Joseph C. Whitney of Edgartown and Westwood died Oct. 31, 2012. He was 85. Joe was the beloved husband of the late Doris (Bubbie) Holbrook Whitney. He graduated from the Fenn School, the Noble & Greenough School and Babson College, and served in China in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1945 to 1946.
Joe and Bubbie were longtime residents of the Vineyard. They first began summering in Edgartown more than 60 years ago. They built their Fuller street home in 1955, and in the early 1980s took up permanent residence. In addition to his pastimes of flying and skiing, Joe was an avid sailor and participated in several Bermuda races. In 1955 he became a member of the Edgartown Yacht Club to which he belonged until his death. He was also an active member of the Edgartown Reading Room.
Joe’s business career included the founding of Robin Hood’s Barn, four men’s and women’s clothing and gift stores, one of which was a longtime fixture in downtown Edgartown. In addition to the retail business, Joe served for more than 30 years as the founder and chief executive officer of Executive Airlines, Air New England and NorEast Airlines. Later, he was a partner in NorEast, a fixed-base operation at the New Bedford airport.
He was predeceased by his brother Robert W. Whitney Jr. and his three sisters, Fanny Blair, Mary Hausserman and Dorothy Nelson. He is survived by his daughters Elizabeth W. Woodard and her husband William of Westwood, Lee W. Forrest of York, Me., Pamela W. Duncan and husband Marvin of Marblehead, and his companion, Hope Register of Edgartown and Westwood. He is also survived by six grandchildren and eight nieces and nephews.
A graveside service for family and friends is planned for 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 1 at the Tower Hill Cemetery in Edgartown.
In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be made in Joe’s memory to the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, 450 Brookline avenue, Boston, MA 02215; or the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital, 1 Hospital Road, Oak Bluffs, MA 02557.