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Diann L. McRee
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Obituary for Diann L. McRee

Diann Ware McRee was born in Granite, Oklahoma on November 23, 1943 to Percy and Lou (Wynn) Ware. She grew up in the Hester community southeast of Mangum where she attended Hester Baptist Church. It was there that she came to know Christ and was baptized.
Diann grew up riding horses on the family farm; her Daddy said she could ride the hair off of a horse. She loved music. Her Mother sold eggs and other farm products, as all farm families did and used some of this earned money to pay for piano lessons for her. And, Oh! She could play the piano!
Diann attended and graduated from Mangum High School In 1962. She attended the University of Central Oklahoma where she received her Bachelor's degree in 1974. She attended classes at Oklahoma State University as well, and later earned her Master’s degree from Southwestern Oklahoma State University in 1986. Her focus was Elementary Education and her love of music. She had a gift for teaching and she loved every student she taught.
In 1971 she married Bobby Whatley and from this union came one son, John Robert Whatley. Diann moved to southwest Oklahoma afterwards and taught at Olustee School from 1974-1975. She moved to Martha and taught there from 1976-1993 when the school closed. What an impact one person can have on so many lives. Her students loved her as much as she loved them. Diann taught First Grade and Music for many years at Martha Elementary. After the school closed, she moved to Shiprock, New Mexico where she taught on the Beclabato Navajo Reservation for many years. She also taught school in Oklahoma City and at Duke School.
She loved to travel, traveling the western half of the United States in a pick-up with a camper shell, sleeping at KOA campgrounds. She was unafraid to strike out and start a new adventure at any time. Of all the things she enjoyed, at the top of her list was her love for her grandchildren. “Ema” was her favorite title of all. Spending time with her grandchildren was all she talked about, and she spoiled the hound out of them.
There are two families to whom she was especially close to, the family of Bobby and Betty Bearden and the Helen Brown family.
Survivors include her son, John Robert Whatley and wife Becky, grandchildren, Emily Louise Whatley, Wyatt Percy Whatley and Susan Grace Whatley all of Russell, Oklahoma. One sister, LaJean Woodworth and husband Ted of Imperial, Mo. one nephew, Rick Woodworth and wife Kim of Annapolis, Mo. and special friends Betty Bearden and Helen Brown.
She is preceded in death by her parents; Percy and Lou Ware, one nephew, Danny Woodworth and a grandson, Robert Mark Whatley.


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