Obituaries, January 5, 2014

Jan. 04, 2014 @ 05:39 PM


Marlene Annette Byrd Brown
DURHAM — Marlene Annette Byrd Brown, age 44, passed away January 3, 2014, after a courageous battle with breast cancer.
She was a native of Durham and graduated from Southern High School in 1987. She worked for the Durham Clerk of Superior Courts Office for many years, before becoming disabled.
She is survived by her husband Rev. Douglas Brown; son Joshua Brown (fiancée Jodi Tilley); mother Annie Lorae Byrd; sisters Teresa Byrd McCabe (husband Don, nephew Donald, nieces Kelsey & Savannah) and Pamela Byrd Andrews (husband Sheriff Mike Andrews); nephew Brett (fiancée Brittney Hardiman) and stepchildren Crystal Brown Winders (husband Rob, grandchildren Katelyn & Jacob) and Kirk Brown (wife Rachel, grandchild Jordan).
She is predeceased by her father Billy Sherman Byrd. Marlene's willingness to participate in 4 drug trials at Duke Hospital is a testament to her undying will to find a cure for Triple Negative Breast Cancer. She was an avid lover of her dogs...especially her babies: Spooky, Little Girl and Roxie. She also loved Disney and had just enjoyed a trip there with her entire family over Thanksgiving. She will always be remembered for her warmth, bravery, caring spirit and ready smile for anyone she met.
Funeral services will be held on Tuesday at 11 a.m. at the Light House of God on Junction Road. Interment will be in Oak Grove Memorial Gardens.
The family will receive friends on Monday from 5 to 8 p.m. at Hudson Funeral Home and other times at the home of Mrs. Annie Byrd, 927 Junction Road. Flowers are acceptable or donations may be made to (click Donate + Tribute Donation).
Online condolences may be made at

Ronnie Gerald Carroll
DURHAM — Mr. Ronnie Gerald Carroll, 60, of Leesville Road, died on Thursday, January 2, 2014.
Mr. Carroll was a native and lifelong resident of Durham. He attended Southern High School and was a member of Calvary Baptist Church. He worked as an electrician and also worked in the Key Office at Duke Medical Center. Ronnie was a very loving and caring person. He was preceded in death by his father, Frank Carroll, and a sister, Valinda Wilkins.
He is survived by his mother and step-father, Gertrude and Ed Sykes of Durham; niece, Megan Davis and husband, Perry; nephew, Seth Wilkins; two great-nieces, Abby and Amber Wilkins.
The family will hold a private memorial service at a later date. Online condolences may be made at The family would like to thank the caregivers at UniHealth of Durham for their care of Ronnie during his illness.

The Right Rev. Robert C. Johnson, Jr.
DURHAM — The Right Rev. Robert C. Johnson, Jr., 75, tenth bishop of North Carolina, died on Friday, January 3. He is survived by his wife of 54 years, Connie Smith Johnson; son, Robert Kinley Johnson (David Oxender); daughter, Julie Johnson Hege (Pike); three grandsons, Ens. Daniel Robert Hege (Emily), Adam Bolanos Hege (Liliana) and Jacob Johnson Hege; two great-grandsons, Henry Hege and Lucas Bolanos Hege; sister, Janette St. Vincent; 7 nieces and 5 nephews. He was predeceased by his parents and sister, Mille Thomas.
Bishop Johnson was born in Columbus, Georgia, to Robert C. and Mildred Little Johnson. He graduated from Columbus High School and Mercer University. He had master’s degrees from Yale Divinity School and NC State, and honorary doctorates from the University of the South and Berkeley at Yale.
Bishop Johnson served the Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina for 37 years at St. Peter’s, Charlotte; St. Paul’s, Smithfield; St. Christopher’s, Garner; St. Luke’s, Durham; and as diocesan bishop until his retirement. He was an outstanding preacher and devoted pastor.
Bishop Johnson was a founder of Habitat for Humanity in Durham, a volunteer for the crisis hotline and a member of Tobaccoland Kiwanis Club.
A memorial service will be held 1:00 p.m., Saturday, January 11, at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, 1737 Hillandale Rd. in Durham. Contributions in his memory may be made to St. Luke’s Memorial Fund. Arrangements are with Hall-Wynne Funeral Service.

The Rev. Albert Arnold Nelius
DURHAM — The Reverend Albert Arnold Nelius, beloved Episcopal priest over 50 years in Durham and former Duke University Library staff member, died peacefully January 1 at the Forest at Duke Health Center, surrounded by his wife and loving, competent staff. He was born December 9, 1925, in Memphis, TN, to Eva and Engel Nelius. Albert served in the U.S. Navy from 1943-46, after which he graduated in 1951 from Rhodes College in Memphis. He finished Virginia Theological Seminary in 1954 and was ordained the following year. Albert began ministry in Nashville, soon after meeting his future wife, Dr. Sigrid von Renner, during her medical residency at Vanderbilt. He served three years at St. Barnabas Church, Florissant, MO, and while there, oversaw construction of a new church. The family moved to Durham in 1960 when Albert joined St. Philip’s Episcopal Church. In 1970 he became Vicar of St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in East Durham--a post he held until 1995. Albert received a master’s degree in Library Science from UNC in 1969, the same year he joined Duke University Library. He rose to circulation director and retired in 1992. Over decades, Albert officiated at the annual Blessing of the Hounds for the Red Mountain Hounds (fox hunting club).
Upon arrival, it took little time for Albert to become known around Durham. A “people person” of courtly manners and gentle spirit, he gravitated to those of all ages, sorts and conditions. Albert never ceased being pastor to his former flock of St. Andrew’s, and for that matter, to any friends seeking spiritual insight and care. He was ever faithful and attentive long after retirement, especially to the elderly. Albert was a traditionalist; he revered the Episcopal Church and found its deepest meaning and beauty expressed in the majestic, King James-style language of the 1928 Book of Common Prayer. He performed the Church’s sacraments with dignity and humility.
A bona fide Renaissance man, Albert was steeped in the arts, literature, history and all things cultural. He was an avid reader, enjoyed adventures abroad, and was conversant in many genres of literature and poetry. His knowledge of classical music and opera was encyclopedic. Albert and Sigrid savored regular New York excursions for the Metropolitan Opera. With inimitable theatrical flair, he had a great command of language and spoke eloquently, complemented by his always genteel appearance and keen humor. Most notably, Albert Nelius was a rare human being to whom people flocked. He had the heart of a gifted Christian pastor with patience, warmth, tenderness, and the keen ability to listen and offer wise counsel. Albert was first to show up in moments of personal trouble, utterly sacrificial in putting the needs of others ahead of his own. His long and remarkable vocation will be remembered as one of compassionate presence and perpetual thoughtfulness.
Surviving are his wife of 58 years, Sigrid von Renner Nelius, M.D.; a sister, Evelyn N. Meyer, and a niece, Christine Haunschild, both of Pittsburgh, PA; and a nephew, Larry Meyer of Charlotte. He was predeceased by his son, Stefan von Renner Nelius; a brother, Engel Nelius; and a nephew, Mark Meyer.
The funeral liturgy will be 12:00 p.m., Thursday, in Duke University Chapel, with The Rev. Dr. John L. Sharpe officiating. Memorial donations to Chapel Choir & Music Endowment of Duke Chapel, (919-684-2338), or to Duke Home Care & Hospice, 4321 Medical Park Dr. #101, Durham 27704. Online condolences to Arrangements are with Hall-Wynne Funeral Service.


Ada Evelyn Fawcett
PITTSBORO — Ada Evelyn (Bowers) Fawcett, 92, died December 23, 2013 at The Laurels of Chatham in Pittsboro, NC.
She was born on March 29, 1921 in Macomb, IL, daughter of the late Lawrence & Etta Bowers. She was the youngest of seven children. She met John R. Fawcett of Canton, IL and they were married October 4, 1940. Ada & John lived in Canton from 1940 to 1983. During their early years together they loved to get together with good friends and go dancing to live big band swing music. They also loved playing canasta and other card games with their friends. Ada was active as a member of Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). In the 1950s they would vacation every summer in Florida. They fell in love with the state and later would retire there in Dunedin. There they happily lived until the death of John in 1990. Three years later, Ada would move to Durham, NC to be closer to her son. She attended Trinity Presbyterian Church in Durham.
In addition to her parents and her husband, John, Ada was preceded in death by her siblings, Lewis Bowers, Esther Vance, Ruby Walraven, Hildreth Casey and Gladys Burke. She is survived by her son, J. Kent (Susan) Fawcett of Chapel Hill, NC, and sister, Marjorie Brown of Galesburg, IL.
A memorial service in Canton, IL will be scheduled at a later date.
Online condolences may be left at Select Obits. The arrangements for Mrs. Fawcett are under the care of Hall–Wynne Funeral Service and Cremation of Pittsboro.


Eunice Delores James Farrington
CHAPEL HILL — Eunice Delores James Farrington, 74, of N. Roberson St., Chapel Hill, NC, passed on Tuesday, December 31, 2013 at her residence. A Memorial Service will be conducted 11:30 a.m., Tuesday, January 7, 2014 at St. Paul AME Zion Church, Chapel Hill, NC. The visitation will be 11 to 11:30 a.m. at the church.
Arrangements by Knotts Funeral Home, 113 N. Graham St., Chapel Hill, NC.

Mary Bert McAfee Ringland
February 1, 1917 — November 30, 2013
HILLSBOROUGH — Mary Ringland, age 96, died on a sunny afternoon in Hillsborough, North Carolina.
Born in Barry, Texas and a lifelong Texan, Mary graduated from North Texas State University with a degree in music education. She got her pilot’s license in 1938. She and her husband, Breen, were married for 59 years and raised five children: Ann, Joe, David, Tom and John. They lived in Houston for over 40 years. After the death of her husband, Mary moved to North Carolina five years ago.
Mary’s passions were reading, music, traveling, gardening and volunteering. She was humorous, passionate and feisty. The family often repeats her favorite quotes, “When tarts are passed, take tarts” and “Each day is a gift. We decide what’s in it.” Her death has left a hole in the fabric of her family.
Surviving Mary are Ann Ringland, of Durham; Tom Ringland and his wife, Lucy Procter Ringland, of Raleigh and John Ringland, of Hillsborough, North Carolina.
She also had two granddaughters, Claire Woodward Belanger and Skylar Lynn Ringland and three great-grandchildren, Madeleine Mae Belanger, William Spencer Belanger and Wyatt James Belanger.
The family thanks the staff of Carillon Assisted Living and personnel of Liberty Hospice for their care and support.
A celebration of Mary’s life is being planned by family and friends.
Memorial contributions may be sent to the charity of one’s choice.


W. Robert Fallaw Jr.
CHESTERTOWN, Md. — W. Robert Fallaw Jr., 78, died at the Hospice of Queen Anne’s Co., Md., on Dec.13, 2013, from multiple myeloma. Born in Durham, he was the older son of Walter R. Fallaw Sr. and Amy Childs Fallaw.
A 1953 graduate of Bragtown High School, in 1957 he earned his B.A., with distinction in history, at Duke University, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. He earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in history at Princeton University.
He taught from 1960 to 1970 at the University of N.C. at Chapel Hill, then from 1970 to retirement in 2005 at Washington College, where he was director of the American studies program from 1970 to 1988 and history department chair from 1988 to 2002. Known as a scintillating lecturer and provocative discussion leader, he received the Alumni Association Award for Distinguished Teaching in 2005.
He is survived by his wife of nearly 50 years, Margaret Quoos Fallaw; their four sons, Stephen of Chestertown, Peter of Beaver Creek, Ore., and Michael and Timothy of Bozeman, Mont.; and three grandchildren. His brother, Wallace C. Fallaw, died in 1995.
A life celebration will be held at 2 p.m., Sun., Jan. 19, at Hynson Lounge, Hodson Hall, Washington College. Donations to the Robert Fallaw Scholarship fund at Washington College are welcome.