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WEST GOSHEN — A year almost to the day after a freak accident killed West Goshen Township Supervisor Dr. Robert “Doc” White, the West Goshen Republican Committee unveiled a tree and plaque in his honor in front of the township building Wednesday night.
White, who was 77, was struck by a pickup truck at the ShopRite Supermarket in the township last Aug. 13.
He had given 35 years of service to West Goshen as a member of the planning commission and as a supervisor.
“As a committee, we wanted to do something,” said Sara Franco, chair of the committee. “He was so influential in the township and we worked so closely with the supervisors. It too fresh, so we thought to wait a little bit. In the Jewish faith, it is a very respectful thing to do and we waited until a year from the anniversary to do it.
“‘Doc’ was very influential in all aspects of the township. We felt very compelled.”
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The tree, a dogwood, was planted about two weeks before the ceremony and unveiling.
What makes it more unique is that the tree will flower white — a perfect tribute to “Doc” White.
In front of the tree is a little plaque, which reads “In memory of Robert ‘Doc’ White, 1937-2014. In recognition of over 35 years of service to West Goshen Township.”
“It will actually be a brass plaque,” Franco said. “This one is just a temporary.”
The tree sits in front of the township building, near the corner of Paoli Pike and North Five Points Road.
Any passing motorists and pedestrians will easily see the tree.
“It’s right here in the front of the building,” Franco said. “I was really pleased to see that’s where they decided to put it, where everyone will remember.”
In attendance during the ceremony were representatives of West Goshen, including supervisors and Township Manager Casey LaLonde, and members of the committee.
Representatives of the county were also in attendance.
“It was a tragic loss for all of us,” said County Commissioner Terence Farrell. “This is a great way to honor somebody whose life was cut short. His contributions were innumerable, not only for West Goshen, but to all of Chester County. He was a great person.”
West Goshen Supervisor Ray Halvorsen, who served on the board with White, spoke to the gathered crowd during the ceremony.
“He left his mark and it will be felt for a long, long time,” he said. “Thanks to the committee for doing this.”
Franco was pleased not only with what the committee did in honor of White, but also the turnout for the ceremony.
“I’m so proud of the committee because they came us with the ideas and ran with it,” she said. “I was pleased that they all came. It was a nice tribute.”
White’s son, Doug, was also in attendance and cut the ceremonial ribbon.
“It makes me very happy to see this,” he said. “I think it would make him happy. And it would make him happy to see his ideas and philosophies continue. In that sense, he keeps going.”