Don D. White
Born, March 17, 1927, in Berrien Springs, Michigan, to parents Wayne and Nelva White, Don lived in numerous cities in Alabama and Tennessee during his first ten years. His father, a Seventh Day Adventist Minister, moved often, and in 1938 the family, which now included his younger brother Gene and sister Wanda, moved to Washington State, where they resided until coming to Loma Linda in 1940. Don learned, at a young age, the value of hard work and extensive knowledge of construction, as he frequently assisted his father in building homes and apartments in Loma Linda. After graduating from La Sierra H.S. in 1945, Don soon joined the Navy; he spent a year in Honolulu before receiving his honorable discharge. Don met the love of his life, Marietta Greene, in 1946 and they married on June 7, 1947. They honeymooned for several months in a Barton Flats campground, living off love and freebie meals from their friends. Marietta provided Don the love, support, and encouragement over the next sixty-one years as he began to build a flourishing career as a plastering contractor. Don took a brief break from plastering from 1964 to 1968, while working as a sales representative for Bauer's Building Materials. During this time he developed a very popular product "Speedy Patch". He spent the next twenty years specializing in plastering room additions and spraying acoustic ceilings, before passing on the business, "Don White and Sons", to his son-in-law. In 1972, Don and Marietta bought a double lot on Lugo St. just north of Baseline Ave., where they developed a beautiful apartment complex. After selling the Lugo apartments, Don developed several apartments in Loma Linda that well served students, hospital employees, and cancer patients needing short term housing while receiving proton therapy. Don and Marietta were adored by their tenants, who appreciated their quality apartments but especially Don's and Marietta's generous caring nature.
Don's tremendous artistic talents are showcased in his and Marietta's beautiful Del Rosa home. Don also donated his talents and tremendous hours to his children, helping them remodel their own homes. His passion for model railroading and his artistic talent became a large part of his life during his last twenty-five years. He stayed busy painting railroad scenes and building railroad dioramas and decorative miniature train layouts, which he generously shared during the Christmas season with the St. Bernardine's Cardio-Rehab, his daughter's school, and City Hall. Several of his pieces, including a beautiful scale model of the San Bernardino train depot, can be viewed at the depot museum and lobby. Don's Hootenanny, a locomotive built on a golf cart that pulls a small caboose, won trophies in Redlands and San Bernardino Christmas parades and provided free rides on Saturdays at the train depot museum.
Don will be fondly remembered as an extremely generous and caring man, great conversationalist/story teller, artist, hard worker, highly principled and ethical businessman, and loving patriarch. He is survived by his son, Stephen White (Faye); daughter, Karen Theriault (Brad); grandchildren, Mitchel White (Carrie), Kirsten White, Amy Theriault, Kyle Theriault (Michelle); great grandchildren, Grady, Audrey, Bernard, and Oscar; sister, Wanda Watson (Ron); and brother, Gene White (Karen); loving companion, Fran Johnson.
Funeral services will be held for Don, on Thursday December 6, 2012, at 10:00 a.m. at Montecito Memorial Park, Colton, California. Phone (909) 825-3024