Mr Richard Frasar White was born in Winchendon Springs, Massacusetts on 26 December 1890, the son of Percival Wayland and Edith Frasar Wheeler. Richard had an older brother, Percival Jr.
Richard's father, with whom he sailed on the Titanic, was a prominent and successful cotton manufacturer in Winchendon Springs, Massachusetts. A few years before they sailed on the Titanic, the White family moved from Winchendon Springs to Brunswick, Maine.
Richard was a 1912 graduate of Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine. He finished his undergraduate studies sooner than expected (in December 1911) but decided to wait until June 1912 to partake in the official commencement exercises in which he would march with his graduating class. During the interim, and as a reward for his academic accomplishment, Percival took his younger son to Europe for a month. Both father and son crossed over on the Olympic, the Titanic's sister ship. The success of their crossing on the Olympic impressed Mr White so much that when returning home, he booked their passage on the Titanic's maiden voyage.
During the trip, they befriended Mrs Elizabeth Lines and her daughter Mary. On the night of the sinking, Mrs Lines remembered that it was Mr White who knocked on their stateroom door to inform them of the danger. The Whites and Mrs Lines and her daughter had staterooms near each other. One unidentified survivor later contacted Mrs White to tell her that "her husband and son were last seen removing their shoes in preparation for their leaps into the sea." Both men then jumped together.
Only the body of young Richard would be recovered a week later by the MacKay Bennett. Interestingly, when the body description was recorded, it indicated that the body appeared to be 37-years-old. Richard was only 21.
|NO. 169. - MALE. - ESTIMATED AGE, 37. - HAIR, VERY FAIR.
CLOTHING - Brown suit; white shoes.
EFFECTS - Keys; match box; gold watch; blood stone ring.
NAME - FRASER WHITE.
Positive identification was later established by Richard's brother, Percival Jr.
Richard's body was returned to Brunswick, Maine (via Boston, under the care of F. A. Smith), where impressive funeral services took place. Faculty and fellow students from Bowdoin College attended and presented Mrs White with Richard's diploma. Following the funeral, Richard's body was returned to the family plot in the town cemetery at Winchendon Springs, Massachusetts.