John Wilbur White
John Wilbur “Papa John” White was born September 21, 1937 in Phillipsburg, Kansas, to Samuel Arthur and Mildred Alice Edith (Arment) White. He died on May 5, 2020 at his home in Gering, Nebraska from complications following a fall, surrounded by his loving family.
John graduated from Phillipsburg High School and attended Ft. Hays State College in Hays, Kansas. John was in the Kansas Army National Guard for 17 years. He ran the movie projector at the Majestic Theatre and the Drive-in Theatre at Phillipsburg, Kansas. He was a mechanic at Matteson Motors before going to work for Farmland Industries. In 1977, he transferred to Scottsbluff, Nebraska to be the shop foreman. When Farmland closed, he went to work at Floyd’s Sales and Services in Scottsbluff where he worked until he retired.
John is survived by his wife Roberta; daughters Nena (William, Jr) Hardison of Cheasapeake, VA, Alisa Gunther of Gering, NE, and Lisa (Troy) Weborg of Bridgeport, NE; son Vern White of Gering and Corey (Stacy) Linnett of Spanaway, Washington; 14 grandchildren: William III and Katrina Hardison; Kari Richardson and her children Jenniffer, Lillyan, and Kyra; Sara (Brent) Hinckley and their daughter Ellie; Steven (Rebecca) Gunther and their children Calvin, Lincoln, and Gideon; Justin (Tiffany) Portenier and their children Jaxson, Ryan, Sutton Wilbur, and Cannon; Jared Portenier and his daughter Aleigh; Kendra (Jason) Rohr and their children Emma, Easton, Bryson, and Cayson; Paige Weborg; Helen Johnson; Kara Jo (Jordan) Berger and their children Oliver and Teagan; Aaron (Samantha) Misner and their children Brody, Korbin and Cash; Kayla (Cody) Barge; and Andrew (Heather) Delcamp; brother Jesse White of Ashland, MS; sister Mildred “Toots” (La-Don) Lappin of Logan, KS; sisters-in-law Wanda Rodenbaugh of Loomis, NE, Maxine Rahjes of Colorado Springs, CO, and Diane Kennedy of Phillipsburg, KS; numerous nieces and nephews; all who knew him from the Steel Grill, Log Cabin, and his girls at the Gering Platte Valley Bank.
John was preceded in death by his parents, his first wife Mildred Snow White, infant daughter Erika Lyn, daughters Katrina Anne White and Lita Fay Delcamp, brother Leonard White, brothers-in-law Wesley, William, and Richard “Dick” Kennedy, Roy Rodenbaugh, and Fred Staker.
John, will be greatly missed by those who loved him and all who fondly called him “Papa John.”
Private family graveside services were held Saturday May 9, 2020, in the Fairview Cemetery, Phillipsburg, KS, with Pastor Mike Szekely officiating. Memorial contributions may be made to Regional West Hospice or the Festival of Hope. The live-streamed service is available on the Olliff-Boeve Memorial Chapel Facebook page.