Lowell-Tims Funeral Home
Altus, Oklahoma 73521
Mary Alice Bearden Green was born August 15th, 1923, at Duke, Oklahoma, the eighth child of Ed and Bertha Orillia Bearden. For years, Mary thought her name was “Maryrun” because her father was a cripple and she always had to run and get him help and her little brother, Monte Del, was always lost playing in the old rusted abandoned cars. Mary sought to have an education but only finished 8th grade when she married William Thomas “Tom” Green on May 4th, 1940. Through fate, they acquired a telephone company, 27 lines on fence posts, which was later known as Southwest Oklahoma Telephone Company. But from the first phones, where you had to “crank the ringers”, to party lines, to a modern telephone system and internet company, SWOI, they survived and saw it grow. Mary was the “Number Please” voice for years as she sat at the switchboard 24/7 and answered all calls, delivering bad news as well as good, telling a child where their parents had gone during school, and sending aid to those who had been taken ill. Both Mary and Tom have been honored as being Pioneers in the telephone industry.
Mary’s son, Donivan, was born on her 20th birthday and Joan came along nearly 4 years later. Mary and Tom were considered pillars in the Duke community helping to start the Duke Chamber of Commerce, sponsoring the Duke School and all its activities, lifetime members in the First Baptist Church where Mary taught Sunday School for some 37 years, even teaching in her home when she was unable to attend services through the graciousness of the Lydia Sunday School ladies coming there instead. They never forgot her dedication with flowers on the anniversary of her becoming their teacher and a traditional live Christmas wreath.
Mary loved her town, her church, her home and her family. Her wish was to pass away at her home surrounded by all her beautiful things and her family. Dr. Ballard, Hospice, several caregivers and family made that happen. Melba Combs, a very special friend, came over every morning for years. They spent many hours cleaning, laughing, talking, and sharing stories. Lovingly called “Mur,” Mary was blessed to have grandchildren, great grandchildren and a great, great grandchild. When her great grandsons Sage, Lane and Lance came in after school to visit with her or watch TV while she slept, it was the highlight of her day.
Mary’s hobbies were her family, but she (the family would say we) put up a Christmas tree that was known far and wide for years as school children from all over and adults were invited to see World War II ornaments, lead icicles, reflectors, the old hot lights and bubble lights (until they gave out). Many a child learned the true meaning of Christmas from Mary’s stories. Mary had a quote for every occasion, “I had worse places on my lips and kept on a whistling,” “When God closes a door, He opens a window” and “It’ll be a brighter day tomorrow.” In her later years, Mary was an avid Thunder fan and she and Joan spent many hours rooting them on. She even went to a game when she was 90.
Mary worked hard all her life, going to the office every weekday until back pain prevented it some 2 years ago. She pulled bolls in her younger day and was a fabulous cook, creating things on a limited budget that made us all feel special. I guess if Mur and Tom real hobby would be working hard. She loved her Green Farms’ operation, farming and cows. She wanted to be buried with gloves on, but I loved her hands. Everyone should honor the hard working hands of a mother. Mary also loved to hear her son-in-law George play the guitar and sing because she said he sang so softly. Friday she tried to sing the words of a hymn with him. She passed away peacefully in her home February 19th, 2017.
Mary leaves behind her son Donivan Green, her daughter Joan and husband George Wycoff, grandchildren Becky and husband Phillip Combs, Michelle and husband Dan Jacobsma, Rana and husband Alan Womack. Great grandchildren include Taylor and wife Macee Combs, RyLee Combs, Sydney and Sage Shaw, Lane and Lance Womack, and great-great grandchild Tacee Combs as well as newly acquired Campbell and Luke Jacobsma. She also has a sister-in-law Cleo Bearden. Mary was preceded in death by her husband of 61-years, Tom, her daughter-in-law Jane Green, one grandchild Timothy Wycoff, her parents and siblings and Tom’s parents and siblings.
Funeral services for Mary Green will be at 2 p.m., Tuesday, February 21, 2017, at the Duke Baptist Church with Pastor Ralph Chapman officiating. Interment will follow at Duke Rock Cemetery under the direction of Lowell-Tims Funeral Home, of Altus.
The family will greet friends at Lowell-Tims Funeral Home on Monday evening, Monday, February 20, 2017, 6 until 7 p.m.
The family request memorials be made to the Duke School Foundation or Duke Baptist Church, in memory of Mary Green.
Online tributes may be made to the family at www.Lowell-Tims.com