Enid News and Eagle
Norma Gilliland Oberlander of Covington, Okla., went to be with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013. She was just four days past her 100th birthday, which was celebrated at her home among many dear friends and family.
Norma was born on a farm near Pawnee, Okla., to Rev. William Bartlett Gilliland and Jessie Cannon Gilliland on Jan. 15, 1913.
She attended grade school in a one-room country school, Oak Grove, near Pawnee. As the daughter of a pastor, she moved to many towns in Oklahoma during her formative years, and attended schools in Pawnee, Drummond, Stillwater and Alva. She received her teacher’s certificate from Northwestern State Teachers College in Alva and later attended Phillips University.
During one of her trips home from college, she met Jake Oberlander at her father’s church. They were married in 1934, and then lived the remainder of their lives in the Covington and Garber communities. They celebrated 61 wonderful years of marriage until Jake’s passing in 1995.
Norma always said that God gives everyone at least one talent, and she believed her talent was teaching. She taught at Lone Star School in the Sinclair District, north of Covington, and later in Garber. She continued her interest in education and become the first female member of the Covington Board of Education. She also served on the Covington Town Board, Garfield County Library Board and was a charter member of Covington Garden Club.
She and Jake owned and operated the Oberlander Service Station and Propane Co. for over 50 years.
She loved flowers, especially roses. She thought she struck gold when she discovered the “knockout rose.” After each cold Oklahoma winter, she looked forward to the awakening of spring, when she could plant annuals throughout her yard.
Norma was blessed with a beautiful singing voice. She began singing at her father’s church and continued to sing and play the piano for numerous community events for more than 50 years. She loved to sing the gospel hymns.
She was a devoted and dedicated wife, mother and grandmother.
She is survived by her daughter, Lynn Oberlander Holloman and husband Jim Holloman of Edmond, Okla.; and her four grandchildren, Amy Holloman Adams and husband Kip Adams of Fort Worth, Texas, Erin Holloman Scott and husband Tim Scott, Matthew Holloman and wife Ashley, all of Edmond, Okla., and Andrew Holloman and wife Padgett of Tampa, Fla. She had nine great-grandchildren, whom she considered her joy and treasure. Norma is also survived by an extended family of nieces, nephews and cousins.
Throughout her life, she was blessed with numerous friends of all ages. She cherished the moments of sharing with her loved ones, a kind and Godly word of advice and encouragement.
Norma was an independent spirit, full of wisdom and grace. She possessed a tenacious faith and a natural beauty. She believed she was led by God’s goodness and mercy through many difficult times, including the Great Depression, the Second World War, the Dust Bowl, and Oklahoma’s hot summers without electricity.
She has shared with us a line from one of her favorite old hymns: “For nothing good have I, whereby Thy grace to claim, I’ll wash my garments white, in the blood of Calvary’s Lamb.”
Service will be 10 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 26, 2013, at Covington United Methodist Church, with Rev. Ruth Atterberry and Dr. Mark Hitchcock. Burial will be in Covington Cemetery under the direction of Ladusau-Evans Funeral Home. Family will receive friends at Ladusau-Evans Funeral Home on Friday, Jan. 25, 2013, from 5-6 p.m.
Memorial contributions may be made to Child Evangelism Fellowship of Oklahoma or Covington United Methodist Church with Ladusau-Evans Funeral Home serving as custodian of the funds.
Condolences may be made online at www.ladusaue vans.com.
(Submitted by family)