Sept. 11, 1789, Alexander Hamilton was appointed the first Secretary of the Treasury. On Sept. 11, 1792, the “Hope Diamond” was stolen. On Sept. 11, 1941, ground breaking had begun for the Pentagon, the future home of the Department of Defense, 60 years to the day before it was attacked along with the World Trade Center.
Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2019 (eight months to the day of Jr passing and 18 years to the day of the Twin Tower attack), Geneva Frances Whiteley, age 92, was welcomed into heaven by her husband of 69 years, Jr Whiteley; her parents, Aaron and Ina Ockerman; her brother, Lowell Ockerman, and his wife Virginia Ann; her sisters, Lois Morrett, and her husband George, Anna Mae Tonelli and her husband Charles, and Nellie Darlene Ockerman; her niece, Cynthia Morrett; her nephews, Andy Morrett, James Morrett and Gary Whiteley; and many friends from the old Jefferson neighborhood.
Geneva Frances Ockerman was born Wednesday, Aug. 17, 1927, to Aaron Francis Ockerman and Ina Frances Crawford Ockerman at home, seven miles south of Allerton. Geneva was the third of six children. Geneva attended “Log Chain” country school through eighth grade. Geneva then attended Allerton High School and graduated in 1944.
Her first job was with Neely Manufacturing Company in Corydon. After Neely Manufacturing Company closed, Geneva moved to Davenport and lived with her Aunt Zula and Uncle Bert Hatfield, where she took a job with Charge-A-Plate Company. She was there six months. When they closed, Geneva returned to Corydon and took a job with Lindfelt Company.
June 3, 1949, Geneva Frances Ockerman and Irvin Jr Whiteley were married at the Allerton Presbyterian Parsonage and made their home in Corydon.
Their first daughter, Peggy Ann, was born on Sept. 5, 1952, while they were living in Corydon. Geneva and Jr made their home in Corydon until Jr took a position with the P.M. Place Company and moved to Corning. Jr’s job moved them to Albany, Mo., where their second daughter, Terry Lynn, was born on Aug. 31, 1961, and 2½ years later, the family moved to Boone, and finally to Jefferson in 1965.
Their last move was to Peg’s home in Perry in December 2015, and Geneva died at Peg’s home in hospice care. The one thing Geneva really wanted was “More Time.”
Geneva was a stay-at-home mother. The family belonged to the First United Methodist Church in Jefferson, where she helped with church functions, MYF and altar flowers.
Geneva attended her children’s school activities and family functions. Geneva spent hours watching Terry play softball and other sport activities.
Geneva’s passion in life was neatness.
First and foremost was her family. Geneva loved and valued her family beyond words. Geneva was known for her attractive lawn and flower beds, which she kept neat and weed-free, along with the cleanest windows in town.
Geneva loved playing Bingo at holiday time. She loved playing cards, country music, Lawrence Welk, “Young and the Restless,” “Price is Right,” “Wheel of Fortune,” binge-watched “Walker, Texas Ranger,” and enjoyed listening to Terry playing the piano.
Geneva loved animals and her pets over the years, especially her cat, Sapphire, who now resides with Terry and Dennis. She enjoyed Peg’s dogs, Cooper and Duke.
Left to cherish her memory are Geneva’s two daughters: Peg (Dick) Wilcox, of Perry; and Terry (Dennis) Murphy, of Jefferson; a brother, Duane Ockerman, of Davenport; five grandchildren: Jennifer Pierce, of Perry; David Wilcox, of Des Moines; Jill (Jim) Carollo, of Allen, Texas; Roxanne Wilcox, of Davenport; and Michael Wilcox, of Scranton. Five great-grandchildren: Katie Cleek, Dalton Humpal, Emma Humpal, Breanna Carollo and Parker Pierce; a great-great-grandchild due in February of 2020; and brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Dail and Maxine Whiteley, of Corydon. She is also survived by several nieces and nephews, other family and many friends.
Geneva’s body was cremated and no services are planned, per her wishes.
Memorials may be sent to Peg Wilcox at 12432 K Drive, Perry, IA 50220, or Terry Murphy at 1410 J Ave., Jefferson, IA 50129.
Professional services provided by the Slininger-Schroeder Funeral Home.