BIO Index

Brenda Whittle

Well, since I didn't have the brain (it went unused at school), and my family didn't have the money for college, my working life began the first Monday after graduation. Sandy Moriarty's dad was manager of Shearson, Hayden, Stone, stock brokerage, and he hired me as a Board Marker (I marked stock prices on a 3 wall blackboard). After a few months of that, I moved to the office. Fast paced and challenging, I loved it.

In 1963 I married Don Smith (Bill Smith's younger bro) and I continued working at Shearson until we decided to move to Toledo, Oh. (Whoopie) where Don's oldest brother and sister still lived. Within a couple of years, Uncle Sam came calling, and we were in El Paso, Tx., then California. Our first daughter was born in 1967 in California, (our great friend Gloria Jackman came to visit us while we were there). I became an unpaid working person at that point. Then, Don was shipped to Germany. Bill Smith and his (then) wife Eileen Broderick lived in Alexandria, Va. and they invited us to stay with them while Don was in Germany for 9 months. Sounded like fun, so Shelli and I got on a train to Va.

We returned to Ohio after Don's duty was over, and in 1969 a son was born and 1972 another daughter. Lots of "stuff" in between, and we moved back to Sarasota in 1974. Don and I were divorced in 1980, and my no-pay working days were over. I was very fortunate to find a job with a large workers' comp insurance company, as assistant to one of the EVP's. I loved my job (mostly).

In 1999 I built a small home in Murphy, N.C., thinking I would retire there, but grandkids came along and changed my mind. I just couldn't leave, so I sold my little house in 2008. I retired in 2005 and rarely get bored with myself - LOL, and I go out to lunch a lot with friends.

I have done about as much traveling as the pocket book would allow. One of my favorite trips was to Oregon in 2008 to visit our pal, Glenda Evers and hubby Jon. Oregon is beautiful and fabulous, the coast is amazing, and I am forever grateful they made it possible for me to see so much.

Raising 3 kids, mostly alone, was the greatest challenge of my life. Thankfully, they all turned out fine. None turned to drugs and none went to jail. I must have done something right. I have 6 grands and 3 step grands. The two oldest boys are in the military. I am still single, healthy (but chubby), happy, love to read and always on the lookout for something fun to do (cheap).

Below is a pic of the family at my 65th surprise Birthday party my children gave for me. I'm the one in the middle with the banner in case you are wondering. Hopefully, I'll see you at the reunion.

Best to you all, Brenda