Thursday, February 26, 2009
It is with great difficulty and sadness I must share with you this news. James White, the founder of MotherMetal, has left us. Jimmy died at approximately 4:30 PM today as the result of injuries he received in an automobile accident, he was 39. Jimmy had been suffering from liver failure over the past year and was not expected to live more than another year. That does not make his passing any easier, in fact, this is incredibly difficult because I just spoke to him the other day. I thought I'd have time to spend with him before he was gone. While this has still not completely set in, I already realize life is short, too short not to spend time with those you love. I know, it's the old cliché, but it's a fact. Don't procrastinate seeing your family, friends, and loved ones. You really never know when it will be too late.
Jim was not only the founder of this great Web site, but also my best friend. He was the best man in my wedding, and I at his. He would have done anything for me, anything. He was like a brother to me, my "brother from another mother". Jim obviously loved music, other than his wife and step kids, it was his single greatest passion. We'd spent countless hours discussing bands, the web site, and music in general. Without him, this Web site would not have existed. Jim labored over this Web site for years until he finally sold it to me around 2005. I promised I'd never let the site die and I have neglected it for over a year. That will at some point change, but for now, This message will remain here until I can gather myself up and regain the energy to make it live again.
Jim, you left me too soon my brother, I love you dearly and am already missing you badly. I hope you are in a better place. I will never forget you. Keep rockin' and kickin' ass. Kathy, Zach, Marissa, Megan, and Cole send their love!
Ps. if you run into God, kick him in the nuts for me.
Brad (aka Stoney)
The following is from Candy, one of JIm's best friends since high school and one of the other people involved in getting MotherMetal off the ground:
"I first met Jimmy in 1982, when he was 13 and I was 12. We attended Papillion Jr High together. Walking across the overpass one day, he ran up behind me, grabbed me, spun me around and ran back to his friends, laughing.
That was Jimmy. Fun and laughing. I was a little scared and dizzy at first...we WERE on the overpass, but in the end, I just had to laugh with him. We used to talk about music in math class, ironically, the class we had to go over the overpass to attend. Laughing and music...that personified Jim, even at 13. We occasionally met at friends houses to listen to and talk about music.
The next year, Jimmy moved back to Missouri, and so we lost track. When he returned to Papillion and began attending high school and he still loved music. We were friends. Jimmy joined the wrestling team which I managed, but ultimately quit because he didn't want to cut his hair. All that bright blonde hair, and he needed it because he was part of the high school rock band, Midnite Fixx, and short hair just wouldn't do. It was the mid '80's, haha.
They used to practice up the street from my home, and once he came over just to kill some alien bug that had invaded the house, since I have a bug phobia. I know he thought I was being ridiculous, but he willingly came along...laughing, of course. He would come over with friends and listen to music in our family room and the garage.
During high school, Jimmy attended school (sometimes), sang in the band and worked at Pamida, off of 84th street. The band ultimately played a homecoming dance and also, Papillion Days (a local type of carnival).
Jimmy and I both graduated midterm in January 1987. I was 16, he was 17. Jimmy was pretty wild during this time, but always laughing, always sweet. One night, driving home from a friends house, I found Jimmy drunk and passed out in his running car on a side street in LaVista. I got him into my car, shut his off, called my parents and took him to my home to sober him up. Jimmy was so mad that my Dad insisted on calling his mother to let her know that we had him and he was safe. After sobering up, we were able to take him back to his car. I remember him puking in my front yard and lying on my living room floor.
I used to stop by and we would chat about what was going on and of course, music. One day I stopped by with a copy of Brighton Rock's first album. I loved it, and it reminded me of his voice. He was flattered...and loved the album. I took him and another friend to ours to Jimmy's first concert. Ratt & Poison in Sioux City. Not the best first concert, but it was a romping good time and it was a blast. I got separated from them and ended up being crushed at the front of the show and removed by ambulance. I wouldn't leave until I left a note and access to the keys to my car. Jimmy came and got me from the hospital and made sure we three all got home safe. A friend and I once TP'd his car. He never knew it was me until I confessed in 2001. We had good times.
At 18, Jimmy joined the Army, married for the first time and left Papillion. That young marriage eventually ended in divorce as young marriages often do. We drifted apart and didn't speak or see each other for years as we both lived our own lives. Upon returning to Omaha, Jimmy began working for First Data and soon remarried. I had moved to Texas, married and was not in the area.
In 2001, on Classmates.com I saw Jimmy again for the first time in years. I sent him a snarky letter reminding him that he puked in my front yard and Jimmy took affront, not realizing I was joking. Within just a couple of days though, we reconnected and spent close to 6 hours on the phone reminiscing and talking about high school, our lives and music, music, music.
He had started Mothermetal.com and we were soon caught up in the potential for the site. I had recently become disabled with Multiple Sclerosis and had the time at home, so I began to help him. First with lyrics for the site and later with graphics, coding and design. Ironically, shortly after this, First Data sent him to Texas for training and while he wasn't in training, we ran around Dallas/Fort Worth as I showed him the sights, including Pantera's strip club. It was a blast.
During this time, I continued to help with improving the website and visited Omaha a few times, eventually moving back for a short period of time. Jimmy was 100% there for me as I dealt with the issues of Multiple Sclerosis, learning to give me medication by intramuscular shots and driving me back and forth to the airport as I traveled. It didn't matter what help I needed, Jimmy was always there to help if he could.
In 2003, I moved to Alabama and shortly thereafter, Jimmy came to visit and we set up hosting the site in Huntsville. We talked on the phone often, chatted by email daily and did our best to keep up with MotherMetal.com. In the end, the site was taking too much of our time and Jimmy sold the site. Once again, we drifted apart as our lives caught up with us.
In 2008, I returned to Omaha, and through Brad, the current owner of MotherMetal, I found that Jimmy had been looking for me. I was dismayed to see that he was so ill, but so glad to have one of my best friends in my life again. We only had a short time to be friends again before the accident that took his life, but it was gratifying to see him once again.
Talking about music and laughing. Laughing, making me laugh.
Jimmy was love and laughter, singing and music. He introduced me to bands I hadn't heard and I introduced him to bands he hadn't heard. We had 26 years of friendship and it was a blessing. Jimmy was a blessing to those who knew him. He made everyone laugh and could get anyone interested in his favorite music, he was always so excited to talk about it.
I will miss him, as will so many others. I wish I had spent more time with him these last few months. I thought I had more time. It was a shock to lose the friend I loved so quickly. Jimmy's death serves as a reminder to us all to stop and take the time to spend with our friends and loved ones, because you just never know. He lives on in our memories and I still laugh when I think of some of the trouble we got into, the good times we had and the friendship that lasted so many years.
From Jimmy and Bobbi's wedding on July 4th, 2008.
A family pic submitted by Jimmy's sister Dawn. The last time all the brothers and sisters were together with their dad.
A few pics from AC (also pictured), another of Jimmy's closest friends:
A little about Jimm
Fav band: Krokus
Other bands: Savatage, Pretty Maids, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Brighton Rock, Icon, T.T. Quick, Cirith Ungol, Enuff Z-nuff, Helix, Lizzy Borden, Metallica, Saxon, Shok Paris, Warrior. etc.
Fav album: Krokus - Headhunter
Fav song: Krokus - Screaming in the Night
Fav movie: Miracle
Fav food: any meat
Fav past time other than music: grilling BBQ
James M. "Jimmy", age 39, Bellevue. February 26, 2009. Loving husband, son, brother, grandson and uncle. Survived by wife, Bobbi; children, Anthony and Ashley; mother, Diane White, Omaha; father, James White, St. James, MO; father-in-law and mother-in-law, Larry and Suetta Van Ness, Glenwood, IA, Cecelia White "Mom" of PA; sister, Dawn and husband Jay Bottorff, Omaha; brothers, Tom White, Omaha, Matt White St. James, MO; grandma, Wanda Moreland, St James, MO; nieces; nephews, Brianna, Lindy, Cade, Toby, Jake and J.J.; brother-in-law, Jake and wife Marcia Van Ness, Glenwood; sister in law – Rose Teel, Pueblo West, CO.
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