This editorial was originally published in The Southampton Press on October 20, 1994.
They say that a joyful and giving spirit keeps one young. That must be Alex White’s secret Fountain of Youth. The 84-year-old Water Mill native, who has been organizing sporting events for area children for more than a quarter century on behalf of the North Sea Lions Club, still has a bounce in his step and a sparkle in his eye.
The longtime caddy master at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club, Mr. White started hanging around the caddy shack there when he was 9. He’s retired now and his two kids have grown up, but he still goes in once a week to fill in. Meanwhile, he’s working hard as ever at setting up golf tournaments, bike and foot races, kite flying contests and skating events for local children.
No one ever asked Mr. White to do it; he started, he has told Grace, his wife of 47 years, because when he was a kid he wished someone was doing it for him and his pals. As a boy, he was a skater who knew every bend in the shore on local ponds. When he grew up—even before he became a founding member of the North Sea Lions—he started off his career of organizing youth events with skating contests.
Earlier this month the Lions honored Mr. White with the 1994 Past District Governor’s Leadership Award. The Lions can be proud of Mr. White, all right, but so can the entire Southampton community. He’s the kind of homegrown hero who reminds us all what simple goodness and decency are. May he stay forever young.