The R-C News-Herald Obituaries for November 13, 2007

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 14, 2007


Johnnie C. Watson

AHOSKIE n Johnnie Cleveland “Peanut Man” Watson, 77, a native of Bertie County, died November 8, 2007 at his residence.

Watson had retired from Peanut City Scrap Metal Company, Suffolk.

Survivors include his sons, Johnnie Watson of Brentwood, Md., Larry D. Watson of Washington, Carlton Watson of Durham, Hubert G. Watson of Somora, Robert I. Watson of Raleigh; daughters, Ethel Thomas and Helen Swain, both of Williamston, Patsy Cherry and Carolyn Watson, both of Ahoskie, Brenda Fennell, Mary L. Watson, Evelyn D. Johnson and Lisa M. Outlaw, all of Durham, Judy A. Eaton of Raleigh, Sheleita Hall of California and Shelly M. Foreman of Windsor; a sister, Willa Watson of Raleigh; brothers, Roosevelt Watson of Windsor and Haywood Watson of Monroe; 37 grandchildren; and 34 great-grandchildren.

 A funeral will be conducted at 11 a.m. Tuesday at Mt. Ararat Baptist Church, Windsor, by the Rev. James Collins. Burial will be in the Bazemore Cemetery, Windsor. Wilder’s Funeral Home Inc., Aulander, is in charge.

William Luther Hand, Jr.

William Luther Hand, Jr., 88, peacefully departed on his final fishing trip on November 7, 2007, surrounded by family who loved him deeply.

Billy was born April 23, 1919, in New Bern, N.C. to parents, Dr. William Luther Hand and Elizabeth Gavine Ellis Hand. He lived there throughout his life.

He graduated from New Bern High School in 1936, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill in 1941, and the Medical College of Virginia School of Dentistry in 1945. He served in both the U.S. Army and the U.S. Navy, and then entered private dental practice with his father.

He practiced from 1947 until 1996, before devoting his time to family,

offshore fishing, and the enjoyment of “office sitting” for his son, a third generation New Bern dentist.

Representative of the many distinctions he earned were: induction into the American Society of Dentistry for Children in 1961; induction into the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry in 1968;

president of North Carolina Dental Society by acclamation in 1970;

induction into the Academy of General Dentistry in 1973; induction into the American College of Dentists in 1977; and election as state delegate to the American Dental Association for three terms. He was one of very few dentists in the state who had concurrent fellowships in these academies. He was also president of Trent Academy School in New Bern, NC and a Charter Member in 1967.

Billy enjoyed waterfowl hunting, and was an avid offshore fisherman. He was captain of his own fully-permitted and licensed commercial fishing boat and introduced many generations to the beauty of the NC Outer Banks.

What most people know about him is his friendly, sincere enjoyment of people, and his passion for learning and sharing.

He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Kathryn Jones Hand, who he called the love of his life and “Partner,” which is a term of endearment that his parents used for each other, and the name of his boat. Also surviving are his daughter Mary Kathryn Davison of Baltimore; son William Hand III and his wife, Lynn, of New Bern;

daughter Elizabeth Hand of Alexandria, Va.; grandchildren William Hand IV; Eric, Scott and Lance Davison; special brother-in-law Joseph H. Jones and wife Imogene of Jacksonville; nephew Joseph H. Jones Jr. of Charlotte; niece Jennifer J. Robertson and husband Rob of New York, NY; and sister-in-law Dorothy K. Jones of Deland, FL; and, his adoring golden retriever grand-dog, Sandy.

The family expresses gratitude for the wonderful care and kindness of the Craven Regional Medical Center and the nurses, doctors and staff of the Intensive Care Unit in particular, for the last two weeks of his life.

On Sunday, November 11, the family invited friends to celebrate his life at 528 East Front Street from 11:00 to 1:45. A memorial service conducted by Reverend Bill Hawkins followed at 3:00 at the First Presbyterian Church in New Bern.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the First Presbyterian Church or the Neuse River Foundation.

Arrangements were made by Cotton Funeral Home.

Grant Norfleet

SUNBURY n Grant Clifton Norfleet, 47, a native of Gates County, died November 2, 2007 at his residence.

A graveside service was conducted Monday at the Norfleet family cemetery, Gatesville, by the Rev. Bobby Riddick. Simmons Funeral Service, Plymouth, was in charge.

Norfleet was a member of Lebanon Grove Missionary Baptist Church.

Survivors include his mother, Georgie Vastie Riddick Norfleet of Gatesville; six sisters, Addie Pollard, Althea Norfleet, Vernell Patmon, Estella Presswood, June Norfleet and Judy Baker; and four sisters, George Norfleet, Shelley Norfleet, Arthur Norfleet and Lloyd Norfleet.

Danny Williams

ROCKY MOUNT n Danny Williams, 43, died November 8, 2007 at his residence.

A funeral was conducted Monday at H.D. Pope Funeral Home, Rocky Mount. H.D. Pope Funeral Home was in charge.

William C. Copeland

SUNBURY -William Carlton &uot;Bill&uot; Copeland, 81, a native of Gates County, died November 9, 2007, in his home. He was the widower of Ruby Eure Copeland.

Copeland was a graduate of Elon College, he retired as the bookkeeper for H.S. Hofler & Sons Lumber Company after 44 years of employment, was a member of Philadelphia United Methodist Church where he served as the treasurer for many years, and was a member of both the Sunbury Ruritan Club and the Sunbury Investment Club.

Survivors include a sister, Dorothy C. Parker of Norfolk; and a brother, J.D. Copeland of Sunbury.

A funeral was conducted Monday in Philadelphia United Methodist Church by the Rev. Tracy Clayton. Burial followed in the Gatesville Cemetery. Miller Funeral Home, Gatesville. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Philadelphia United Methodist Church, in care of Willie Barnes, 319 NC 32 North, Sunbury, NC 27979 or to one’s favorite charity.

William S. Debnam

RALEIGH – Dr. William S. Debnam, 78, a native of Norfolk, Va., died November 9, 2007.

Debnam served in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War. He earned a doctorate in dental surgery and a Master of Science degree in orthodontics. Bill began his orthodontic practice in 1959 in Portsmouth. As the practice grew, he added offices in Suffolk and Gloucester, Va., as well as in Elizabeth City, Ahoskie, and Nags Head, N.C.

Survivors include his wife, Judy Thompson Debnam of Raleigh; his sister, Betty Debnam Hunt of Washington, D.C.; three daughters, Julie Gross of Clear Lake, Texas, Lyn Kirby of Raleigh and Tali Denton of Raleigh; and eight grandchildren.

A graveside service will be conducted Thursday at Meadowbrook Memorial Gardens in Suffolk. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Hospice of Wake County, 1300 Saint Mary’s St., Raleigh, NC 27605. Bryan-Lee Funeral Home, 831 Wake Forest Road, Raleigh, NC, was in charge. Condolences may be made through

Daly N. Rountree

BELVIDERE -Daly Newby Rountree, 77, died November 9, 2007.

A graveside service will be conducted Monday in Up River Cemetery. Swindell Funeral and Cremation Services is in charge.

Mary E. Griffin

NORFOLK, Va. – Mary E. &uot;Lil Mary&uot; Griffin, 89, a native of Bertie County, died November 6, 2007 at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital. She was the widow William H. Griffin.

Mrs. Griffin was a member of First Baptist Church, Campostella.

Survivors include a daughter, Margaret O. Hampton of Fairview Heights; four sisters, Lillian Mitchell and Sadie Askew, both of Baltimore, Carrie B. Cherry and Bertha Freeman, both of Ahoskie; four grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

A funeral was conducted Monday in First Baptist Church, Campostella, by the Rev. Tyrone Armstrong. Interment was in Roosevelt Memorial Park, Chesapeake. Metropolitan Funeral Service is in charge.

June S. Boyd

OVIEDO, FL n June Summers Boyd, 81, a native of Norris City, IL, and formerly of Severn, died October 2, 2007.

A funeral was conducted October 5 at the First Baptist Church of Oviedo. Interment followed at Woodlawn Memorial Park, Florida.

Survivors include her husband, Bob Boyd; a son, Ron Summers; and two grandchildren.