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William “Bill” Volentine White, 56
OBIT - White.jpg

We are sad to announce William “Bill” Volentine White of McMinnville passed away on March 27. 

Bill was born on April 18, 1965. He was preceded in death by his mother, Joyce Jean White. He is survived by his father, Jewel White; his brother, Michael (Cynthia) White; his sisters, Jenny (Greg) Nance and Rebecca (Brett) Merritt, as well as eight nieces and nephews and their spouses and 25 great nieces and nephews. Bill was a faithful Christian. 

Bill was known for many roles throughout his life: an artist, author, and poet; an actor (famed for his role as Rev. Oglethorpe among many other celebrated roles); a Civil War reenactor, who promoted and taught historical study through reenactment while participating in many events, including the film Glory; a teacher of writing, the arts, and history; a connoisseur of excellent music; and a comedian. As can be seen through this list, Bill was endlessly creative and unique. And yet, although Bill was known for all of these things, he channeled his vast creativity for many years into his goal of being the greatest uncle of all time, an ambition that his nieces and nephews can all attest was a resounding success. 

Bill deeply loved his family. His nieces and nephews remember with fondness the endless adventures with Uncle Bill. The “Midnight Run,” a great favorite, involved packing everyone into a car and cruising to see what stores stay open late, accompanied with laughter and excellent music. Bill also spent countless hours making movies with his nieces and nephews in short sketches or dramatic full-length features. When not spending time with his nieces and nephews, he reminded them of how much he loved them by creating them special musical mix tapes, often with his own art or commentary, which became lifetime treasures and heirlooms.

With Bill, almost anything could be transformed into a charming joke or a loving game to strengthen the bonds of family. His family fondly remembers games and jokes that spanned for years, such as “Boop Boop,” “Hide the army man,” “Kickball dog tag,” and “The Scary Santa.” Bill always added an impromptu song into the moment so that every adventure and celebration had a soundtrack, which his family continues to sing years after. 

Though Bill was always the life of the party, he also demonstrated his love to his family in quiet ways. Bill was a thoughtful gift giver, always adding a creative and personal touch to his gifts. He wrote personal messages and poems for his parents and siblings, reiterating and reaffirming his love for his family through his meaningful words. Although Bill’s life was touched at times with struggle and grief, his love for his family was never in doubt, shining through the ups and downs. The imprint he left on his family’s hearts can never be erased, and we celebrate knowing he has gone on to a place of perfect peace and joy. 

A private family memorial service will be held. 

McMinnville Funeral Home is honored to serve the family and handle arrangements.

Southern Standard

(McMinnville, Tenn.) April 1, 2022