Memorial services for the Reverend Arlen Lowery Fowler will be at 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 25, 2020, at St. Philip's Episcopal Church. The Reverend Michael Stephenson will officiate. Following a period of declining health, Arlen died peacefully on Monday, Jan. 13, 2020, at the age of 91 years, seven months and three days.
Arlen L. Fowler was born in Bartlesville, Oka., on June 10, 1928 to Benjamin Fowler and Aleene (Clark) Fowler. He graduated from the Bartlesville school system and attended Oklahoma A&M in Stillwater. He held degrees from Oklahoma State University, Princeton and Washington State University.
Arlen spent his summers as a teenager working at a local swimming pool as a lifeguard. Arlen always talked about the two gifts of that summer job. First, he was mentored by his boss, “Coach,” who gave him great advice and a lifelong love of humor. Second, and most importantly, it was where he met the love of his life, Mary Jane.
Mary Jane and Arlen were married in November of 1950, in Bartlesville. In June of 1952, Arlen was called to service and deployed to Korea as an infantry Lieutenant. Six weeks before he left their first child (Chris) was born.
Arlen had a vibrant life fulfilling several lifelong dreams.
In 1963, Arlen took the family to Pullman Washington where he received his PHD from Washington State University in Afro-American History. His dissertation, The Black Infantry in The West, was one of the first books ever written on the Buffalo soldiers. It is still in print and available on Amazon globally.
In 1976, Arlen left his position as associate professor of history at Eastern Illinois University, moved his family to Oklahoma, and served as vice-president for student affairs at the University of Tulsa.
In 1983, Arlen became the fulltime pastor of St. Philip's Episcopal Church in Ardmore and served the church until retiring. While serving in Ardmore, Arlen took a sabbatical from the parish and went to Princeton Seminary where he studied the Shoah and wrote a deeply moving book “Facing Auschwitz: A Christian Imperative,” which is also in print and available on Amazon.
Arlen and Mary Jane had enjoyed over 67 years of marriage, including four children, Sally, Clark, Andrew and Mary Christine, when Mary Jane passed away in August of 2018.
In addition to his parents, Ben and Aleene Fowler, and wife, Mary Jane, Arlen was preceded in death by his daughter, Mary Christine McArthur.
Survivors include, Clark Fowler and wife, Valerie of Chicago, daughter, Sally Haughey, Paris, France; Andrew Fowler and wife, Sue of Las Vegas; his grandchildren, Courtney Ferrante, Liz Hartley, Ben Haughey, Caitlin McArthur, Kelsey McBoyd, Abbey Haughey and Levi Fowler; also great-grandchildren, Leo, Olivia, Kaiden and Kamden.
All who knew Arlen knew that he loved to laugh. Up until his final days, he still could be heard joking with friends, family, other residents of Brookdale and with his nurses. Rest in peace Arlen L. Fowler, you will truly be missed but not forgotten.
Service arrangements and Cremation-With-Care are entrusted to Harvey-Douglas Funeral Home and Crematory. Words of comfort may be sent to the family online at www.hdouglasfuneralhome.com.
Posted online on June 22, 2020