‘Wheel of Fortune’s Vanna White Announces Her Father Has Died at 96: ‘I Love You Dad’

by Samantha Whidden
(Photo by Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for Chrysalis Butterfly Ball)

On Friday (April 1st), “Wheel of Fortune” icon Vanna White took to her social media accounts to announce that her father died at the age of 96. 

In the tribute post, White wrote, “It is with great sadness that I tell you my 96-year-old dad passed away peacefully this morning. He lived a full and happy life. And will be remembered as one of the kindest and most wonderful human beings of North Myrtle Beach. I love you so much, dad. RIP.”

Vanna White notably spoke to Larry King about the situation with her mother. “It was very tough. I went back home. I took care of the situation And then I came back out here. Rearing to go.”

When asked by the late-night talk show host if the “toughest loss of all” was her mother, Vanna White quickly answered, “Absolutely.”

Over the years, Vanna White wrote special social media posts about her mother. On Mother’s Day in 2015, White shared, “My mom Joan was the best mother ever! I love you with all my heart! You will always be with me in spirit.”

Vanna White Previously Opened Up About Her Childhood in Myrtle Beach 

During a 2014 interview with Grand Stand Magazine, Vanna White spoke about growing up with her mother and father in Myrtle Beach. “Growing up in a small town like North Myrtle Beach was awesome and to my benefit. I’ve taken that small-town girl and same morals to Hollywood. And still, I feel I’m not that different. I don’t think it’s different than any other career.”

Chip White, Vanna’s brother, also opened up about his sister and how close they are. “She’s always been very protective of me and would drive me to school. I was always Vanna’s little brother. There was always a bar that she set that I couldn’t reach.”

Chip then spoke about spending time with Vanna White after her fiancé John Gibson died in a plane crash in 1986. “I had been out there in LA and returned to the East Coast. But moved out there for Vanna when he died to support her.”

Chip further explained that despite the situation, Vanna White cared for others while having to handle the unfortunate situation of Gibson’s passing. “Even though you feel like you’re supporting her, she’s really supporting you.”

Vanna White revealed that she still visits with friends and family in Myrtle Beach despite moving on the other side of the country to pursue her dreams. In regards to her successful career and well-known achievements throughout the years, Vanna White said she has accomplished all that she wanted to do. “I wanted to be a role model and I get to do that because I play myself on TV.”