August 14, 2016, Mary Agnes Wolff White sailed off into the ultimate sunset after living life to its fullest for over 92 years. The daughter of Dr. George Ralph Wolff and Rachel McRee Wolff, she was the third generation of the Wolff family, dating back to the 1880s, to love Fernandina and make lasting differences in the community. Mary Agnes was a unique and caring individual who touched the lives of all who knew her.
She was born in Mobile, Alabama on December 7, 1923, where her father began his dentistry career. Her family returned to Fernandina in 1937. After graduating from Fernandina High School in 1941, Mary Agnes attended Georgia State Woman’s College, located in Valdosta, majoring in chemistry and minoring in speech. She worked at Brooklyn Polytechnic in New York City and in 1946 she joined the American Red Cross, supporting allied troops in Northern Germany.
In 1948, she returned to Fernandina Beach where she met and one year later married her best friend and one true love, Robert (Bob) Moore White. They had three children and, as a couple, they personified the phrase “happily married” for 57 years. Together Bob and Mary Agnes owned and operated Nassau Building and Supply Company.
Mary Agnes was a long-time member of the Memorial Methodist Church, a proactive member of the community, a founding member of the Magnolia Garden Club, and honored as a life member of the Duncan Lamont Clinch Historical Society. During the 1970s, she and Bob helped spearhead the restoration of Centre Street through their involvement with the Amelia Island-Fernandina Restoration Foundation. She was a member of the Woman’s Club and a sponsor for Little Women. An ardent card player, Mary Agnes relished playing beside her cohorts in numerous bridge clubs.
A passionate nature lover, Mary Agnes walked the beaches of Amelia Island from one end to the other embracing all the beauty and rich history. On full moon nights, she could be found at the beach waiting to howl at the rising moon. An early tree hugger, Mary Agnes’s efforts helped to preserve the live oak tree that still stands in the Fred’s parking lot. Mary Agnes maintained a positive outlook and reminisced about her long life fondly saying, “it’s been a good run”. She embodied every aspect of a truly gracious “Southern Lady” and leaves a legacy of kindness, generosity and embracing individuality. She was quick to remind “you are a lady/gentleman whether you want to be or not”, and always left you with a “kiss on your pink ear”.
Mary Agnes leaves behind her three children: Ralph Moore White (Barbara), Taos, New Mexico; Clifford Hall White, Jacksonville, Florida; and Aggie White Swails (Marty), Alpharetta, Georgia; and three granddaughters: Maria Rachel White, Kalie Swails Urbanowitz, (Seth) and Kristen Amelia Swails, as well as many loved and cherished cousins and friends, too numerous to mention but not forgotten.
In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be sent in memory of Mary Agnes Wolff White to one of the following charities; the Autism Society, Asheville Office, 306 Summit Street, Asheville, NC., OR the Epilepsy Foundation, 8301 Professional Place, East, Suite 200, Landover, MD. 20785-2353, OR 8 Flags Playscapes – Oak Tree Fund, P O Box 15158, Fernandina Beach, Florida 32035.
On Thursday, August 18, 2016 there will be Visitation with the family beginning at 1:00, followed by a Memorial service at 3:00 in the Burgess Chapel at Oxley-Heard.August 14, 2016.