Alvin Joseph White, Jr., 91, Orange


Last updated 4/12/2024 at 10:48am

Alvin Joseph White, Jr., 91, of Orange, Texas, passed away on April 9, 2024, at Oakwood Manor Nursing Home, Vidor, Texas. A.J. was born to Juanita Gonzales and Alvin White Sr. on May 28, 1932, in Orange, Texas. His birth took place at the family’s houseboat on the Sabine River, where his father made his living as a trapper. He spent his life in Orange and graduated from Stark High School in 1950. A.J. enlisted in the Navy in 1950 and married Carolyn Glancey in 1952. He spent four years on the USS Bremerton, Baker Division, during the Korean Conflict and was honorably discharged in May 1955. He started civilian life at American Bridge but was quickly hired at Firestone Tire & Rubber in 1956 where he spent the remainder of his career in the utilities department until retirement in 1982. This culminated in a lifelong interest in the field of water processing and purification where A.J. remained a strong advocate for hydration via “properly” purified water, which could only be “reverse osmosis.” During his career at Firestone and for many years after his retirement, he spent his spare time as a cabinet maker, builder, and remodeler at A.J. White & Son, with his son, Charles. Many homes of his family, extended family, and throughout the area are evidence of the beauty and quality of his woodwork and abilities. From building entire homes to the remodeling of a kitchen or bath, and even something as small as a great grandchild’s special toy box, he put “hard work and self-sacrifice,” along with personal flair into every endeavor. A.J. was an avid hunter and sportsman throughout his life. He always seemed as happy with bringing home several Stuckey’s pecan logs as he was a deer. There was a fishing pole residing in whatever vehicle he drove, and he was ever ready for a fishing invite or to “throw a hook.” He fished in waters from the Atlantic coastline of New Jersey to the Pacific waters of Hawaii and many points in between – his favorite spots were Sabine Lake when “the redfish were knocking” and his “flounder hole” at Crystal Beach. Dancing was a joy and hobby for A.J., and whether it was at “the old folks dance,” the local VFW, or The Longhorn, if he was there, he was moving. He once cleared the floor with his partner at The Longhorn, dancing from the beginning to the end of the Orange Blossom Special, garnering well-deserved adulation from the onlookers. A.J. White enjoyed people and socializing and living life. He accumulated innumerable acquaintances and clients through the years, many of whom became lifelong friends. Through his love of building and remodeling he was able to help many families get into their own homes and provided jobs to folks in need of work. His generosity of spirit included making sure family members always had ground coffee, fresh pineapple, and frozen goods wrapped to last the test of time. Perhaps his favorite role in life was that of “Paw Paw.” His grandchildren and great grandchildren were the source of immeasurable joy and pride to him, and he will forever hold a special place in their hearts, as well. A.J. White was preceded in death by his parents, Alvin White, Juanita and Manuel Gomez; and his brother, Charlie Gomez. He is survived by his children, Karen Stanfield and husband, Andy, of Houston; Charles “Chuck” White and wife, Lani, of Orange; and Alison Kymer and husband, Doug, of Waxhaw, North Carolina. His grandchildren, Faran Bagley and wife, Jamie; Katy Buchanan and husband, David; and Jolie Kymer; his great-grandchildren, Emma Bagley, Rayce Bagley, Bonamy Morgan, and Jonesie Morgan; his siblings, Leroy Gomez and wife, Glinda; Josie Wilkinson Tipton; and a host of nieces, nephews and other loving family members and friends. Cremation will be held under the direction of Claybar Funeral Home in Orange, Texas with a service for family and friends to be scheduled at a later time. Any memorial donations wished to be made in A.J.’s memory may be sent to one of his favorite charitable organizations, Wounded Warrior Project or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.


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