Honoring a lifelong friendship prompted Bernardyne Vipperman to establish the Marion Letha Milton Scholarship at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma.
It seems Marion’s life of service started as a baby, sharing a mother’s milk with Howard Vipperman. Friendship continued even when miles separated the families. Each pursued their separate careers with Marion teaching and Howard founding VIP Rubber Co.
Pursuing a dream of college was not an easy task for Marion. Her desire to attend the Oklahoma College for Women resulted in giving young Haileyville students a scholarship to USAO.
Her education came with much sacrifice and hard work. Marion pursued her dream, working, receiving honors, and sharing this knowledge to the very end. This is evidenced by her tutoring young students from the retirement center where she spent her last years.
Marion was born in Haileyville, Oklahoma, to John and Inez Milton. She graduated from Haileyville High School as valedictorian and secretary-treasurer of her class. Her good friend, Howard Vipperman, was president of the class.
After graduating from Oklahoma State University with a degree in math, her first teaching job was at Haileyville. She then taught 36 years in the Tulsa School system.
Retiring in 1986, Marion moved to the Sportsman Club area at Lake Eufaula. She remained active in the Tulsa Retired Teachers Association.
She kept in touch with her former students and helped many with their college tuition. A student revealed that Marion kept him and several other football players eligible by helping with or doing their math work. “We might not have had a winning football team except for her.”
An accomplished pianist, she played for the Glee Club and several churches. She has been described as a loyal friend.
Loyalty and love for her hometown, Haileyville, kept Marion going back to every reunion – the great joy of her life.
The scholarship is available to Haileyville students who wish to attend USAO. Back to Gallery