John Arleigh Pearce



A memorial service for John Arleigh Pearce was held on Saturday, June 15, 2019 at the First Baptist Church in Tahlequah, OK. John A. Pearce was born January 8, 1929 in Miami, OK. He was the only son of George and Frances Pearce. John passed away peacefully on June 13, 2019 with the love of his life, Martha at his side.
John became a Christian at a very young age and lived his life as a Christian and role model.
John was a member of the 1947 graduating class of Nowata High School in Nowata, OK. After graduating from high school, John followed pipe-lining where he operated a side boom catapillar for three years. John was drafted into the US Army in 1953 and served during the Korean War, building air strips for the US military to land planes in Korea.
After returning from the war in 1955, John met Martha in Nowata, OK. Martha was from Pottsville, Arkansas and the newly hired Home Economics teacher at the Nowata High School. John owned a local eatery, The Hickory House Café. He and Martha married May 25, 1956 and moved to Tahlequah that evening on their Honeymoon. John enrolled at Northeastern State University on the GI Bill the following Monday and graduated May of 1959. He was a Boy Scout Leader and organized the first Boy Scout Troop at the First United Methodist Church. John also served as an activity director at the United Methodist Home in the summer, even after he started teaching. John started his career in education in 1959 in the Tahlequah Public School system, teaching American History at the high school. In 1962, John became the Assistant Principal at the Tahlequah High School until 1964 when he moved to Assistant Superintendent. In 1968, John became the Superintendent of Tahlequah Public Schools until he retired, December 1987. Upon retirement John worked for Ruth Kelly Picture Studio in Muskogee, OK as their first full time sales representative going from town to town calling on Schools in Eastern Oklahoma for approximately five years before fully retiring as a result of his health. John fought a long battle with Alzheimer Disease.
John served in many educational organizations/associations over the years, such as the Board of Trustees of Oklahoma United Methodist Home, the Board of Directors for the Oklahoma Curriculum Improvement Commission, the Oklahoma Association of School Administrators, The Schools Advisory Council Eastern Oklahoma Development District, the State and National Association of School Administrators, the State and National Association of School Business Officials, the state Board of Directors for the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma, the Alpha Chi Honor Fraternity, Phi Delta Kappa and the Rho Theta Sigma Honor Societies, the Robert C. Byrd Honors Scholarship program and the Eastern Private Industry Council.
John was preceded in death by his Father, George & Mother Frances (McKibben) Pearce and Charlie Pearce (Step Father). Survivors include John's Wife Martha, one Son and Daughter-In-Law, John Calvin and Kelley Pearce of Jacksonville, Alabama, one Daughter LynnAnne Peters of Bixby, Oklahoma, three Grandsons, John Blake and Erica Pearce (Granddaughter-In-Law) of Cincinnati, OH, Preston Peters and AJ Peters of Bixby, OK, one Granddaughter, Morgan Pearce Bible and Dillon Bible (Grandson-In-Law) of Jacksonville, AL and five Great Grand Children, Tristan, Skylar and John Harper Pearce of Cincinnati, OH and Ava and John Mack Bible of Jacksonville, AL.
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Published on June 17, 2019
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4 posts

Judy Gamble
Jul 21, 2019
Thank you Lord for both John and Martha Pearce.
Iva Lee Quetone
Jul 07, 2019
So sorry for the loss of your husband, father & grandfather. John was an important part of my life and many others helping us get started in public education. He was a very good role model.
Jerry C. Bread, Sr.
Jun 27, 2019
I share my spirit and offer my condolences to the John Pearce Family. I praise Mr. Pearce as one of the "pioneers" of education, for his dedication, conviction, and loyalty to the profession and the people of Tahlequah. He was a partner in education with the Cherokee Nation and laid the foundation to a meaningful relationship for all concern. God bless his soul and be with the family.
John Pearce
Jun 17, 2019