MACHIAS - Dale Fisher Whitney passed away peacefully Saturday, Jan. 5, 2013, in his sleep. He was born March 3, 1936, in Providence, R.I., to Millard and Dorothy (Fisher) Whitney.
Dale and his family moved to Pembroke, when he was 2, after which the family settled in Machias. He attended school in Machias and played baseball and basketball, and learned to play the saxophone. He started his first band, "The Harmony Five," while in high school. He graduated from Machias High School in 1954. After a year of prep school at MCI he entered University of Maine, Orono, and graduated with a bachelor's degree in business. While at the university, Dale formed a band called "The Maine Black Bears" which played all throughout New England. In October 1958, Dale married Virginia Dale Winslow. Their marriage was blessed with three children, Helen Ann, Elizabeth Jean and David Millard. Aside from his passion for music, he considered his role in life to be provider for his family. As such, he followed the family tradition as a third generation car dealer and wild blueberry farmer, both of which he did with excellence, honesty and integrity. He fostered his son, David's entrepreneurial spirit and was very nurturing and supportive of him during the growth of his businesses, Whitney Wreath, Whitney's TriTown Marine, Whitney's Tool Shed and Whitney's Blueberries, which are now together known as Whitney Corp. Though he really loved business, his true passion was always music including jazz, funk, blues, and rock and roll. His talent never stopped evolving until his final day. From age 12 until the day he died he played tenor saxophone in dozens of bands. He was hugely respected by musicians from Maine to Las Vegas and had open invitations to play with many bands. His special musician friends are too numerous to name.
He is survived by his loving wife of 54 years, Ginnie; their children, Helen "Hedy" Whitney Ardito and husband, Gregory, and son, Shane, of Pipersville, Pa., Elizabeth "Lilibet" Whitney Stanke and husband, Mark, and children, Brooke and Alec, of Lee's Summit, Mo., and David Whitney and wife, Holly, and their children, Michon, Ashton and Coleton, of Marshfield; sister, Evelyn Whitney Foster of Ellsworth; special niece, Dottie Foster Vachon; and two special nephews, Robert Foster and Daniel Foste,r and their families. His cousins include Clark, Linda, Judy, Peggy, Wayne, Bobby, Arolyn and Helen.
There will be a celebration of his life noon Friday, Jan. 11, at Centre Street Congregational Church, Machias, with the Rev. Dr. Eric W Kelley officiating. Memorial contributions may be made to The Roof Repair Fund in memory of Dale Whitney at Centre Street Congregational Church, Machias. Arrangements by Bragdon-Kelley Funeral Home, Machias.