The world lost a kind and gentle soul on September 18, 2016. William Earl Loftin Sr. (Bill) died peacefully at age 96, in Charlotte, NC.
Bill was predeceased by his parents, Charles Ivey Loftin Sr. and Martha Jackson Loftin; his beloved wife of 59 years, Martha Enck Loftin; his beloved wife of 9 years, Ruth Lipford Loftin; his brother Charles Ivey Loftin Jr.; his brother John Frank (Hank) Loftin; and his sister Martha Loftin Whaley.
Bill Loftin loved God, family, work, Davidson College, and Rotary International. Bill was born in Gastonia, NC on January 10, 1920. He graduated from Davidson College in 1941, earning both Phi Beta Kappa and Omicron Delta Kappa.
Though unable to serve in WWII due to health issues, Bill moved to Boston and worked in the airplane industry during the war. He often lamented losing his brother, Hank, and friends to the war, and wished he could have joined them on the battlefield.
Bill attended and taught at Harvard Business School and went on to teach at Florida State University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
One of Bill’s mottos was “live to work, not work to live.” In 1956, Bill opened a business, Heritage Printers Inc. in Charlotte, NC. Heritage Printers became nationally known for its high quality letterpress books with customers such as University of California, Yale University and Atheneum Press. Bill also continued his father’s commercial printing company, Loftin and Co. (founded in1898 and still operating).
Bill Loftin was a Southern gentleman, known for his integrity and good will. He served as Charlotte Rotary president and was named a Paul Harris Fellow. He served as deacon and elder of Avondale Presbyterian Church and was active with Davidson College alumni.
He was a friend to the downtrodden, and taught his family to “provide for the comfort of others.” He was a servant leader who left the world better.
Bill loved his family and often called them “The Lucky/Blessed Ones.” He is survived by his daughters, Ann Loftin Robinson (Peter), Judith Loftin Hobbs (Walter), Martha Loftin Whitfield (Chip) and his son, William Earl Loftin Jr. (Nan); eight grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.
The family wishes to thank Bill’s caregivers, Ida Vaughn and Pier Williams, for their loving service over the past four years, and the staff of Levine/Dickson Hospice House.
A celebration of Bill Loftin’s life will be held October 15, at 2 pm at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, 258 West Franklin Boulevard Gastonia, NC. The family welcomes friends to honor Bill, October 14, 7-9 pm, 221 Altondale Avenue, Charlotte, NC.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials be sent to Levine/Dickson Hospice House or “The Rotary Foundation” c/o The Rotary Club of Charlotte, 1850 East 3rd St., (Suite 220), Charlotte, NC 28204.
McLean Funeral Directors of Gastonia is serving the Loftin family.