Claude Whitson Lyerly, 104, of Salisbury, passed away on Thursday, September 29, 2016 at NC State Veterans Home in Salisbury, NC.
Claude was born on November 4, 1911 to the late Paul Hilbert and Dovie Beaver Lyerly in Salisbury, NC. He was a graduate of Granite Quarry High School and a 1933 graduate of Lenoir Rhyne College. Claude was a WWII Veteran, having served in the United States Army. Claude worked with his father who owned and operated Fifty-Fifty Grocery in Salisbury starting in 1933. He took over the business in 1967 and retired in 1981.
Claude was a lifelong member of Christiana Lutheran Church; he taught Sunday School, was the church treasurer for many years, served on church council and many other committees. He served on the Rowan County School Board, was member of American Legion Post 448, was the last remaining 1945 charter member of the Granite Quarry Civitan Club, and at one time he was the oldest active member of Civitans in the country. Claude served on the review board for Boy Scout Troop 379. He was 2014 recipient of the Order of the Long Leaf Pine. Claude was featured on the front page of the Salisbury Post when he turned 100; he also rode in the Faith Fourth of July Parade when he turned 100, riding as Rowan County's oldest Veteran and the oldest member of Christiana Lutheran Church.
Claude had a wonderful sense of humor, he enjoyed people and loved to laugh. He enjoyed stamp and coin collecting, photography and Rowan County history. Claude was an avid Tarheel and Atlanta Braves fan, and he loved playing bingo everyday at the NC State Veterans Home. Claude was proud of the fact that he had read the Bible numerous times.
Claude is survived by his Wife of over 75 years, Margaret Pauline Lyerly, whom he married October 27, 1940; Three Sons, Brantley Whitson Lyerly and friend Linda Walls of Salisbury, NC, David Maxwell Lyerly and wife Mary Denton of Radford, VA, and Donald Paul Lyerly and wife Debbie of Moncure; Three Grandsons, Ben Lyerly and wife Carissa, Matt Lyerly and Rob Lyerly; Granddaughter, Megan Lyerly; and five great grandchildren. He is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews.
In addition to his parents, Claude was preceded in death by Daughter, Carol Louise Lyerly, and Sister, Louise Bostian.
Burial will take place in the Salisbury National Cemetery on Wednesday, October 5th at 9:00 am with Military Honors provided by the NC National Guard and the Rowan County Veterans Honor Guard.
A Memorial Service will be held on Wednesday, October 5th at 11:00 am at Christiana Lutheran Church with Rev. Carl Haynes, Pastor officiating. Visitation will follow in the Smith Assembly Hall at Christiana Lutheran Church.
The family would like to thank the doctors, staff and friends that have cared for Claude at the NC State Veterans Home. They would like to thank the many doctors and medical staff for their care over the years, and would like to offer their sincere gratitude to Cindy Poole. Special thanks to Granite Quarry Civitan Club and Men's Bible Class at Christiana Lutheran Church. The family also thanks Pastor Carl Haynes for all that he has done for our family.
In lieu of flowers, memorials in memory of Claude may be made to Christiana Lutheran Church 6190 US Hwy 52 Salisbury NC 28146.
Powles Staton Funeral Home of Rockwell, honored provider of Veterans Funeral Care, is assisting the family of Claude Lyerly . Online condolences may be made at www.powlesfuneralhome.com.