Harriet Shukow White

by | Sep 16, 2018 | Obituaries

Virginia Beach—Harriet Shukow White, daughter of Gertrude and Irving Shukow, was born in The Bronx, New York in 1929, and died September 7, 2018 in her home in Virginia Beach.

She was predeceased by her parents, her sister Shirley, and the love of her life, her husband Samuel I. White.

She married Sam in 1952 and joined him in Norfolk where he had begun his law career. A graduate of Hunter College and Old Dominion University in math and education, she was a career math teacher, enjoying the many years and students she taught at Ryan Private School and Tidewater Community College.

She and Sam were founding members of Temple Israel. She started her community involvement with the Temple Israel Sisterhood and the Jewish Community Center, teaching arts and crafts and serving as a camp counselor. She was an early supporter of women’s rights and their place in the working world, and started by selling ads for the United Jewish Federation newspaper. Sam and Harriet enjoyed the Norfolk/Virginia Symphony, the Virginia Opera, ballet, the beach, the pool at the Lafayette Club, and, most of all, traveling the world. She loved getting together with her dear friends to play Mah Jong and bridge, and substantially increased the gross domestic product of Tidewater through her stock club.

Family gatherings brought her great pleasure. Her favorite trips were the annual gatherings at the Homestead and the Greenbrier with her children and grandchildren. A few weeks before her passing, most of her family gathered in her home where she enjoyed holding her new great granddaughter, Becca White. Less than two weeks before her passing, she and her daughter Phyllis spent five days in New York City, where Harriet was always at home, enjoying Bette Midler in Hello Dolly, Renee Fleming in Carousel, visits to museums, dinner with her grandson Mike and his partner David, and one of her favorite activities, shopping! Hobbies included knitting, needlepoint, playing the piano, dancing, reading, keeping up with politics on TV, watching Tiger Woods and Downton Abbey. Her intelligence, sense of humor, generosity, sense of style and resilience kept her in good stead. She was always a fiercely independent person, and was proud that she could live on her own in her own home.

She is survived by her four children, Eric White and his wife Vicki, Phyllis White, Matthew White and his wife Valerie, and Adam White and his wife Ashley; Grandchildren Alec and his wife Emily and daughter Becca; Mike and his partner David; Sara and Rachel, and Seth and Jillian.

Harriet and Sam were always passionate supporters of many community activities including WHRO, the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, The Virginia Opera, and The Tidewater Jewish Foundation. Harriet would appreciate contributions to any of these organizations. A graveside service was held at Forest Lawn Cemetery.