An Oklahoma educator, who pioneered integration of special needs children into mainstream public education, Rosemarie Robinson, of Claremore, Oklahoma, died November 13, 2022, at Clarehouse in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She was 84 years old.
Born March 9th, 1938, in Wheeling, West Virginia, Rosemarie was the eldest of two daughters to John and Mary Ambrolavich. She earned a bachelor's degree from West Liberty State University in West Virginia and began her career in education as an elementary school teacher in the Wheeling area.
While a student at West Liberty, she met James L. Robinson, the star place kicker for the school's football team. They were married on June 21, 1958 and were together 59 years until James' death in 2017.
The couple moved to Claremore in 1970 where they raised four children. Their youngest son Darien, born with an intellectual disability, inspired Rosemarie to begin graduate study in special education at the University of Tulsa.
When she began her decades-long career as a special education teacher for Tulsa Public Schools in the 1970s, special needs children received their education in facilities apart from other students. Rosemarie fought for the rights of these children to be integrated into the schools in their neighborhoods, where such educational service is commonplace today throughout Oklahoma.
She is survived by her daughter Teresa Case (Bob) of Claremore, son James D (James Kroll) of Rancho Mirage, California, daughter Rachael McAnany (Kirk) of Tulsa, and son Darien of Claremore, her sister Ruth O'Boyle (Tom) of Ashland, Oregon, and three grandchildren.
A funeral mass at St. Cecilia Catholic Church in Claremore will be announced at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully asks for donations to Clarehouse, 7617 S Mingo Road in Tulsa.
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