Last week my paternal grandfather passed away. David L. White, Sr., was 85 years old and died in his home on his 65th wedding anniversary. We carry the same name…I am David L. White III.
Known by all his grandchildren as “Papaw”, he grew up in rural Scioto County, Ohio, and first left Scioto County when he was 18 and joined the Navy. He then traveled all over the world. After his service in the Navy, he built his career in the Air Force and lived in Pickerington, Ohio.
Papaw was an avid craftsman that could make just about anything. I remember being in his basement as a child, with all of the woodwork and tools, and wanting to build things myself. I think that my artistic side comes from Papaw, as nobody else in my family is as creative with their hands.
He also was a fantastic gardener, as he and Mamaw, my grandmother, would cook many delicious meals from vegetables in their garden in the backyard.
Though stubborn and of the mindset that he was always right, Papaw lived with honor, and pride in his family. He has 14 grandchildren and I believe 7 great-grandchildren.
My relationship with Papaw grew stronger in his last couple of years, as we shared more and he became warmer and gentler. He was a fantastic host during visits with my wife and in-laws.
Yesterday Papaw was returned to the dust and buried in Scioto County, at the White family cemetery. There was a beautiful burial service with 2 men from the Navy to honor and commemorate his service.