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By Bev Odom/The Red River Sun—
WELLINGTON — Garroll White arrived back in Collingsworth County almost three years ago. Born at Quail on Nov. 21, 1937 to the late Ocie White and Christine Stiles White Simmons, he says he ran away from home – cattle, horses and the farm – to join the United States Army in 1956.
Glynn Moore VFW Post No. 6439 installed White as Post Commander at its Tuesday, June 2 meeting at 6 p.m. Additional officers include Senior Vice Commander Benito Castillo, Junior Vice Commander Adam Sosa, Quartermaster Epifanio “Jr.” Castillo, Chaplain Jeff Pastor, Trustees James Ammons,
Gary Dye and Billy Langford, Adjutant James Larned, Service Officer Michael Stanley, Judge Advocate Sam Adams and Surgeon Hugh Kutch.
Veterans of the Red River Region looking for a VFW Post are welcome at the Glynn Moore Post in Wellington. With the meeting the first Tuesday of every month at 7 p.m., contact Quartermaster Castillo at 806-205-1610 for membership information.
White earned his high school diploma from the U.S. Army Institute at Fort MacArthur, Calif. He attended aircraft maintenance training at Fort Rucker, Ala. He was stationed at at Long Beach at Fort MacArthur then shipped out to Korea.
He served with the 150th Transportation Cargo Helicopter Field Maintenance unit working on tandem rotor aircraft.
During his service, White crossed paths with MASH star Jamie Farr and comedian Jerry Lewis. He said he saw half the world as his travels took him to the Okinawan Islands of Japan and Adak Station in Alaska.
White rose to the rank of Specialist 5th Class in the army but in 1959, his dad passed cutting his active military service to 33 months.
He joined a reserve unit while helping his mom with the farm near Quail. He worked as a route milkman delivering milk all over the area then was promoted to manager for Goldsmith Dairy in Memphis. In 1972 he became a member of the Ready Reserve and headed back to California.
White worked as a maintenance inspector then became a 1st Sgt. for the 730th Truck Company. He attended Fresno City College and took classes at theUniversity of California. As a member of the Army Reserves, he studied psychology at Yakima Valley, Wash.
His third year he went to work for Fresno County as a road equipment operator. He worked his way up to road maintenance supervisor then road superintendent. White promoted to Sgt. 1st Class Army Reserves.
He retired at 60 years as he and his wife enjoyed traveling. Diagnosed with bone cancer, she passed in January 2014 after 55 years of marriage. White lost his only daughter to brain cancer in November 2014.
White met his wife Olivia and settled in Palm Desert., and left his home in Fresno to his son.
“Olivia and I couldn’t live like they do out in California,” White said. “We bought our home in Wellington and moved here in August 2017. Collingsworth County has always been home to me.”
Neal White, Geneva Thomas and the late P.J. White, all of Wellington, the late Harold White of Hedley and Donald White, now of Clarendon, are some of Garroll White’s first cousins.
“We are well planted in Collingsworth County,” he said. “I’m happy to be home.”
He looks forward to serving as commander of the local VFW Post chartered March 17, 1946 by 214 veterans of World War II. Still living is Harley William “Bill” Hatch, an active tenant of a retirement community in Amarillo called The Clairmont.