DeWitt Weary Jr.
DeWitt Lee Weary Jr., of East St. Louis, Ill., born Oct. 1, 1933, was called home from time to eternity on Sunday, Nov. 10, 2013.
DeWitt was born to the union of Mr. DeWitt Lee Weary Sr. and Mrs. Rebecca E. Weary, nee Haywood. He was the oldest of three children born to this union.
He was preceded in death by both parents; two sisters, Mrs. Faye (Weary) Jackson and Mrs. Nell (Weary) Thompson-Bufford; and two nieces, Mrs. Sharon (Weary) Wayne and Ms. Angela Jackson.
Mr. Weary received his education at Hughes Quinn Jr. High and Lincoln Senior High School. He earned his bachelor's degree at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale and a master's degree from Webster University. He was employed for over 30 years with District 189 as a social studies teacher. He worked for the American Federation of Teachers, unionizing teachers in school districts all over the Midwest. His organizational expertise consolidated the contract efforts of the two major teacher unions in St. Louis, Mo., the National Education Association, NEA and the American Federation of Teachers, AFT, to overcome strike busting tactics. This led his peers to elect him twice President of the Illinois Federation of Teachers, Local 1220, once in the early 1970's, and again in the early 1980's. Dewitt Lee Weary Jr. was instrumental in innovations such as the 12 months paid salary for school teachers. After a long strike in fall of 1981, he had negotiated the highest pay increase of any teachers' contract to this day in District 189. He remained a popular history teacher until the time of his retirement.
He leaves to cherish his memory his daughter, Mrs. Doris (Darwyn) Woodhouse, of Swansea, Ill.; son, Mr. DeWitt Lee (Tamarra) Weary, III of Columbia, Ill.; six grandchildren, Darwyn Jr., Dane, Dominique, DeWitt IV, Alexandria and Hubert Deavit; four nieces, Pamela (Gaylen) Wilson, Rita Ward, Nita Jackson and Phyllis (Terry) Busey; four nephews, Phillip Thompson, Gary Thompson, Todd Jackson and William Thompson, Jr.; his beloved cousin, Marsha; a host of other relatives and a very special loving companion, Ms. Grace James.
Visitation: Visitation was held Thursday, Nov. 14, 2013, at the Serenity Memorial Chapel, 8501 West Main Street, Belleville, Ill.
Funeral: Funeral services are scheduled for 9 a.m. Friday, Nov. 15, 2013, at the Unity Lutheran Church, 4200 Caseyville Avenue, East St. Louis, Ill. Interment services will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, Nov. 15, 2013, at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery, 2900 Sheridan Road, St. Louis, Mo.
SERENITY MEMORIAL CHAPEL, Belleville, Ill.
Published in Belleville News-Democrat on Nov. 15, 2013