Julius Charles "J.C." Whittaker, 87, of Jackson died Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2012, at Hickory Creek Nursing Home in Crawfordsville, Ind.
He was born Sept. 21, 1924, in Jackson, to R.V. and Marie Ramsey Whittaker. He was a proud 1942 graduate of Jackson High School. He resided west of Jackson until his health declined in recent years and he moved to Crawfordsville to reside near a niece.
He served his country during World War II as a radio officer in the Merchant Marines for the U.S. Coast Guard, graduating Aug. 10, 1945, at Hoffman Island, N.Y., and subsequently inducted Aug. 27, 1945. Ships on which he served include the SS Norway Victory, SS Joseph Alston and SS Cape Georgia. Later promoted to the occupation of purser, he was honorably discharged Dec. 31, 1946, and returned to Jackson where he farmed the family farm with his father.
In 1954 he began a successful career as a communications officer in the Sikeston, Mo., and Cairo, Ill., hubs for the former Missouri-Pacific Railroad, now Union Pacific Railroad. He enjoyed his work and was awarded various recognitions for his achievements, retiring in 1988 when he became more extensively involved in operating the farm.
His memberships in Jackson include First Baptist Church and Excelsior Lodge 441, where he was a past worshipful master.
Those who remember J.C. are several nieces and nephews, including Sue Mullendore, Charles Deur, John Deur, John Whittaker, Janice Nelson, Denise Alloway, Gail Hernandez, Patty Peacock, Brett Whittaker, Michael Whittaker, Dana Perales; and a host of friends in Jackson and Crawfordsville.
He was preceded in death by his parents and two siblings, R.V. Whittaker and Mary Elizabeth Deur.
A Masonic service will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday at the chapel of McCombs Funeral Home and Cremation Center in Jackson, followed by visitation until time of service.
The funeral will be at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at the funeral home, with the Rev. Tommy Weems officiating. Burial will be in Cape County Memorial Park in Cape Girardeau.
Memorials may take the form of contributions to First Baptist Church, Excelsior Lodge 441 and Premier Hospice.
Online condolences may be sent to the family by visiting www.mccombsfuneralhome.com.