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James's Story

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James McGill White, 85, of Commerce, went to be with his Lord and Savior on Sunday, Aug. 6, 2017, surrounded by his family. The family will receive friends at a visitation to be held Thursday, Aug. 10, at 10 a.m. at First Baptist Church, Commerce. A funeral service will follow at 11 a.m. at the church, with Rev. Maria Garza officiating. Burial will follow at Rosemound Cemetery in Commerce.
Commerce Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
He was born Jan. 31, 1932, in Wolfe City, Texas, the son of Charles and Grace White.
When Jim was 2 years old, his family moved to Commerce. He attended Commerce High School, graduating in 1949. While a student there, he was a member of the football team as well as the tennis team. After high school, he entered East Texas State Teacher's College and was active in sports and was a member of the tennis team for four years. Upon graduating in 1953 with a B.S. in Business, he entered the United States Air Force through the ROTC program. He received pilot training at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Hondo Air Base, Reese Air Force Base in Lubbock, Randolph Air Force Base in San Antonio and Bergstrom Air Force Base in Austin. He was a KB-29 Tanker Pilot.
Jim married Jane Myers on May 31, 1953, at the First Baptist Church in Commerce. After a brief time away, they returned to Commerce in 1956 to join Jim's father at White's Dry Goods, which was on the town square. He was active in several organizations, including two terms as president of the Jaycees, president of the Kiwanis Club and helped organize the Commerce Merchant's Association. He again attended East Texas State University and earned his Master's degree in Business. He taught as an adjunct professor in the Marketing Department at ETSU as well as Paris Junior College.
Jim professed his faith in Jesus Christ at an early age. As an adult, he and his family were very active at First Baptist Church, where he served as a deacon. He was responsible for the building of the new First Baptist Church, serving as chairman of the "Together We Build" campaign. Late in life, Jim moved his membership to the First Christian Church where he had been a member as a child. While a member there as an adult, he served as an elder and chairman of the Board. In 2014, he and his family moved their membership back to First Baptist Church, Commerce.
Jim was employed by Sherwood Medical after the dry goods store closed. He was a supervisor and later retired from the company. Following retirement, he worked at Commerce Independent School District as a driver/trainer for the school system.
Jim will be remembered for his devotion and love for his family, friends and church. His greatest joy was spending time with his daughter, Dawn, and his grandchildren.
He is survived by his loving wife of 64 years, Jane; his daughter, Dawn Bohannon and husband Gary; grandchildren Derek Bohannon and wife Kayla, Scott Bohannon and wife Kelsey, Amy Bohannon and Briana Bohannon; and great-grandchildren Trinity Grace Bohannon and Preslee Joy Bohannon.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Charles and Grace White; a brother, Charles White; a sister, Kathy Roberts; and his in-laws whom he loved very much, Dennis and Rena Myers.
Serving as pallbearers for Jim will be Gary Bohannon, Derek Bohannon, Scott Bohannon, Dave Carwell, Ron Roberts, Neal Stewart and Chuck White. Serving as honorary pallbearers will be Brandon Beadles, Ryan Beadles, Ronnie Scott, Paul Mead, Craig Jensen, Jeff White, Brad White, Bob McKenzie, Harold Malone, Ken Evans, Rev. John Click, Johnnie Wade and Jimmy Chennault.
The White family would like to express their heartfelt appreciation to the caregivers at the VA Community Living Center in Bonham.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Jim's honor to the football scholarship that has been set up at Commerce High School.
Published on August 8, 2017
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