Cover photo for Laura B. Pierce, Ed.D.'s Obituary
Laura B. Pierce, Ed.D. Profile Photo
1945 Laura B. Pierce 2024

Laura B. Pierce, Ed.D.

October 5, 1945 — January 13, 2024

Fort Worth

Laura Boehl Pierce, Ed.D., (born Laura Anne Boehl), 78, passed away on January 13, 2024 at James L. West Center for Dementia Care in Fort Worth, Texas. She was born on October 5, 1945 in Birmingham, Alabama, to John Clement Boehl and Helen Eloise Boehl (King).

Laura grew up in Navy Point, Warrington, Pensacola, Florida. She graduated from Pensacola Catholic High School in Pensacola, Florida in 1963. She was a journalist for the high school newspaper, the homeroom secretary, and became a member of the permanent Conservation of Sodality of the Blessed Lady in 1963. After high school she attended Dominican College in New Orleans, Louisiana, and was a member of Alpha Chi Epsilon. Laura then transferred to Pensacola Junior College, in Pensacola, Florida in 1964, where she met her future husband, Robert H. Pierce. In 1965, they transferred to Florida State University (Tallahassee, Florida), where she earned a bachelor's degree in Vocational Home Economics in 1967. Laura earned a master's degree in Early Childhood Education (1989, Texas Wesleyan University, Fort Worth, Texas) and a doctorate in Early Childhood Education (2003, University of North Texas, Denton, Texas).

Laura was fascinated early-on with children’s development and learning. Many times, the family relocated due to Robert's career, but this did not limit her passion to spread her love of learning: 

  • In 1968, she began her 40-year career in education as a teacher of home economics at Pensacola High School (Escambia County School District). 
  • After having their children, Brad and Amy, in 1975, the family relocated to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida where Laura trained to be a Montessori teacher. She taught kindergarten and preschool at L'Academic Montessori School and became the school's Assistant Director. 
  • Moving to Texas (1978), Laura taught at Plano Senior High School (Plano I.S.D.). At Lookout Community Preschool in Richardson, Texas, she taught preschool and became school Director. 
  • In 1983 at Wunsche High School (Spring I.S.D.), combining two passions, Laura instructed high school students how to work with pre-school students in the "Pre-Employment Laboratory Education in Child Care". She developed and implemented the Child Care Lab program from its inception. Laura served as acting principal and earned Teacher of the Year.  She also created the curriculum for middle school home economics which her son, Brad, took in seventh grade.
  • Laura taught kindergarten (1987) at Speer Elementary and West Elementary (Arlington I.S.D.) for 20 years, combined. She taught professional development to other teachers within the District regularly. She retired in 2008 from the District, Laura Pierce, Ed.D. instructed undergraduates at the University of Texas at Arlington and graduates via online distance courses at the University of West Alabama until 2014. 

Laura married Robert on New Year's Eve in 1966 in Pensacola, Florida. They were happily married for 56 years. Laura was a loving wife to Robert, and a loving mother, grandmother and aunt. She was active in the Arlington Retired School Employees Association and the Historian, and a faithful member of St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church. She enjoyed travel, golf, quilting, embroidery, aerobics and loved learning, reading and spending time with her grandsons. She was a life-long learner and it was important to share the love of learning with others. 

Laura was preceded in death by her parents, John Clement Boehl and Helen Eloise Boehl (King), her brother, John Clement Boehl, Jr., and her husband, Robert Harold Pierce.

Laura is survived by her son, Bradley Pierce and wife (Kimberly Pierce), their sons, Jacob Pierce and wife (Madeleine Pierce) and Nathan Pierce of Fort Worth, Texas; daughter, Amy Pierce and husband (Curt Van Riper), their sons, Leoden Van Riper and Sigursen Van Riper of Austin, Texas; loving in-laws; cousins; nieces; nephews and a host of long-time friends.

A Visitation and Rosary will be held at Emerald Hills Funeral Home, from 5 P.M. to 7 P.M. (Rosary at 5:45 P.M.) on Friday, January 26, 2024. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church, 5819 W. Pleasant Ridge Rd. on Saturday, January 27, 2024, at 10 A.M., immediately followed by the Rite of Committal and Burial at Emerald Hills Funeral Home and Memorial Park, 500 Kennedale Sublett Rd., Kennedale TX, 76060. A luncheon will be held at the church after the burial is complete.

Please send flowers, plant a tree, or make a donation to the James L. West Senior Day Program (jameslwest.org) or The Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration (theaftd.org) honoring Laura B. Pierce.

The family wishes to extend their gratitude to all the loving caregivers, nurses, doctors, staff and administrators who cared for Laura, including those at James L. West Center for Dementia Care, HomeWatch Caregivers, Community Hospice, The Vantage Memory Care and Silverado Memory Care. Laura's caregivers served above and beyond and are part of our family. Even when Laura could not speak, she would smile, stare with her beautiful blue-grey eyes, reach out to hold your hand and give kisses. Laura’s love and kindness shone through every moment of her life, and she made a large impact in many lives. Laura demonstrated every day, the words of Mother Teresa of Calcutta, "Small things done with great love will change the world."

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Laura B. Pierce, Ed.D., please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Friday, January 26, 2024

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

Emerald Hills Funeral Home & Memorial Park

500 Kennedale Sublett Rd, Kennedale, TX 76060

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Mass

Saturday, January 27, 2024

10:00 - 11:00 am (Central time)

St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church

5819 W Pleasant Ridge Rd, Arlington, TX 76016

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Burial

Saturday, January 27, 2024

11:30am - 12:30 pm (Central time)

Emerald Hills Funeral Home & Memorial Park

500 Kennedale Sublett Rd, Kennedale, TX 76060

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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