A Trooper Honor Guard carried the flag draped casket of Governor Mark White into the Texas capitol Thursday. His family was greeted by current Governor Greg Abbott, as well as Speaker Joe Straus and Lt. Governor Dan Patrick. It was a moving sight for those who stood and watched the processional.
"I just thought it was very appropriate, for a former Governor of Texas, it was just very impressive, solemn and an honor just to see it,” said Kathy Pesch who was visiting from Abilene.
Under the dome in the capitol rotunda, the casket was placed under White's portrait.
Friends, supporters, political allies, past and present, stood in a long line to pay their respects.
"And I just felt like I had to be here, it’s just something I felt I had to do,” said family friend Jo Watts.
Luci Baines Johnson was among those who embraced former First Lady Linda Gale White.
"He may have retired from public office but he never retired from public service. And he is an example of we all ought to embrace about how we can come and reason together and work together and Mark was brilliant at that,” said Johnson.
White served as Secretary of State and Attorney General before his single term as Governor. He is best remembered for education reforms like no pass no play and advocating for utility rate regulations.
From the capital, Governor White was brought to the Texas State Cemetery. A private graveside service was held here for his family. The grave is located along a shaded hillside on the southwest corner of the cemetery. It’s not far from Texas icons like Congresswoman Barbara Jordan, frontier pioneer Steven F. Austin, U.T. coach Darryl Royal, American Sniper Chris Kyle, and entertainer Cactus Prior.
"There's 13 Texas Governors buried here today, Governor White will be the 14th Texas Governor buried at the state cemetery. And really the folks who are buried out here at the state cemetery have contributed significantly to the history and culture of our state and it’s very appropriate for Governor White to be laid to rest here at the state cemetery today, “said Jason Walker with the State Cemetery.
The Texas flag at the capitol will remain at half-staff through sunset Thursday in memory of Governor White.