Alice Rebecca "Rebecca" Whitener, daughter of Joseph Harry (1895-1930) and Ruth Anne (Sherrill) (1896-1994) Whitener, was born 3 July 1923, North Carolina. Rebecca attended and graduated with honors in 1943 from Greensboro College, Greensboro, Guilford County, North Carolina. Later she obtained a master's degree from Michigan State College.
Rebecca, while attending college, married Joseph Dwight Winchester. Joseph, born 10 June 1921, Guilford County, North Carolina, was inducted into the US Army 17 October 1942. His induction papers described him as 5'7", weighing 130 pounds and with 2 years of college education. Rebecca and Joseph married 17 December 1942 in Georgia where Joseph was in US Army training. Rebecca returned to college and Joseph was shipped out to serve in the war in Europe. The married couple was listed in the 1943 Greensboro, NC City directory.
Sgt. Joseph Winchester, serving with the 378th Infantry Regiment, 95th Infantry Division, US Army, was killed in action 30 November 1944, France. Sgt. Winchester was first interred Temporary American Military Cemetery, Limey, France but later reinterred Lorraine American Cemetery, St. Avoid, France. Posthumously he was awarded the Purple Heart.
Rebecca met and then married John Henry Crocker 14 June 1947, Belmont, Gaston County, North Carolina. John became a band instructor and taught in the Waverly School District and St. Thomas Aquinas school in East Lansing, Ingham County, Michigan. Rebecca taught mathematics at Okemos High School 1952-1953, then moved to Pattengill Junior High School, Lansing where she taught for over 30 years.
Lansing State Journal (Lansing, Michigan) Wednesday 15 August 1962
Rebecca and John celebrated 2 daughters and 57 years together. Rebecca died 31 July 2004, Lansing. She was interred Evergreen Cemetery, Lansing.
Lansing State Journal (Lansing, Michigan) Wednesday 4 August 2004
Rebecca Crocker passed away at her home on July 31, 2003, at the age of 81. She was born Alice Rebecca Whitener in July 3, 1923, in North Carolina, the daughter of Joseph Harry and Ruth Anne (Sherrill) Whitener. Rebecca graduated with Honors in 1943 from Greensboro College in North Carolina, and received a Master's Degree from Michigan State University. In 1947, she married John H. Crocker and they resided in North Carolina and later in Chicago, In 1950, they moved to Lansing and continued to reside there. Rebecca was a math teacher at Pattengill Junior High school for over 30 years. With her husband, she enjoyed growing and showing roses and was an active member of the Lansing Rose Society. A past member of Central United Methodist Church, she more recently attended Plymouth Congregational Church. She was preceded in death by her sister, Rachel (Whitener) Sharpe, of Greensboro, NC; son-in-law Roger A. Rapaport of Okemos; and sister-in-law Dorothy (Crocker) Wilder. Rebecca is survived by her husband, John H. Crocker; daughters, Jane C. Rapaport of Okemos and Nancy R. Crocker of Phoenix, AZ; grandchildren, John R. Rapaport, Anne C. Rapaport and Benjamin J. Rathbun; brothers-in-law, C.S. Sharpe of North Carolina, G. Benette (Vivian) Crocker of Saginaw, Kenneth E. (Phyllis) Crocker of Florida, and Justin (Mary) Wilder of Indiana; and many nieces and nephews. Funeral services will b held Saturday, August 7, at 2 p.m. at Plymouth Congregational Church, 2001 E. Grand River, Lansing, with Dr. Lloyd Hall officiating. Interment will follow in Evergreen Cemetery, Lansing.