Don Reese Whittemore ’50

Don Reese Whittemore '50

Don Reese Whittemore, 92, of Wilmington, NC, passed away on Tuesday, October 1st, 2019.

Don was born on August 30, 1927 in Newport News, Virginia to Albert E. Whittemore and Kay Stadler Whittemore. Don was the Whittemores’ only child. The Whittemores moved to Rockingham, NC in 1937 where Don’s father pursued work and later Don’s mother established the elegant dress store “Kay’s” which was a fixture in Rockingham for over 50 years.

Don graduated from Rockingham High School in 1944. After graduation, he enlisted in the United States Army and served as a Medical Technician at Camp Hood, Texas during 1945-46. Upon his discharge from the Army, Don enrolled at Davidson College where he excelled in academics and golf. Don had the distinct privilege of competing against Arnold Palmer, who, at the time, was a member of the Wake Forest golf team. It was during his time at Davidson that Don met Mary Myers Carter of Charlotte, NC. They were married on August 3, 1949.

After college graduation, Don attended the Southern College of Optometry in Memphis, Tennessee, graduating in 1953. It was then that Don and Mary Myers moved to Wilmington, NC where Don set up his Optometry practice. In 2003, after 50 celebrated years of practice, Don Whittemore retired from Optometry.

Aside from the memorable time spent with his four daughters, Don was deeply immersed in the Wilmington community where he was a member of the Wilmington JC’s, 21 Club, and served on the Boy Scout Council for 18 years where was awarded the prestigious Silver Bear Award. He also worked on various Azalea Festival Committees from 1955 to 1968 and served on the Wrightsville Beach Lion’s Club for 56 years. Additionally, he was also a proud member of the American Optometry Association and the North Carolina State Optometry Association.

An avid, near scratch golfer, Don was a longtime member of Cape Fear Country Club. His other golf memberships included Pine Valley Country Club in Wilmington and both Pinehurst National and Pinehurst Country Club in Pinehurst, North Carolina. Don also loved vacationing across the United States & Canada with his family and fishing and hunting with his close friends.

For many years, Don and his family were members of Wrightsville United Methodist Church and Trinity United Methodist Church.

Don was preceded in death by his wife, Mary Myers Whittemore, of 63 years.

He is survived by his four daughters, five grandchildren and four great grandchildren. They are Kay Decker of Pinehurst, her husband, BG (RET) Bob Decker, their daughter, Caroline of Atlanta, GA; Marsha Foscue of Southern Pines, her husband Cyrus Foscue, their daughter Myers Smith of Raleigh, her husband, Barrett Smith and their sons Grayson and Colton and the Foscue’s second daughter Collins O’Toole of Raleigh and her husband Brian O’Toole, and their son Aiden and daughter Stadler; Donna Craigg of Wilmington, her husband Tom Craigg and their daughter Carter of Wilmington; and Lee Whittemore of Ormond Beach, FL and her son Whitt Coates of Ormond Beach.

“Doc” will be dearly missed by countless extended family members, former patients, and friends. He was a true southern gentleman, a great humanitarian, a deeply loyal friend, and loving husband and father. He is already missed, but will never be forgotten!

The family will receive friends for visitation from 1 PM to 3 PM on Saturday, October 5th at Andrews Funeral Home, 1617 Market Street, Wilmington, N.C.

A celebration of life, memorial, and burial service will be held at 11:30 on Monday, October 7th at Richmond County Memorial Park Cemetery, 1717 East Broad Street (Off Business HWY 74), Rockingham, NC, 28379.

Flowers are welcomed and for those who wish to make a donation, the family suggests Lower Cape Fear Hospice, 1414 Physicians Drive, Wilmington, NC 28401.

Copyright © 2019 Richmond County Daily Journal, Champion Media LLC, All rights reserved.

Hamp Shuford, Jr. ’50

Hamp Shuford, Jr. '50

Wade Hampton “Hamp” Shuford Jr. who was born July 12, 1928, went to heaven to join his beloved wife Joanne White Shuford Wednesday, September 18, 2019. 

He is survived by his sons: Wade H. III (and wife, Kathleen) of Conover, David W. of San Diego, CA; and granddaughter Amanda Shuford of Raleigh. 

Hamp was a veteran of the U.S. Air Force where he served four years. He was a graduate of Hickory High School, Mercersburg Academy (PA), Catawba College, Middlebury Language Schools (VT), and Austin Presbyterian Seminary (TX); he also attended Lenoir-Rhyne College, Davidson College, University Of Texas, and UNC. 

Some of his many interests and talents included: foreign languages (Spanish, French, German), French Horn (college bands and Hickory New Horizons Band), Carolina Moonlighters (barbershop chorus), Edelweiss (German) Club, Alliance Françoise, travel (all continents except Antarctica), cruising, Hickory Coffee Club, Adult Life Programs, Johns River Valley Camp (and other UCC camps), community theatre, Hickory Lions Club, Hickory Kiwanis Club, photography, Hickory Landmarks Society, playing bridge, and antique cars. He was a life-long member of Corinth Reformed Church, and served on the Catawba College Board of Trustees (50+ years). He made the world a happier and better place for many and will be greatly missed. 

A memorial service will be held at 11:00 a.m. September 28, 2019, at Corinth Reformed Church with the Rev. Dr. Bob Thompson officiating. The family will receive friends prior to the service from 9:30 – 11:00 a.m. at the church. 

In lieu of flowers, please make donations to: Catawba College, Wade H. & Joanne Shuford 

Scholarship Fund, 2300 W. Innes St., Salisbury, NC 28144; Corinth Reformed UCC, 150 16th Ave., NW, Hickory, NC 28601; Adult Life Programs, P.O. Box 807, Hickory, NC 28603; Hickory Landmarks Society, P.O. Box 2341, Hickory, NC 28603; Johns River Valley Camp, 6211 Hwy. 90, Collettsville, NC 28611; or Carolina Caring (Hospice), 3975 Robinson Rd., Newton, NC 28658. Thank you! 

Bass-Smith Funeral Home in Hickory is serving the family of Wade (Hamp) Shuford, Jr. and on-line condolences may be sent to www.bass-smithfuneralhome.com. 

Copyright 2019, The Observer-News-Enterprise, All Rights Reserved.

Robert Miller Gallant II ’50

Robert Miller Gallant II '50

Robert Miller Gallant II, son of William Erskine Gallant, Sr. and Ione Peek Gallant, was born October 19, 1929, at Anderson County Hospital in South Carolina and died on September 15th at the age of 89 in his summer home in Blue Hill, Maine, with his family by his side.

He is survived by his wife, Mary (Louise) Calhoun Gallant; daughter, Elisabeth Gallant Fouché and her husband, Heyward; Robert Miller Gallant III and his wife, Anne, and their children Mary Louise and Miller; Anna Gallant Carter and her sons, Stuart and Sam; and William Andrew (Andy) Gallant and his children William, Perry, and Anna Katherine.

He was preceded in death by his brother and sister, William Erskine Gallant, Jr. and Margaret Gallant Sullivan.

Mr. Gallant was a life-long member of First Presbyterian Church where he served as a Deacon. He attended North Fant Grammar School, McCants Junior High School, and Anderson Boys High, followed by Davidson College and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Mr. Gallant was a distinguished graduate of the USAF Officer Candidate School and served as Intelligence Officer in the Alaskan Air Command. He then served eight years in the USAF Reserves.

Upon returning from Alaska, Mr. Gallant began his career in the family retail business, the Gallant-Belk Group, which consisted of some forty stores founded by his father when he opened the first store in 1919 in Anderson.

Mr. Gallant retired from retail after having served as Executive Vice-president, Supervising Partner, Director, and Anderson Store Manager. He was honored with numerous Achievement Awards over his years of service for the Anderson store and the Anderson Division. Mr. Gallant always attributed the strength and the robust growth of the business to the quality of the people employed by the stores. He thought of his employees as family and strongly believed the way you treated your employees was the way they would treat the customers, and service to customers was always at the top of his list.

Mr. Gallant’s name, like his father’s, was synonymous with civic leadership. He served as Director of Anderson Merchant’s Association, Anderson Chamber of Commerce, and South Carolina National Bank, as well as president of the Anderson County Citizens for Progress Committee. His love for Anderson led him to be a founding member of the Anderson Downtown Redevelopment Association, whose first accomplishment was to preserve the Anderson County Courthouse, saving it from demolition.

In addition to his retailing and civic responsibilities, Mr. Gallant was involved in real estate as a developer and loyal landlord to fellow retailers. Mr. Gallant’s varied interests and knowledge contributed to many friends and family referring to him as their favorite renaissance man, a complement he never accepted. He believed that a person could do anything a person wanted to if there were a good book to be found on the subject.

Over his many years, he enjoyed sailing on Lake Hartwell and the shores of South Carolina and Maine, aerobatics in his small plane decorated in blue and white stripes and shooting stars, photography, sculpture, poetry, architecture, collecting art, and spoiling his dedicated canine companion, Rooney. He loved most of all sharing these joys with family and friends.

As much as Mr. Gallant loved South Carolina and his friends there, it was a night spent as a young boy at a fish camp with his family in Maine that sparked his love for New England.

After he retired from Gallant-Belk, he and Mary began spending summers in the small towns of Brooklin and Blue Hill, Maine, where they made many additional friends with whom they were able to share art, music, and sailing.

Arrangements were previously announced as being held on October 10th; however, the family will now receive friends on Friday, October 11, 2019, at 11:00 a.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 302 W. Whitner St., Anderson, SC 29624. The memorial service will follow at 12:30 p.m. with Dr. Dennis Tedder officiating.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Northern Light Home Care & Hospice of Hancock County, 441 Main St., Ellsworth, ME 04605, First Presbyterian Church, or a non-profit of the donor’s choice. www.mcdougaldfuneralhome.com

Copyright: © 2019 Journal Media Group

Thomas Grady Spires ’50

Thomas Grady Spires '50

Thomas Grady Spires, known to all simply as “Grady,” passed into glory peacefully at the age of 91 years on Tuesday, August 27, 2019, at The Residence at Riverbend in Ipswich.

In his final days, he was surrounded by family, who rejoice that Grady has gone home to be with the Savior that he loved so dearly and served faithfully his entire life. 

Grady was born in Miami, Florida, on June 6, 1928 to Alfred Clinton Spires and Mildred Evans Spires, the third of five siblings, the late Evans Spires, the late Clinton Spires, Eunice (Spires) Hoffman, and Mary (Spires) Rynd.

He met his wife, Marian Elizabeth White, of Schenectady, NY, at Penial Bible Conference, and were married on May 23, 1953. Later, after Marian’s death, Grady remarried to Catharina Swart of Beverly, on June 2, 2005. 

Grady graduated from Miami High School in 1946, then from Davidson College with an A.B. in 1950, then went on to study under eminent Reformed philosopher Cornelius van Til, earning a bachelor’s degree in Divinity from Westminster Seminary in 1953.

After Westminster, he moved to Boston, completing a Masters in Sacred Theology at Harvard Divinity School, and continued on in pursuit of a PhD, with graduate work at Free University of Amsterdam.

While in his doctorate program, he felt called to teaching in Christian higher education and started as a Professor of Philosophy at Gordon College in 1956. 

Grady continued to teach at Gordon for the next 42 years, becoming a beloved fixture at the school until his retirement in 1998. His roles at Gordon included not only professor but also department chair, academic advisor, faculty senate chair, professor for European Seminar, visiting professor at Daystar University in Kenya and much more; twice he was awarded Distinguished Teacher of the Year Award (1969, then again in 1998).

During his tenure at Gordon, he wrote a significant portion of his doctoral thesis – inspired by Dutch Reformed philosopher Herman Dooyeweerd – but tragically lost the thesis in an office fire at the college.

On May 26, 2005, Grady was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Divinity from Westminster Seminary, honoring his incredible contributions to his field and his tenacious efforts to obtain his doctorate. 

Grady was known for his incredible warmth, his genuine joy, his vivacious smile and greeting, his infectious interest in all things philosophical and theological, his intellectual curiosity, and his well-grounded character and faith.

He was a true Renaissance man, often performing his famous “bottle-cap tap dance” at faculty talent shows, acting in many theatrical productions – both at Gordon and beyond – and singing and playing jazzy piano long into his older years, including for the residents of his retirement community.

He stayed active until well into his older years and he spoke Dutch, German, and also knew Greek and Hebrew as a result of his theological studies. 

Outside of life at Gordon, Grady was a founding elder of First Presbyterian Church North Shore, in Ipswich, where he served faithfully as an elder for many years and was an integral part of church life for over six decades.

He taught at Peniel Bible Conference – the place he met his wife Marian, a camp named after the place where Jacob encountered God in the Old Testament – in upstate New York for many summers, also becoming an indispensable part of that community.

He also gave his time to the C.S. Lewis Foundation, where he was a founding trustee, working to preserve Lewis’ legacy and his estate in England. 

Finally, Grady was a loving husband, father, and grandfather as well. He is preceded by his first wife, Marion (White) Spires, and survived by his second wife, Catharina (Swart) Spires.

He is also survived by his four children and their spouses: Karen (Spires) and John Capps of Flagstaff, AZ, Jo-Alice (Spires) and Ken Stockwell, of Danvers, Cindy (Spires) and Frank Purdy, of Hamilton, and Thomas Spires of Amesbury; 11 grandchildren, Krista, Nicole, Allison, Kayla, John Michael, Janel, Sarah, Josiah, Jennifer, Johanna, Jonathan and six great-grandchildren, Talia, Emmett, Lucas, Wyatt, Selah, and Rowan. 

A memorial service for Grady will take place on Saturday, September 28, 2019, at 2 pm in the First Presbyterian Church, 179 County Road, Ipswich. Family and friends are respectfully welcomed.

Arrangements are under the direction of the Whittier-Porter Funeral Home of Ipswich.

To leave a condolence please visit www.whittier-porer.com. 

To send flowers to the family of Thomas Grady Spires, please visit Tribute Store. 

Copyright 2019, Salem News, The / CNHI, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

W. D. “Dave” Erwin ’50

 W. D. “Dave” Erwin died May 7, 2019. Dave was born in Honea Path, SC, son of Malcom and Inez Erwin, in 1929.

He was predeceased by his wife Alice “Mickey” Erwin, his son Pat M. Erwin, and his brother Malcom “Mack” Erwin. He is survived by his son William D. Erwin Jr. and five grandchildren, Catherine, Mary Dallas, Ryan, Lydia, and Marcus Erwin.

Dave graduated from Greenville High in 1946 and from Davidson College in 1950. He was employed in the Savings and Loan business for more than 30 years. After retirement, he worked part time with several Savings and Loans and Banks for 10 more years.

Dave became a member of First Presbyterian Church in 1936. He was a former Deacon, Church Treasurer, and President of the Men’s Bible Class. He was a former Board member of the YMCA, took cancer patients to the hospital, and delivered Meals on Wheels.

Dave’s first love was his family and second love was sports. He played football and basketball and coached County League football, Church basketball, and officiated football.

Dave had several great mentors growing up. They were B.T. Gault (Elementary Principal), George Mackey (Director of Rotary Boys Choir), Monk Mulligan (Director of YMCA Camp Greenville), coaches J. H. “Speedy” Spear and James “Slick” Moore. All had a great influence on him and kept Dave straight growing up.

Dave said, “My father had the greatest influence on me, and I tried my best to do the same for my family. I had the best – my wife, my father and mother, my two sons, and my brother. I don’t think anyone could have had a better life than me – growing up in Greenville and having the friends I had. I was certainly blessed. My visit on Earth is done – it’s time to move on to the welcoming arms of my Heavenly Father.”

Visitation will be held Friday, May 10, 2019, from 3:15 p.m. until 4:15 p.m. at Thomas McAfee Funeral Home, Downtown. The graveside service will be held at 4:30 p.m. at Springwood Cemetery.

Flowers will be accepted, or memorials may be made to Greenville High School Booster Club, 1 Vardry St., Greenville, SC 29601, or First Presbyterian Church, 200 W. Washington St., Greenville, SC 29601.

Condolences may be made to the family by visiting thomasmcafee.com.