Beloved father, grandfather, and dear friend to many, James Logue (Pete) Whitehead, III, passed away peacefully September 23rd at his residence at St. Catherine’s Village in Madison, Mississippi.
“Little Pete,” as he was known by everyone, was born in Winona, Mississippi, March 19, 1937, to James Logue “Big Pete” Whitehead, Jr., and Mary Frances Jenkins Whitehead, who then resided in Moorhead, Mississippi. The family moved to Winona, Mississippi, where Pete was raised. He graduated from Winona High School in 1955. Pete was awarded the very first “Bill Stewart Award” in 1955, given to the most outstanding football player (as a center) in the Mississippi High School All Star Game. He attended Mississippi State University on an athletic scholarship and played football from 1955-1958 and graduated with a B.A. in History in 1959. While at MSU, Pete was married to Jennie Lee Garrott, also from Winona.
Pete’s love of history, athletic achievement, and nurturing young people led him into the world of teaching and coaching with stops in Slidell, Louisiana; Bruce, Vaiden, Greenwood and Moss Point, Mississippi; Caracas, Venezuela, and several schools in the state of Oregon. As a student himself, he obtained a M.Ed. from Delta State University in 1971 and an Ed.D. from MSU in 1974. Later in life, chasing a passion of all things old and unique, Pete went to auctioneering school and became a professional auctioneer, often donating his time and skills to those for whom he banged the gavel.
Pete was preceded in death by his parents and foster brother Billy Stacy of Starkville, Mississippi. He was also preceded in death by his beloved wife, Carole Newland Whitehead of Dundee, Oregon, and her brother, Bob Newland of Eugene, Oregon.
Survivors include children James Logue (Jim) Whitehead, IV, of Memphis, Tennessee; Emilie Whitehead Odom (Mike) of Ridgeland, Mississippi; Carole’s children, Erik Hanson (Danielle) of Phoenix, Arizona, and Sonja Hanson (Jerre Munson) of Dundee, Oregon. Grandchildren are Jennie and Asher Odom; Cameron, Jack and Quinlyn Hanson; and Skyler and Kirk Whalon. He is also survived by sisters-in-law, Christie Newland and Candace Newland-Holley and several nieces and nephews.
Inscribed on the Bill Stewart Award are the following words: “Presented by Arthur Morton to the All-Star Football player whose attitude, character, and conduct on and off the field best exemplifies the life and endeavors of Bill Stewart-athlete, gentleman, sportsman, and sacrificial patriot.” Pete aspired to live his life by these words and has now been welcomed into Heaven and eternal life.
Visitation will be from 10:00-11:00 a.m., Thursday, September 30th, followed by a Memorial Service at 11:00 a.m., both at Highlands Presbyterian Church, 1160 Highland Colony Parkway, Ridgeland, Mississippi. Interment will follow at 2:30 p.m. that day in Oakwood Cemetery in Winona, Mississippi. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Palmer Home for Children in Columbus, Mississippi, or to the charity of your choosing.