James White Whitaker was born August 24, 1923 to Janie White and James Lee Whitaker. He was born and brought up in the big white house called Laurens Hill and graduated from Dudley High School with the class of 1938.He was one of only two classmates of Dudley High still living. Jimmy attended Middle Georgia College, where he met Evelyn Jones of Cochran, Georgia. He enlisted in the Navy but because he was attending pharmacy school, was transferred to the Marine Corps as a Pharmacist’s Mate First Class where he served as a Corpsman (medic). He served in several campaigns during World War II including the invasion of Okinawa and eventually rose to the rank of Master Sergeant.
At the conclusion of the War, Jimmy returned home and married Evelyn! She was the love of his life, and they were married for 53 years. Jimmy, known by friends as “Nubbin”, was a Laurens County farmer who loved raising cows and growing row crops. He became a rural mail carrier in the late 1940s and retired from the Post Office after 36 years of service. He served as a deacon for Montrose Baptist Church; then, First Baptist Church after he moved his family to Dublin. Jimmy loved Jesus and was his children’s greatest role model. For pleasure, he loved to fish and hunt; and, also, play bridge in The Supper Club with his wife and friends.
Jimmy was predeceased by his wife, Evelyn Jones Whitaker; parents, Janie and James Lee Whitaker; sisters, Carolyn Whitaker Tankersley, and Janet Whitaker King; and, great granddaughter, Polly Lynn Dawson.
He is survived by daughters: Wanda (Rob) Hicks of Brunswick, GA; Jan (Bruce) Lake of Dublin; Linda (John) Ronning of Baltimore , MD; Candi (Michael) Pharis of Dublin; and son William Lee (Cathryn) Whitaker of Dublin; and, sister Mary Whitaker Townsend of Dublin.
Mr. Whitaker is also survived by his beloved grandchildren: Butler (Emily) Dawson of Richmond Hill, GA; Whit (Hayley) Dawson of Greenville, SC ;Lauren Terry of Macon, GA; Amanda (Guy) Lake of Tennille, GA; Laurel (Andrew) Braun of The Republic of Georgia; Joel Ronning of Baltimore, MD; Jared Ronning of Tyson’s Corner, VA; Jonathan Ronning of Colton, CA; Ben Whitaker of Dublin; Sarah Whitaker of Dublin; Beth Whitaker– Staff Sergeant, US Army stationed in Italy ; Jack Pharis of Dublin; and James Pharis of Dublin.
Jimmy Whitaker is also survived by great grandchildren: Liam Dawson, Chapman Dawson, Blakely Dawson, Jones Dawson, Rhett Dawson, Henry Terry, Mary Evelyn Terry, Sam Lake and Olivia Lake along with many nieces and nephews whom he loved.
Grandsons - Butler Dawson, Whit Dawson, Ben Whitaker, Joel Ronning, Jared Ronning, Jonathan Ronning, Jack Pharis, and James Pharis will serve as pallbearers.
Visitation and Funeral services will be held at First Baptist Church Dublin, GA, with Dr. Cliff Morris officiating on Friday, November 22, 2019. The family will receive friends from 9:30-11:00 am with the funeral service immediately following at 11:00 am. Graveside services will follow at Northview Cemetery with Military Honors.
The family will be at the home of Michael and Candi Pharis at 1629 GA-19 South, Dublin, GA 31021. In lieu of flowers the family asks that donations be made to Serenity Place at 504 Parker Dairy Road, Dublin, GA 31021.
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