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Garmon Whitenack, 88, of Hayes, known by many as “Whitey,” passed away peacefully Feb. 2, 2016 at his home.

Garmon was born March 6, 1927 in Lester, W.Va., one of seven children of James and Sarah Whitenack. He attended Lester Jr. High and Trap Hill High School. In 1945, he joined the USMC staying for a year. After that he worked in the coal mines for four years until he entered the U.S. Air Force, retiring after 20 years of service. He served his country proudly both in the States and Foreign Service, China and Vietnam.

In 1954, Garmon was one of the founding members of SAC, Strategic Air Command, at Lincoln Air Force Base. Garmon was the recipient of numerous awards, in addition to receiving the Bronze Star, AF Commendation with Oakleaf Cluster, Good Conduct Medal, American Campaign, Asiatic Pacific Campaign, WWII Victory, National Defense, Republic of Vietnam Campaign and Outstanding Unit Award medals. He was very patriotic and very proud of his country.

After his retirement from the Air Force he worked for Kashouty Auto and Liebherr-American as a mechanic supervisor for more than 14 years. Garmon was a member of the Gloucester American Legion, the Air Force Sergeants Association, and White Marsh Baptist Church.

Garmon loved his family sharing with them everything he had. In general, Garmon listened more than he spoke and gave more than he received. He was patient, generous and unfailingly kind. His family and friends loved him dearly and will miss him desperately.

He was preceded in death by his parents, James and Sarah Whitenack; his son, James L. Whitenack; sisters, Viva Milam, Zita Canaday and Adina Sanger, and brothers, Boyd Whitenack, Basil Whitenack and Marvin Whitenack.

He is survived by his loving wife of 59 years, Janis Whitenack; daughter, Teresa A. Gagnon; grandson, Frank S. Oberle; granddaughters, Analisa Gagnon, Emilee Gagnon and Bretney Oberle, and great-grandchildren, Connor Oberle, Hayden Gagnon and Deklan Carvana.

Funeral service conducted by the Rev. Kevin Thompson was held at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016, at Hogg Funeral Home, Gloucester Point. Interment with military honors followed in Rosewell Memorial Garden Cemetery. The family received friends prior to the service on Sunday from 1-2 at the funeral home.

In memory of Garmon, please consider donations to the Abingdon Volunteer Fire and Rescue, P.O. Box 9, Bena, Va. 23018.

Family and friends may share condolences and memories at


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