James Gregory Poole, Jr. ’57

James Gregory Poole, Jr. was born on December 18, 1934 to Irene Rand Poole and James Gregory Poole, Sr. at the first Rex Hospital on South Street in Raleigh. After a brief illness, he died surrounded by his loving family on December 29, 2018.

Greg grew up in Raleigh where he attended public school until the 9th grade when he chose to go to Culver Military Academy in Culver, Indiana. He was Regimental Commander his senior year. His love of Culver, its focus on the mind, body, and spirit, combined with the relationships he built there with his fellow classmates, were strong influences in his life. 

After graduating from Culver in 1953, he attended Davidson College; he was a quarterback on the football team. After two years he transferred to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and graduated in 1957.

After serving six months in the Army Reserves, Greg went to work for the Gregory Poole Equipment Company, which his father founded in 1951. He became President and CEO in 1964 and retired in 1998. Greg helped his father develop MacGregor Downs and later founded MacGregor Development Company, which developed Lochmere and MacGregor Park in Cary.

Greg’s life was characterized by a remarkable knack for developing lasting friendships with all those he encountered. He had a great passion for his community and greatly influenced much of what we enjoy in Raleigh today.

In his later years he worked tirelessly advocating for the establishment of the Dorothea Dix Park in Raleigh. In addition, he spent considerable time developing his basket weaving and woodworking skills, and loved sharing his work with others.

Greg is remembered and admired most not for his considerable accomplishments, but for his character and love of people. His life was framed by his father’s high school class motto, “Building for Character, not for Fame”.

Greg is survived by his four children, James Gregory Poole, III, Barbara Alyson Poole, William Kenan Poole (Stephanie) and Edward Ashton Poole (Fran); eight grandchildren, James Gregory Poole IV, Sarah Lane Poole, John Braxton Poole, Caroline Claire Poole, William Kenan Poole II, Richard Harrison Poole, Edward Ashton Poole, Jr., and Patricia Vaughan Poole.

He is also survived by his loving wife of 34 years, Mary Ann Dailey Poole, and his former wife and mother of his children, Barbara Hatcher McDonald.

He was predeceased by his sister, Jean Poole Enderle, and his parents.

A visitation is planned for Tuesday, January 1, 2019, from 3:00-5:00 pm at the Flowers Cottage, Dorothea Dix Park, 2105 Umstead Drive, Raleigh.

A Witness to the Resurrection service in his honor will be held at White Memorial Presbyterian Church at 11:00 am on Wednesday, January 2, 2019. A reception will follow.

Memorial gifts in Greg’s honor may be made to the White Memorial Presbyterian Church, Dorothea Dix Park, Camp Oak Hill or the charity of your choice

James Gregory Poole, Jr. '57

Published in The News & Observer from Dec. 31, 2018 to Jan. 1, 2019

W. Roy Robinson, Jr. ’57

William Roy Robinson, Jr., 83, devoted son, husband, father and indulgent grandpa, passed away on December 18, 2018, in Winston-Salem.

Born in Gastonia on August 10, 1935, Roy enjoyed in his youth a reputation as a hellion, not only setting off fireworks indoors and sneaking into–and being expelled from–baseball games, but also spying on the bootleggers around Booger Mountain and getting chased off by their whizzing bullets. When he drove by, residents would remark, “There goes Roy, like a bat outta hell.”

From his parents, the late William Roy Robinson, Sr., and Lida Stacy Robinson, Roy quickly learned self-reliance and the value of a buck and would purchase movie tickets from money earned collecting soda bottles and running paper routes. He also learned the virtues of patience, devotion to family, taking care of others, and being cool, although these took more time. After he knocked his mom out. Accidentally.

After graduating from Gastonia High School in 1953, Roy attended Davidson College, where he was on the track and field team, earned his BA in Business upon graduation in 1957, and formed lifelong friendships. In 1958, he married Allene Hudson, also from Gastonia, and began his 38-year career with Wachovia Bank, first in Charlotte, then later in Winston-Salem, until his early retirement in 1996.

Together he and his wife raised a son and daughter in Clemmons, where they were community leaders, founding the local PTA chapter. Roy also saved countless lives by donating his rare blood; coached and managed Clemmons Little League Baseball; was an Assistant Scoutmaster of Troop 736; and was active in the Clemmons Civic Club, promoting–and consuming–their pancake breakfasts and assisting with their investment portfolio to fund West Forsyth High School scholarships.

A graduate of and, subsequently, teacher at the American Institute of Banking (Investments), Roy developed a deep passion for the stock market and began day trading of stocks, specializing in the selling of call and put options. He loved to explain to anyone that would listen the intricacies and magic of options and taught many people the technique of option trading.

Blessed with a keen wit, analytical mind, and a competitive, feisty spirit, Roy loved a puzzle and never turned down a challenge. During the ’60s and ’70s, he was a professional contester. He was both a card, winning joke contests, and a card shark. An expert bridge player, Roy challenged any takers, especially his nieces, to marathon bridge matches and played weekly at the Shepherd’s Center, South Fork, and Miller Park in Winston-Salem. 

Preceded in death by his beloved wife, Allene Hudson Robinson, Roy leaves behind his grieving children, West Tripp Robinson of Davidson and Susan Allene Robinson of Clemmons; sister, Carolyn Robinson Lineberger of Dallas; brothers, Stacy Banks Robinson of Charlotte and Starr Neely Robinson of Forest City; daughter-in-law, Becky Montelibano, and granddaughter, Kalista Chuanshi Robinson, both of Davidson; granddog, Rosie Mathilda; and many loved ones, both friends and family.

A memorial service will be held Saturday, December 29, at 2:00 p.m. at Clemmons Moravian Church, 3535 Spangenberg Ave. The family will receive friends for a visitation following the service.

Frank Vogler & Sons Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements. www.frankvoglerandsonsclemmons.com

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to either Davidson College or the Clemmons Civic Club.

Published in Gaston Gazette on Dec. 23, 2018

Richard “Dick” Spurgeon Belton ’57

Richard "Dick" Spurgeon Belton '57Mr. Richard “Dick” Spurgeon Belton, Sr., age 83 , of Mt. Airy died Thursday, October 25, 2018, at the Woltz Hospice Home.

Mr. Belton was born in Surry Country, April 16, 1935, the son of the late E.C. and Irene Roberts Belton.

He graduated from Mt. Airy High School and Davidson College where he excelled in football. Mr. Belton was a veteran of the United States Army and a lifelong member of First Baptist Church.

He was inducted into the Mt. Airy Sports Hall of Fame in 2009.

He is survived by his wife, Nancy Reece Belton; his daughter and son-in-law, Lib and Ron Rabun; his son and daughter-in-law, Richard and Leshia Belton, Jr.; his grandchildren, Nathan (Misty) Belton, Jacob (Allie) Belton, Luke Rabun, Molly Rabun; one great-grandchild, Molly Belton; his sister and brother-in-law, Carolyn and Ed Bonahue; his brother and sister-in-law, Bill and Jeanette Belton.

A memorial service will be held Monday, October 29, 2018, at 12:00 at First Baptist Church in Mt. Airy with Rev. Jay Meadows officiating.  The family will visit with family and friends two hours prior to the service in the Fireside Room of First Baptist Church.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Woltz Hospice Home or First Baptist Church of Mt. Airy.

Tommy Brewer Griffin ’57

Tommy Griffin

‘I am the vine; you are the branches….apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:5. On his 82nd birthday, January 1, 2018, Dr. Tommy Brewer Griffin went to the place Jesus had prepared for him.

If an obituary of earthly works were going to be written, he wanted the reader to know that apart from Christ, he could do nothing. On January 1, 1936, Tommy was born to Marcus Vann and Elizabeth Brewer Griffin. By the time he was five years old he knew that he was going to be a physician.

After Aiken High School, he graduated cum laude from Davidson College with a BS in Pre-Med Sciences. From a very strong Alpha Omega Alpha Medical School career at the University Of Pennsylvania School Of Medicine, he graduated in 1961.

The Yale University Grace New Haven Hospital was the site of his internship before he moved back south to Chapel Hill for residencies in internal medicine followed by a residency and fellowship in dermatology at North Carolina Memorial Hospital, the University of North Carolina.

He was a Major in the Army Medical Corps during the Vietnam War. His base was in Research and Development at the Letterman General Hospital at the Presidio of San Francisco. Tommy returned to the faculty of the UNC Department of Dermatology.

In 1971 He moved to Spartanburg and opened the second dermatology office (Dr. Paul Cook was the first.) His practice grew with more dermatologists and he retired from Spartanburg Dermatology and Skin Surgery Clinic in 2001.

Patients and their care, teaching in medical settings, and the superbly dedicated staff brought thirty years of great joy in the professional life! Even on his last day he still recognized with a twinkle, his wife, children and grandchildren.

He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Freida Deaton Griffin; sons, Marcus Vann Griffin II, wife, Tracy, grandchildren, Maura and Nathanial, of Dana Point, CA, Thomas Scott Griffin, wife, Suzannah, grandchildren, Thomas and Sarah of Spartanburg, SC; daughter, Dr. Julia G. Girard and husband, Dr. Dhru Girard Griffin and granddaughter, Ava of Rome, GA.

An only child, Tommy completely embraced Freida’s siblings as his own: Nancy and Bennie Ward, Glenda and Don Loftis, Mary Jo and Chick Harvey, Dale and Lawrence Ledbetter and Becky and David Wilkins. Since its founding, All Saints Church, Spartanburg, has been Tommy’s very special church home and family.

Visitation will be 12:30-1:30 PM Saturday, January 6, 2018, at Floyd’s Greenlawn Chapel, 2075 East Main St., Spartanburg, SC 29307, with services following at 2:00 PM in the Chapel.

The Reverend Nowell Copley, Rector and the Reverend Mike Smith, Deacon will be officiating the service. Burial will be in Greenlawn Memorial Gardens, 1300 Fernwood-Glendale Rd., Spartanburg, SC 29307.

Memorial gifts may be considered to Mobile Meals Service, PO Box 461, Spartanburg, SC 29304 or to All Saints Church, Spartanburg, 401 E. Kennedy St. Suite B7, Spartanburg, SC 29302.

The family would like to express their great appreciation to Mary Sipple, his caregiver for over a year, for her love and care.

An online guest register is available at www.floydmortuary.com Floyd’s Greenlawn Chapel

Copyright 2018 Herald-Journal (Spartanburg, SC)

Eugene Douglas Connell, Sr. ’57

Eugene Douglas Connell, Sr., “Gene”, 83 of Savannah, GA passed away peacefully Thursday, December 22nd holding the hands of his children.

Born June 19, 1934, in Spencer, NC, Gene was the son of the late Troy Grubb Wortham also from Spencer, NC. Gene graduated from Spencer High School, attended Fishburne Military Academy, Lenoir Rhyne University, and Davidson College – completing his textile engineering degree at North Carolina State University in 1959.

Gene began his career at Dan River Mills in Danville, VA and Cartex Mill in Salisbury, NC. He remained in the textile industry until he took early retirement from Celanese Corporation to do the things he loved – building houses and opening a barbeque restaurant. Always staying busy, he also worked in outside sales along the way.

Poppie, as he was called by his grandchildren and great granddaughter, was an amazing husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather and friend. His love of family, quick wit, infectious laugh, meticulous attention to detail, loyalty, and generosity was loved, is missed and will always be treasured.

Gene cherished his friendships from his many family moves from Spencer, Salisbury, Danville, Gastonia, Charlotte, Marietta, Clover and Savannah; enjoyed every sport imaginable – from attending ACC basketball tournaments, Clemson football games, and NASCAR races with his best buddy Gene Auten; and took great pride in his famous hot slaw – only recently sharing the secret recipe with his children and grandchildren.

Those left to cherish his memory are the love of his life – his wife of 60 years, Elizabeth Swaim Connell; daughters Kelly Connell Gasque and husband Michael Gene Gasque, and Susan Connell Galvin and husband Michael Jeffrey Galvin; son Eugene Douglas (Doug) Connell, Jr. and wife Angie Rogers Connell; grandchildren Rachel Connell, Morgan Connell, Ashley Wilkes, Alex Grayson, Sam Grayson, Spencer Gasque, Travis Gasque, Brendon Galvin, and Kyle Galvin; son-in-law Austin Wilkes, daughter-in-laws Nicole Grayson and Courtney Galvin, Spencer’s love Taylor Post and great granddaughter Lucy Kate Wilkes.

Poppie loved his family and treasured the time they all spent together. So to follow his wishes, there will be no service, rather a private family celebration. Well-wishers are encouraged to raise a glass of Early Times in his honor.

In lieu of flowers, gifts can be made in Gene’s memory to St. Joseph’s Hospital along with a special thank you to the 7th floor south nursing staff for their loving care and support of their dear friend, “Mr. Gene”. St. Joseph’s/Candler Foundation, 5356 Reynolds Street, Suite 400, Savannah, GA 31405, 912-819-8683

https://www.sjchs.org/foundations/tribute-gifts

We will always all be together. We love and miss you Poppie.

Please sign our online guestbook at www.foxandweeks.com

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