Christine Winchester Kearney, 100, wife of the late Joseph Kearney, died Tuesday, April 18, 2023.
Born at her home in Little Eastatoe, Pickens, SC. Third daughter of the late Benjamin and Mary Garrett Winchester, high school sweethearts from Six Mile Highschool, who later married after he served in World War I.
Growing up, she lived in her grandparents’ home, along with her parents and siblings. She reminisced of pulling his beard and him chasing them around the house with his cane. Her mother was a schoolteacher and an organ player, and her father was a song leader. Church attendance played a meaningful role in her early life, and she remembered sitting on a blanket in front of the pulpit during revivals.
Christine went to Mont Vale School until 2nd grade and then moved to twelve-mile school until 6th grade. Her family moved to Pickens during her high school years. After graduation, she went to Anderson College where she earned a General Studies Degree and a Teacher’s Certificate. She then entered “The College of Commerce” in Greenville, SC for a degree in Secretarial Studies. While there she learned the skill of typing and shorthand. She would use this skill to obtain a job in the Department of Agriculture in Washington, DC. With permission she moved to Washington with two of her friends who also shared the same skills. Her first job was dictating for Soil Conservation Service Magazine.
After joining a church bowling club, she met the love of her life, Joseph “Joe” Kearney. He was working at the bowling alley part-time to pay for law school. They started dating and she stated that “it was love at first sight.” They were married on May 22, 1948. The next day they got on a train to Washington DC and began their “Happy Life” together. She transferred from the magazine to the Research and Development office of the Army Atomic Energy Department. She would advance her career all the way up to working for the pentagon.
After retirement they settled back in the upstate of South Carolina where she was a longtime member of Berea First Baptist Church, she sang in the Senior Adult Choir, participating in the Singing Christmas Tree, and was a member of the Women’s Missionary Union.
Christine lived a life full of faith, love, family, adventure, and happiness.
Visitation will be held Thursday, May 11, 2023 from 12:00 p.m. until 1:45 p.m. at Berea First Baptist Church. The funeral service will begin at 2:00 p.m. in the church sanctuary. Burial will be in Arlington National Cemetery.
Friends are encouraged to share their favorite memories of Christine with the family by clicking on the button labeled “Leave A Message, Share A Memory” below.