WHITTON and RITCH -Surname Studies and people from the Island of GRAEMSAY, Orkney

James Harlan Whitton

James Harlan Whitton

Male 1925 - 2010  (85 years)

Personal Information    |    Notes    |    All

  • Name James Harlan Whitton 
    Born 22 Jan 1925  Sa Augustine, Texas Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender Male 
    Died 29 Sep 2010  San Augustine, Texas Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID I28719  Whitton
    Last Modified 22 Jun 2020 

    Father Kirk Patrick Whitton,   b. 11 Oct 1880, Shelby, Texas. Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 20 Sep 1965, Jasper, Texas buried San Augustine Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 84 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Mother Eliza Mary Hickman,   b. 27 Nov 1884,   d. 6 Mar 1956, buried San Augustine Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 71 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Family ID F9516  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Wilma Ruth Jacks,   b. 20 Aug 1935,   d. 21 Jul 2001, Pineland, texas Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 65 years) 
    Married 20 Aug 1955 
    Children 
     1. Rena Ranell Whitton,   b. 25 May 1964, Sabine County, Tezas Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 30 May 1991, Murdered Texas Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 27 years)  [natural]
     2. Living
     3. Living
    Last Modified 22 Jun 2020 
    Family ID F9971  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • James H. "Jack" Whitton, age 85, of Pineland, Texas, passed away Sunday, Sept. 26, 2010.

      He was well known throughout Texas as a basketball coach and educator in the state's public school systems. He was inducted to the Texas High School Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame.

      Coach Whitton was born Jan. 22, 1925, in San Augustine County, a son of the late Kirt Patrick Whitton and Eliza Hickman Whitton. He served in the U.S. Army during World War II and attended Stephen F. Austin State University, Nacogdoches. He and the former Ruth Jacks were married Aug. 20, 1955.

      His early career was with small rural schools of Sabine County and in the 1950s he moved to Huntington where he took the reins of Huntington High School's Red Devils, making several trips to the state tournament in Austin and bringing home the championship. Upon leaving Huntington he moved to Seminole, Texas, for another succesful tenure coaching.

      In 1961 when the Pineland and Bronson schools consolidated to form West Sabine High School, he returned to East Texas to serve as the first coach of the West Sabine Tigers. Success for the Tigers was immediate with an outstanding season and a trip to the state tournament. Though the Tigers didn't capture the championship the first year, they returned the next year and won the state champhionship. Years to come found the Tigers to be a team to be reckoned with by teams from much larger schools, including Houston area teams. Coach Whitton and the Tigers continued making trips to the state tourney and brought home champhionships throughout the 1960s.

      After several years leading the West Sabine athletics, Whitton stepped up in 1969 to serve as principal of West Sabine High School. He continued to serve in this position and earning the respect of students, parents, colleagues, and the community until his retirement in 1985.

      Following retirement, he had a brief stint as interim coach for Shelbyville High School.

      Education, students, and youth were an important part of Coach Whitton's life. Also in retirement he served several years on the board of trustees for West Sabine Independent School District, including a tenure as president of the board. Community service was also important to Mr. Whitton, he served five years as a board member for Sabine County Hospital District, 1983-1988. He was an active member of Pineland Service Club which suports many community and school projects.

      Returning to Sabine County when joining the W.S. faculty, Jack and Ruth made their home in the Centerview community near Pineland and reared their family there. Ruth helped guide many students as well, as a first grade teacher at West Sabine several years.

      He was preceded in death by his wife, Ruth Whitton Jacks, on July 21, 2001, as well as his daughter, Rena RaNell "Ra" Whitton Rogers, and granddaughter, Jacy Ra, on May 30, 1991.

      Jack was the last surviving child of the K.P. Whitton family. He was preceded in death by his brothers, Walter, Benton, Charlie, and K.P. Jr.; and sisters, Yvonne Kingsley, Duetta Ogden, Zera Gary, Lena Smith, and Armatha Lane.

      He is survived by his sons and daughters-in-law, Jim D. and Sheila Whitton and Jon A. and Natalie Whitton, all of the Centerview community; five grandchildren, Rachel, Josh, Rebecca, Robyn, and Ragan; six great-grandchldren; and a host of nieces and nephews.

      Funeral services are set for 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 29, at the Starr Funeral Home chapel in Hemphill. Interment will follow at the Whitton Family Cemetery in the Centerview community, Pineland.

      Visitation will be held Tuesday, Sept. 28, from 4:00 to 9:00 p.m. at Starr Funeral Home, 510 Starr Street in Hemphill, Texas.