March 3, 1921 - Sept. 18, 2010
Ruth Vina White of College Place, passed away Sept. 18, 2010, at her home at the age of 89 years. Memorial celebration will be Saturday, Sept. 25, 2010, at 10 a.m. at the First Baptist Church in Milton-Freewater. Memorial contributions may be made to the First Baptist Church Memorial Fund or Walla Walla Community Hospice through the Munselle-Rhodes Funeral Home, 902 S. Main St., Milton-Freewater, OR, 97862.
Ruth was born March 3, 1921, in Moselle, Mo., the eighth of an eventual 12 children of Charles and Arrilla Collins Long. She moved to Foley, Ala. in high school and was the first in her family to graduate from high school in 1939. After high school she moved to Monrovia, Calif., to live with her oldest sister where she met her future husband, Paul Wood White and they married on March 2, 1941.
In the years following, they moved to Tulare then Chester, Calif., before moving to McMinnville, Bandon and Milton-Freewater, then to Prosser, before Paul retired from the ministry in 1979. Ruth shared a passion for travel with her husband. She traveled abroad to Israel, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand and visited most of the states in the USA, including Hawaii last Thanksgiving. After retirement, their sense of adventure led them to interim pastorates in 12 churches from Kodiak, Alaska, to Sidell, Ill., and many in between.
The Whites retired back to College Place in 1985 where they eventually returned to the First Baptist Church in Milton-Freewater while serving four years at a church in Adams, Ore., from 1990-1994. Ruth faithfully served the Lord in many church settings, including preparing meals, as a member of various committees, teaching numerous Sunday school classes, and she was active in the Oregon American Baptist Women, holding the office of president at one point. In addition, she cooked at Mac-Hi, led a Camp Fire Girls Troop, and tailored/sewed clothes at two Stretch Sew stores (one owned by her sister Winnie VanHouten), Perk's.
She was a member of PEO and volunteered at Grove School in the SMART program during the 2003-2004 school year. Ruth had many roles as a sister, wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, pastor's wife, friend and neighbor. Two of her favorite things to do each week were to attend Tuesday morning breakfast with her friends and any family members who might be available that week, and to go out to lunch after church most Sundays with her church family.
She was independent until the end and died at home in her sleep, as she always wanted to do, with her family present. Ruth was loved by her family and friends and will by missed. She was preceded in death by her husband on June 13, 2001, and her daughter Suzanne Kathleen Stocker in 2004.
She is survived by children and spouses, Larry and Carolee White, Walla Walla, Ron and Donna White, Redondo Beach, Calif; two daughters, Paula Hansen of Los Angeles and Vicci Dee White of Troy, Idaho; three sisters, Juanita Webb of Troy, Ohio, Gladys Crocker, Santa Monica, Calif., Helen VanLierop, Montgomery, Ala.; 10 grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; five great-great- grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.