Carolyn Rinehart Obituary

Dec 7, 1942 – Feb 19, 2024

Carolyn Sue Coker Rinehart, born on Dec. 7, 1942, in Athens, Texas, died on Feb. 19, 2024, due to complications from bladder cancer.

Shortly after her birth, Carolyn’s family relocated to Austin, Texas. During her early years in Austin, she embarked on a creative endeavor that would shape her future. In the summer following her third grade year, Carolyn produced “The Rosedale Rocket,” a neighborhood newspaper. Starting with just 10-12 mimeographed copies at the outset, the weekly paper grew to over 300 subscribers by the time she completed the eighth grade.

Carolyn continued pursuing her passion by running her high school newspaper and the Daily Texan, the University of Texas at Austin’s newspaper. In 1964, she graduated with a degree in journalism. During this time, she also met the love of her life, Robert “Bob” Rinehart. Their shared commitment to social justice and civil rights brought them together, and on July 4, 1964, they were married. Their love story endured for 53 years until Bob’s passing in 2017.

Following Bob’s college graduation, they embarked on a journey to Amarillo, Texas, where they welcomed their daughter, Roberta “Bobi.” Six weeks later, they set out for Montana, leading them to Superior and Missoula, Mont., finally ending up in Alaska in 1977.

In Alaska, Carolyn worked for the Anchorage Times as a reporter. She was also an active member of the First Congregational Church and the Alaska Professional Communicators, formerly Alaska Press Women. She retired as a technical writer from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 1999.

Carolyn is survived by her daughter, Roberta “Bobi” B. Rinehart; son-in-law, Michael A. Erb; granddaughter, Garland Grace Erb of Anchorage; as well as stepgranddaughter, Marieka Erb; and great-granddaughter, Lynnea Barclay of Sitka, Alaska.

A memorial service to celebrate Carolyn’s life will be held on Friday, March 1, 2024, at 3:30 p.m. at the First Congregational Church in Anchorage.

Instead of flowers, the family kindly requests donations to Katie’s Handprint,; or First Congregational Church,

Her cremated remains will be interred later at the family grave marker in the Athens Cemetery in Athens.