Celebration of Life – Jonathan Edward White, 88 years old, passed away November 9, 2020, at his home with his family by his side.
Jon was born in 1932 in the little town of Florence, MO, the son of Oscar and Dorothy Allie (Hodges) White.
Jon came from a large family of nine (four sisters and five brothers).
After leaving his small town in Morgan County, Missouri, (south of Sedalia, around Stover and Versailles), Jon worked several places.
He and his brother Aaron worked as cook assistants at the General Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri.
That is where Jon met a very pretty RN by the name of Vina Irene Russell.
Jon married Vina, who was the love of his life, on August 12, 1953 in Kansas City, Missouri. Jon and Vina shared 55-and-a-half wonderful years together.
Jon had several jobs during that 55-and-a-half years.
He was a milk deliverer for Sealtest Dairy.
Jon’s brother Aaron had moved to Oregon and talked Jon and Vina into moving there as well.
Their adventure started as they packed their things and with their first child, were Oregon-bound.
While in Oregon, Jon worked as a truck driver hauling logs at a lumber mill.
He could not take the cold and wet months working in the rain.
Jon came in out of the rain one day and asked Vina if she would like to move back to Missouri.
She said, “Get in the car, I will do the packing,” and soon they were on their way back to Missouri.
Once they were settled back in Missouri, Jon worked for Guys, selling potato chips, candies and nuts.
Then one day, Jon saw an ad in the newspaper for Auctioneering School.
He asked Vina what she thought of the idea of him going to a two-week-long school and learning to auction.
She thought it was a good idea and so, he began a new trade.
He started off taking bids with another auctioneer at a three-day auction at the Nelson Art Gallery in Kansas City, Missouri.
On the third day, the main auctioneer lost his voice, so Jon took over and his career began.
The weekend job paid $25 a day.
He did this until he started selling produce at a grocery store, making $100 a day each weekend while still holding down his full-time job working for Guys.
Several years went by until he decided he wanted to be a welder.
Jon worked for Allis Chalmers in Independence, Missouri making $3 an hour top pay.
He worked there for five years.
At this time, Jon and Vina lived in Kingsville, Missouri on a farm.
Traveling to and from Independence was a bit of a drive for Jon.
He found out that Stahl’s Manufacturing in Kingsville was looking for welders.
He thought it would certainly be nice working closer to home.
Jon applied and was hired, making $2.50 an hour welding furnaces.
He worked there until he took on another trade, selling life insurance.
Jon worked for Life and Casualty Insurance in Raytown, Missouri for four to five years.
After five years, he and Vina decided to buy a combine and go on a wheat harvest out of state.
They, along with their sons, Tim and Russell, their friends, Mike and Barbara Vick and Mervin Vick, all traveled by trucks and hauled their combines and headers to Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas.
They spent a great deal of their summer working on the wheat harvest.
They returned home to their 150-acre farm, milking up to 70 cows a day, morning and evening.
They also did custom combining on the side.
Jon and Vina found that the cows loved to listen to music.
It seemed to make them calmer.
They decided they wanted to start singing with their family and friends.
Not making much money, they called themselves “The Countryside Praise Singers.”
Jon and Vina had a little shop called the “What Knot Shop,” making chairs and ceramics.
Jon, now getting close to retirement at 65 years old, together with Vina, decided to sell the farm and cows and move to town.
Once they got settled in their new home in Holden, Missouri, Jon sold insurance and drove a school bus part-time for five years.
Jon’s life came crashing down in 2009, when the love of his life, his precious wife Vina passed away.
Sadly, he lost his granddaughter a year later.
One rainy morning in 2011, Jon was traveling a short distance away to a neighboring town when he was in a very bad car accident.
Jon was told he would never walk again.
Jon began a trying routine of being in and out of hospitals, rehabilitation centers and nursing homes.
Jon enjoyed the community and visiting with friends.
He knew a lot of people from his days of selling insurance.
One of his favorite places to eat was at Jamie’s Place.
He walked into the restaurant with a cane or a walker a great deal of the time.
He always received several hugs from the owner and the workers. Jon became like family to them.
His daughter would take him there at least once or twice a week.
He also enjoyed sitting on the front porch of his home waving to everyone who drove past.
Jon attended the Kingsville Seventh-day Adventist Church.
His daughter and son-in-law would take him several times and a good friend, Bob Reynolds and his wife Janice, would drive him home when he needed a ride.
Jon enjoyed his close friends at church and his family.
Several of his close friends and family would visit him at the facilities and at home.
These dear friends helped keep his spirits up throughout the past almost 11 years.
By showing their love and friendships for him, they helped him make it through each day.
Holden nursing home staff and residents, along with Encompass Hospice were also an extended part of his ending life too.
The house will feel so empty now, the walls will echo with the missing of someone who wanted to peel potatoes for the holiday meals, who sang, told us the mailman came, played around by auctioning off different items in the room, and someone who won’t be sitting at the end of the table, just wanting to visit and drink a good cup of coffee.
He was a good father, grand-father and friend.
Jon is survived by his sister, Florence Dameron (Luther); two brothers, Aaron and James White; his six children, Paul White (Cindy), Naomi Chastain (Dave), Steve White (Judy), Melinda Sechrest (Russell), Russell White (Nancy), and Tim White (Stephanie); 13 grandchildren; 13 great-grandchildren; four step-grandchildren; and five great-step-grandchildren.
Jon was preceded in death by his lovely wife, Vina Irene (Russell) White; his parents; three sisters; four brothers; and a granddaughter, Lisa.
Jonathan Edward White will be laid to rest next to his wife Vina in Holden, Missouri.
Until we meet again.
Funeral services were held at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, November 15, 2020, at Campbell-Cast Funeral Home, Holden, Missouri, with Pastor Harvey Reynolds officiating.
Reading of the obituary was by Jonnie McGowen.
Pallbearers were Paul White, Steve White, Russell White, Tim White, Dave Chastain and Russell Sechrest.
Honorary pallbearers were Jacob White, Kevin White, Josh White, Jonnie McGowen, Chanler Sechrest, Chase Sechrest, Tim Chastain, Shawn Brewington, Danny Smith, Evan Engwall, Mark Howlett and Sam Doney.
Interment was at the Fairview Cemetery (Hwy. 131, Holden, MO). Funeral arrangements were entrusted to Campbell-Cast Funeral Home, Holden, Missouri.
Memorial Contributions may be made to the Kingsville Seventh-day Adventist Church (1564 SW, MO 58, Kingsville, MO 64061).
Online Condolences may be left at www.castfuneralhome.com.