Hall of Heroes
This page is
dedicated to the memory of those who have been a part of the Historical
memory live with us always
Died March 15, 2003
Charter member of the Lenoir County Battlefields Commission
Chairman of the Preservation Committee
KINSTON - Wilbur "Wil"
Fred King III, 36, of 2187 Marion Lane, died Saturday, March 15, 2003, at
home. "Wil" was a graduate of Arendell Parrott Academy and was a member of
Gordon Street Christian Church in Kinston. He was a member of Eagle Scout
Troop 41 from his home church. He attended Campbell University and served in
the U.S. Army-82nd. Airborne Division. He was vice-president of King's
Restaurant in Kinston and was a member of and was past Chairman of the
Tourism Development Authority and Preservation Chairman of the Lenoir County
Battlefield Commission. He was a member of the Richard Caswell Masonic Lodge
No. 705, New Bern Scottish Rites and Sudan Temple and Lenoir County Shrine
Club. He was a holder of U.S. Coast Guard Captains' license. He was the
grandson of the late Howard Monroe Lee and Juanita Westbrook Lee of Dunn,
Beulah M. Speight of Hookerton and his paternal grandfather, Wilbur Fred
King Sr. of Kinston. Services will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday, March 18,
2003, at the chapel of Howard-Carter & Stroud Funeral Home with Pastor Mark
A. Benson officiating. Interment will follow at Westview Cemetery. Survivors
include one daughter, Ariel Nicole King of Wilmington; father, Wilbur Fred
King Jr. and wife, Carolyn, of Kinston; mother, Marilyn Lee Leach and
husband, South Carolina Representative Bob Leach, of Greenville, S.C.;
sister, Marilyn Jai Lee Morgan of High Point; brother, Samuel Speight King
and wife, Leslie Ann of Atlanta, Ga.; paternal grandmother, Margaret Joyner
King of Kinston and special friend, Samantha Harper of Kinston. Visitation
was held from 7 to 9 p.m. Monday, March 17, 2003, at Howard-Carter & Stroud
Funeral Home. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Historical
Preservation Group, 1603 West Road, Kinston, NC 28501, atten: Jane Phillips.
Arrangements by Howard-Carter & Stroud Funeral Home. (Paid
Wil at earthworks at Woodington
Charter member of the Heritage Genealogical Society
Clarence in the middle with
Sara Sparks on the left and Jackie Boykin on the right
Keats Sparrow, Ph. D.
Charter member of the Lenoir
County Colonial Commission Died Nov. 11, 2009
holding the Richard Caswell Book he illustrated and edited
W. Keats Sparrow, Dean Emeritus of East
Carolina University’s Thomas Harriot College of Arts and Sciences, passed
away on November 11, 2009. He was 67.
A memorial service will be held at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Greenville
at 2 p.m. on Saturday, after which the family will receive friends in St.
Paul’s Parish Hall. Inurnment in the Sparrow Family Plot at Westview
Cemetery in Kinston will be private.
Sparrow was the son of Fred Becton and Tessie Rouse Sparrow of Kinston,
where he was born and reared. He held A.B. and M.A. degrees from East
Carolina College, where he was a member of Sigma Nu fraternity, and a Ph.D.
in English from the University of Kentucky. Before his appointment as Dean
of ECU’s Harriot College in 1990, he had served as Professor and Chairman of
ECU’s Department of English. He was a specialist in early North Carolina
literature and technical and professional writing and published many
articles and books in those fields.
He was active in public life and professional circles and served as
President of the Pitt County Historical Society, the North Carolina Literary
and Historical Association, the North Carolina-Virginia College English
Association, and the North Carolina Huguenot Society. At the time of
his death, he was President of the Carolina Charter Corporation, the sponsor
of the second series of the North Carolina colonial records publication
project, and Governor of the Society of Colonial Wars in the State of North
Carolina. For many years he served on the Tryon Palace Commission, the
Historic Bath Commission, and the North Carolina State Capitol Foundation
Board. Formerly he had been a member of the First Flight Centennial
Commission and of the Global TransPark Commission. He held membership
in the Order of First Families of North Carolina and the North Carolina
Society of the Cincinnati. He was also active in the Lenoir County
Historical Association and the Lenoir County Colonial Commission.
Many of his varied works and services earned awards and citations. His state
and national recognitions included the 1982 National Council of Teachers of
English book award, the 1998 Award of Excellence for his term as President
of the ECU Chapter of the academic honor society of Phi Kappa Phi, and the
2001 Christopher Crittenden Memorial Award for Significant Contributions
to the Preservation of North Carolina History.
In 2007 Sparrow was presented with the Roberts Award for his role in
establishing the celebrated North Carolina Literary Review and in 2008,
the North Carolina Society of Historians’ History Book Award for his edition
of The First of Patriots and Best of Men: The Public Life of Richard
Caswell. He was also inducted as a member of The North Caroliniana Society,
the Order of St. John, and the Order of the Long Leaf Pine.
Upon Sparrow’s retirement from the Harriot College Deanship, the ECU Board
of Trustees named the college’s Bate Building conference room in his honor,
and his department chairs, faculty, and other supporters created an
endowment to support the W. Keats Sparrow Distinguished Chair in the Liberal
Arts, an honorary title to be held by all subsequent ECU Harriot College
Deans. In 2008, Sparrow was presented with the Harriot College Distinguished
Service Medallion and in 2009 with honorary lifetime membership in ECU’s
Friends of Joyner Library.
An accomplished terpsichorean, in 2009 he was also inducted into the
Atlantic Beach Shaggers Hall of Fame.
Sparrow is survived by his wife of 47 years, Elizabeth H. Sparrow; a
daughter, Nicole S. McDuffy, son-in-law, Robert J. McDuffy, and a
granddaughter, Ashley Elizabeth Furr, all of Beaufort; a sister, Karine
Sparrow Caglayan, and brother-in-law, Dr. Sumer Caglayan, of Kinston; a
brother, John D. Sparrow, Sr., of Kinston; nieces, Kara Druhen and Rebekah
Sparrow; and nephews, Lee Ginter and John D. Sparrow, Jr.
The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 pm Friday at Wilkerson Funeral
Home in Greenville.
The family requests that, in lieu of flowers, memorials be made to the
Sparrow Keynote Lecture Endowment, North Carolina Literary and Historical
Association, c/o N.C. Division of Archives and History, 109 E. Jones Street,
Room 305, Raleigh, NC 27601, or to St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 401 E.
Fourth Street, Greenville, NC 27858.
Edgar "Eddie" Dargan Lide
Member of Lenoir County Battlefields Commission
Died May 7, 2011
Eddie and wife Vickie
at the Wil King Antebellum Ball
KINSTON — Edgar Dargan Lide,
III passed away on May 7, 2011 with his family by his side. Eddie was a
loving husband, father and grandfather. He was born in Hartsville, SC, to
the late Christine Mixon and Edgar Dargan Lide, Jr. Eddie was a great
humanitarian and believed in helping others. A member and past president
of the Ram Neuse Lions Club, he was a recipient of the Melvin Jones Fellow
and the Jack Stickley Fellow. He was also a Lions' Industry Board member.
He attended Spilman Memorial Baptist Church where he sang in the choir,
was a trustee and past deacon. Eddie graduated from Hartsville High School
and attended Clemson University. He was retired from William Barnett and
Son and the North Carolina National Guard as a Chief Warrant Officer
(CW3). An avid Clemson Tiger fan and a staunch Republican, he was ready to
discuss sports or politics to whomever would listen. Eddie enjoyed
hunting, fishing and working in his yards. He also loved
history, especially Civil War history. He loved all music and had
begun violin lessons in his retirement. His grandchildren were his pride
and joy. He loved taking them on golf cart rides, swimming at the “member
pool” and shopping at Walmart. Eddie is survived by Vickie McLean Lide,
his wife of forty years and their daughter Kelly Lide Thompson and
husband, Jeff and their children, Dargan McLean and Lawton Oliver. He is
also survived by sisters, Laura Hendrix (Charles) of Hartsville and Marian
Lide of Beaufort, SC, and several nieces and nephews. Services will be
held Tuesday, May 10 at 11:00 a.m. at Spilman Memorial Baptist Church with
visitation following. Drs. Randy Outland and James E. Everette and Rev.
Toby Arnold will officiate. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to
the Lenoir County SPCA or UHS Inpatient Hospice, 920 Wellness Drive,
Greenville. Burial will take place at a later date in Hartsville, SC.
Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. Sunday, January 16, 2011 at
Howard-Carter Funeral Home with Reverend Benji Ramsaur and Reverend Allen
Ham officiating. The family will receive friends following the service. A
private burial will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorials
may be made to Grainger Baptist Church c/o Mrs. Esther Parris, 1758 Stony
Drive, Kinston, NC 28501.
Died May 2011
Consultant to HPG Played an
instrumental role in helping HPG become incorporated in 2001
Died April 20, 2011
Member of Wil King Civil War Ball Committee
Left to right Bruce Parson, Shirley Herring, Dr. Charles Herring,
MARGARET BURCHETT and Joe Burchette
KINSTON — Margaret Kilpatrick Burchette, 66, of Kinston,
passed away Wednesday, April 20, 2011, at her residence. Margaret was an
Elder and Sunday School Teacher at Gordon Street Christian Church. Funeral
services will be held at 2 p.m. Friday, April 22, at Gordon Street Christian
Church with the Rev. Mark Benson officiating. Burial will be at the Gordon
Street Christian Church Memorial Gardens. The family will receive friends
following the service at the church. Margaret is survived by her husband,
Joe Burchette of the home; and her son, Paul Burchette of Kinston. In lieu
of flowers contributions may be made to the Gordon Street Christian Church
Memorial Garden Fund. Edwards Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
Died September 1, 2011
Heritage Genealogical Society
Chair of the African American American Committee
Thelma relaxing at Genealogy Conference
woman exploring family trees
November 15, 2004
Digging into the past is too
painful for some black people. The capture of African ancestors, the
Middle Passage, the forced labor and the horrors that went along with it
are thoughts some would like to forget.
Thelma Waters chose to
face her past. She got interested in genealogy and spent 12 years
researching the history of her mother's family. Her book about Homer
Simmons, her slave grandfather, was her first project.
"I got started because I
didn't know about the background of the family in which I came from,"
The first project took a
long time because she had to do it while she wasn't teaching. She began
putting her book together in 1986 when she retired.
Filling in the branches
of her family tree was, at times, a difficult process. Family members were
reluctant to give information.
"The wound of slavery is
too intense," Waters said. "A lot of people didn't want to be bothered
with. They said, 'Let the dead stay dead.' In reading the Bible, everyone
in the Bible is dead, and we're still reading about them now."
The Bible and "Roots"
author Alex Haley inspired Waters to delve into her history.
"Alex Haley inspired the
whole country and the whole world when he wanted to find his lineage and
his family name," Waters said.
Finding Homer Simmons,
her slave grandfather, was Waters' goal in the process. She was also able
to find Homer's mother and her slave grandmother, Flora Simmons, who
Waters believes came from East Kenya.
Waters found a picture of
the bill of sale for her slave grandfather and grandmother.
"It was a treasure to
find," she said.
Waters got information
from the National Archives in Washington, D.C., the Office of Archives and
History in Raleigh, the Jones County Courthouse and grave sites in
Kinston. Her husband's family left a lot of information that she used to
compile his family tree, she said.
In any genealogy project,
Waters said starting with the oldest person in the family is important
"because they can reach back further."
Through her search,
Waters found a filmmaker in her family who worked with Oprah Winfrey. On
her husband's side, Waters discovered that her son's were related to Nat
Turner, who led a slave revolt in 1831.
Her first project was a
long process, but now it takes Waters about six to nine months to complete
"It comes easy to me
now," she said.
Since genealogy comes
easy to Waters, many people seek her expertise in tracing their own roots.
Helping people find their history is as fulfilling as knowing her own.
"The love of it is to
accomplish and finish," Waters said. 'For them to come back and say, 'I
didn't know this about my family.' To see one being thankful to recognize
someone in their family that they don't know.'
Waters hasn't stopped
with family histories. In July, she started working on documenting the
history of the black schools in Lenoir County.
The first school for
black children was Shine Street School, which was opened in the 1800s.
Members of the Colored Businessman's League went before the school board
in 1927 to present a plan for "larger and better equipment." The men said
that 1,500 to 1,600 students were in a school with 80 to 90 students
crammed in one room.
"The interesting part
about it was that, seemingly, it was a struggle to get schools started for
blacks," Waters said.
Copies of her research on
the schools are available at Lenoir Community College, the Kinston-Lenoir
County Public Library, the Board of Education office and city hall.
Searching for her past
and that of others has added blessings to Waters' life.
"It's really touching and
rewarding," she said. "It made my life richer. Making contact with people,
being able to associate, being thankful of other rewards that one can give
Died September 8, 2011
Member of the
Heritage Genealogical Society
CHEVY CHASE, Md. - On
Thursday, September 8, 2011, Ruth Blount Fentress died at Anne Arundel
Medical Center in Annapolis, Md. Beloved wife of the late John Simmons
Fentress, loving daughter of the late Harry Anderson Blount and Lena
Margaret Blunt; devoted sister of Mary B. Hipp (George) of Salisbury and the
late Lena Catherine Blount Arthur, Sarah Anita Blount Powell and Harry A.
Blount Jr. Also survived by nieces, Cyndy Arthur Rankin (Mike) of Shadyside,
Md., Lynne B. Berry (Michael) of Lewisville; nephews, Steven Blount (Meloney)
of Salisbury, Andy Arthur (Mary Ruth) of Salisbury, Mark Arthur (Martha) of
Carolina Beach, Alan Hipp (Cita) of Gloucester, Va., Greg Hipp (Jackie) of
Salisbury and Gerry Powell (Susie) of Luftkin, Texas.
A native of
Salisbury, Mrs. Fentress graduated from Wake Forest University in 1946 after
completing her first two years at Mars Hill College. Ruth and Simmons spent
extensive time in both Raleigh and Charlotte where he was a
reporter for both the Raleigh News and Observer
and the Charlotte Observer, and then in Atlanta where Simmons was made
Bureau Chief of TIME Magazine covering politics. In 1964 they moved to Chevy
Chase where Simmons continued his career with TIME Magazine with a two year
post as TIME's bureau chief in Saigon during the Vietnam war before
returning to the Washington, DC area. Mrs. Fentress was known for her
extensive work on Genealogy. Painstakingly tracing ancestors as a member of
the First Families of North Carolina and the Jamestown Society.
Friends and relatives are
invited to call at the Cotten Funeral Home, 2201 Neuse Blvd., New Bern on
Saturday, September 17 from noon to 1:30 p.m. Graveside service will be held
on September 17, 2011, at 2 p.m. at Greenleaf Memorial Park in New Bern.
Died August 5, 2012
Served on the Historical Preservation Board of Directors
Lenoir County Battlefields Commission
Lenoir County Colonial Commission
Anthony Douglas "Tony" Kelly, 73, of 348 Bell Road passed away Sunday,
August 5, 2012, at Vidant Medical Center in Greenville. From a rookie
fireman known as "crowbar" he achieved his goal
and became Chief of the Kinston Fire Department where he served with the
fire department and retired with 38 years of service. He was one of the
founders of the Kinston Fire Department Museum and donated many items. Tony
was a member of the Custom Knife Makers Guild; was a member of the
Historical Preservation Group of Lenoir County; and was deeply involved in
studying local history,
WWII history and Indian history. He was a member
of the First N.C. 11th Regiment of the Civil War Reenactments. He was a kind
and gentle man who loved his family, loved animals and was known by many
friends as "Peck." He was preceded in death by his parents, William Emerson
and Dallas Kelly. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday,
August 9, 2012, from the chapel of Garner Funeral Home with Chaplain John D.
Butler officiating. Interment will follow in Westview Cemetery. The family
will receive friends from 6-8 p.m. on Wednesday evening at the funeral home
and other times at the home of his son, 400 Bell Road. Survivors include his
wife of 52 years, Carol F. Kelly of the home; his daughters, Cynthia "Cindy"
Deaver of Kinston, and Angela "Angie" Stroud of Grifton; his sons, Anthony
"Andy" Kelly of Livingston, Texas, Clifford "Cliff" Kelly of Tazewell, Va.,
Christopher "Chris" Kelly of Pink Hill and Emerson Kelly of Kinston; his
sister, Tanya Aldridge of Pink Hill and 12 grandchildren. Arrangements are
by Garner Funeral Home. Sign the guest book at
kinston.com. (Paid obituary)