Originally serving as a military pilot back on Earth during the Resource Wars, White joined the C.E.C. when the war ended, eventually becoming the First Officer of the prestigious USG Ishimura below Captain Benjamin Mathius. Although Mathius was a devout Unitologist, White did not share in these views and was rather critical of Unitology and wary about their growing presence on the ship. His unsavory views of Unitology are evidenced by a list that he made of all of the known Unitologists aboard the ship.
Despite his dislike of Unitology, he elected to hold his tongue on these matters and continued following the orders of the Captain, despite his affiliations to the Church of Unitology. It would not be until the Necromorph infestation of the Ishimura and the increasingly irrational behavior of the Captain began evidencing itself that he would dare to protest the Captain's orders.
When an erratic and disturbed Mathius began wildly ranting and ordered Dr. Kyne to be placed under arrest, White and Chic decided that Mathius went too far and attempted to restrain him as Dr. Kyne tried to administer a sedative. Mathius, however broke free of their grasp and while choking Kyne, he was portrayed as he was being pushed into the needle that Kyne was holding when White and Chic tried to restrain him once more. White and Chic are responsible for the Captain's death by pushing him into the needle. White immediately declared Kyne a killer and attempted to arrest him.[note 1]
Following the death of Mathius, control of the ship was handed over to White. White, however was unable to re-establish contact with the rest of the ship and instead became more and more pessimistic in regards to their chances for survival. By the time Alissa Vincent arrived on the Bridge, White completely lost all hope, believing the entire ship to be lost. This attitude was further reinforced by the discovery that Kyne was sabotaging the ship in order to scuttle it.
Alissa, disgusted with White's pessimism toward their fates and ability to avert them struck White in the face and left the Bridge. This would mark the last appearance of White. His exact fate remains unknown. It is possible he may have survived, but it is also likely that he could have killed by a Necromorph as the Bridge was eventually overrun.
White was shown to be a rational and logic-based individual who eschewed more fantastic explanations for mundane and pragmatic ones. Despite his contempt for fantastical institutions such as the Church of Unitology, he did not allow this to affect his work despite serving with and directly underneath several Unitologists. Though, it should be noted that despite his obvious professionalism, White can and questioned orders if they became too irrational and/or erratic.
- According to a log found by Isaac Clarke, White had an extreme dislike for Unitologists. This may explain White's willingness to blame Kyne for the death of the Captain, especially given the Captain's verbal outburst that the Unitologists had sent him and Kyne to secure the marker.
- The name of White may be a reference to Dan White, the San Francisco city councilor who killed Harvey Milk and the San Francisco's mayor George Moscone, in 1978.
- It should be noted that Dead Space displays these events considerably differently, thus this scene may not be considered canon to what actually occurred