Home Records Obituaries Joe Hunter “Putt” White

Joe Hunter “Putt” White

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Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record

July 31, 1925 — November 26, 2020

Long-time New Mexico cattleman, horseman, and rancher Joe Hunter White, lovingly known as “Putt,” passed away at age 95 in Pueblo, Colorado, on November 26, 2020. He was equally at home on a 2-year-old colt, the board of a national ag bank, behind the controls of his airplanes, or on the road crossing the country in a big rig. Putt always had a smile, a good word (although sometimes sarcastic), and usually a practical joke for all. He made many lifelong friends with his sparkling blue eyes, light-hearted energy, and unforgettable personality.

Putt was born near Wellington, Texas, on July 30, 1926. In 1928, the family moved to Artesia, New Mexico, and later to Roswell, where he caused a stir by riding a young colt through the high school gym during a pep rally. In 1942, his senior year in high school, the White family bought a ranch and moved near Puerto de Luna, New Mexico, just south of Santa Rosa. He finished high school and enlisted in the U.S. Navy, where he was the rear gunner of a dive bomber flying off the USS Wasp in the Pacific theater during World War II – an experience that would affect the remainder of his life.

After the war, he returned to Santa Rosa and married Gloria Moorhouse White, working on her father’s ranch until Mr. Moorhouse’s death, at which time he took over day-to-day operations of that ranch along with the White Ranch at Puerto de Luna. Putt and Gloria later opened a second home in Hereford, Texas, to keep a closer watch on their feedlot cattle, commuting weekly by air between the ranch and Hereford.

Over many years, the couple raised three sons and enumerable Quarter and Paint horses, whose quality bloodlines exist today. An accomplished instrument pilot (as are two of his sons), he loved to fly and volunteered his aircraft and skill, assisting the New Mexico State Police and the Guadalupe County Hospital on many occasions.

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Later, after the sale of both ranches, Putt and Gloria moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico, where they lived near the Plaza, and he continued in the cattle and horse business as an order buyer.

In the late 1980s, Putt remarried and moved to Penrose, Colorado, near Pueblo, where he started a trucking business that took him on long trips across the United States. On retirement, he spent many happy years living with his wife Sandy and their many animals. Later in life, his wife and son Sam broke him out of his nursing home against doctors’ advice, so he could spend his final days with the horses, dogs, and people he loved.

With a body worn out by years of hard work and too many unplanned exits from a horse, Putt passed away peacefully on Thanksgiving Day at age 95, with his wife Sandy and son Sam near his side. The family is grateful to the U.S. Veteran’s Administration and the staff of Rock Canyon, who put up with and took care of Putt during his final days, along with Sandy and her daughter Jennifer Mower.

Putt is survived by his wife Sandy, three sons Coley, Ron, Sam and his wife Sondra, and three step-children Robert and Stacy Yellico, Jennifer Yellico Mowers, and J.D. and Sheri Yellico. He is also survived by eight grandchildren, 16 step-grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren, and two step-great-grandchildren who remember him fondly as “Pappy Putt” or “Grandpa Putt.” Putt is preceded in death by his first wife, Gloria, his parents, Vista and Robert White, his sister Geneva and brothers Sam and Bob. Putt’s sister Peggy, the only remaining sibling, lives in Santa Rosa, New Mexico.

Putt was cremated near his home in Penrose. A memorial service will occur as soon as it is safe to gather in groups and pandemic restrictions are lifted. You may direct memorial gifts to Dreamcatcher Equine Rescue in Fountain, Colorado. If you would like to be notified of services or leave word for Putt’s family, please visit https://rememberputtwhite.com.

Putt would like to be remembered as a World War II veteran and simple cowboy.