Calling upon her love for education and her athletic endurance, Evelyn Carleton Singer outsmarted and outdistanced multiple myeloma for more than 14 years, refusing to give in to the cancer’s relentless attack.
Evelyn, her last lesson taught, her seemingly endless energy spent, died Tuesday, Aug. 28, at age 82.
Evelyn always wanted to be a teacher, and she lived that desire to the fullest. In a career that spanned more than three decades, she had an impact on the lives of thousands of young people, their parents and colleagues. Most of her work was in the Austin Independent School District at Walnut Creek and Highland Park elementary schools. She began her teaching career in Blanco and also taught in Lone Star and Buffalo in East Texas.
She was considered a teacher’s teacher, leading many workshops for colleagues. Her dry, understated wit combined with her professionalism endeared her to the people she served and with whom she worked. She was a member of Alpha Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma, international honor society for women educators.
Another passion was distance running. She competed in more than 20 Capitol 10,000 races and numerous half marathons. In 1994, she won her age division in the Austin Motorola Marathon. With her running slowed by age, Evelyn took up golf, playing at courses around Austin and Houston until diagnosed with cancer. Husband Griff Singer joined her in running and golf during their 32 years together. He acknowledged he could never catch her in a race.
Evelyn was a loving, loyal child, mother and grandmother. She dutifully aided her aging parents. And she was extremely proud of her granddaughters. Although they arrived much later in her life, she cherished every opportunity to be with them.
As a youngster, Evelyn was active in East Side Baptist Church in her hometown of Gonzales, and later at St. John’s, Tarrytown and University United Methodist churches in Austin. At the time of her death, she was a member of Riverbend Church.
She graduated from Gonzales High School and received an associate degree from what is now Tarleton State University. Her second year there she was named homecoming queen. She received the Bachelor of Science in education from what is now Texas State University and did graduate work at The University of Texas at Austin.
Evelyn was the daughter of the late Harvey and Oneta Carleton. She is survived by her husband, S. Griffin Singer of Austin; a son, Michael Selby and wife Kathryn of University Park; stepdaughter, Cathy Becker and husband Clay of San Antonio; stepson, Mark Singer and wife Patricia of Bellaire; granddaughters Paige Selby, Brynn Selby and Siena Singer; and three brothers, Samuel Carleton of Angleton and William Carleton and Dale Carleton of Gonzales.
Visitation will be from 6-8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 5, at Weed-Corley-Fish Funeral Home, 3125 N. Lamar. A celebration of Evelyn’s life will be at the funeral chapel at 10 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 6, with the Rev. Gordon Smith officiating.
The family appreciates so much the tender, thoughtful care rendered for Evelyn by Dr. Donna Weber and Tiffany Richards APN of the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center Myeloma Clinic; Dr. Michael Kasper and Donna Prebble APN and members of the unbelievable infusion team at Texas Oncology; and the Hospice Austin team of Melanie, Brita and Mudita.
The family recommends remembrances be made to the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center (please specify for multiple myeloma research), P.O. Box 4486, Houston, Texas 77210-4486, or to Hospice of Austin, 4107 Spicewood Springs Road, Suite 100, Austin, Texas 78759.
Arrangements by Weed-Corley-Fish Funeral Home, Austin, Texas – (512) 452-8811. Remembrances may be left at www.wcfish.com.