Eric Wilford White, age 88, passed away on Tuesday, March 20, 2018, surrounded by his family. He was born on Feb. 8, 1930, in Rudy, Ark., to Ed and Violet Demeter White. One of seven children, Eric attended a one-room schoolhouse and worked to help support his family through the Great Depression. Despite reaching only the eighth grade, Eric’s intelligence and perseverance led him to found several successful businesses and enrich his community through his service, generosity, and friendship.

After moving to Texas in 1951, Eric got his start in business in 1961 when he opened White’s Concrete & Pottery in Pasadena, Texas. In 1979, he founded Garden Ridge Pottery, which, through Eric’s vision and dedication, quickly grew from a small local store into a national home goods chain. In 1992, Eric and Carolyn purchased the White Ranch in New Braunfels, where they raised award-winning Brangus cattle. Eric was an integral part of the Schertz and New Braunfels communities, contributing his time and resources to the Schertz Public Library, Schertz Bank, Oakwood Baptist Church, and Hope Hospice of New Braunfels, among other organizations. Even more than for his business acumen, Eric was known for his generosity, compassion, and wit. He will be remembered as a strong, thoughtful leader who set an inimitable example in all areas of life for his children and grandchildren.

Eric is survived by his beloved wife of 43 years, Carolyn; daughter, Phyllis Oliver; son, Mark White; grandchildren, Jason White, Eric J. White, and Kayla Oliver; great-grandchildren, Melanie White, Tyler White, Trey White, Isaiah White, and Eric T. White; sister-in-law, Rebecca Ingram; nephews, Mason Ingram and David Harris; and nieces, Leza Ingram and Pamela Sue Waldrop. Eric was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Jack White, Richard White and Henry White; sister, Mary Young; and son, Ronnie White.

The family will greet friends from 5 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, March 27 at Schertz Funeral Home, located at 2217 FM 3009 in Schertz. Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, March 28 at Oakwood Baptist Church, located at 2154 Loop 337 in New Braunfels, with Pastor Ray Still officiating. Burial will follow at Hill Country Memorial Gardens on Highway 46 in New Braunfels. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Hope Hospice, or to the charity of your choice.

You are invited to sign the electronic guestbook at www.schertzfuneralhome.com.