PATIENCE LATTING

Obituary
  • "To The Latting Family: We offer our sympathy, thoughts and..."
  • "Mayor Latting was one of my mentors in my early years of..."
    - Dorotha Edwards
  • "Memories of "Mrs. Latting": tennis, tennis, the fight for..."
    - Brian Mitchell
  • "We were sad when she left office. We never had a better..."
    - SHERIE HODGES
  • "Cynthia: So sorry for the loss of your mother. The many..."
    - Mark Dixon

August 27, 1918 - December 29, 2012 OKLAHOMA CITY Patience Sewell Latting passed away on December 29, 2012. Born August 27, 1918, in Texhoma, Oklahoma. She was the daughter of Frank Asa and Leila Yates Sewell and the sister of Frank A. Sewell, Jr., who predeceased her. She graduated from Classen High School in Oklahoma City in 1934. She received her Bachelor's degree in Mathematics from the University of Oklahoma in 1938. She graduated Magna Cum Laude, was named the outstanding senior woman, and earned membership in Phi Beta Kappa as a junior. She went on to earn a Master's degree in Economics and Statistics from Columbia University in New York City in 1939. She then worked as a researcher for Chase Manhattan Bank before returning to Oklahoma to marry Trimble B. Latting, a lawyer and an oil man, in 1941. She was active in the Parent Teacher Association and the League of Women Voters. As Legislative Chairman of the Oklahoma Congress of Parents and Teachers from 1960-67, she became concerned about the under-representation of the state's most populous counties. Latting was a witness in the landmark Federal District Court reapportionment case in 1964. Using her background in mathematics and statistics, she assisted the Court in drawing new state legislative district boundaries that finally gave equal representation to Oklahoma's urban areas. In 1967, Latting became the first woman member of the Oklahoma City Council. In 1971, she received national attention when she was elected Oklahoma City's Mayor. At the time, Oklahoma City, with a population of 350,000, became the first city in the country with a population greater than 200,000, to elect a woman mayor. Latting served as Mayor until she retired from elective office in 1983. She served as Chairman of the Board of the Oklahoma City Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City from 1983-89. Latting was inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 1980. She received the Constitution Award from Rogers State College in 1995 for her dedication to public service and devotion to constitutional ideas. A bust of Latting was placed at the entrance to the Oklahoma City Mayor's office in 2005. In 2011, Oklahoma City's newest library, the Patience S. Latting Northwest Library at N.W. 122nd and MacArthur Avenue, was named in her honor. She received numerous awards for civic work, including the Outstanding Oklahoman by Phi Beta Kappa in 1976, the Woman of the Year in Civic Work by the Oklahoma City Chapter of Theta Sigma Phi in 1961, and the Outstanding Woman of Oklahoma by the Soroptimists in 1969. She enjoyed playing tennis, jogging, bird-watching, playing the piano, singing, and writing poetry. She and her husband Trimble, with whom she celebrated their fifty-fifth anniversary prior to his death in 1996, had four children: Francelia Latting Wilson, who predeceased her, Nancy Latting Spelman, James Trimble Latting, and Cynthia Latting Weimer. Latting has seven grandchildren: Brooke Patience Spelman, Erin Latting Spelman Johnson, Cynthia Anne Wilson, Robin Marie Wilson, Christen Sewell Weimer, James Scott Weimer, and Justin Latting Weimer. She also has one great grandchild: Brooke Wilson Goodson. She was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, and great grandmother, and she will be sorely missed by her family. Funeral Services will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, January 5, 2013 at Westminster Presbyterian Church. The family suggests that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to: The Patience S. Latting Library Memorial Fund, c/o Oklahoma Community Foundation, P.O. Box 1146, Oklahoma City, OK 73101, or to another .

Published in The Oklahoman from Jan. 3 to Jan. 4, 2013
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