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Olivia Tunley Mitchell

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Olivia Tunley Mitchell Obituary
Mitchell Olivia Tunley Mitchell, age 92, departed this life Monday, May 22, 2017. Born April 21, 1925 in Henryetta, Oklahoma, she was the younger of two children born to Roy Tunley and Ellen Haynes Tunley. Olivia received her 8th grade certificate in 1939 and finished Rosenwald High School in 1943. She then worked in the Sheet Metal Department at Tinker Field, Oklahoma during World War II, "Keeping our planes flying". Olivia entered Langston University, a HBC school, in 1944. While in school, she worked in the Registrar's Office, the English Department, and for the Dean of Administration to earn room and board. She also worked various odd jobs in the summer to pay for books and clothing. Olivia earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in 1948, majoring in Commerce with a minor in Education. Olivia met her future husband Rufus, while both were employed at the State Training School for Boys in Boley, Oklahoma. Married in 1949, they moved to Columbus, Ohio in 1950. To this union four boys were born. During this time, Olivia was content being a superb full time housewife and mother. With her sons nearly grown, she returned to school in 1966 at The Ohio State University, earning her teaching certificate. She then began working for the Columbus Board of Education as an Elementary School teacher from which she later retired in 1984. Olivia was a faithful member of Stewart Memorial Christian Methodist Episcopal Church and had served on the Stewardess Board. She was predeceased by her parents, her sister Helen Othenia Lennox and her beloved husband Rufus C. Mitchell. She leaves to cherish her memory, sons, Roy, John, Elmer, and Daryl Mitchell; daughters-in-law, Roxann, Randi, and Rebecca; grandchildren, Alisha, Kamilah, Johne', Ryan, Keith, Omari, Abagail, Mara and Brandon; great-grandchildren, Christian, Maryam, Caden, Muhammed, Jaci, Ayah, Caleb; and a multitude of cousins, nieces, nephews, and friends. Homegoing service 11 a.m. Wednesday, May 31, 2017 at the Stewart Memorial C.M.E. Church, 60 S. Cypress Ave., Columbus, OH 43222, where the family will receive friends 10 a.m. until the start of service. Interment in Forest Lawn Memorial Gardens. Arrangements entrusted to DIEHL-WHITTAKER FUNERAL SERVICE, 720 E. Long St. To sign the online guestbook, please visit www.diehl-whittaker.com/obits


Published in The Columbus Dispatch from May 29 to May 30, 2017
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