Stanley Henry Whitted Jr. was born in Narcoossee, Florida, on January 24, 1924, one of four children born to Stanley H. Sr. and Ella Short Whitted. When Stanley was two, Ella died – her youngest child was only seven months old. Seven years later, Stanley Sr. died; the children were separated and sent to various family members. Stanley’s Aunt Wiggins brought the Whitted children together again and reared them, along with eight children of her own.
Stanley completed the eighth grade in a one-room schoolhouse which was later moved to serve as the band room at Kissimmee High School on Central Avenue. He found work in the citrus groves around Narcoossee and in 1946 enlisted in the U.S. Army, serving three years in the South Pacific. Returning to Narcoossee following his discharge, he entered Jones High school under the GI Bill to complete his education and receive a diploma.
After getting his driver’s license, Stanley then got a chauffeur’s license. A starting job as a janitor for Mack Trucks in Orlando, led to being trained as a mechanic’s helper and eventually he drove and delivered trucks across the United States for the company for 18 years. His last job was with the Osceola County schools, where he stayed until retirement in 1989.
Stanley and Christine Carswell married in 1948 and raised their family in the house he built a few years before the marriage. His family and its history was important to Stanley, as evidenced by the pride he took in showing the family Bible, brought to Osceola County in the late 1800s by Stanley’s grandfather. In it were recorded not only births, marriages and deaths, but also his ancestors’ move from North Carolina to Narcoossee as well as their service during the Civil War.
Stanley was caretaker for the Narcoossee Arthur Fell Cemetery for many years and was laid to rest there when he died on October 17, 2006. He was a member of St. Luke Missionary Baptist Church, chairman of the Deacon Board and Superintendent of the Sunday school. Two daughters had preceded him in death. He was survived by his wife Christine, sons Johnny and Stanley III, daughter Anita and sister Florence, 14 grandchildren and 31 great-grandchildren.
Written by Anza Bast
Sources: “Orlando Sentinel” March 27, and April 3, 1994, October 19, 2006