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Spud White of White’s Wrecker Service retires

By Bailey Nichols,


PANAMA CITY, Fla. ( WMBB ) — Spud White has been a fixture on roadways across the Panhandle for six decades.

When Richard White started ‘White’s Wrecker Service’ in 1949, his young son ‘Spud’ was by his side and eventually inherited the family business.

Spud White helped thousands of people stranded in breakdowns or traffic crashes.

For years, the job involved hooking and towing cars and trucks. However, in 1983, tow truck operators were allowed to help Police, Fire, and EMS rescue drivers pinned in vehicles

In the 90s, Spud came up with the idea to tow drivers for free on New Year’s Eve if they’d had a bit too much to drink.

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“That’s our main goal is to help people. That’s why we do the DUI program to keep impaired drivers off the highways to save lives. And I feel like over the past 40 years we have saved a lot of lives,” said Spud White.

At 66, Spud decided to retire and turn over the business to his children. It’s an easy transition.

White’s Wrecker Service has always been a family-run business. Spud’s daughter, Hassie, has been helping her dad since she was 8, running the office at 15.

“We’ve had a lot of growth here with the junkyard and Dad’s retiring and passing the torch on to the rest of us. I think it’s just going to be a good start,” said Hassie White.

Hassie’s daughter is next to help the business.

“I have a 13-year-old right now that’s busting at the seams to get behind that desk,” said Hassie White.

Spud’s son, Bubba, has been driving tow trucks for years and his grandsons, Zach and Dakota, are both behind the wheel.

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“Feels pretty good knowing that I’m on the road now and I can start taking over, so I can start helping people like he has,” said Zach White.

Retiring will be an adjustment, but Spud says he’s confident about the future.

“I just want to thank the general public for being so good. And I mean, it’s like giving up on your children to go get married and leaving town. Thank you,” said Spud.

Spud’s looking forward to going fishing on his boat without any worries.

Spud says investing in the company proved successful.

White’s has the largest tow trucks in the Panhandle and hauls huge vehicles, like the jet that crashed Tuesday night at the airport .

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