Howell (Howie) Travis Whiting, 86, Lt. Col. (Ret.), U.S. Army Signal Corps, went to be with Our Lord and Savior on May 11, 2012. He was a loving and generous husband, fa[auth] ther, and grandfather. He was born Dec. 23, 1925, in Atlanta, Ga., to Howell Thadeus Whiting and Vera Whelchel Whiting.
They predeceased him, as did a brother, John Robert Whiting, in 1997, and a son, Roy Russell Whiting, in 2011.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 63 years Doris Evelyn Haskamp Whiting; sons, Philip Lee Whiting (Carmen), of Phoenix, Wayne Alan Whiting, of Roswell; daughter Diane Cherie Whiting Weir, of Roswell; and a brother, Alanson George Whiting (Glenda), of Greenwood, Fla.; six grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren.
He served in the Navy in World War II, seeing action in the South Pacific. After the war, he completed two years of college at the University of Maryland, then graduated from Basic Officers Training at Ft. Benning, Ga. Doris and the children were fortunate to accompany him on all of his stateside and overseas tours of duty, beginning with two years in Alaska. While stationed for 3½ years at Verdun, France, he earned a BA in political science from the University of Maryland Overseas Program. After a short time at Ft. Huachucha, Ariz., he attended and graduated from the Defense Language Institute at Monterey, Calif., becoming fluent in the Turkish language. Maj. Whiting and family spent three years in Ankara, Turkey; then he retired as a lieutenant colonel from 2½ years service at the Pentagon. During his various tours of duty, Howie was awarded the Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal, Joint Service Commendation Medal with metal pendant, Army Commendation Medal, American Campaign Ribbon WWII, Asiatic Pacific Ribbon WWII, WWII Victory Medal, Navy Occupation Service Medal, National Defense, and Armed Forces Reserve Ribbon, all for exceptionally meritorious service.
Howie and Doris chose Roswell for their retirement home in 1971. An avid rockhound, Howie joined the Chaparral Rockhound Club in 1972 and served in many capacities, including president and show chairman. In 1983, he was the Outstanding Graduate of the Gemological Institute of America, thus becoming a certified gemologist. He was past president of the Rocky Mountain Federation of Mineralogical Societies, and in 1996 was awarded that society’s prestigious Gold Pan Award, for exceptional dedication and service in the rockhounding and lapidary fields. He was a member of the Blue Ribbon Coalition, American Lands Access Association and the Rollin’ Rock Club. He was also past president of the Pecos Valley Chapter of Military Officers Association of America.
The family would like to thank the VistaCare employees for their compassion and dedication to Howie.
According to his wishes, Howie will be cremated and a private family memorial service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that a donation be sent to the N.M. Tech. Mineral Museum Endowment Fund, c/o Virgil Lueth, Curator, 801 Leroy Place, Socorro, NM 87801-4796.
Please take a moment to share your thoughts and memories in the online register book at andersonbethany.com. Arrangements are under the direction of Anderson-Bethany Funeral Home and Crematory.