In Memoram: Mary Stobaugh Shambarger, 1935-2022

Mary Shambarger, the Lena Goodwin Trimble Professor of Music, emerita at Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, Arkansas, died on February 27 in Rogers, Arkansas. She was 86 years old.

A native of Morrilton, Arkansas, Shamarger earned a bachelor’s degree in music from Louisiana State University and a master’s degree from the University of Arkansas.

She began her career at Cassville High School in Missouri, where she met her husband who was the school’s basketball coach. The couple moved to Walnut Ridge, Arkansas, where they took positions at Williams Baptist College. After six years, they moved on to Ouachita Baptist University in 1966.

While on faculty at Ouachita Baptist University, Shamarger served as chair of the department of applied music, and coordinator of voice programs. She was the Arkansas governor of the National Association of Teachers of Singing and the university’s representative for the Arkansas Women of Higher Education. Professor Shambarger formed and directed The Ouachi-Tones, an all-female choral ensemble. The group traveled and performed extensively throughout Arkansas, the U.S., and abroad. In 1991, after 25 years, she chose to restructure the group and formed The Ouachita Sounds, an ensemble combining women and men.

Professor Shambarger retired in 1998, after serving on the faculty at Ouachita Baptist University for 32 years.

Filed Under: In Memoriam


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  1. David Lau says:

    I graduated from Williams Baptist College ( originally,Southern Baptist College ) in 1967,and from Ouachita Baptist University in 1969. Professor Shambarger got me involved with the opera workshop,men ‘s quartet,traveling choir and church youth choir.
    ( I was majoring in Science and Mathematics )
    I did visit her while I attended the AP Workshop at Henderson State and Homecoming. She was my most respected professor at both Williams
    and Ouachita. She was an educator model for me ( I retired as a High School Science and Math Teacher and Adjunct Professor at Dallas Community College ). I miss her as a God ‘s faithful servant,with a kind heart and lady of grace. While visiting her,she asked me about still serving the Lord. My response was,singing with church choir and evangelistic choir and a die hard song leader. Even today,78 years of age,still lead singing at worship services and direct all seniors choir.
    Thank you Mrs. Shambarger. Perhaps,you may meet my wife,Irene,who was the director of church music at DCBC,in Heaven. Irene was an accomplished organist and violinist and accompanist.

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