In Memoriam: Dave White- A Life of MRA Leadership

Marietta Restoration Associates (MRA) mourns the loss of one of its founding members and guiding forces. David L. White, “Dave” as he was known to friends and family, passed away on April 30th. Dave leaves behind a legacy of service to MRA and to the Marietta community.
Growing up in Marietta as a third-generation Mariettian, Dave exhibited his love for this town and its heritage at an early age. In his youth, Dave could be found discussing Marietta history and architecture with older neighbors on the west side of town, where he lived. In 1965, at the young age of 18, Dave joined other civic-minded individuals in the formation of Marietta Restoration Associates. From 1965 until today, MRA has had the mission of preserving Marietta’s unique history and culture.
Those who knew Dave know that he would be quick to deflect credit for himself and to point to the contributions of others, but it is impossible to downplay Dave’s role in the accomplishments of MRA over the years. As a two-time President of the Board of MRA, Dave often took on a leadership role within the organization.
Among the significant contributions of MRA to the town of Marietta was the saving of the Union Meeting House from possible demolition and assuming custodianship of Old Town Hall. Landmarks such as First National Bank, the Vesta Furnace Building, and the Marietta Theater were all MRA properties during Dave’s tenure with the group that found new ownership, rather than facing a wrecking ball. MRA’s most significant fundraiser, The Christmas Candlelight Tour of Homes, has been a Marietta tradition for over 50 years and draws visitors from all over the region to our town each year. The Marietta Traveler was acquired and reestablished by Marietta Restoration Associates during Dave’s most recent stint as President of the Board.
David White’s friends and admirers can honor his legacy of service in a number of ways-
First, Marietta Restoration Associates will be accepting memorial contributions in David White’s honor, which will be used to undertake needed renovation projects at Old Town Hall. Checks may be made out to “Marietta Restoration Associates” and mailed to:
Marietta Restoration Associates
P.O. Box 3
Marietta, PA 17547
Those interested in donating online are encouraged to visit MRAs Facebook page for information on how to contribute.
Second, it was Dave’s wish to draw more members/volunteers into the Marietta Restoration Associates fold. In a 2015 interview in The Marietta Traveler, Dave stated: “You don’t have to live in a historic house to appreciate old houses and the unique charm of Marietta. As a community, we need to work together to preserve Marietta’s safe, tranquil, and aesthetically-pleasing character. If we don’t work to preserve it, it will be gone.”
Those interested in joining MRA and volunteering in efforts to preserve what makes our town great can find more information at or by contacting an MRA board member.
Finally, Dave’s many friends and the Marietta community are encouraged to attend his “Celebration of Life” at the Union Meeting House on Saturday, June 5th from 1:00-3:00.
“If you’re going to live, leave a legacy. Make a mark on the world that can’t be erased.”
Maya Angelou