Mary Jo Stratton
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Mary Jo Stratton
  • March 13, 1933 - October 30, 2017
  • Lancaster, Ohio

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Mary Josephine (Whitmore) Stratton , 84, passed away Monday October 30, 2017 at her home in Lancaster. She was born March 13, 1933 in Salem, Virginia. Mary Jo was a 1950 graduate from Williamson High School in Williamson, West Virginia. She retired from Drew Shoe Corporation after 20 years as Receptionist, Telephone operator and Payroll clerk in the business offices on Quarry Road. Previous employment was at the First National Bank in Williamson, West Virginia and City National Bank in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
Mary Jo was an active member of Sixth Avenue United Methodist Church having served on and participated with many committees, classes, and projects. Her history as a choir director included directing the choirs at Mills Memorial United Methodist Church, Maple Street United Methodist Church and Sixth Avenue United Methodist for an accumulated number of years.
During her years as a director of choirs and civic vocal groups, Mary Jo established and directed the Unity Singers of Lancaster which was active for 25 years. As a first and only time entry, The Unity Singers of Lancaster won first place as the Best Traditional Choir in the state of Ohio during the 1981 contest at the State Fair. The group received the Revolving Cup from the then governor, James Rhodes. Mary Jo was honored with the Service to Mankind Award from the Sertoma Club of Lancaster in 1983 as director of the Unity Singers for their philanthropic work through the years by presenting productions and concerts to aid many worthy causes and organizations. One cause very close to her heart was the Special Wish Foundation. Mary Jo established a branch of the Special Wish Foundation in Lancaster with the direction of Ramona Fickle, originator of the Foundation in Columbus. Mary Jo organized and directed the One Voice Women's Barbershop Chorus in 1996 which she reorganized in
2007 enjoying years of pleasure presenting the group to civic organizations and churches in Lancaster and surrounding cities. Mary Jo formed the Fairfield County Senior Chorus at Olivedale Senior Citizens Organization and directed the group during its beginning years. She served on the Board of Directors at Olivedale Senior Citizens Organization for two terms
She is survived by her daughter and son-in-law, Kelly Foster Stratton of Florida, sons Donald Wayne Stratton of Nelsonville, Karl Edward (Mary) Stratton of Lancaster, Benjamin Louis (Lynne) Stratton of Hilliard and Chad William (Kelly) Stratton of Charlotte, North Carolina; seven grandchildren, Chad Stratton, Briggs Stratton, K. Phillip (Tara) Stratton and Paige P. Stratton, Jacob F. Stratton and William E. Stratton and Madeline J. Stratton, two step grandchildren, John and Joseph Westhoven, five great-grandchildren; nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her husband C. Foster Stratton, two daughters; Carol Ann and Jane Stratton; her parents George E. Whitmore, Jr. and Kathleen L. (Deyerle) Whitmore; sister and brother-in-law, Loraine (Whitmore) and Gordon E. Minns, brother and sister-in-law William E. and Betty (Cook) Whitmore.
A celebration of her life will take place 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday November 7, 2017 at the Sixth Avenue United Methodist Church with the Rev. Rick Jones officiating. Interment will follow at Floral Hills Memory Gardens. Friends may call on Monday from 2-4 & 6-8 p.m. at Halteman-Fett & Dyer Funeral Home.
Memorial gifts may be given in her memory to the Sixth Avenue United Methodist Church, 1004 W. Sixth Avenue, Lancaster, Ohio 43130.