Julia Mildred (Ledbetter) Carpenter, age 99 years, 4 months and 8 days, a long time resident of Osceola and St. Clair County, passed away May 25th, 2012, in San Antonio, Texas. Julia was born January 17, 1913, on the family farm two miles south of the Ohio community in Monegaw Township. She was the youngest daughter of Robert McHenry “Sam” Ledbetter and Olive Florence (Boots) Ledbetter.
Julia attended grade school at the one-room Lewellen country schoolhouse and graduated from Osceola High School in the class of 1932. She began working for the County Collector, Mr. Walt Lyons, soon after graduation. She married Forrest Lee Carpenter at Versailles, Missouri, on her birthday in 1933. The newlyweds did not announce their marriage until 1938, shortly after Forrest obtained full-time employment as a lineman with Kansas City Power and Light. To their union one child, Charles Lee, was born in 1939. Julia and Forrest purchased a farm northeast of Osceola in 1943 and farmed until Forrest’s death in 1976. Julia worked as a clerk in Knight’s dry goods store and Duke’s grocery in the late 40’s and early 50’s. In 1954 she was elected as the first female County Clerk in Missouri and was reelected in 1958. For some time in the early sixties, Julia worked as a case worker in the county welfare office before becoming the county administrator for the Federal-State food program in St. Clair County. Julia fervently served county residents during her working lifetime.
Julia was preceded in death by her parents, her four sisters, Sylvia Hunt, Edna Fenwick, Lelia Teague and Maude Long, long time school teachers and residents of St. Clair County. She is survived by her son, Charles Lee, and his wife, Phyllis, of Bulverde, Texas; grandchildren Travis Carpenter and his wife, Laura, of Boerne, Texas; Stacy Carpenter and great-grandchildren, Jordan and Nicholas, of Bulverde, Texas; and Matthew Carpenter and great-grandchildren, McKenna and Jackson, of Round Rock, Texas. Survivors also include nephews Gene Fenwick and wife, Naida, of Clinton; Robert Fenwick and wife, Arvie, of Clinton; Jim Long and wife, Jenny, of Raymore; Jerry Long and wife, Beverly, of the Ohio community; and their many lovely children.