Andrew Eugene Geer, Jr. ’51

Andrew Geer '51Andrew Eugene Geer, Jr., died peacefully Friday evening, April 6, 2018.

His Funeral Service will be held Wednesday, April 11, 2018, in St. Philip’s Church, 142 Church Street at 11:00a.m. Interment will follow in St. Philip’s Churchyard. The family will receive friends on Tuesday, April 10, 2018, at 31 East Battery, from 4:30p.m. to 7:00p.m.  Arrangements by J. Henry Stuhr, Inc. Downtown Chapel.

Gene was born March 21, 1930, in Charleston, South Carolina, son of Andrew Eugene Geer, Sr. and Winifred Williams Geer. He attended Episcopal High School in Alexandria, VA, then matriculated to Davidson College where he received a degree in Business Administration. He then received a Masters Degree in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He served as a First Lieutenant in the Army during the Korean War.

He returned to Charleston, SC, after his education and service to work with his father and cousins at The Geer Drug Company. Shortly thereafter, he met and married Betty Sovacool Small of Columbia, SC, in July of 1958. They had been married for 56 years when she passed away in 2014.

He is survived by his children, Cordes Geer Simpson (Jim), of Wadmalaw Island, SC, Andrew Eugene Geer III, M.D. (Susan), and William Gordon Geer (Bonnie), all of Charleston, SC; sister, Mary Goode DiRaddo, of Charleston, SC; grandchildren, Caroline Simpson, Porter Geer, and Gordon Geer, Jr., all of Charleston, SC, and numerous nieces, nephews, and godchildren.

“Gene” was a loyal friend. He loved animals; especially his Boykin Spaniel, Baron, and his rescue cat, Gracie. He was a faithful servant to his community as a lifelong member of St. Philip’s Church and a former Commissioner of Public Works.

He served on numerous committees and boards. He was a former president of the local Kiwanis club. He was a member of the St. Cecelia Society, The SC Society, the St. George’s Society, the Society of Colonial Wars and was a former Commodore of the Carolina Yacht Club. He will be missed.

In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to your favorite animal rescue and care charity.

A memorial message may be sent to the family by visiting our website at Visit our guestbook at charleston

Published in Charleston Post & Courier on Apr. 9, 2018

Arthur Jordan Balk, Jr. ’51

Arthur Jordan Balk, Jr. '51Arthur Jordan Balk, Jr., a fourth-generation Augustan born May 12, 1927 entered into rest on April 4th, 2018. He was the son of Bessie and Arthur Balk, Sr. and the loving husband of 46 years to Martha Gibson Balk.

Arthur was an Eagle Scout at the age of 15 and was a graduate of the Academy of Richmond County. He served his country in the US Army during World War II and was stationed in Korea for two years.

Following his military service he graduated with a B.A. in history from Davidson College and subsequently studied for his Masters at the University of Georgia. He was an educator and principal in the Richmond County school system. He was a well-known home builder for many years and founded Balk Construction in 1960.

He was a member of Trinity-on-the-Hill United Methodist Church and the Adult Couples and Singles Sunday School Class. He was a faithful member of the Exchange Club of Augusta for over 50 years. He enjoyed flying and held a private pilot’s license for years. He was an avid member of the Augusta Sailing Club and a member of the Augusta Home Builders Association.

Arthur is survived by his children: Bruce Balk, Claire Balk Dalton (Chad) and Chum Balk; step-daughters: Phyllis Hodges Collier (Robert) and Paige Hodges Usry (Brad); grandchildren: Ian, Forrest, Harrison and Madison Balk, Wood Dalton, Riah Collier (Tamara), Blake Collier, (Camila), Jordan Collier ( Meagan), Havird Usry (Brooke), Hodges Usry; 8 great-grandchildren; sister: Betty Gene Balk Lovingood (Al).

A visitation will be held in the Gathering Room at Trinity-on-the-Hill United Methodist Church at 10:00 A.M. on Tuesday, April 10, 2018. The service will follow at 11:00 A.M. Honorary pallbearers are Exchange Club Augusta Members and the Adult Couples and Singles Sunday School Class.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorials may be made to the Music Ministry at Trinity-on-the-Hill United Methodist Church,1330 Monte Sano Avenue Augusta, Georgia 30904.

Thomas Poteet & Son Funeral Directors, 214 Davis Rd., Augusta, GA 30907 (706) 364-8484. Please sign the guestbook at


Published in The Augusta Chronicle on Apr. 9, 2018

Yale Waterman Greer ’51

Yale Waterman Greer '51Yale Waterman Greer, age 87, died on February 1, 2018. He was born in Chase City, Virginia on June 19, 1930 and grew up in South Boston Virginia.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Thomas Whittaker Greer, I and Edith Waterman Marilla; brothers Thomas Whittaker Greer, II, James Willard Greer and son Thomas Whittaker Greer, III.

He is survived by his wife, Mary Alexander Greer, daughters Cary Greer Runyon and husband Brent of Lynchburg, and Rebecca Marshall Plesha and husband Jeff of Wake Forest, North Carolina, grandson David Yale Greer and wife Bambi, great-grand children Hudson Yale Greer and Mason Yale Greer of Edmond, Oklahoma. Grand children Lindsey Clark Mahnke and husband Dylan, and great-grand children Landon Dean Mahnke, Parker Joseph Mahnke, Greyson Thomas Mahnke and Adalynn Grace Mahnke; and a grandson Paul Spencer Runyon. He is also survived by many beloved nieces, nephews, cousins and great-great nieces and nephews.

Yale graduated from C.H. Friend High School in South Boston, Davidson College in North Carolina, and received his Masters in Education From University of Virginia in 1969. He served our country in Korea between 1951-1953.

Yale had a childlike enthusiasm about whatever interest him at the moment and tried to convince anyone that would listen to be just as excited. He loved the human story and was generally interested in people’s lives and the stories they told. He was an unselfish, nonjudgmental, and a giving man to all he encountered. He was happiest when the HOOS were winning.

Yale loved the mountains, especially the Appalachian Trail, always looking for the next adventure or chance encounter with another hiker. His love for the outdoors and the solitude that it brought him was passed along to his children, again, with great enthusiasm.

He never met a stranger and would give the shirt off his back to anyone, even if he didn’t have another. He believed that “Life’s greatest treasures lie in human personality.”

In Lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the Lynchburg Humane Society and the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Claude Ulric Voils, Jr. ’51

Claude Ulric Voils, Jr. '51Claude Ulric Voils, Jr., 88, of Mooresville, passed away Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017, at his residence. He was born April 21, 1929, in Mooresville, to the late Claude and Addria Carpenter Voils.

Mr. Voils was a U.S. Army veteran, having served in the Korean War. He received his bachelor’s degree from Davidson College and was retired from National Starch as their head chemist.

He was a lifelong member of First Presbyterian Church in Mooresville, where he was a member of the Men’s Bible Class. Mr. Voils loved his hometown, Mooresville, where he was a member of the Mooresville Rotary Club and on the board of directors for the Mooresville Federal Savings & Loan.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Helen Morgan Voils; and infant twin brother, Thad Voils.

He is survived by his daughters, Jane Kinney (Steve), Mary Aven and late husband, Gary Aven; grandchildren, Stephen Kinney (Tara), Ginger Lane (Josh), Chris Aven (Haylie), Robby Kinney (Candi), William Aven; and 12 great-grandchildren.

The family will receive friends Friday, Oct. 13, from 10 to 11 a.m., with a service following at 11 a.m., at First Presbyterian Church, with the Rev. Dr. Dave Rockness officiating. Burial at Glenwood Memorial Park will follow the service.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Barium Springs Home for Children, P.O. Box 1, Barium Springs, NC 28010.

Cavin-Cook Funeral Home and Crematory of Mooresville is serving the Voils family. Condolences may be made to the family at

Copyright 2017, Statesville Record & Landmark, Statesville, NC

Hugh “Woody” Leach ’51

Hugh "Woody" Leach '51Hugh Underwood “Woody” Leach, 88, of Blacksburg, died Thursday, June 22, 2017, at his home.

He was born December 21, 1928 in Donalsonville, Ga., son of the Reverend Coleaton Underwood Leach and Lois Baker Leach.

He married Nancy Phillips on March 28, 1953. A noted community activist and Presbyterian minister, Woody grew up in DeFuniak Springs, Fla.

His undergraduate education was at Davidson College where he was active in ROTC and attended on a football scholarship majoring in history and graduating in 1951. Woody then served in the United States Artillery Army including two years in Germany from 1953 to 1955.

He earned his Masters of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary in Richmond, Va. in 1958. Woody had a burning passion for social justice that was re-enforced by an association with the Rev. William Sloane Coffin during his sabbatical and Masters of Ethics at Yale in 1963-64.

In 1958 Woody began his 35 years of ministry in Blacksburg. He initially served under the Presbyterian Campus Christian Life Committee of Virginia. In 1964 the Presbyterian Westminster Fellowship merged with students of the Disciples of Christ Church. In the 1960s the program was very active as a crisis center to meet student needs.

In 1970 the ministry moved to 305 Washington Street and became known as Cooper House Presbyterian Campus Ministry. Woody was involved in the 1965 Prince Edward County, Virginia literacy project “Operation Catch Up” for African American school children victimized by Virginia’s massive resistance to racial integration. The project enrolled 520 children, with 37 teaching and administering the program.

He served one term on Blacksburg’s Town Council from 1978 to 1982 and was instrumental in the 1989 formation of the San Jose de Bocay, Nicaragua official sister city relationship with Blacksburg. He made many visits with other Blacksburg volunteers and Virginia Tech students to improve their local schools and increase safety through the building of fuel-efficient stoves for town residents.

His advanced professional education continued during summer sabbaticals: one at San Francisco Theological Seminary in San Anselmo, Calif. and another on a Danforth Scholarship at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, Calif.

His special interests included enjoying conversations with friends and playing tennis. He was preceded in death by his adult son, Christopher “Chris” Underwood Leach, of California; his granddaughter, Ashley Dowdy, of Christiansburg, Va.; and sister, Martha O’Neal Leach.

He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Nancy Phillips Leach; two daughters, Sheri Leach of Christiansburg, Va. and Susie Borenstein of Alexandria, Va.; and four grandchildren, Josh Dowdy, Zachary Borenstein, Elyse Borenstein and Leah Borenstein. He is survived by two brothers, Neil Calvin Leach and wife, D’Etta of Asheville, N.C. and Dan Blanchard Leach and wife, Genevieve of Greensboro, N.C.; and many nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m., Monday, July 10, 2017 at Blacksburg Presbyterian Church with the Rev. Charles Taylor of Blacksburg officiating and the Rev. Jim VandeBerg of St. Augustine, Fla. and Woody’s brother, Neil Leach of Asheville, N.C. assisting. Private inurnment of cremains with the family only will be held at a later date at Memorial Gardens of the New River Valley in Blacksburg.


In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorials be made to: UKirk at Virginia Tech (formerly known as Cooper House Presbyterian Campus Ministry) 305 Washington Street, Blacksburg, VA 24060; or Blacksburg Presbyterian Church 701 Church Street SE Blacksburg, VA 24060 or Sojourn Center (hospice house project for the New River Valley,, P.O. Box 295, Blacksburg, VA 24063. Arrangements by McCoy Funeral Home, 150 Country Club Drive, SW, Blacksburg VA, 540-552-3211.