spoken by her two chosen granddaughters. Marie was an executive secretary for McDonnell-Douglas for nearly 40 years, retiring in the late seventies.
She was an active member of First Christian Church and Eastern Star, a member of the White Shrine, a ladies auxiliary member with both the American Legion and the VFW and an active member of the local branch of AARP.
She devoted her full energy to each of these worthy organizations, holding offices in many.
Because of the Olson families patriotism and strong commitment to lasting friendships, they made veterans reunions a yearly family affair.
They also traveled extensively both near and far. And having met at a dance, many of these travels included the two of them showing off their expertise on the dance floor — often winning awards for their talents. Carl passed away Sept. 11, 1998.
Marie’s rich memories, the support of her treasured family and her many friends kept her strong. She became even more involved in activities in the community, which included becoming the travel coordinator for the AARP organization.
She organized numerous trips, the biggest including a 9-11 anniversary visit to New York City and a tour of Bloom Fest in New Mexico.
Marie continued to embrace life every single day for her entire life—even ringing in the new year of 2013 with new hopes and goals. She was indeed an inspiration to all who knew her.
Marie is survived by her daughter, Cheryl Lea Way of the home in Claremore; her two granddaughters, Stephanie Lea Hise and husband Clint of Pryor and Phyliss Lea Lenz and husband Derrick of Olathe, KS; five great grandchildren, Caleb, Natalie and Bristol of Pryor and Cooper and Weston of Olathe and a sister, Sheila Ann Knight of Owasso.
She was preceded by her parents, husband, brother, Robert Lee Walters, Jr. and a sister who died in childhood.