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1932 Roberta 2023

Roberta Ann Irby

February 17, 1932 — January 18, 2023

Roberta Ann Irby passed into the arms of her SAVIOR at 90 years, 11 months in Tulsa, Oklahoma on January 18, 2023 surrounded by her loving family.

She was born February 17, 1932 in Okemah, OK, the third of Robert and M. Irene (Myers) Unterkircher’s six children. Roberta grew up on a farm near Mason, Oklahoma, Okfuskee County and graduated from Mason High School in 1950. She continued her education in Stillwater, OK at Oklahoma A & M with a Bachelor’s degree in Home Economics, graduating with scholastic and beauty queen honors in 1954. While acquiring her degree, she roomed with Mary McFarland and was introduced on a blind date to Mary’s fiancé’s little brother, James R. Irby, when they attended a church function. Jim quickly became the love of her life, and they were united in marriage at her parents’ home on June 3, 1954 after completion of their final semester. GOD blessed them with three children Dick, Cindy, and Anita.

Jim and Roberta were entrepreneurs at heart. Together they started and operated two clothing stores, Irby’s Dept Store in Mannford, OK established in 1966 and the Clothes Closet in Stillwater, OK established in 1976. They retired from a life of working side by side in the public in 1996, which allowed her to maintain many of life’s pleasure between severe health issues as GOD allowed. She always looked forward to any opportunity to cook for their extending family, making sure no one left their home with any possibility of getting another bite down and insuring leftovers were taken with them. After retirement, she continued to enjoy a return to her roots of country life, grands, sewing, sitting in the sunshine, reading, cooking, traveling, entering fair competition projects and gardening.

Roberta was known by many to be humble. By many others she was seen as very bold, never wavering in her purpose of the moment, focused, and most importantly strong in her faith in GOD. She loved her whole family deeply, was always looking forward to an opportunity to spend time learning everything that was going on in each of their lives, and being a great encourager to each of them individually. Roberta was an avid note taker and kept a running list on most any given subject matter. She saved a poem in her Bible that was a prayer in essence, which when paraphrased, is a great summation of her life view…LORD, now that I have gained much wisdom, help me not feel that I have to set everyone straight all the time.

Roberta’s memory will be kept alive by her loving husband of 68 years James R. Irby; her children, James R. (Dick) Irby Jr. and wife Linda of Keller, Texas, Cindy Harp and husband Ron of Tulsa, Oklahoma, Anita Cathey and husband Jeff of Carrolton, Texas; siblings, Maxine Haydon of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Freda Wilson and husband Clif of Fairview, Oklahoma, Kay Adams and husband Bobby of Okemah, Oklahoma; 14 grandchildren, Ryan Irby and wife Heather Irby, Matthew Harp and wife Alison, Mackenzie Hoffman and husband Aaron, Travis Irby and wife Rachel, Graham Harp and wife Emily, Cameron Harp and wife Polly, Constance Toledo and husband Tyler, Rachel Cathey, Olivia Harp, Meg Cathy and fiancé Logan Shea, Elliott Harp and fiancé Hanna Barnosky, Aubria Peercy and husband Tommy, Jacob Cathey, Peyton Harp; and 16 great grandchildren, Callie Hoffman, Caroline Irby, Avery Hoffman, Marcail Harp, Adaline Irby, Emma Hoffman, Hayes Irby, Andrew Harp, Lilly Irby, Micah Harp, Caleb Harp, Josie Irby, Jesse Harp, Sadie Hoffman, Baby Peercy, and Baby Hoffman.

She goes to be with her parents, sister, Nelda Ferguson, and brother Charles Unterkircher.

Online condolences may be left for the family by clicking on "Shae A Memory" on this page or at Facebook at

In lieu of flowers, Roberta was passionate about serving in the church kitchen during times of fellowship and communion ministries and donations would be welcomed by their church.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Roberta Ann Irby , please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, January 20, 2023

9:00am - 5:00 pm (Central time)

Dighton-Marler Funeral Home Chapel

5106 North Washington Street, Stillwater, OK 74075

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

Funeral Services

Saturday, January 21, 2023

Starts at 10:00 am (Central time)

University Heights Baptist Church

323 South Knoblock Street, Stillwater, OK 74074

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


Saturday, January 21, 2023

Starts at 2:30 pm (Central time)

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