Edgar Lee White Jr., “Lee” to his friends and family, lived a life of service to humanity and his country. Lee attended Rockingham High school, class of ‘72. He attended Western Carolina University, and after graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Library Science from WCU, he joined the Peace Corp. His service would utilize the skills he had learned from working with the NC Agriculture Department summer jobs and began teaching farming management techniques in North Africa. His next tour would be in Thailand, where he managed medical relief supplies in refugee camps on the Cambodian border and helped rescue women and children escaping in the rivers of the cruel world of Cambodia at that time. He often referred to this service as “the worst job you’ll ever love.” He would continue this work with the Catholic Relief Services in Thailand and Angola, Africa. He was fluent in several languages. After years of service, and wanting to continue his schooling, he returned to the US and at the age of 29 joined the US Army. In the Army, he would stay stateside and impress the fellow soldiers with preparing a Thanksgiving dinner as his mother and grandmother would serve with the definitive southern flair. He received a certificate for “best cook in the Army”. Later he would meet the love of his life, Chim, and they would have one son, Edgar S. Lee, and was most proud of his family. Lee went on to receive a Master’s degree in education at Winthrop College. Upon completing his masters he taught at Fairfax Elementary in Fairfax, South Carolina, followed by computer and library science at Bolden Elementary on the Marine Corp Air base at Laurel Bay SC for 20 years.
Lee was preceded in his death by his father, Edgar Lee White of Rockingham and is survived by his mother Patsy M. White; wife, Chim White; son Edgar S. White; his sister, Suzanne White Gustafson and her husband Ronald; and his brother, Daniel Patrick White. He is also survived by his extended family in the US and Thailand and many lifelong friends.
In lieu of flowers, a donation can be made to the Thomas H. Leath Library, 412 East Franklin Street, Rockingham, North Carolina 28379; as well as Agape Hospice Care at Agape Foundation, Post Office Box 801087, Acworth, Georgia 30101.
ARRANGEMENTS BY: THE BRICE W. HERNDON AND SONS FUNERAL HOMES AND CREMATORY, VARNVILLE-HAMPTON CHAPEL, 1074 Yemassee Highway, Varnville, 803.943.5016. Visit the registry online at: www.briceherndonfuneralhome.com.
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