Frank Sims Key, Jr. ’45

Frank Sims Key, Jr. of Florence died on Monday, August 12, 2019. He was 95. Frank was born on January 20, 1924, in Gastonia, N.C., the son of the late Frank Sims Key, Sr. and Rachel Auld Key.

After graduating from Florence High School, Frank attended Davidson College and graduated from Georgia Institute of Technology.

He served as a Naval Aviator during World War II. Upon his return to Florence, he joined his father in the roofing business for several years. In the early 1960s, he became a part of Sanborn Chase’s team at Vulcraft as an engineer.

Later, in 1966, he and two partners founded Socar, where he would work until his retirement in 2006. Frank was an excellent tennis player, a lover of automobiles, a great Sunday School teacher and a quiet mentor to many people. He and his wife, Peggy, and several other Christian friends started the East Florence Mission in the early 1970s and remain involved with that ministry to this day.

Frank is survived by his wife of 69 years, Peggy Elmore Key. In addition, there are four children: Randy (Gigi) Key of Florence, SC; Margaret (Ken) Charles of Florence, SC; Charlie (Marilyn) Key of Timmonsville, SC; and Pete (Katy) Key of James Island, SC. He is also survived by nine grandchildren and 21 great-grandchildren.

A family burial will take place on Wednesday, directed by Waters-Powell Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the P. E. K. Foundation, Post Office Box 649, Florence, SC 29503.

 © Copyright 2019, Morning News, Florence, SC

Bryant B. Skinner ’45

Bryant B. Skinner '45

Bryant B. Skinner, Sr., a lifelong resident of Jacksonville, Florida, died on March 10, 2019 at the age of 96.

Born October 12, 1922, he was one of the first babies born at the new St. Vincent’s Hospital in Riverside.

He was a well know businessman and civic leader, spending his career in commercial real estate development and giving his time and talents to innumerable political, civic and charitable organizations.

He attended the public schools in Jacksonville, but graduated high school from The Webb School in Bell Buckell, Tennessee. He attended Davidson College until the outbreak of WWII, which led to his transfer to the University of North Carolina under the naval officers training program.

He shipped out to the south Pacific as a newly minted “ninety-day wonder” ensign on board the LST 1009. He was in numerous campaigns in the amphibious war and was part of the occupation forces in Japan.

Returning home, he graduated from UNC and went to work for Stockton, Whatley & Davin, Co., a large real estate development company based in Jacksonville, were he spent 10 years involved in the company’s state-wide operations. He was a vice president of the company when he left in 1959.

He married Betty Walthour of Birmingham, Ala., in 1948. They had many happy years together and raised three sons and a daughter. Betty was a strong and dedicated supporter of Bryant’s many adventures.

In 1960 he commenced development of the Deerwood Club, a gated residential community in the then “middle of nowhere” wilderness called the Southside of Jacksonville. Deerwood was a great success and is credited with being the vanguard of development in what was to become the city’s most dynamic quadrant.

In 1981, he commenced a commercial development called “Southpoint”, at the interchange of I-95 and the newly opened J. Turner Butler Blvd. It too was a success, and established JTB as the city’s main growth corridor to this day.

Together with his three sons, he established Skinners Wholesale Nursery, a nursery specializing in large container grown trees.

His early involvement in the local Republican Party, when a Republican was an oddity in Jacksonville, was another expression of his visionary life. He met every Republican president from Dwight Eisenhour to George Bush and visited President Nixon and President Reagan in the White House. He was Reagan’s Duval County campaign manager in his successful 1980 campaign.

He loved the Gators, especially football, rarely missing a game. An avid sportsman, he loved hunting and fishing, tennis and golf, but did not like hiking or walking, saying that the person who was walking was just a person who had missed his ride!

He was active in business and civic life, serving as a director on the boards of Baptist Hospital, St. Luke’s/Mayo Hospital, Flagship Bank and as chairman of the board of Sun Bank. He served as president of the River Club, downtown Rotary Club, Jacksonville Country Day School, Young Life and the University of Florida Gator Boosters. He headed the committee to establish the Jacksonville Navy Memorial.

In all his many adventures-business, civic, travel, sports, etc., he never failed to be scrupulously honest. He loved to “work hard, play hard.”

Almost every social or family event was punctuated by his storytelling, tales which grew more fantastical and hilarious with each telling. He was a man of his times, a proud member of the Greatest Generation. He will be missed!

He is survived by Betty, his daughter, Betsy, his son Russell (Sandy), his son Bryant, Jr. (Joan), and his son Charlie (Laura), eleven grandchildren and eleven great-grandchildren, and his brother Dr. Richard Green Skinner Jr.

Close to his heart are his “do it all” companion for over 30 years, Heyward Jones, his dedicated live-in caregiver Beth Jones Batistin, and his secretary/house manager Cydnie Forrest.

A memorial service will be held at 11:00 am on Thursday, March 28, at the First Presbyterian Church of Jacksonville, 118 East Monroe St., Jacksonville, FL 32202.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Young Life Jacksonville.

Arrangements by Hardage-Giddens, THE OAKLAWN CHAPEL, 4801 San Jose Blvd., Jacksonville.

Please sign the guestbook at

┬áJames Alexander Corrigan ’45

James Corrigan '45James Alexander Corrigan, 94, of Evanston, Illinois, died Monday, June 18, 2018 in Evanston.

Jim was born in Asheville, North Carolina, in 1924, to John James Corrigan and Charlotte McRae Corrigan. His family then moved to High Point where he was raised. He attended Davidson College until called into service for the war in 1943, during which time he served in the United States Air Force.

After the war, he completed his undergraduate degree at Amherst College, where he was a member of Psi Upsilon Fraternity and made lifelong friendships. Jim completed his Masters of Business Administration at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business. Jim’s career in finance spanned seven decades and took him to The Treasury Department of the University of Chicago and finally as a consultant to the Educational Testing Service from which he retired at the age of 84.

Jim was preceded in death by his parents, his brother, William McRae Corrigan and his sister-in-law, Virginia Loebs Corrigan.

Jim is survived by his two nieces who loved him dearly, Louise Corrigan Havens and husband David of New Canaan, CT, and Sallie Corrigan Amos and husband Bob of High Point, NC.

Jim took great joy in the activities of his great-nephews and nieces, William Havens, Charlotte Havens, Samuel Havens, Sophie Havens, Trela Hendrix IV and McRae Hendrix. Jim is also survived by cousins, Sandy and Linda McRae, Catherine McRae, Coralie McRae Barnett and Douglas McRae.

A private family graveside service will be held Wednesday, June 27, 2018, at Oakwood Cemetery Drive, with Ken Broman-Fulks officiating.

In lieu of flowers the family requests all memorials be directed to The First Presbyterian Church, 918 N. Main Street, High Point, NC 27262.

Cumby Family Funeral Service is serving the Corrigan family.

 Copyright (c) 2018 High Point Enterprise

John Tweed Hannah ’45

John Hannah '45John Tweed Hannah, beloved husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather and friend died on Tuesday, the 6th of March 2018 at The Hallmark in Houston. He was 94 years old.

He was born in Houston on the 15th of January 1924 to Ethel Bloomfield Hannah, originally from Moss Point, Mississippi, and David Hannah from Ayrshire, Scotland. John attended Davidson College and graduated with a BBA from the University of Texas. He was a member of Phi Gamma Delta fraternity.

His business pursuits were centered on the development of medical buildings. He built the first offices for what is now the Kelsey-Seybold Clinic. With Jesse W. Edmundson, he restored Houston’s 1884 Cotton Exchange Building, a historic landmark recognized by the state and nation.

Under the tutelage of master angler Charley Thanheiser, John became an incorrigible fisherman. He took trout and Atlantic salmon on the fly from the streams and rivers of seven countries, including twelve states and provinces.

For a time, John was co-owner, with Brooks Bouldin, of the E. F. Payne Rod Company in Highland Mills, New York.

He and Rita were organizing members of St. Philip Presbyterian Church in the early 1950s and they have continued to serve the church for 65 years. John was a commissioner to the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA) and helped organize a subsequent General Assembly of the denomination, held in Houston.

He was a writer, publishing two books of fishing memories, as well as two additional books. During his long life, John served a number of organizations in positions of responsibility including Presbyterian MoRanch Assembly, Texas Presbyterian Foundation, Interfaith Ministries of Greater Houston, Interface-Samaritan Counseling Center, Riverside General Hospital, Citizens for Good Schools, Texas Interfaith Housing Corporation, Preservation Alliance of Greater Houston, Southampton Residents Association, The Forest Club, the Wodehouse Society and Texas Flyfishers.

During World War II, he served in the Navy as an Aviation Electronics Technician’s Mate First Class and was stationed on Guam. At the end of the war, he and another former electronics sailor, Frank C. Smith, Jr, took a motorized victory lap of seven thousand miles around the country.

John was active in the Republican Party, and later in the Democratic Party.

He is preceded in death by his siblings David Hannah, Jr, and Mary Hannah Smith; and also by granddaughter Jennifer Thorvilson.

By far the greatest joy of John’s life was his wife and counselor of 70 years, Rita Grace Waters Hannah, who survives him. He was proud of, and enjoyed the company of, his descendants.

He is also survived by his two daughters, Heather Hannah Beadle of Boulder, Colorado, and Janet Hannah Eskridge (Carl) of Lincoln, Nebraska; granddaughters Hannah Eskridge Mirmiran of Omaha, Nebraska, and Rachel Eskridge of Nashville, Tennessee; great-grandchildren Grace Thorvilson (Kurt Burne), Johnathan Thorvilson, Joey, Daniel and Lily Mirmiran, and Jac Eskridge-Smith; great-great-grandchildren Will and Daxton Thorvilson.

He is also survived by loving nieces, nephews and a host of relatives in Scotland. The family wishes to thank the staff and residents of the Hallmark for their gracious and caring support.

A memorial service is to be conducted at two o’clock in the afternoon on Monday, the 12th of March, in the sanctuary of St. Philip Presbyterian Church, 4807 San Felipe in Houston, where Dr. John Wurster will officiate. Immediately following, all are invited to greet the family during a reception in the adjacent gathering area.

Prior to the service the family will have gathered for a private interment at Glenwood Cemetery in Houston.

In lieu of customary remembrances, memorial contributions may be directed to St. Philip Presbyterian Church.

Copyright (c), 2018, Houston Chronicle. All Rights Reserved.

Irwin “Ike” Belk ’45

Irwin "Ike" Belk '45Irwin “Ike” Belk was born in Charlotte, North Carolina on April 4, 1922 to the late William Henry and Mary Irwin Belk.

He was predeceased by the love of his life, Carol Grotnes Belk, to whom he was married for 66 years. He was also predeceased by his brothers: Henry, John, Henderson, and Tom, and daughter-in-law Anne Belk.

Survivors are his children: William Irwin Belk (Georgia), Irene Belk Miltimore (Dean), Marilyn Belk Wallis (Edward), and Carl Grotnes Belk (Beth). Irwin is also survived by his grandchildren: Christopher Belk, Irwin Belk II, Suzanne Belk, Mary and Carol Miltimore, Jamee and Charlotte Wallis, David and Patricia Belk, Mary Ellen Goode (Matt Spangler) and Edward Goode, Jr., and by his sister, Sarah Belk Gambrell along with numerous nieces and nephews.

Ike attended McCallie School with his brothers, followed by one year at Davidson College. He transferred to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he majored in business. He served two and a half years in World War II in the 491st Bomber group of the famed 8th Air Force.

Ike had a rewarding life as a businessman, philanthropist, civic leader, elected official and public servant. He served most of his adult life (over 50 years) as an executive with Belk Stores. He served on many corporate boards including textile mills, banks, distribution companies, and insurance companies.

Ike was elected and served four terms in the House of Representatives and Senate of the State of North Carolina legislature. One of his proudest accomplishments was to introduce the legislation creating UNC Charlotte as the fourth component of the University of North Carolina. He served many years as a member of the Board of Governors of the University system. Later in life, he served two terms as a United Nations delegate.

Irwin’s love of athletics and education led him to donate generously to create tracks and to procure acclaimed artists from around the world to sculpt mascots for college campuses. His goal was for the sculpture to be the largest of its kind in the world, and he did the research to make certain that was the case.

Ike was fond of saying, “The first objective in life is to educate your brains. Your brain can’t function if your body is not in shape.” His generosity extended to many colleges and universities where Ike and Carol established and funded scholarships, fellowships, libraries, classroom buildings and dining halls. He served on many university boards.

Ike served as District Governor of the Lions Club and as a member of the U.S. Olympic Committee and received the prestigious Olympic Order, an award presented by the International Olympic Committee. He served on the American Cancer Society board for over 40 years, receiving their highest honor, the Merit Award. He also received numerous honorary degrees.

Ike was a member and retired elder of Myers Park Presbyterian Church. He enjoyed traveling all over the world with his family and especially enjoyed deep sea fishing with his beloved wife, Carol.

Ike was an extraordinary and gracious host when Carol and he entertained their family, friends, and business and professional associates. He was a treasure trove of Charlotte, Mecklenburg, and the State of North Carolina history. Ike delighted in sharing his “history lessons” at every opportunity. His office staff admired and respected him. He abolished the custom of “secretaries bringing the boss coffee,” instead he brought them coffee.

A celebration of Irwin’s life will be held on Monday, March 5, 2018 at 11 am at Myers Park Presbyterian Church. The family will receive friends following the service in Oxford Hall. Burial at Elmwood Cemetery will be private.

Memorials may be made to UNC Charlotte Foundation, 9201 University City Blvd, Charlotte, NC 28223 or Myers Park Presbyterian Church, 2501 Oxford Place, Charlotte, NC 28207.

The family is grateful to Elena and Joseph Magpayo for their loving dedication to both Ike and Carol, and to Barbara Potts, Carma Bennett, Karen Goins and Devante Finches along with the staff of the Cypress for their compassion and care.

“My father always taught us that those who were fortunate enough to possess or earn wealth had a special responsibility to both use it wisely and to share it with those less fortunate. If you don’t take care of this generation, the next one won’t be worth shooting. My advice is to throw the roses where you can smell them. Don’t wait until you’re dead and gone. Do it now.” — Irwin Belk


Published in Charlotte Observer from Feb. 25 to Feb. 28, 2018