William Burton Raker

July 10, 1932November 10, 2021

William Burton Raker was born on July 10, 1932 and passed on November 10, 2021 to be with his heavenly father, Jesus Christ. He was the first of three children born to John Temple Raker and his wife Ruth Virginia Blackburn in Chester, PA. His father was a lineman for the Philadelphia Electric Co. and his mother was a home maker. During his childhood he resided in Springfield, Delaware County, PA.

He graduated from Williamson College of the Trades, Media, PA and Millersville University in Millersville, PA. He did his graduate work at the University of Delaware, Newark, DE.

During school Bill worked as a plumber’s helper for the Paoli Plumbing & Heating Co. After graduation from Williamson, he started his own business painting and decorating with a partner.

He was drafted into the US Army and was stationed at Ft. Lewis, Washington in the Signal Corp as an aerial photographer. While there he had an interest in theater photography and became the movie projectionist between several theaters on base.

After serving his time with the Army he attended Millersville University. Upon graduation he took a job teaching Industrial Arts at Delaware City, DE. He was there 42 years and taught wood, foundry, plastic, leather and isometric drawing. He was awarded several awards for his teaching excellence.

Bill was a gentle, kind, talented person. He had a general contractor license and did additions, porches and repairs. He enjoyed working with his hands and turned out beautiful bowls on the lath. He was a Boy Scout leader, a graduate of the Hixson School of Floral Design in Cleveland, Ohio and the Troy Welding School in Troy, Ohio. He taught Sunday School and was involved in vacation Bible School in his church in DE.

After retirement, Bill attended the Newark Senior Center and took weekly Bible classes and art lessons. He was a very talented artist and builder. Each house he and his wife Dolly owned he would modify and add built-ins.

He was a member for ten years in the United States Coast Guard Auxiliary and served as Commander of Flotilla 14 in Newark, DE. Bill held a general license as an amateur radio operator with the call sign of WB3IVH.

In 2009, he and his wife Dolly permanently retired to FL to Rotonda West where he immediately started to modify the house according to his wife’s wishes. He was a member of Englewood United Methodist Church and got involved in the activities. He attended the weekly Men’s Fellowship Group and prepared for many years the weekly devotions. He would type the devotions himself (hunt and peck) on a piece of paper and hand them out to people. He worked on the pancake breakfast, the yearly rummage sale, and the Christmas Dinner.

Bill was an avid reader and enjoyed the Civil War period. He and his family traveled in an RV to visit the Civil War battle sites and many places in the US.

Survivors include his wife of 64 years Dolores J. Martens Raker, sons Williams B. Raker, Jr. (Danae), Bruce A. Raker (Lisa), daughters Bonnie J. Raker Carpenter, and Kimberly A. Raker. Grandchildren: Kaitlyn Elizabeth Raker, Sarah Anne Carpenter, Thomas Paul Carpenter, Jr. (Kelsey), Christopher Andrew Ward Raker, Matthew Ward Carpenter, Robert Simeon Carpenter, and Kenneth William Carpenter. Great-grandchildren: Jose Esteban Chacon, Jr. and Willow Rose Carpenter. Sister: Virginia Wingate, sister-in-law Shirley Devaris and brother-in-law William H. Martens, Jr. (Linda) and many cousins, nieces and nephews. Pre deceased by his sister Mary Ward Raker.

A funeral service for William will be held Tuesday, December 7, 2021 from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM at Englewood United Methodist Church, Dearborn Street, Englewood, FL 34223.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at for the Raker family.


7 December

Funeral Service

11:00 am - 1:00 pm

Englewood United Methodist Church

Dearborn Street
Englewood, FL 34223


William Burton Raker

have a memory or condolence to add?

Thomas Carpenter

November 25, 2021

First, Bill is my father-in-law. I was reflecting the other day that I have had shared many experiences with Bill and Dolly. Bill was a man of great character and lead by example. We spent many hours together doing various projects in the garage and backyard. He took the time for my children when i was working and filled in as a role model. He was patient and kind to to the children.
I enjoyed going to Promise Keepers with him and a retreat up in New York. He passed on personal wisdom and caring. I experienced his great faith during such outings. Many things that men only share with men. He will be missed by all and has left a lasting legacy to the tribute of family and faith. You are the Overmatch in in heaven now. You are in good company, rest.

I recall my last words to him " Till we meet again."

Richard Lester

November 23, 2021

Mr Raker was a great teacher I learned alot from him . I thought I was a know it all he quicky changed me frist day in class. Hope to meet him again some day class of 67.

Jack Kirk

November 21, 2021

I was a junior high student of Mr. Raker in the late 60's. I had absolutely no talent for what was then referred to as shop class. Mr. Raker had the patience of a saint with my projects. One was an ambitious one for me of making a wooden serving tray for my mother for Christmas, (which she still has at her home in Venice, Florida.) I can remember him jokingly telling me that it was good that my father was president of the school board so he could devote the entire operating budget of the district to purchasing band saw blades which I broke on a daily basis... He was a kind man. I live in Sarasota and agree with his opinion on the beautiful SW Florida sky especially the sunsets.

Norma Sturgeon

November 21, 2021


Hitman Peg

November 15, 2021

Bill was a kind and gentle loving person...Dolly & he were a wonderful couple & so fortunate to have each other. We were blessed to call them our dear friends...He will be sadly missed.

Dolores Raker

November 15, 2021

My husband Bill was an exceptional person. He was so gentle, kind and talented. When I look around the house I see his handiwork everywhere. He took time to get the measurements just right before he tackled any project. Nothing was too great a chore for him. When we moved to FL he so enjoyed the wildlife and the sky especially the clouds here in FL. Where we live we have no industry so no pollution and you can see the sky at night so clearly. We'd be eating at the table and he'd say to me "have you seen the sky"? He loved to walk the beach and just pick up shells that interested him. He truly was a lover of nature. I will miss him terribly.

Bonnie Carpenter

November 15, 2021

I loved going out to the store with my dad. We would always see someone who had him for a shop teacher. They would always tell of how much they enjoyed his class! He was a special man and a wonderful teacher. He loved sharing his knowledge.