Harriet Virginia Whiting, age 98, passed away on Tuesday, March 27, 2018, at Circle of Life Hospice Home in Springdale, AR. She was born on February 17, 1920, to Joseph Samuel Dooty and Edna Mura McIntosh Dooty in Melvern, Kansas. She grew up in Melvern and graduated valedictorian in 1937 from Melvern High School. She wanted to follow her sister in nursing school but was too young. She received a scholarship from the College of Emporia and was hired that summer to work in the office at Newman Memorial Hospital and lived in the nurses’ quarters. In the fall a position opened up in the Nursing School. She was allowed to enter by waiving the age restriction of 18. When she graduated from Nursing School, she was too young to take the State Boards and had to remain at the hospital as a student nurse until she turned 21. Nursing assignments took her to Kansas City, KS, and St. Peter, MN. After she became an RN she and a fellow nursing student moved to the Hines VA in Chicago IL to begin their nursing careers.
Harriet continued working as a psychiatric nurse at the VA hospital in Topeka Kansas for many years. She met her husband John (Jack) Campbell Whiting in Topeka. They celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary shortly before his death. During their marriage they lived in Topeka, KS; Norman, OK; Midwest City, OK; Kettering, OH; and then returned to Topeka. After retirement they moved to Stockton, MO, to sail on Stockton Lake in their sailboat, Aegina. They sailed for several years with all of their grandchildren and enjoyed their retirement. They also traveled the world and went on 16 cruises, including rafting on the Amazon River and touring New Zealand for a month. They were active members of the Stockton Methodist Church. They later moved to Elfindale Retirement Community in Springfield, Mo, where they were members of the Southminster Presbyterian Church. They lived there until Jack’s death in 2009. Harriet then moved to Peachtree Retirement Village in Holiday Island, AR, to be near her daughter. After suffering a heart attack, she moved to Green Acres Lodge in Holiday Island and was well taken care of by the wonderful staff, especially GiGi who was her nurse, and became a dear friend. In her last year at Green Acres, she enjoyed extra help from the caretakers of the We Care Company.
Harriet is preceded in death by her parents; sister, Mercedes Rice; brother, Cedric Dooty; husband, John Campbell Whiting II; son, John Campbell Whiting III; granddaughter, Juli Mackey Brown, and grandson, Justin Blenden. She is survived by her sister, Georgia Ree Tribble of Topeka Kansas; daughter, Judith Higginbottom (Marvin), of Holiday Island, AR; daughter, Jolene Whiting (Bob), of Chicago, IL; daughter, Jay Patterson(Denny), of La Veta, CO, and step-daughter, Gillette Ransom of Elkhart, IN; grandchildren Forrest Danson (Deb); Deborah Modica (Joe): Christopher Danson (Catherine); Marjorie Hignite (Mike); John Mackey (Leslie); Billie Blenden; Karl Kreipe; Doug Brown; and Joe Whiting; great-grandchildren Jackson, Mary Emma, John Paul, Cooper, Mallory, Sutton, Jonathan, Lacey, Cade, Kyler, Elliott, Sarah, Julia, Joey and Anna, nephews Karl (CeCy), and Chuck; nieces Diane, Nancy and Dona; and dear friends Chuck and Sally Moffett and Merrill Mauk.
Donations may be made to Circle of Life Hospice Home, 109 S. Jones in Springdale AR. The entire family is grateful to them for the wonderful care we all received in her last days. A celebration of her life will be held in Melvern, KS, on July 14th.
Please visit Harriet’s memorial page at www.WestfieldChapel.com.