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Jeanette Irene Whitner Woodruff

1920 - 2015 Obituary Condolences
Jeanette Irene Whitner Woodruff

Jeanette Irene Whitner Woodruff passed away peacefully on Monday, March 23, 2015. She was born on January 5, 1920 at home in Easton, Pennsylvania to parents Jennie Irene Weierbach Whitner and Samuel Walker Whitner, where she joined older sister Claire. The family soon moved to Atlantic City, NJ where her father was employed as a teacher of printing at a local vocational school and subsequently moved to Ventnor, NJ where Jeanette made a number of lifelong friends. She graduated from Atlantic City High School in 1937 and New Jersey College for Women, now Douglass College, in 1941 where she majored in Home Economics. More importantly, at the end of her freshman year, she met her lifetime soul mate and future husband, H. Boyd Woodruff. After graduation, Jeanette taught for three years in Princeton's Nassau and Witherspoon Junior High Schools and received her permanent teaching certificate. Boyd and Jeanette lived in Cranford and Westfield prior to settling in Watchung where they resided for the past 62 years.

Jeanette was an active volunteer in numerous organizations. She and Boyd were High School Youth Leaders for their church in Princeton, were active in their church in Westfield, and have been stalwarts at their church of the past 61 years, Wilson Memorial Union Church. Jeanette was a 2nd grade Sunday school teacher, served as president of the Women's Guild on three different occasions, and served six years on the church's Executive Board. Jeanette also served as a Cub Scout Den Mother, volunteered at the school library, and joined the Watchung Garden Club as a charter member. For many years, Jeanette and Boyd have been faithful volunteers at the Starfish Food Pantry in Plainfield.

Jeanette treasured the many opportunities for travel that she and Boyd shared, including a 9-year period from 1973 to 1982 where they spent half-time based in Tokyo, Japan. She made lifelong friends in many different countries and maintained connections with those friends through her frequent letter writing and by hosting many guests in their home. She will be missed by all yet has left us with many wonderful memories.

Jeanette was predeceased by her parents, Samuel and Jennie Whitner, her sister, Claire Louise Hawkins, and many aunts, uncles, and cousins, with whom she maintained contact throughout their lifetimes. She is survived by Boyd, her husband of more than 72 years, sons Brian (and his wife Sandra) and Hugh (and his wife Sandria), grandchildren Lauren, Andy, and Ashley, nephews Glenn and Doug and their families, and niece Carol and her family.

The family will receive visitors on Saturday, March 28, 2015, at Higgins Home for Funerals, 752 Mountain Blvd., Watchung, NJ from 2 to 5 PM. A memorial service will be held on Sunday, March 29th at 4 PM at Wilson Memorial Union Church, 7 Valley Road, Watchung, NJ followed by a light reception. Burial will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations in Jeanette's memory are encouraged to Wilson Memorial Union Church, Douglass College, or a . To send condolences go to

Published in Courier News on Mar. 25, 2015
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