Patricia Elaine Whitelow was born in Benton Harbor Michigan June 30, 1955, to the late James Whitelow Sr. and Emma Whitelow. She accepted Christ at Second Baptist Church under the leadership of the late Rev. Donald Adkins. True to those vows she served God, her church, and community until her death.
Patricia, but to others, she was often called Pat or Patty was always active in Second Baptist serving on the hospitality board, funeral repast committee, assisting as well as with the nursery department and the youth. Pat also helped with the annual vacation bible school. Patricia always had the willingness to help her church family with anything necessary.
Pat has always shown leadership, as a student at Benton Harbor High school, she worked the switchboard accepting incoming calls and directing them in a professional way. She was one of the organizers of the Black Student Civic Association. She was on one of the first debutant Courts at Benton Harbor High School. Patricia graduated from Benton Harbor High School on June 4, 1973.
Pat matriculated at Western Michigan University majoring in elementary education graduating with a Bachelors's in 1978. Pat became a reading specialist and intervention consultant with the Benton Harbor Area Schools. Pat was a shining example of a person who left Benton Harbor to get their education and came back to plant and spread seeds of greatness.
Pat's greatest joy was the birth of her miracle baby girl, Crystal Marie. Her life was full. She became a Tiger booster as Crystal played clarinet in the band and traveled to Africa with the Global Ambassador program. Pat made sure she participated in every event that Crystal was involved in.
Pat has served on all the 1973 homecoming committees, organizing all Benton Harbor High School class reunions ensuring its continuation by partnering with the class of 1973 and 1974.
Following in her late mother Emma Whitelow's footsteps, Pat joined the Senior Citizens. Pat became the Secretary for the Benton Harbor and Benton Township Senior Citizen Committee respectively organizing taking notes during their monthly board meetings.
She was an active member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Iota Iota Omega Chapter of Benton Harbor-St Joseph Michigan. Patricia helped with organizing and mobilizing the community by culture and by merit. Patricia was initiated into the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc, Iota Iota Omega Chapter on November 1, 1987. She was a Silver Star Soror with more than 25 years of service. An active member of the Benton Harbor/ St. Joseph Chapter she served on many committees including Fundraising, Membership, the Cotillion, Sisterly Relations, and the Social and Wellness Committees to name a few.
When Pats mom Emma Whitelow got sick Pat put on her daughter gloves and took care of her mother until she passed from this life all the while teaching, helping others, and putting on a brave smile. Pat then retired from teaching after 37 years but she did not retire from being kind and helping others. Pat was a tutor for students in the Benton Harbor St. Joseph area.
She departed this life on June 3, 2021, cradled in the arms of her beloved daughter. Pat leaves to cherish her memories of her daughter Crystal Marie Jennings, one brother James Whitelow and two nephews Leon (Lisa) Bell and Antonio (Chivonne) Bell. She also leaves memories in the hearts of many family and friends, Special friends just to name a few, Nora Hudson, Linda Williams, Emma Goodloe, Marilyn Ross-Golden, Joanne Robinson, and Dolores King, and a loving and devoted community that will miss her true devotion. Patricia was preceded in death by her parents James and Emma Whitelow her Sister Jacqueline Whitelow/Bell and her good friend Sandra Reynold, a host of aunts, uncles, cousins, and other loved ones.
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