Obituary: Elizabeth White, 1954-2020 | Obituaries | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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Obituary: Elizabeth White, 1954-2020 

Mother, wife and teacher was "the first to volunteer, the first to bake, the first to donate"

click to enlarge Elizabeth White
  • Elizabeth White

She gave everything her all, and she gave us everything. On Tuesday, March 31, Elizabeth White was unfairly taken from her family after an extended battle against lymphoma and hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis (HLH). We are heartbroken.

She was "Mrs. White" to the hundreds of kids at Rick Marcotte Central School, "Grammy" to her six grandchildren, "Gabby" to her many extended family members, and just "Mom" to her three kids who loved her.

My mother was an extraordinary person. The first to volunteer, the first to bake, the first to donate. She never ran out of gifts to share — be it food, care, time or one of her amazing quilts. She delighted in teaching kids and adults alike to sew, hosting summer camps and one-on-one sessions in her basement. Even while she was undergoing treatment, she still churned out quilts to donate and made sure that each of the grandkids had a “big kid” quilt to grow into.

I will miss her stream-of-consciousness emails and texts — completely without punctuation — that would leave me scratching my head about what she meant while turning to her “other” daughter Jennifer for a second opinion.

She leaves behind her husband, Roger, of South Burlington, Vt; daughter Bethani and granddaughter Steele of Kentucky; son Tim and his wife, Kelsey, and their children Rylie, Aubree and Felix in Florida; and son Nick and his wife, Jamie, and their kids Easton and Bailey in Wisconsin.

Mom was the baby — two brothers, George and JW Waddell, along with sisters Anna Monahan and Eileen Curran, remember her. Her parents, AB and Rita Waddell, preceded her in death.

We have her quilts, so we don’t really need flowers, and all of us, except maybe Nick, are full.

Here are a few things you can do to honor Gabby:

- Plant something. Mom loved lilacs and peonies.

- Learn to sew, and then teach someone else.

- Read to a child.

- Use your talent (whatever it is) to make someone else feel special.

- Register to be an organ and tissue donor.

- Donate blood or platelets — be a literal lifesaver. Use the hashtag #SleevesUp4Gabby or pledge your donation here: sleevesup.redcrossblood.org/campaign/save-more-people-like-gabby.

- Donate to the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in her name; help us end cancer: jimmyfund.org/gift.

We are tentatively planning a celebration of life for her birthday weekend (September 27) when we are hopefully finished social distancing. In the meantime, curl up in the quilt she made you — and stay home!

Sister, 65 years. Wife, 45 years. Mother, 43 years. Grammy, six years. Friend and fighter, always. #FCancer

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