Milton City Councilman Clayton White passed away early Tuesday morning. Milton Mayor Guy Thompson said he died peacefully, without suffering. “It was time for the Lord to call him home,” said Thompson. White served from 1980 through 1994 and ran again in 2000 and died while serving. Thompson said he was a steady hand for the city, and didn’t make knee-jerk reactions. “He was sensible,” said Thompson, “and worked with logic; an outstanding councilman.” Thompson said because White had served for a long time in the city council, he had a great deal of institutional knowledge and considered him a leader among the council. Civic minded, White also served his country in the Navy.

Jim Martin, former salesman for the Santa Rosa Press Gazette, said he had known White since he was 10 years old. “I remember when he started Tops TV and Appliances,” said Martin, “but I first knew him when he was a sailor at Whiting Field while working part time at the dime store for the Amos family. He was young and first married. He and Betty lived next door to my parents for over 40 years.”  Martin said he had a green thumb and always had a beautiful garden.

“He was one of the good guys. There’s not many left. He was a friend to the farmer; looking after them if they lost their freezer and always helped a friend in need. You don’t hear about that anymore,” said Martin.  “Small town businesses are almost a thing of the past,” he said. Martin said he knew all three of White’s three sons and watched them grow up. “He will be missed,” said Martin.

Thompson said White had lost his wife Betty last December. “He was doing very well,” said Thompson. “When you lose a friend of such a long time, it’s a bummer of a day,” he said.