Mary Whitaker, beloved wife, mother, sister, and precious friend to many, went to meet her Lord on February 6, 2020. Mary was born on March 23, 1930 in Hartford, Alabama, was raised in Black, Alabama where she met and married her soulmate, Marvin Whitaker, spending the next 71 plus years sharing a wonderful life full of joy and adventure. She was a dedicated Army spouse, serving Army soldiers and their families with selfless service for 30 years during their military service. As a beloved wife and mother, Mary travelled the world, raising and nurturing an incredible family while putting everyone’s needs above her own.
Mary had a special love of flowers and horticulture, which led her to a career teaching and sharing that love with special needs students in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. She was also a very talented artist winning several awards in various art shows. Her love of painting and art history inspired one of her granddaughters to obtain an art degree, and others to share Mary’s appreciation of all the beauty and tranquility of art. Education was of paramount importance to Mary, as she ensured her five children obtained multiple college degrees, while Mary obtained three separate college degrees of her own, from the City College of San Francisco in California, Judson College in Alabama, and Troy University in Troy, Alabama.
A devout, Christian woman, Mary’s faith was strong, and she instilled that belief and faith in Christ to her children each and every day. Mary was preceded in death by her parents, Maver and Kate Austin. She is survived by her loving husband, Marvin, and five wonderful children, Mike (Lynda) Whitaker of Black, Alabama, Marcia (Dwight) Reightnour of Bonifay, Florida, Mark (Lisa) Whitaker of Huntsville, Alabama, Mitch Whitaker of Bonifay, Florida, and Marvin S. Whitaker of Madison, Alabama. Mary also leaves behind a loving sister, Karol Turner, 12 grandchildren, and 18 great-grandchildren.
Visitation will be Sunday, February 9, 2020 from 2:00 to 3:00 PM at Ward-Wilson Funeral Home, Dothan, Alabama, followed by funeral service at 3:00 PM. Flowers are being accepted or donations can be made in Mary’s honor to the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America at alzfdn.org.
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