Wyre, Gloria Moore, 1938
Gloria Wyre was a “quiet force,” in the words of former colleagues; she could “put things in focusfor you.”
Born Gloria Moore on May 14, 1938, to the Rev. Louis and Irma Adams Moore, she grew up with a deep love for God and for learning. She earned a B.A. from Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and began teaching elementary grades in Bogalusa, Alabama. She taught there from 1960 to 1968, marrying Arthell Wyre in 1962.
The Wyres moved to Albion in 1969, and Gloria taught elementary grades at North School, which became Caldwell School during her tenure. In her twenty-four years at Caldwell, until her untimely death in 1993, all of the students who passed through that school came to know her. Both they and her teaching colleagues felt a particular love and respect for her. Her teaching style combined professional knowledge, enriched by graduate study at Albion College, Western Michigan University, and Wayne State University, with unswerving reliance on traditional values and a real love of her “babies.” One former student summarized this by saying, “Mrs. Wyre seemed to show sincere interest in her students and a genuine love for her work. She provided good early fundamentals with an ‘old school temperament,’ while giving off a soft side, essential in elementary classes. She was a true professional.”
She focused her energies on her work, her family life, and her church. She was a member of the professional service sorority Eta Phi Beta, a group providing services to developmentally disabled children and scholarships to graduating high school seniors. She held two different offices in this group, but unofficially she has been variously described at the group’s focus, its mother, and its conscience. In 1981 her classroom work was publicly recognized when she received the Chemical Bank’s Teacher Proficiency Award for exceptional service to students at the elementary level. In 1982 she initiated Caldwell School’s adoption of a child in India, through the Christian Children’s Fund.
While her three children were growing up, she helped to guide their development by doing such things as Girl Scout leadership in after-school hours. She was also a member of the Bethel Baptist Church, attending regularly and joining in the singing, but not the choir. Her participation in the church perhaps illustrates an important theme of her life; she had a fine soprano voice, and she knew all the hymns in the book by heart – her pastor father had required this of her in childhood – but she sang from the congregation, not in any place where she would be given special attention. She never sought the spotlight, but she always had much to give and gave unstintingly.
Source: Albion Public Library, Local History Room
From: Albion AAUW. Some Notable Women of the Albion Area. Albion, Michigan: American Association of University Women. 1998.