W. E. Whitney 1894 - 1973
Warren Berg, Kent, Washington
The rhododendron world has lost another of its beloved "old-timers". "Bill" Whitney passed away July 30th from a heart attack at his home on the Toandos Peninsula, Hood Canal, Washington. Bill was one of the most dedicated and talented men in the rhododendron field. He started growing plants in 1931, and with help and encouragement from Theodore Van Veen, Sr., began hybridizing in 1936. Over a period of 37 years, he developed many of the fine hybrids being grown today. Bill was a charter member of the American Rhododendron Society. In 1962 he received the Horticulture Man of the Year Award from the Washington State Women's Federation of Garden Clubs. He was most generous, always interested in helping others, never seeming to run out of energy or enthusiasm. Above all, Bill was a real gentleman. Until the day he died he was busy with new propagations and planning future crosses. Although he contributed much and left many reminders of his efforts, his many friends will dearly miss him.