Thelma Alfretta Hoovler White, 98, formerly of White County

Thelma Alfretta Hoovler White, 98, passed away June 5 at McCall Hospice House in Simpsonville, S.C.

She was born in the Pleasantville community in northwestern Pennsylvania Feb. 19, 1922, daughter of Floyd Marion and Olive Bingman Hoovler.

She married George Quinton White, and the newlywed couple moved to Phillips Township in White County, Ill. during the oil boom of the 1940’s. She earned a bachelor’s degree in education from Oakland City College in Oakland City, Ind., and later earned a master’s degree in theology. She became an elementary school teacher, starting in Brownsville School, and spending most of her career as an elementary teacher in Grayville. In her retirement from teaching, she was an adult literacy volunteer.

She had a passion for missionary work in Haiti and Belize. Through her support and mission work, the Thelma White Mission was built. In her younger years, she played mandolin and sang in a gospel quartet. She was a charter member of the former Gospel Temple Pentecostal church in Carmi, and also attended the Carmi Church of God. She later became a member of Salem Baptist Church in Anderson, S.C.

Thelma loved traveling with her family, either by car trips across the country or flying. She and her husband were licensed pilots, and were members of the flying club at the Carmi Airport.

She was also a member of Royal Neighbors, and the Business and Professional Women Club.

Survivors include daughter Georgianna Amelia (Leland) Cutter of Anderson S.C.; four grandchildren, Andrea Lynn (Stan) Howe of Princeton, Ind., Jerry David (Cheryl) Holtzclaw of Highland, S.C., Sharon Kay Stinson of Carmi, and Shawna (Alex) Atiles of Piedmont S.C.; ten great-grandchildren, Robert Andrew “Drew” Howe, Nick (Megan) Hanna, Austin and Emily Holtzclaw, Reo and Asa Stinson, Brook (Kirk) Chastain, Gregory and Bryant Hall, Bishop Knight Gonzales; three great-great grandchildren, Jameson Hanna, Axel Stinson and Calvin Chastain; son-in-law, Andrew Jefferson Holtzclaw of Carmi; and several nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband; firstborn daughter Lorna Thelma Holtzclaw; a brother, Marion Hoovler; and sisters Joyce Questell, Evaline Faye Prather and Carol Sterling.

A celebration of her life is planned at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 27, at Salem Baptist Church in Anderson, S.C. A family graveside memorial follows at 1 p.m. at Oakway Cemetery in Westminster, S.C. Sandifer Funeral Home of Westminster is assisting the family.

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