OBITUARIES

Opinion
Mar 26, 2010
by WLJ

Maynard Lee Potter

Maynard Lee Potter, 70, of Emmett, ID, passed away on March 19, 2010. He was born in Watsonville, CA, on May 3, 1939, to Ralph and Margaret Potter. Potter grew up in Watsonville on his parents’ ranch in Larkin Valley raising tomatoes, hay and sheep. His experiences in the Future Farmers of America influenced much of his life. After graduating from Hartnell College in Business and Animal Husbandry, he attended San Jose State. Potter served in the Army and National Guard for 12 years and graduated from Officer Candidate School in Fort Benning, GA. In 1962, he entered the real estate business in Watsonville, CA. After the market took a downturn, he became more and more interested in raising and showing registered Suffolk sheep.

It was this that attracted Potter to the fair industry and in 1968, he became manager of the San Luis Obispo County Fair in Paso Robles, CA. Under his 25 years of leadership, the fair evolved from a small county fair to one of the biggest, most widely attended happenings in central California. Potter is credited as being the first fair manager to bring named entertainment to a fair. The California Mid-State Fair was lauded as the largest entertainment fair in the nation, attracting acts like Kenny Rogers, Dolly Parton, Bob Dylan, Lionel Richie, Alabama, Rod Stewart and countless other entertainers at the peaks of their careers.

Upon retirement in 1993, he and his wife Becky moved to Emmett, ID, where he pursued his life-long dream of owning and operating a family ranch. Potter and his family raised registered Angus and Gelbvieh cattle and show sheep.

He touched many lives and will be greatly missed by all who loved him. Potter is survived by his loving wife of 36 years, Becky; four children, Monica Potter, Todd (Georgianna) Potter, Scott (Sherry) Potter, Kevin (Michelle) Potter; his sister Martha (Ed) Burnell and six grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his son Kristian Matthew Potter and his parents Ralph and Margaret Potter.

James Brett White

On March 17, 2010, James Brett White passed away to his eternal rest at his home in Boise, ID, surrounded by his loving family. He was 51 years old.

White was born Oct. 11, 1958, in Nampa, ID. The only son of Robert and Pauline White, he was raised, attended and graduated from schools in Notus, ID, along with his two sisters, Cleo and Julie. From an early age, he was taught the value of hard work and had his first job at the ripe old age of 12. This lesson served him well throughout his life as he wore many hats along the way providing for his family. In 1979, he partnered with his parents and bought a cattle ranch along the Boise River in Parma, ID. JB White Herefords raised registered Hereford cattle. It was at this time that he met and fell in love with Debbie Edens, his best friend and devoted wife of 29 years. Together they raised three children; a daughter, Lauren, and two sons, Jordan and Morgan, in a log home they built with their own hands. Though Jim and Debbie would move two more times, the ranch was always considered home as this lifestyle provided cherished memories for the whole family.

In 1982, White started another business, Northwest Bull Testing Center, and it became the most successful consignment sale of its kind in the nation. He operated the test center for 15 years. In 1988, always looking for new opportunities to provide more for his family, he purchased Energy Tactics Fence Company, operating it with his dad for 13 years.

The rest of his life was devoted to his family in every way possible. Whether volunteering as a coach in summer baseball, YBA basketball or helping his kids with 4-H steers, he enjoyed any activity that his children were involved in.

White had a passion for basketball that led to a 10-year period of coaching in the Parma School District, including four years as the girl’s varsity coach and three years as the boy’s varsity coach. He truly loved the game of basketball and considered this time as one of the high points of his life.

In 1998, White sold the ranch and, soon after, the fence business, and went to work for Asumendi Produce in Wilder. As with everything else he had ever done, he put his heart and soul into being the best onion salesman around and developed a loyal clientele throughout the nation.

At the age of 46, with his kids grown and a little more free time, White bought the old Edens’ cabin in Donnelly and for two years, prior to his diagnosis of cancer, he had the time of his life learning to ski at Tamarack.

Jim regarded the time spent in Donnelly with his family as the best time of his life. The time spent at the cabin was outshone only by the arrival of his first grandchild, Jack. Jack brought immeasurable joy to his Papa and continued to be the best medicine he could get.

White loved life and had a powerful will to live, which carried him and his family through the difficulties of the last several years following his diagnosis of kidney cancer. Even at the end of his life, his focus remained on his family and their well-being, tending to details that would prepare them for a life without him.

White was preceded in death by his parents, Robert and Pauline White. He is survived by his wife, Debbie; his children, Lauren and Sean Brown, Jordan White (Janelle), Morgan White (Ami); his only grandchild, Jack Brown; his sisters Cleo Shaw (Greg), and Julie Asumendi (Domingo); his fatherand mother-in-law, Jim and Reva Edens; his sister-in-law, Dianne Simpson (Carl); his brothers-in-law, Scott Edens and Mike Edens (Colleen); and numerous nieces and nephews.

Memorials may be made in Jim White’s name to the Kidney Cancer Association, P.O. Box 3516, Oak Brook, IL 60522.

{rating_box}