James Steele ’60

James SteeleJames L. Steele of Harrisonburg passed away March 8, 2017, at Brookdale Assisted Living after a lengthy battle with dementia.

Jim was born near Charlotte, N.C., in 1937 to the late Claude Steele and Kathleen Young Steele.

In addition to his wife, Jane Dinsmore Steele, he is survived by a stepdaughter, Jacqueline Dinsmore, and a nephew, Richard Griffin Jr. and his wife, Amy. His only child, Gregory Steele, and his only sister, Peggy Griffin, are deceased.

Growing up on his family’s small farm, Jim would rise at 4 a.m. to milk the family dairy cows. He and his sister learned to cook for the family, and Jim continued his cooking skills into his adult life, where his cheesecake was requested for various social functions. Every Christmas, he would spend an entire day creating a raspberry trifle, which could have been shown in any food magazine.

Jim was a good athlete, playing football, basketball, as well as being a standout on the high school wrestling team. In his adult life, he attended James Madison basketball and football games and also rooted for his favorite ACC basketball teams and the Washington Redskins.

In Jim’s senior year of high school, he was elected class president and also student body president, but had to choose between the two, selecting class president. Other honors included being voted “Most Original,” “Friendliest” and “Most Popular.” He kept in touch with his high school classmates, particularly his close friend, Thad Morrison.

After high school, Jim went to Davidson College, where he majored in English. He was an excellent writer and edited publications and books for sociology societies during his career.

Following college graduation, Jim chose to attend Wake Forest University, where he obtained a master’s in theology. For seven years, Jim pastored two Southern Baptist Churches, one in Charlotte and one in New Jersey. He often mentioned his greatest joy during those years was working with the young people in the church. Anyone who knew Jim was aware of his love for children.

Even after this most cruel disease had greatly affected his speech and personality, his face would light up when he would see children in the assisted living facility, and they always received a big smile.

Jim’s love of the West took him to Montana, where he studied and obtained a doctorate in philosophy from the University of Montana. Fishing and hunting were his hobbies during these years, and he often remarked about the beautiful rivers in Montana where he fly-fished.

Due to family circumstances, Jim returned to the East and found his home at James Madison University. It was there that he stayed for 35 years, teaching a variety of classes in sociology, as well as statistics and a class in the athletic department with Challace McMillan. He worked with the Honors Program and was a freshmen adviser for many years.

After retirement at age 71, he was awarded an emeritus status for his long service to the university that had been his home for so long. His name, along with others, is forever inscribed in limestone on the university quad.

Jim’s hobbies included running (he would run 10 miles on his birthday well into his 50s) and rock climbing with his son. He loved camping and traveled with his beloved Dodge Power Wagon (The Boss), pulling his camper, to favorite places like Colorado. Another hobby was fishing every fall at the Outer Banks. He would brag how The Boss pulled out many trucks stuck in the sand. The truck, over the years, became a minor celebrity wherever it went, and Jim drove it until it could no longer pass inspection.

In later years, Jim converted his love for hunting into helping animals. He dearly loved a “pet squirrel” he named Flippy and was devastated when it was killed in the road. A pet stray cat he let into the house was named KitKat, and later he had a rescue Siamese he called Taffy.

Every morning, even after his affliction became worse, he would dress before a city park opened its gates to take food to the homeless cats that were born and lived in the park. They became tame and watched for his car.

Not neglecting feathered “friends,” Jim carried his father’s love for raising exotic fowl over into keeping bird feeders and water baths filled for the birds, including hiding peanuts every morning for a family of crows. He was so tender-hearted, he could not bear to be present when a pet was suffering and had to be put to sleep. His yard was a burial ground for three favorite squirrels, one cat, and two guinea pigs.

Having been gifted with a beautiful voice, Jim listened to and collected all kinds of music. He directed the church choir while attending Mossy Creek Presbyterian Church. His other enjoyment were movies, his favorite form of relaxation, and he had a wide variety of films, some which he would watch over and over.

Jim was a generous and kind father, stepfather and husband, and his love for teasing, making friends with everyone he met, and his dedication to his many students over the years, will be greatly missed. He endured his last years of a terrible affliction with great courage and a strong will to live.

The family thanks the management and wonderful staff at Brookdale Assisted Living who saw to Jim’s needs for three years. They affectionately nicknamed him “Jimbo,” and he enjoyed teasing the staff as best he could communicate.

The family will receive friends at the Lindsey Funeral Home on Saturday, March 11, between 6 and 8 p.m. Burial will be private.

Any donations in Jim’s honor can be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 1160 Pepsi Place, Suite 306, Charlottesville, VA 22901.

Online condolences may be sent to the family by visiting www.lindseyharrisonburg.com.

Copyright (c) 2017, Byrd Newspapers, All Rights Reserved.


Warren Coleman Leamon ’60

Warren Coleman Leamon, 78, of Athens GA passed away peacefully, Saturday January 14th, in his home.

A requiem mass in his honor will be held at the UGA Catholic Center, 1344 South Lumpkin Avenue Athens, on Friday January 27th at 11am.Burial will follow at Winterville Cemetery.

Chickens roamed in the yard as Warren was born on his family dining room table on East Wesley Road NW Atlanta, in 1938.

Warren graduated from North Fulton High School in 1956, and pursued further studies at Davidson College, the University of Georgia, and Vanderbilt University before earning a PhD in English from University College in Dublin Ireland. Warren worked as a Associate Professor of English, a poet, a novelist, and a literary critic.

Warren began his academic career at the University of Georgia in the 1970s and retired from the University of Hiroshima in Hiroshima Japan at the turn of the century. Warren liked to say that he never lived anywhere that did not lose “the War”.

Warren published poems and critical reviews during his retirement years, while splitting his time between Athens GA and Blairsville GA.

Warren is survived by his children, Sarah Leamon Turula, Dominic Leamon, and William Leamon, and his grandchildren Dominic and Jane Turula.

In lieu of flowers memorial donations can be made to the University of Georgia Foundation, in care of the Libraries. Lord and Stephens, East is in charge of arrangements. www.lordandstephens.com

Published in Athens Banner-Herald on Jan. 20, 2017



John Cole Hatcher ’60

John Cole Hatcher, 78, passed away peacefully at Novant Presbyterian Hospital on November 14, 2016. He was born July 25, 1938, at Mercy Hospital in Charlotte to the late Rueben and Jean Cole Hatcher.

He graduated McCallie School in 1956, attended Davidson College and graduated from North Carolina State University with an Industrial Engineering Degree.

He is survived by his daughter, Anne-Scott Hatcher; his grandchildren, Grace Anne Fabyan and Cole Salem Fabyan and their father, Barry Fabyan; first cousins, Jean Hovis Henderson and family; Betsy Culp Boyer and family; and Benjamin Culp and family.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 57 years, Anne Suber Hatcher. John Cole Hatcher loved fiercely and was fiercely loved.

He treasured every single adventure with his fishing buddies, cherished his personal and professional families and truly appreciated each tenant and vendor. His legacy lives in the wisdom and wit he shared with all who came to him for advice.

The family will receive friends from 2:00-5:00 pm on Sunday, November 20, 2016 at his home, 7525 Valleybrook Road, Charlotte, NC 28270.

A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 2:00 pm on Monday, November 21, 2016 at Saint Gabriel Catholic Church, 3016 Providence Road, Charlotte, with Reverend Frank O’Rourke, Celebrant.

Inurnment in the church columbarium will follow. There will be a reception for friends in the Fellowship Hall after the service.

Memorial contributions may be made to Holy Angels, Inc. at holyangelsnc.org. Harry & Bryant is serving the family.

Copyright (c) 2016 The Charlotte Observer

Peter Van Orden Sterling ’60

Peter Van Orden Sterling '60Peter Van Orden Sterling passed away at home on Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2016. He was born in Springfield, Massachusetts, to Clarence Irving and Edith Van Orden Sterling. Peter was a graduate of Davidson College (North Carolina) and Georgetown University (D.C.). 

Peter served as chair of the history department at the New Hampton School (New Hampshire); director of education at Colonial Williamsburg (Virginia); executive director of the USS Constitution Museum (Old Ironsides) (Massachusetts); and president and CEO of The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. Peter consulted around the world, seeking fresh perspectives on ways to bring us all together. 

In his much loved adopted town of Waynesville, Peter continued his life’s work, serving on the Waynesville Historic Preservation Commission and developing the Haywood Snapshot Project, a community based program to preserve and share historical photographs. 

An avid sailor, Peter always relished sitting around a dinner table, a dog at his feet, with dear friends, laughing and debating ideas. These friends buoyed him up during his long battle with Parkinson’s disease. And so together, family, friends and his beloved dog, Farley, saw him home at last to a safe harbor. 

Peter was preceded in death by his parents and elder brother, Clarence Sterling. 

He is survived by his wife, Lorna; daughter, Melissa Sterling; son-in-law, Vincent Ridley; grandchildren, Elana, Caiden and Zane, of San Francisco; daughter, Caroline Sterling; and grandchildren, Sophia, Oliver and Amelia, of Pittsburgh; and his brother, David Sterling, of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania; and so many dear friends to whom we are deeply grateful. 

A celebration of Peter’s life will be held at a future time. The family invites you to contribute to Friends of the Haywood County Animal Shelter, P.O. Box 142, Waynesville, NC 28786, or a charity of your choice in memory of Peter. 

Wells Funeral Homes & Cremation Services of Waynesville is in charge of arrangements. An online memorial register is available at “Obituaries” at www.wellsfuneralhome.com.

 Copyright, 2016, Mountaineer, The, All Rights Reserved.

Charles Hampton “Sam” Mauzy III

Charles Hampton “Sam” Mauzy III of Winston-Salem, N.C., died July 2 at Forsyth Medical Center in Winston-Salem. He was 77.

He was born Sept. 25, 1938, in Charlottesville, Va., the son of Charles Hampton Mauzy Jr. and Elizabeth Thaxton Mauzy.

Mr. Mauzy was a member of Parkway Presbyterian Church in Winston-Salem where he was a deacon, a member of the choir and a Sunday school teacher.

He was a 1956 graduate of R.J. Reynolds High School and attended Davidson College and Wake Forest College. He was a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and attended the University of Virginia School of Law and Wake Forest Graduate School. He taught school at Glenn Junior High School from 1962 until 1969 and worked for the National Education Association from 1969 until his retirement in 1990.

Survivors include his wife of 53 years, Marji Mauzy; a daughter, Perry Richardson Mauzy of Pawleys Island; two brothers, John Thaxton Mauzy and his wife Betsy of Harrisonburg, Va., and William Clark Mauzy and his wife Carrie of Sewanee, Tenn.; a sister-in-law, Phyllis Graham and her husband Jack of Kitty Hawk, N.C.; and several nieces and nephews.

Sam and Marji were planning to relocate to the Lakes at Litchfield. A celebration of his life will be held Sept. 25 at Litchfield Beach.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to RJR Home Field Advantage, c/o Leah Crowlely, 380-H Knollwood St. #177, Winston-Salem, NC 27103-1865.

Condolences may be sent at goldfinchfuneralhome.com.


Copyright 2016, The Coastal Observer, All Rights Reserved.