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Doris Beidenmiller Gelzer "Dee" Whitaker

1923 - 2016
Doris Beidenmiller Gelzer "Dee" Whitaker Obituary
Doris "Dee" Beidenmiller Whitaker


Doris "Dee" Beidenmiller Gelzer Whitaker, 92, passed away Wednesday, July 6, 2016, at Bishop Gadsden Retirement Community in Charleston. She was born December 18, 1923 in Huntington, West Virginia, and was the elder daughter of Charles Henry and Myrtle Elizabeth Smith Beidenmiller.

Doris attended public schools in West Virginia and boarding school in Lexington, KY. She graduated from Triadelphia High School in Wheeling, WV and Brenau College (now University) in Gainesville, GA, where she was a member and president for two years of her women's fraternity, Alpha Chi Omega. She was also a member of Senior Honor Society and Honor Court, and treasurer and vice-president of the Student Government Association. She served as alumnae trustee of Brenau's Board from 1998 to 2004. She continued her dedication to Alpha Chi Omega in Charlotte, NC as president of the AXO Alumnae Club, and as district alumnae officer for South Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee while residing in Charleston, SC in the early 80's.

She was the widow of William Porcher Gelzer, who died in 1981, and she married Dr. Thomas Whitaker in 1991, when she moved from Charleston to Greenville, SC. After Dr. Whitaker's passing in 2009, she became a resident of Bishop Gadsden Retirement Community.

She is predeceased by her oldest son, William A. "Chip" Smith, III. She is survived by son, Jonathan Bruce "Jay" Smith (Melissa) of Myrtle Beach, SC; two step-daughters: Kathleen Gelzer Seatter (Don) of Charleston and Susan Gelzer Dodd (Joe) of Conyers, GA; grandson, Jonathan B. Smith II; granddaughter, Lauren Libre of Sacramento, CA and Lauren's three children; five step-grandchildren; her only sister, Charlie Ruth Franklin of Wheeling, WV; and three nieces and a nephew.

She was a member of Buncombe Street Methodist Church and the Tommy Thomasson Fellowship Class in Greenville, SC.

A Memorial Service will be held in The Chapel at Bishop Gadsden on Monday, July 18, 2016, at 3:00 p.m. Arrangements by J. HENRY STUHR, INC., DOWNTOWN CHAPEL, Charleston, SC.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Brenau University, 500 Washington St. SE, Gainesville, GA 30501 and/or the Bishop Gadsden Resident Assistance Fund, One Bishop Gadsden Way, Charleston, SC 29412.

A memorial message may be sent to the family by visiting our website at
Published in The Greenville News on July 10, 2016
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