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In memoriam

In Memoriam

Remembering men and women from the Wofford family.

1943

William Kilgore Thompson Jr., Sept. 9, 2016, Spartanburg, S.C. Thompson served during World War II as a motor officer and regiment maintenance officer. After the war he married his sweetheart, Mary, who wrote him a letter every day while he was away. He served with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Savannah, Ga., for 30 years. He retired with many honors, including the Army Decoration for Meritorious Civilian Service. He was an elder in the Presbyterian Church and an active Habitat for Humanity and Mobile Meals volunteer.

1949

Dr. Roy James Ellison Jr., Sept. 30, 2016, Greenville, S.C. A member of Westminister Presbyterian Church and a World War II veteran, Ellison practiced psychiatry for more than 50 years. He served as medical director of Marshall I. Pickens Hospital and chairman of Greenville Hospital System’s Department of Psychiatry. He led several professional associations and served on the state Board of Medical Examiners as the first psychiatrist and legislative representative of the state psychiatry association.

1950

The Rev. Thomas F. Steele Jr., Sept. 26, 2016, Rock Hill, S.C. A retired United Methodist minister, Steele was the first director of the Jaycee Boys Home in Rock Hill. He also served as director of the Children’s Home in Lancaster, S.C. He and his wife, Mary, were foster parents to more than 160 children during this time and were fondly referred to as “Mom and Pop Steele.”

1951

Herbert Lucien “Shag” Williams, Aug. 14, 2016, Greenville, S.C. After Naval and Merchant Marine service during World War II, Williams worked as a loan officer for First Federal Savings and Loan.

1952

Robert Alfred Hammett Sr., Aug. 26, 2016, Spartanburg, S.C. A longtime attorney, Hammett served in the South Carolina House of Representatives from 1960 to 1968. He was past city attorney and mayor of Inman. Hammett served four years in the U.S. Army on active duty in Korea and Europe before spending 18 years in the Army Reserve. He was an active member of the Episcopal Church of the Advent and past president of the Advent Foundation.

1954

The Rev. Willis Harold Switzer, Aug. 29, 2016, Franklin, Va. A veteran of World War II, Switzer pastored Baptist churches for 56 years. He retired in 2012 and continued to serve the community through a grief support group.

1956

Billy Hobert Inman Jr., Sept. 25, 2016, Boiling Springs, S.C. A U.S. Army veteran, Inman was a longtime agent with Liberty Life Insurance Company and a devoted volunteer with Boy Scouts of America. He was a member of Trinity United Methodist Church.

1957

Jerry Thomas Davis, Sept. 14, 2016, Spartanburg, S.C. Davis worked as a computer programmer before suffering from debilitating mental illness. He found hope and enjoyment later in life through New Day Clubhouse, an organization that provides volunteer opportunities, socialization and purpose for members.

1959

Col. (Ret.) Kenneth Huff Campbell, Sept. 16, 2016, Horse Shoe, N.C. Campbell served in the U.S. Army for 33 years, with assignments in Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Panama, Vietnam and Thailand. He was a member of the Carolina Mountain Artist Guild and the owner of Function Flue. He was an active member of Etowah United Methodist Church.

James Martin “Jim” Keesler, Sept. 12, 2016, Spartanburg, S.C. Keesler retired from Arkwright Mills after 43 years, including service as vice president of the company. He was active in First Baptist Church and the Spartanburg Executive Sertoma Club, the Spartanburg Development Association and the Spartanburg County Historical Association.

1960

Ernest Roy Barefield, Sept. 8, 2016, Bluffton, S.C. Barefield served on the Wofford Alumni Board, including a term as president in 1993. He also served as president of the Wofford Georgia Alumni Club between 1987 and 1989. Barefield did a tour with the U.S. Army Intelligence Corps before enjoying a successful career in business and accounting.

Felder B. Wheeler Jr., Oct. 3, 2016, Knoxville, Tenn. Wheeler taught high school English, retired from the Navy in 1982 as a full commander after 20 years of service and served as the pastor of Grace Church in Knoxville. He also retired from Newport News Shipyard and Tennessee Valley Authority.

1962

Hoyt Cromwell Burnett Jr., Sept. 5, 2016, Lexington, S.C. Burnett was a member of Kappa Sigma fraternity and a four-year letterman and captain during his senior year on the Wofford football team. He spent his career with the state of South Carolina, including service with Vocational Rehabilitation, Midlands Technical College and Lexington School District Five. He was a member of Kathwood Baptist Church.

Roy Lee Cashwell Jr., Sept. 16, 2016, Greenville, S.C. Cashwell died after a brave battle with cancer. A loyal Terrier fan, Cashwell was instrumental in the creation of the Cashwell Family Endowed Scholarship at Wofford, where the family has asked that memorials be made. Cashwell spent his career in the insurance industry after a tour in Germany with the Army Security Agency. He was an active member of the Sertoma Club of Greenville and a faithful volunteer of the club’s Christmas tree program.

1963

William Frank Turner Jr., Sept. 9, 2016, Inman, S.C. Turner worked as an accountant with Mayfair Mills and as a drug counselor with the Spartanburg Methadone Clinic. He served in the South Carolina National Guard.

1965

James E. Curwen, Oct. 7, 2016, Brevard, N.C. Curwen worked in medical sales for much of his career, helping many physicians set up in-office laboratories. He was an avid runner, qualifying for and running in the Boston Marathon, and a sailor, racing both Sunfish and J-24s. After retirement, he worked with the North Carolina Arboretum as recreational liaison.

1966

Dr. Clarence Edward Taylor Jr., Oct. 11, 2016, Columbia, S.C. For more than 35 years, Taylor worked at the South Carolina Department of Mental Health as a psychologist and director of staff development and training. He devoted his life and career to promoting respect for those affected by mental illness.

1969

Elbert Stone Felder, Sept. 5, 2016, Union, S.C. Felder retired from the state of South Carolina and was a former member of the South Carolina National Guard. He was a lifelong member of Grace United Methodist Church.

1976

Joseph Henry Howard II, Sept. 9, 2016, Portal, Ga. Howard worked in banking. He loved cooking, politics and attending Wofford athletics events with his dear friend Tom Bower ’74.

Larry Douglas Kearse Sr., Sept. 18, 2016, Irmo, S.C. Kearse taught history and social studies for 34 years. He retired from Columbia High School in 2012 as a teacher, athletics director and dean of students. He was a recipient of the Christine Webb Humanitarian Award in 1996. Kearse was a member of Grace United Methodist Church.

1982

Susan Hall Fisher, Sept. 24, 2016, Spartanburg, S.C. A member of Kappa Delta sorority at Wofford, Fisher taught history at Dorman High School. She was a devoted mother and wife.

Friends

Dr. James A. Keller, Sept. 6, 2016, Spartanburg, S.C. Keller retired as Samuel Pate Gardner Professor of Philosophy at Wofford in 2011 after 39 years of service. He chaired the department from 1972 to 2003 and was awarded emeritus status following retirement. Keller continued to teach classes even after retirement. His research and teaching interests centered on how religious beliefs can be appropriately justified, and his book, “Problems of Evil and the Power of God” (Ashgate, 2007), dealt with those issues. He was an avid reader of science fiction and a film buff. Keller was an active member of First Presbyterian Church of Spartanburg.