Eleanor McCarter



Eleanor Crider McCarter of Columbia, formerly of Asheville, N.C., passed away Sunday, Jan. 8, 2023, at University of Missouri Hospital in Columbia. Age is just a number, and at 93 she was still very active and young at heart.
She was born Dec. 23, 1929, in Owensville, the daughter of James Mack and Eda Lockhart Jenkins. On Sept. 27, 1947, she was united in marriage to James Oliver Crider at her parent’s home in Canaan. Eleanor and James celebrated 43 happy and loving years prior to his death on May 9, 1991. Although they had no children of their own, all their many nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews were loved like children.
James was a construction manager supervisor for Merck Pharmaceutical Co. and in 1958 they moved from Owensville to Asheville, N.C. Together they moved 30 times, living in several states on the east coast, Puerto Rico and Ireland, however they made Asheville and the beautiful Smoky Mountains their home.
On July 2, 1994, Eleanor married Henry M. McCarter, Jr. in Asheville and was welcomed into the loving McCarter family in North Carolina. Henry preceded her in death on Aug. 1, 2001.
In 2021, she moved back to Missouri to be with her family and chose to live in Columbia at the Terrace Retirement Community where she made many new friends.
Eleanor was a member of First Baptist Church, Asheville, where she was firmly rooted in her faith and love of God. She was also a life member of the VFW Ladies Auxiliary in Owensville.
One of 11 children, Eleanor was only able to complete eight years of school due to World War II and the family’s need for her to obtain employment when her mother became ill. She valued education and always wished to obtain her high school diploma. In 1971, at the age of 42, she proudly received her high school equivalency diploma in North Carolina. She cherished a letter from the North Carolina State Board of Education noting that it processed thousands of certificates annually and it was not a normal operational practice for them to write a complimentary letter, however her excellent scores on the GED tests were indicative of her ability and attitude toward a mastery of the art of learning.
Eleanor was fortunate to travel the globe with both James and Henry. She often said she was able to visit and marvel at almost all the sites she only read about when she was young, never thinking she would even travel outside Missouri. She was an avid reader, choosing books that would both educate and entertain. She enjoyed listening to music, collecting art, flower gardening, visiting with family and friends and playing games. She especially enjoyed beating family at cards and her wicked grin flashed whenever she bested them.
She was preceded in death by husbands, James and Henry; parents James and Eda; siblings, Berdell Duncan Bruckerhoff, Evelyn Johns Williams, Phyllis L. Smith, Edward (Red) Jenkins, Kenneth Ray Jenkins, William Royd Jenkins, James Ross Jenkins and an infant sister, Betty Jean Jenkins.
She is survived by sisters Ruth Carwile of Owensville and Janna Jenkins of Columbia; brother Clarence R. Jenkins of Jefferson City; brother-in-law Orlin Smith of Kansas; sisters-in-law Doris Jenkins of Owensville, Margaret (Peggy) Jenkins of Alabama and Dorothy Hampton and husband Wade Hampton, Jr. of North Carolina; and numerous nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews and her special friend, Linda Cook of North Carolina.
A Celebration of Life will be held Friday, Jan. 20, at 2 p.m. at Gottenstroeter Funeral Home with Pastor Marsha West Eichler and Dean Eichler. Visitation will begin at 1 p.m. at the chapel. Her ashes will be interred at Countryside Memorial Gardens.
Memorials are suggested to Liberty Baptist Church, Owensville.