Cpt. Dempsey Walton Whitey White

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Cpt. Dempsey Walton "Whitey" White

August 02, 1928 - February 26, 2019

Cpt. Dempsey Walton Whitey White Cpt. Dempsey Walton "Whitey" White, U.S. Air Force-retired, of Fairfield Glade was born Aug. 2, 1928, in Fentress County, TN, and passed away Feb. 26, 2019 at Cookeville Regional Medical Center.
He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Katherine (Wilson) White, and the couple's two children, Andrew White and his wife, Jona White, and Angela (White) Ellis and her husband, Ralph Ellis. He is also survived by grandchildren Meredith (White) Strauss and husband, Brian Strauss, and great-grandchildren, Shea and Patton Strauss, of Soddy Daisy, TN. Other survivors are grandchildren, Nathan White, Carter White and Lauren White, all of Knoxville, and grandchildren Abigail Ellis of Athens, GA, and Samuel Ellis of Atlanta.
Dempsey was the eighth of nine children born to Sherman and Florence (Baldwin) White of Clarkrange, TN. He was preceded in death by his parents and his eight siblings, Clyde, Cordell, Clifford, Clella, Leffie, Ruth, Juanita and Reba Nell.
Sherman and Florence raised their children with money earned in the Wilder Coal mines and from food raised on the small family farm. After Dempsey graduated from Clarkrange High School, he enlisted in the Air Force in 1948, before the Air Force was even a year old. He served 10 years on active duty and 10 years in the reserves, retiring at the rank of captain. His military career included training in Texas and active duty assignments in the Pentagon, Tennessee and Japan. He was among the small cadre of Air Force personnel who supported the establishment of Arnold Air Force Base. He even served in the Honor Guard when President Harry Truman dedicated the installation in 1951.
In 1958, he separated from active duty and joined the Air Force Reserves so he could use the G.I. Bill and his wife's strong support to earn a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering at the University of Tennessee, one of his proudest accomplishments. Upon graduation, he returned to Tullahoma and Arnold Air Force Base where he worked 26 years for ARO, Inc. and Sverdrup, predecessors to today's Jacobs Technology. There he served as a test engineer, helping to develop and improve advanced jet engines for America's military aircraft, including engines for the SR-71 spy plane, the F-15 and the F-16.
Dempsey is best remembered for his deep love of family, friends and country. He coached numerous youth sports teams in Tullahoma, influencing the character and development of more than 100 young people who played for his teams over more than a decade. He was an avid golfer and sports fan, with a strong passion for his Tennessee Vols. He and Kathy were long-time members of the "Hix and Chix" square dance club in Tullahoma, longtime members of Trinity Lutheran Church in Tullahoma and among charter members of Christ Lutheran Church at Fairfield Glade.
Family and friends are invited to join the family at a funeral service celebrating Dempsey's life Saturday, March 2, at Christ Lutheran Church, 481 Snead Dr., Fairfield Glade. The service will begin at 11 a.m. with the family receiving friends beginning at 10 a.m. Following the funeral service, there will be a short graveside service at Rose Hill Memorial Gardens, 4758 New Manchester Highway, Tullahoma, beginning at approximately 3:30 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made in memory of Dempsey White to Shriner's Hospital for Children
Arrangements are being handled by Bilbrey Funeral Home in Crossville, Bilbreyfuneralhomeinc.com or (931) 484-6119.
Published on February 28, 2019
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1 posts

Kathy Ray
Mar 03, 2019
Oh I was so sorry to learn about Whitey's death. What a friend he was to my family , especially Charlie. Know I'm thinking of you.