William “Bill” Whitfield Smith ’50, of Goldsboro, N.C., died Jan. 17 at Kitty Askins Hospice Center. He was born in Raleigh, N.C., Oct. 11, 1928, and was the son of the late Alice McGee Smith and Roger Alexander Smith, Jr. He spent his childhood in Smithfield and Raleigh. Smith earned a bachelor of art degree in English from Davidson and graduated from UNC School of Law in 1953. He served in the U.S. Army from 1953 to 1955. Smith joined the Dees Law Firm in Goldsboro in 1955 and practiced law with the firm for 36 years. He was dedicated to his family and his profession and was active in community and church work. He enjoyed being involved in the lives of his children and, more recently, his grandchildren, with whom he shared his many interests, including a love of sailing. He favored projects and organizations that emphasize law and order and education and was a member and served on the board of many organizations, including Goldsboro Rotary Club, Downtown Goldsboro Development Corporation, Wayne County Library, Wayne County Chamber of Commerce, Wayne Community Concerts, Wayne Country Day School, United Way of Wayne County, WAGES, Wayne County Community College, Wayne Memorial Hospital, State Library of North Carolina, Salvation Army, and the Peace College Foundation. Smith was a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Goldsboro and served the church as a deacon and member of various committees. Smith is survived by his wife of 53 years, Jane Parker Smith, 606 Brookwood Ln., Goldsboro, NC 27534-7518; his children, William Whitfield “Whit” Smith, Jr. (Alison), Alexander Parker “Sandy” Smith ’83 (Alicia), and Mariah Smith Malik; grandchildren, Jordan Smith Malik, Alexander “Alex” Parker Smith, Jr., Aurora “Rory” Jane Smith, and Elspeth Fiona Smith; and devoted family friend, Carrie Mae Faison. He was preceded in death by his sons, Fort Talbot Smith and Thomas “Tom” McAdams Smith. He loved his family, his friends, and the community he served.
Jeane M. Jackson ’49, 82, of Swansea, S.C., died Jan. 14. Jackson was born in Lexington, a son of the late Roscoe C. and Carrie Mae Wingard Jackson. He was a member of Ebenezer United Methodist Church. He attended Davidson and USC. After his father’s death, he worked the family farm. He was also a lifelong hunter. Survivors include his children, Mike Jackson, 2312 Highway 178, Apt. 178, Swansea, SC 29160-9176, Peggy J. Davis, R.C. “Butch” Jeffcoat, Diane Martin, Jennifer Caughman, and a special daughter, Becky Fogle, and a number of grandchildren. He was preceded in death by a brother, R.C. Jackson, Jr., and a sister, Edith J. McGinnis.
Boone Aiken Knox ’58, of Thomson, Ga., died on Jan. 13. He was born on Dec. 21, 1936, the second son of Peter Seymour Knox, Jr. ’32 and Mary Lyles Aiken Knox of Thomson. He was named for his maternal grandfather, Jefferson Boone Aiken, of Florence, S.C. Knox grew up in Thomson and was educated at Davidson and the University of Georgia, from which he graduated in 1958. After graduation he married his wife of 52 years, George-Ann Walker Knox, and entered the family business in Thomson. He was an accomplished businessman, blessed with a keen mind, integrity, a strong work ethic, and a personality which endeared him to employees, business associates, and legions of friends. He gave to his communities, and his philanthropy is well known, impacting the cultural life of both Thomson and Augusta, as well as the lives of many people. He was an avid golfer, enjoying equally both the fierce competition and fellowship with friends. He played at many venues, building lasting friendships and relationships, not only among fellow golfers, but also among those who worked to make such venues outstanding places. Knox is survived by his wife, George-Ann Knox, 3133 Washington Rd., Thomson, GA 30824-5451; three children, Elizabeth Knox Hopkins (William Cunningham Hopkins), Jefferson Boone Aiken Knox (Catherine Davis Knox), and Charles Edward Knox (Kimberly Nations Knox); 12 grandchildren, Walker Grout Hopkins (Melissa), William Cunningham Hopkins, Jr., Broone Knox Hopkins, Jefferson Boone Aiken Knox, Jr., James Lee Davis Knox, Austin Walker Knox, Leila Nations Knox, Charles Edward Knox, Jr., John Michael Knox, James Walker Mackenzie Knox, Peter Boone Knox, and Henry Seymour Knox; his sister-in-law, Pat Knox; and numerous nephews, nieces, and cousins.
Hugh W. Armstrong ’49, former Monroe, N.C., veterinarian, died Jan. 13 in Matthews, N.C. Armstrong was born Jan. 2, 1921, in Gastonia, N.C., son of the late Oscar Armstrong and Kate Rankin Armstrong. After graduating from high school, Armstrong joined the U.S. Air Force, where he served from 1942 until 1945. He attended Davidson, Presbyterian Junior College, and N.C. State College before attending the University of Georgia School of Veterinary Medicine in 1949. He married Alida Fair Stevenson in 1950, and graduated from veterinary school in 1953. He began his veterinary practice in Monroe, N.C., in 1953 as Monroe Animal Clinic and later, as Armstrong Animal Hospital, and he retired in May 2008. He was a life member of the N.C. Veterinary Medical Association, honor roll member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, and a member of the N.C. Academy of Small Animal Medicine. He was a member of First Presbyterian Church of Monroe, where he served as a deacon and elder for several years. He was a member of Kappa Sigma Fraternity at Davidson and a past member of the Monroe Lions Club. He also served on the Union County Board of Health for nine years. Armstrong was preceded in death by his wife, Alida, of 55 years, and his brother, George Rankin Armstrong. He is survived by his son, Rankin Armstrong (Debbi); daughter, Ann Armstrong McGhee (Karl), 627 Twin Pine Rd., Pittsburgh, PA 15215, and daughters, Sara Staton McGhee and Erin Emery McGhee; niece, Allison Elizabeth Armstrong; and other loving nieces and nephews.
Champney Adams McNair ’49, 86, died Jan. 12 at his residence in Murrells Inlet, S.C. Born in Sanford, N.C., he was a son of the late John Nelson McNair and Jessie Rose Chamberlain McNair. He was an Eagle Scout and later in his life received the Silver Beaver, Silver Antelope, and the distinguished Eagle award. McNair received a bachelor’s degree, cum laude, from Davidson and a M.B.A. from Harvard University. He retired as CFO from Suntrust Bank in Atlanta, Ga., a company he served with distinction for over 30 years. McNair proudly served his country under General George Patton in WWII in the European Theater. In faith he served as a member of First Presbyterian Church of Myrtle Beach and an elder at Peachtree and Clairmont Presbyterian churches in Atlanta. He served his community in many roles including chairman and trustee of Georgia Council on Economic Education, chairman of the United Negro College Fund, chairman of the board of trustees of Rabun Gap Nacoochee School, and National Council member representing the Atlanta Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America. Most importantly, McNair was a loving husband, a strong father to his boys, a joyful grandfather, and a doting great-grandfather. He has been generous beyond words with family and friends and has helped many a stranger in his charitable work. Survivors include his wife, Catherine, P.O. Box 1010, Murrells Inlet, SC 29576-1010; four sons, Champney Adams McNair, Jr. ’72, William A. McNair, John E. McNair, and Robert G. McNair; six grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; and a sister, Elinor McNair Ankrom.