Phillip A. White, born Dec 30, 1948, at Cushing Memorial Hospital in Leavenworth Kansas, passed away early Saturday morning May 16, 2020, at Brookdale Senior Living in Topeka, Kansas. Phillip was the son of Dorothy Chamberlain White and John E. White. He was the middle child of three boys.
Phillip graduated high school in Roundup, Montana. He then attended college at Rocky Mountain College in Billings, Montana, majoring in Biology. This interest in science threaded through his life. After graduating from college, he enlisted in the U.S. Army working as a microbiologist/Food Inspection Specialist. He was stationed at the USA Medical Lab in St. Louis, Missouri. Phillip performed chemical and biological tests on food procured by the U.S. government. He served from 1974 to 1977. After his honorable discharge he continued to inspect food for the military for the rest of his civilian career at the USA Medical Lab.
Phillip’s passion for science also led him to become one of the longest serving volunteers at the St. Louis Science Center. He loved giving tours of the exhibits and always tried to pass on his curiosity and love of science to the children, young people and adults who would visit the Center.
Phillip regularly attended church and was active in his community, including serving as a Big Brother to several children in St Louis. Phillip enjoyed taking long daily walks in his neighborhood and stopped at every garage sale along the way. He was also passionate about travel. Early in his life he served in the Peace Corps in Malaysia. During his lifetime he visited 45 states and numerous national parks. All of which he documented with his cameras. He loved photography and had multiple cameras and lenses as well as a full darkroom photo lab in his basement.
In the last decade of his life, Phillip developed dementia and primary progressive aphasia which required him to move out of his home in St Louis and into a residential care facility in Topeka Kansas. He was faithfully and lovingly cared for by his Mother and brothers during this time.
To all who knew him, Phillip was an introverted, intelligent, good natured person who was committed to his career and a patchwork of family and friends. He is survived by two brothers, Charles White,Topeka,Kansas, and Ken M. White (John Linscheid), Brattleboro, Vermont. Phillip also had many beloved cousins in Kansas, Missouri and Michigan whom he enjoyed visiting regularly and especially on holidays and special occasions. Phillip had a quilted wall hanging filled with family pictures made by one of his cousins which stated so eloquently “Families that are stitched together with Love seldom unravel.” He will be deeply missed but not forgotten.
Phillip will interned at Prairie Home Cemetery.
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