June 20, 1922 ~ September 19, 2012
ARLINGTON -- Louise Bohannon passed away on Wednesday, September 19, 2012 in Arlington. Celebration of Life Services will be held for Louise Spiegelmire Bohannon on Saturday, September 29, 2012 at First United Methodist Church, Arlington, Texas. Louise was born June 20, 1922 in Tucumcari, New Mexico, to John and Clara Spiegelmire. At Tucumcari High School, she participated in band, orchestra, and was the accompanist for the choirs. She graduated at age 16 as Valedictorian of the Class of 1940. She attended McMurry University on a Valedictorian and Choir/Band Scholarship, where she earned a BS degree in Music Education. While there, she also played clarinet in the band, tuba in the orchestra, and accompanied all choral groups. She went on to work at McMurry as instructor of music theory and vocal coach, and as accompanist for students and the McMurry chanters. She earned a Master of Music Education from Texas Christian University in 1949. Her teaching career continued at North Texas Agriculture College in Arlington (currently UTA). In 1953, Louise opened a private piano studio and later owned and operated the Arlington Conservatory, providing instruction in piano, organ, voice, band instruments, ballet, art and preschool music. In addition to teaching piano for several decades, she taught in the Arlington ISD as a Music Specialist from 1968 until retiring in 1987. In the 1950's, Louise assisted in the production of the Civic Chorus summer musicals, opera excerpts and the Messiah at Christmas. She was the accompanist for The Messiah (good training for her current position accompanying THE Messiah!) and directed the outdoor summer musicals. She was active with the Ft. Worth Opera Association, Civic Music in Ft. Worth, and the Community and Ft. Worth Symphony Concerts in Arlington. She was a member of the chorus and piano quartet sponsored by the Euterpean Club of Ft. Worth and helped organize the Arlington Music Teachers Association. She also served as accompanist for the Chinese Association Choir at UTA. Louise had a passion for both the arts and education and a heart for serving others. She earned many awards in her life, including Teacher of the Year from Rankin Elementary, 1976-77; Texas PTA Honorary Life Membership; Twenty-first Century Award from Texas Retired Teachers; and Arlington's Outstanding Sr. Citizen of the year for 1991. As an active member of the Arlington Story League, she held many offices and told stories to hundreds of school children across the district. In 2004 she received the First Place Award from the National Story League Short Story Writing Contest, Adult Division. As a certified instructor in arthritis aquatics, Louise helped many people with their exercise programs at Hugh Smith Pool. For years she crocheted baby blankets for the Lamar PEP Program, afghans for Meals on Wheels, and most recently baby caps for Arlington Memorial Hospital. A member of First Methodist Church since 1948, she was active in the Chancel Choir, Ambassador Hand Bell Choir, and served on various commissions. She was the pianist for Aldersgate Sunday School class for 60 years. Louise is survived by her daughter Mary Nunn and son-in-law Jimmy of Lubbock, TX; son John Bohannon and daughter-in-law Kara of Golden, CO; grandchildren Jaime and Scott Montgomery and Michael Nunn, and Patrick and Anna Louise Bohannon; brother Joe Spiegelmire of Spain; sister-in-law Mary Spiegerlmire of Tucumcari, NM; nieces and nephews; and many dear, devoted friends. Wade Family Funeral Home Arlington, 817-274-9233
Louise and I worked across the hall from one another at Thornton Elementary school from about 1977 until 1989. I was the strings teacher and she always made sure that I knew which kids should be recruited for the orchestra, even though that meant taking some of the best kids out of her own class. She wanted what was best for them, not what was good for herself. I always admired her determination to move as long as she possibly could and faithfulness to her swim therepy for her arthritis as well as her encouragement to others who needed it. And I could always count on getting an angel to watch over me in the form of a Christmas card each year. Your mom was consistant, faithful, kind and a very dear friend.