Mary Oakley was an outstanding Newfoundland and Labrador athlete for over 30 years. Her softball career spanned from 1967 to 1998 as part of the St. John’s Senior Ladies Softball League. In 1970, she won the League MVP for most doubles, most home runs, and most strikeouts. At the provincial senior level Mary played on eleven Senior “A” Championship Teams between 1967-1989 and during those years she won the 1974 Batting Title, the 1981 and 1989 MVP Award, and the 1975 and 1992 Sportsmanship and Ability Award. At the national level Mary represented Newfoundland and Labrador at ten Senior Ladies Fast-pitch Nationals and two Senior Ladies Slo-Pitch Nationals.
While her main strength was softball, she also excelled at a competitive level in a variety of other sports, including soccer and rowing. She played in the St. John’s Soccer Ladies League for 6 years, and in 1977 won MVP for the season and won the Ladies Provincial Championship. Beginning her rowing career in 1964, she rowed in several positions, never lost a race in every St. John’s Regatta she participated in, tied the old course record of 5:12 in 1973 at the St. John’s Regatta, and was stroke for the last four years that she rowed.
Throughout her career she has demonstrated outstanding sportsmanship to treat others in a congenial way in any circumstance. Mary Oakley has been acknowledged for her contributions to sport many times, including being picked as Oars Person of the Year for the St. John’s Regatta in 1973, being inducted into the Softball Newfoundland and Labrador Hall of Fame in 2014 and the Royal St. John’s Regatta Hall of Fame in 2015.