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St Mark's Lutheran Church
501 Duncan Rd
Wilmington, DE 19809
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Loretta H. (Miller) Whitford


1924 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Loretta H. (Miller) Whitford Obituary
Loretta H. (Miller) Whitford

AGE: 91 • Wilmington, DE

Our beloved mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, died peacefully on April 7, 2016 at Foulk Manor North in Wilmington, after a period of declining health. Loretta was born in Kingston, PA on Aug. 27, 1924 to Matylda (Ertner) and Julius Haebich. She was preceded in death by her husband of 23 years, Richmond (Dick) Whitford, in 1992, and her sister Dolores Kocyan in 2014.

Celebrating her life are three daughters and one step-son: Beverly Miller Ritacco (Steve) of Stafford, VA, Indee Miller (Joe Kowslowski) of Jacksonville Beach, FL, Ruthea Miller (Joe Mauro) of Landenberg, PA, and Denny Whitford (Dorothy) of Arnold, MD; her five grandchildren: Kymberly and Kathleen Ritacco, Mindee Miller, Scott and Brad Whitford; three great-grandchildren as well as her dear nieces and nephews.

Loretta graduated at age 16 from Kingston HS, class of '41. Just after graduation she left home to live with her favorite aunt in Philadelphia and started working that same year as a secretary. In 1947, she met a blue-eyed Marine named George who made her laugh. They married on Valentine's Day in 1948 and started their family in West Wyoming, PA. For better opportunities, they moved to Wilmington, DE in 1953, moving again to Claymont, DE in 1956, where Loretta became very active in PTA, Girl Scouts, Jr. Women's Club, St. Mark's Lutheran Church, Holiday Lanes Bowling League and Bridge Club. She was a founding member of the Naamans Kill Questers and helped to start the making of the "Critters" at the Brandywine River Art Museum. Loretta especially loved visiting her aunts, uncles, and cousins, and family reunions. She delighted in browsing through shops looking for antique treasures. Loretta was always willing to jump in the car to take her girls on an "adventure," many times ending up in Florida. She enjoyed cooking for her family and neighbors, sewing for herself and her daughters, spending time at Wildwood Crest, NJ every summer, and caring for the many household pets that were always present. Loretta remarried in 1969 to Dick Whitford who was the love of her life. She worked alongside her husband for Worthy Brothers Pipeline Co. as payroll master and bookkeeper. Retiring in 1982, they moved to Tolchester Beach, MD. They loved the water, especially the Chesapeake Bay, and traveling the country in their RV. Her involvement with Tolchester Estates Assoc., the Garden Club, and the Crafts Group, kept her very busy. After Dick's death in 1992 she continued to be very active with the community, volunteered for Kent Co. Hospice and Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge. She traveled the country to visit relatives and friends as often as possible. Loretta truly anticipated and enjoyed the frequent visits of many loving friends, neighbors, children, grandchildren, and grandniece, as these were the highlights of her years. After a fall in late 2010, Loretta moved to Foulk Manor North in Wilmington. For the past 5+ years, she truly received the best care from the staff at FMN, and during the last year, from Vitas Hospice and Aston Home Health. If she could tell them, she would say, "I love you all." Loretta was fearless, unconditionally loving, chronically happy, endlessly giving, with a Sherpa's love of adventure, and Gulliver's taste for travel.

A Celebration of Life will take place Saturday, April 23rd, at St. Mark's Lutheran Church, 501 Duncan Rd, Wilmington DE 19809; guests will be received at 10:30 a.m., service will begin at 11:30 a.m. In lieu of flowers, kindly consider donations to St Mark's Lutheran Church, or to .
Published in The News Journal from Apr. 17 to Apr. 22, 2016
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