Remembering Mona White
Mona White, 92, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, passed away on 25 July 2023. She was a missionary who served in Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands from 1959-1995.
Mona Rae Smithson was born to Allen Wrex and Evelyn Marcella Smithson in Luling, Texas, on 8 September 1930. She grew up scooping Mayhaw berries from the bayou with her big brother and running them home to make jelly with her mother.
In school, she enjoyed singing in the choir, marching with the pep band, and making new friends. She developed an early interest in poetry and wrote often for school publications.
Throughout her life, Mona had a deep love for the creative arts, which her children and grandchildren shared. Even though communication was difficult in her last days, she knew the words to every song she had sung to each of them and spent the final visits singing just like in her younger days.
Mona attended Southern Nazarene University (SNU) in Bethany, Oklahoma, before beginning her missionary journey alongside her husband, Wallace White. They were married in 1949.
Mona and Wallace were missionaries in Papua New Guinea from 1959 to 1992. They planted many churches and helped start a hospital in Kudjip, a remote part of the PNG highlands that now boasts a residential wing named after them. They also founded missionary work in the Solomon Islands in 1992 and were involved in it until they retired to Colorado in 1995.
After the passing of her husband in 2008, Mona continued her mission work at “Winslow Court,” her assisted living residence, for the next 13 years. She coordinated weekly services and speakers, led Bible studies, and joined the choir. She was voted “Ms. Winslow Court” for one of the years she was in residence.
Mona spent her days at Winslow Court rekindling her passionate pursuit of oil painting, writing poetry, and music. Her love of serving others never waned as she continued serving the Lord until her last breath.
Mona was preceded in death by her beloved husband of 59 years, Wallace Filmore White, her parents, her brother Allen Wrex Smithson, Jr., and one grandchild Michelle Suzanne Gilliam White.
She is survived by her sons Robert White, Stephen White, Granger Narara, and Reggie Narara; six grandchildren; 19 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild.