Miriam Eileen Recker White, 79, a resident at Luther Ridge Retirement Community near Chambersburg, PA, died on April 14, 2011 in her home. She was the wife of LTSP Emeritus Professor the Rev. Dr. Andrew J. (Jack) White. Born in Pemberville, OH, on December 9, 1931, to the late Rev. Dr. Dale C. Recker and Mary Ward Recker, she was a graduate of Wittenberg University, Springfield, OH, with BA and BS degrees, as well as Temple University in Philadelphia with an MS in Science Education. She married Andrew J. White on May 30, 1953, in Cleveland Heights, OH.
She taught general science and chemistry for thirty years at Chestnut Hill Academy, a boys’ prep school in Philadelphia. She held the Baird Chair, was made an honorary alumna of the Academy, and received a fan appreciation award, the Corning Pearson Award for Distinguished Service, and several other recognition awards.
Always active in her churches, St. Luke Lutheran in Chambersburg and Reformation Lutheran, Philadelphia, as teacher, leader and choir member, she will be remembered as the consummate team player in every endeavor of life.
Miriam was active in the American Chemical Society and was the first high-school teacher ever elected chair of the large Philadelphia Section of ACS. In 1987, she was one of four teachers in the United States to be granted the prestigious Catalyst Award by the Chemical Manufacturers’ Association.
She retired in 1997 and spent the first year of retirement teaching in Bratislava, Slovakia. With her husband, she returned to Slovakia to serve as an official observer for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) during the Slovak national elections in 1998.
Returning to the U. S., the couple did volunteer service at the LBJ Ranch in Johnson City, TX. In June of 1999, they settled at Luther Ridge. Miriam was a faithful tutor at the Scotland School for Veterans’ Children for the following ten years.
She spent three months in the fall of 2002 as a volunteer at the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Wittenberg Center in Germany. She also served as a recruiter for missionaries for the Global Mission division of the church body. In her lifetime, she traveled in 45 countries on six continents.
Miriam is survived by her husband, Jack, and four children: Mary Sue Burns and husband Michael of Marlinton, WV; Daniel Allen of Atlanta, GA; John Andrew and wife Kay of Houston, TX; and James Dirken and wife Laura of Huntingdon, PA. She has five grandchildren: M. Jesse Burns, Jonathon D. Burns, Sara M. White, Shelby T. White and Joanna M. White. She has two surviving sisters: Donna M. Hall of Sarasota, FL, and Nancy R. McEaneney of Columbus, OH. Her step-mother, Katherine H. Recker, lives in Columbus as well. She was predeceased by a brother, David H. Recker.
Services will be held at St. Luke Lutheran Church, 2695 Luther Drive, Chambersburg, PA 17202 on Saturday, April 23, 2011 at 11 am. A luncheon will follow at the Fleck Center on the Luther Ridge campus. In lieu of flowers, gifts may be directed to Lutheran Home Care and Hospice or Chestnut Hill Academy in Philadelphia, where Miriam has set up a special scholarship fund. Those who know CHA are invited to assist the school she loved in this memorial.