P. W. “Buddy” Whiteaker, age 87, died peacefully on December 3, 2022, surrounded by family at his home in Maumelle, Arkansas. He was born in Pine Bluff, Arkansas on July 8, 1935, the son of Joseph William and Laura Pearl (Muse) Whiteaker. Buddy graduated from Pine Bluff High School (1954), before earning his B.A. from Southwestern at Memphis (now Rhodes College) (1958), where he proudly pledged Sigma Nu Fraternity. He furthered his education by earning his M.B.A. from the University of Mississippi.
Buddy will be remembered for his passion for politics and public policy, his respect for all people, his love of music, the arts, the outdoors, games, gardening, and learning, his work ethic, his leadership, and his ability to dream impossible dreams. He proudly served the people of the State of Arkansas as the Administrative Assistant and Staff Director for Senator John L. McClellan before returning to the state to develop land and build homes. He will be deeply missed.
Buddy is survived by his wife of 64 years, Mary Ada (Latta) Whiteaker; their children, Greg (Maria) Whiteaker, Deni Whiteaker Clark, and Scott (Mary) Whiteaker; their grandchildren, Abby (Miles) French, Preston (Shelby) Clark, and Byrne, Elise, Alyssa and Drew Whiteaker; and his nephews, who are more like brothers, Jim and Rick Skillen. A great-grandson, Everett Alan Clark, will make his arrival in the coming weeks, and great-granddaughter, Mary Claire French, will arrive this spring. Buddy was preceded in death by his parents, sisters, brothers, brothers-in-law, and son-in-law, Mike Clark.
A memorial service will be held at 1:30 p.m., Wednesday, December 7, 2022, in the Chapel of Ralph Robinson & Son in Pine Bluff, with a visitation to follow.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Our House shelter organization, P.O. Box 34155, Little Rock, AR 72205.
For online condolences, please visit www.RalphRobinsonandSon.com