Mom's life revolved around children, church
Laura Divins kept a special place in her heart for children — hundreds of children, her loved ones said.
“She was always very energetic and always very kind and really tried to engage the young children with learning,” said Brian Devlin of Bradford Woods, who was a student in Divins' preschool class more than 25 years ago.
Laura “Jane” Divins of Oakmont died from a stroke on Thursday, Oct. 25, 2012, in Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. She was 88.
Mrs. Divins was visiting her daughter, Barbara Guerriero of Powell, Ohio, when she was hospitalized.
A former Ross resident, Mrs. Divins was a preschool teacher's assistant who never shied away from hard work, Guerriero said.
“We moved around and my father built every house we lived in. My mother was a true partner. My mother helped build those houses,” she said.
Born Feb. 24, 1924, in Punxsutawney, Mrs. Divins graduated from Punxsutawney High School in 1942 and married James Robert “Bob” Divins three years later.
While her daughter and son attended Perrysville Elementary School in the mid- to late 1950s, Mrs. Divins was one of the “hot dog ladies” — mothers who volunteered to cook hot dogs for students once a month during a time when hot lunches in schools were not the norm, Guerriero said.
“And that was a really big thing to a little kid at that time,” she said.
Mrs. Divins later became a registrar and preschool teacher's assistant at Hiland Preschool, part of Hiland Presbyterian Church in Ross.
“The family joke is, we never wanted to go to Ross Park Mall shopping with her because ... every 20 feet she would run into a student or former student and wanted to relive those memories,” Guerriero said.
Mrs. Divins retired in 2002 after more than 30 years at Hiland. She loved travel, the outdoors and dogs, her daughter said.
She remained active in the church, where she served on committees, assisted with Vacation Bible School and chaired a women's circle before moving to Oakmont.
In 2006, 14 years after her husband died, she moved from Ross to Presbyterian SeniorCare's Westminster Place, an assisted-living facility in Oakmont.
In addition to her daughter, Mrs. Divins is survived by her son, James E. “Jim” Divins of New Creek, W.Va.
Her husband, James; sister, Leota “Belle” Thompson Moore; and brother, Bernard “Bus” Thompson, preceded her in death.
Services will take place at 11 a.m. Tuesday in T.B. Devlin Funeral Home, 806 Perry Highway, Ross. Entombment will follow in Allegheny County Memorial Park Mausoleum.
Tory N. Parrish is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-380-5662 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.