The Transylvania Times -

Dewey R. Whitaker


Dewey R. Whitaker

Dewey R. Whitaker, 83, of Mills River, died on Wednesday, April 18, 2012, after a period of declining health.

A native of Mills River, he was the son of Seaman S. Whitaker and Irene Bagwell Whitaker. He was born in Asheville on May 29, 1928. His parents and wife, Martha Jane Orr Whitaker, preceded him in death.

He was a graduate of Mills River High School, Brevard College, Western Carolina University and North Carolina State University. He attended Brevard College and Western Carolina on football scholarships. At Western Carolina, he played on the conference championship team of 1949 – the only WCU football team to ever play in a post-season bowl.

He received a master’s degree from North Carolina State in 1960. Prior to that he was an officer in the Air Force during the Korean War and attended the Army Language School in Monterey, Calif., where he learned to speak fluent Russian. He retired as a lieutenant colonel from the Georgia Air National Guard.

He worked at various companies during his career as a chemical engineer and retired from AMP Incorporated, where he held many management positions, in 1997.

Those who loved him will miss his unintentional humor, his love of good food, hunting and fishing, and his gardening advice.

Survivors include his son, Dewey R. Whitaker Jr. and his wife, Michelle, of Rutherfordton; daughter, Jane L. Whitaker, of Harrisburg, Pa .; granddaughter, Amanda S. Oliver and husband, Kevin, of Harrisburg; and two great-granddaughters, Olivia Jane and Savannah Leigh Oliver.

He loved and enjoyed the company of his step-granddaughters, Laura, Ashley, and Amanda Thompson and Jordyn Oliver. He also loved his wife’s sisters and brother and his many nieces, nephews and cousins.

The family would like to express a special thank you to the amazing staff at Lifecare Center of Hendersonville and to his cousins, Steve and Susan Praytor, who looked after him and loved him like a father. There are no words to fully express our appreciation for those who took care of his daily needs while treating him as a valued friend.

A graveside service was held at 2 p.m. on Monday, April 23, 2012, at Whitaker-Moore Cemetery in Mills River with Rev. Paul Thompson officiating.

The family received friends and family at the home from 3 until 5 p.m. on Sunday, April 22, 2012.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Whitaker-Moore Cemetery Fund, c/o Mills River Baptist Church, 689 South Mills River Road, Mills River, NC 28759.

A register book is available online for family and friends by visiting

Thos. Shepherd & Son Funeral Directors of Hendersonville is in charge of arrangements.


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