Eartha M.M. White and the Acts of Life

By Warren, Cleve | The Florida Times Union, January 22, 2013 | Go to article overview

Eartha M.M. White and the Acts of Life


Warren, Cleve, The Florida Times Union


Byline: Cleve Warren

"The acts of this life are the destiny of the next" is an Eastern proverb that best summarizes the life and legacy of Eartha Mary Magdalene White.

Thirty-nine years ago last Saturday, White died at the age of 98, completing a life of humanitarian works that included teaching, opera, political advocacy and charity.

While best known for the mission she founded and named for her mother Clara White, Eartha White was a humanitarian recognized throughout the nation.

She showed leadership and volunteerism by supporting the young (delinquent and orphaned boys).

She worked with the afflicted (substance abuse/former prisoners/unwed mothers).

She helped the elderly (Eartha White Nursing Home).

And she supported the disenfranchised (civil rights and women's suffrage).

President Richard Nixon appointed White, at the age of 95, to the board of directors for the National Center for Voluntary Action.

She was honored in 1971 by Florida Gov. Reubin Askew as Florida's Outstanding Senior Citizen.

Later she earned the designation as a Great Floridian (Florida Department of State).

She was posthumously elected to the Florida Women's Hall of Fame in 1986.

While the value of White's contributions are widely known and lauded across the state, few opportunities exist that memorialize her life and commitment to Jacksonville citizens. …

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