Obituary Details

Francis Elgin Ward

February 3, 1930 - June 11, 2020

Birthplace & Residence

Information withheld per family request

Viewing

Location:
Renaissance Funeral Home & Cremation Tribute Center
Date:
Tuesday, June 16, 2020
Time:
11:00 AM to 11:30 AM

Funeral

Location:
Renaissance Funeral Home & Cremation Tribute Center
Date:
Tuesday, June 16, 2020
Service Time:
11:30 AM

Cemetery

Information withheld per family request

Notes

Mr. Francis Elgin Ward, 90, of Raleigh, North Carolina passed away on June 11, 2020. He was born on February 3, 1930 to the late Hilda Francis Hutchings Ward and William Friss Ward. As a boy and young man Francis was a softshell crabber and a fisherman on a menhaden boat. He attended Kilmarnock High School graduating in 1947 and received a Bachelor of Science in Social Sciences from The College of William and Mary in June 1958.

Francis led a varied and interesting life. Prior to attending William and Mary, he drove a truck delivering oysters for Webb Oyster Company. He then joined the U.S. Army and was sent to Japan as part of the Occupations Forces after WWII. Then while serving in the U.S. Army from 1948 to 1952, he was stationed in Korea where he was wounded in combat during the Korean War. After Korea, he served in the U.S. Reserves of the Air Force from 1953 to 1956, attended college, and taught at Kilmarnock High School for 2 years. He then served as an ABC Board Enforcement Officer in Virginia from 1958 to 1962. He worked as a salesman for Zimco Electric in Odessa, Texas from 1962 to 1966. He then joined Eaton Corporation (Cutler Hammer) as a Salesman in 1966 in Norfolk, VA. After a 27-year career, Francis retired from Eaton Corporation in Raleigh, NC as Director of Sales for the southeastern states. Following retirement, Francis volunteered as a Riverboat Captain for “Roaming on the Scuppernong” operated by Partnership for the Sound and he ran for Mayor of Columbia, NC in 2007.

After living and raising his family in Chesapeake, VA from 1966 to 1979, then in Raleigh, NC from 1979 to 2004, Francis retired in 1993 and then subsequently moved to Columbia, NC (Helen’s hometown) in 2004. He resided in Columbia, NC until he moved back to Raleigh in 2016 to be closer to family and be a part of the Magnolia Glen, and then Brighton Garden’s Communities. Over the last few years, his family enjoyed having Francis close by to join in on many family gatherings, holidays, and special occasions.

In addition to his work life, he was involved in many organizations and was the recipient of multiple honors and awards. He was:
-Master Mason - Doric Lodge No.44 - Norfolk, VA (1971)
-Master of the Lodge - Providence Lodge No. 678 - Columbia, NC
-Member of the Arman Shriners - Legion of Honor Unit - Cary, NC
-Order of the Eastern Star - Edith Chapter #160 Cary, NC and Columbia Chapter #281Columbia, NC (District Deputy Grand Patron of The Second District 2003)
-American Legion - Columbia, NC
-Member of Columbia Missionary Baptist Church and Wesley Memorial United Methodist Church in Columbia, NC
He received the following military honors: CIB Good Conduct Medal; Occupational Medal (Japan); Korean Service Medal. He graduated Leadership School at Fort Jackson in Columbia, SC for Infantry to Combat Leadership and received an Honorable Discharge from the US Army in 1952 with rank of Sargent First Class (SFC).

Francis enjoyed a lifelong love of the water. He shared this love with his children early in life through many hours of boating and fishing. Later in life, his children cherished the time to take their Dad fishing and allow “Grandpa” the opportunity to teach the grandchildren to fish and share his love of the water. These are special memories that the family will cherish forever.

He was known by a variety of names to the many people in his life. Most knew him as Francis, others as Elgin and Ward. His parents called him Sonny, Brother to his sisters, and Buddy to his brother. To his family he was Dad, Grandpa, and Great Papa. And for everyone he had the same warm smile and positive outlook on life.

Francis was a teacher at heart, and had a life-long love of learning. He was an Army drill instructor, taught high school history, conducted training classes for work, served as a Sunday school teacher at church, taught his children to love and honor God, their family and country, and he always had a “don’t you know” story to share with his grandchildren.
Francis was a great example of a servant leader throughout his life. He served and blossomed wherever he was planted, whatever the circumstances. He served his God, his country, his family, his church, work, friends and communities, all with a glad heart, never seeking any recognition.

Francis was wed to Lura Elizabeth Weiland in 1950 (divorced); Diane Parks in 1958 (preceded in death in 1973); Helen Brickhouse Yerby in 1974 (preceded in death in 2008, to whom he was happily married for over 33 years); and a companionship with Vida Clause for over 10 years beginning in 2009. Throughout the years, Francis was blessed with six children, thirteen grandchildren; and seventeen great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents and sister, June Mason. His life will forever be remembered by his family: children, John (Joy) Ward of Raleigh, NC, Ricky (Teresa) Ward of Columbia, SC, Fran (Lei Ann) Ward of Orem, UT, Lura Carey of Orem, UT, Chris (Ellen) Yerby of Hillsborough, NC, and Karen Yerby of Raleigh, NC; grandchildren, Kayla Ward (Josh) Steedly of Raleigh, NC, Sarah Ward of Raleigh, NC, Cameron Ward of Columbia, SC, Jackson Ward of Columbia, SC, Lauren Bolick of Hillsborough, NC, Chad (Sunni Dutton) Yerby of Graham, NC, Elizabeth Ward Richardson of Lindon, UT, Joseph (Kara Roylance) Ward of Lehi, UT, Rachael Ward of Salt Lake City, UT, Benjamin (Lisa Olsen) Ward of Spanish Fork, UT, Samuel (Carolyn Kay) Ward of Glendale, AZ; Shane Carey of Chandler, AZ; Kathlean Wolf of Madison, WI; siblings, William “Billy” Ward and Vera May Winegar.

A brief viewing and visitation will be held at Renaissance Funeral Home, 7615 Six Forks Road, Raleigh, NC on Tuesday, June 16, 2020 at 11:00 a.m. with a Memorial Service immediately following at 11:30 a.m.

The service will be live streamed. It can be viewed at the following link for those that cannot attend or prefer not to attend in person due to COVID-19 – https://video.ibm.com/channel/island-sound

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Shriners Hospitals for Children at https://www.shrinershospitalsforchildren.org/shc/donate Wounded Warrior Project at https://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/donate>; (he was a wounded Korean War Veteran), or the Alzheimer's Association at https://www.alz.org/get-involved-now/donate.

Graveside service will take place on Wednesday, June 17, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. at Campbell Memorial Presbyterian Church, 3712 Weems Road, Weems, VA 22576
www.campbellchurch.net

Arrangements in Virginia by Currie Funeral Home and Crematory
116 East Church Street
Kilmarnock, VA 22482
(804) 435-1077
https://www.curriefuneralhome.net/
Posted by:
Ricky Ward
Posted on:
June 19, 2020
Here is a link to slideshow tribute to my dad.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1RkRItVwYfCpIHhrih2shU-gL1GfiaxKb/view?usp=sharing
Posted by:
Ricky Ward
Posted on:
June 19, 2020
For anyone that is interested, here is a link to a video of the service.

https://spaces.hightail.com/receive/UQl5sFuxCb/aGVhdGhlckByZmhyLmNvbQ==
Posted by:
Joyce Bateman Gigioni
Posted on:
June 16, 2020
May the precious memories of your loved one be a comfort to you now and become even more precious with the passage of time. May it help to know that many thoughts are with you in your sorrow. My deepest sympathy to all of the Ward family.

Joyce Bateman Giglioni
Friend in Columbia, NC
Posted by:
Elgin-LeiAnne Ward
Posted on:
June 14, 2020
My dad is Francis Elgin Ward Sr. He named me Francis Elgin Ward Jr. In naming my two younger brothers, he used names from his own ancestors, naming his second son Richard Hall Ward and his third son John William Ward. More than 40 years ago, my dad organized a William Hall Ward Family Reunion where William Hall Ward’s descendants have annually met continuously since that time. My dad passed away on the birthday of his father William Friss Ward on June 11, 2020. My dad loved and honored his parents, his ancestors, and all his family.
My dad loved and honored his God. While growing up in the small fishing village of Weems, Virginia, my dad faithfully attended and worshipped in the Campbell Memorial Presbyterian Church. There he learned to sing hymns to worship his God. He had a beautiful, deep, rich singing voice and would often join and sing with the choir wherever he attended church. He also loved to share the teachings of Jesus Christ with others. He did so in his family life, at church as a Sunday school teacher, and with friends and acquaintances. He set an example for us all of how a kind, loving, charitable Christian should live.
My dad loved and honored his Country. At the age of 17, just after World War II had ended, my dad joined the US Army and was sent to be part of the US Occupational Forces in Japan. While he was there, the Korean War broke out and he was sent into battle on the Korean peninsula along with thousands of other Americans. When over a million Chinese soldiers surged across the border into Korea, driving back the US Army, my dad and several of his fellow soldiers were trapped behind enemy lines. The Lord blessed him to travel safely at night time for three days and nights until they reached the protection of the American Forces. Before his honorable discharge from the Army in 1952, my dad served as a Drill Instructor teaching and preparing other military personnel.
My dad loved and served many good causes during his life. After graduating from the University of William & Mary, he taught high school in Lancaster County, Virginia, not far from where he was born. For years he gave many hours of charitable service through his affiliation with the Masons, Shriners, and Eastern Star.
My dad gave me love, teachings, an example, a family name and heritage which have all my life blessed me, my wife, my children and my grandchildren. I am grateful to my Heavenly Father that he blessed me to have Francis Elgin Ward Sr. as my father.

by Francis Elgin Ward Jr.
Report This Comment
Let us know why you would like to report this Comment.
Your report will be kept anonymous

Viewing

Renaissance Funeral Home & Cremation Tribute Center
7615 Six Forks Rd
Raleigh, NC 27615
919-866-1866
View Website

Funeral

Renaissance Funeral Home & Cremation Tribute Center
7615 Six Forks Rd
Raleigh, NC 27615
919-866-1866
View Website

Cemetery

Unknown Location