Willa Dene Pace
April 26, 1927 – April 1, 2021
Willa Dene Pace was born in Durant, Oklahoma to Joe Louis Scearce and Robbie Fleming Scearce on April 26, 1927. She was married to her high school sweetheart, Homer Eugene (Gene) Pace for fifty-three years, a union that lasted until his death in 1999. She is survived by her three children, Janis Munson, and her husband Curt of Edmond, Gary Pace of Scottsdale, Arizona and James Pace and his wife Philana of Tyler, Texas, her sister, Aulena Gibson, and husband Gib of OKC, her sister in law Barbara Scearce of Lawton, her brother, Robert and his wife Ginnie, of Kansas City and her six grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren of whom she was so proud.
Willa Dene graduated from Northeastern State College in Tahlequah, receiving her Bachelor’s Degree in 1948 followed by a Master’s Degree in Teaching in 1963 and in Library Science in 1964. She was a much-loved educator and media center director at Tahlequah High School in Tahlequah, Ok. for almost thirty years. Always, students and other faculty seemed to gravitate to Willa Dene. Throughout her retirement, Willa Dene would be delighted when THS alums or former co-workers would call, write, or visit to maintain their friendships with her.
Willa Dene’s list of professional associations, service clubs and volunteer organizations to which she lent her talents include: Quail Springs Methodist Church, PEO, Soroptimist Club, the Tahlequah Arts and Humanities Council, 20th Century Club, Delta Kappa Gamma, the sponsor for the THS Close Up organization that allowed students to visit Washington, DC, NEDA, and Delta Zeta Sorority.
She is preceded in death by her parents, her much loved brothers Joe Leland Scearce and his wife Carla of Bethesda, Maryland, and William Scearce of Lawton. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Quail Springs Methodist Church, 1461 N. Penn., OKC, Ok.73134