H. Reid Montgomery ’50

The Reverend Doctor Hugh Reid Montgomery, Senior died peacefully at The Pines in Davidson, NC on April 21, 2020, with his cherished wife and two of his sons by his side.

He was the son of Robert Scales Montgomery and Nettie Reid Harris Montgomery of Reidsville, NC.

Dr. Montgomery attended Reidsville Senior High School, Davidson College and graduated from Elon University. He held degrees from Union Presbyterian Seminary in Richmond, VA, New York Theological Seminary of New York City, and Columbia Presbyterian Seminary in Decatur, GA.

Dr. Montgomery served pastorates for sixty years in: Greensboro, NC; Queens, New York; Kingsport, TN; and Rockingham, Alexander and Mecklenburg Counties, NC. During two of these pastorates, he led the expansion of the church campuses to include new education buildings.

After his 1993 retirement from Speedwell Presbyterian Church in Rockingham County, he held several interim pastorates, the last being fourteen years at Calvary Presbyterian Church in Davidson, NC. In addition to his ministry, Dr. Montgomery taught in the NC prison system, community colleges, Elon University, and UNC-Charlotte.

Dr. Montgomery was predeceased by his parents and seven siblings. He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Martha Elizabeth Fulcher Montgomery of Davidson; Elizabeth Montgomery Cassidy (Edward), Hugh Reid, Jr. (Sonya), Emmett Fulcher (Rebecca), and Whitney Harris (Lindsay); Dr. Montgomery also had nine grandchildren: Clarence Reid, Stuart Rae, Findley Dean, Ellen Elizabeth, Catherine Stuart, Emma Grace, Whitney Harris, Jr, William Nicholas and Tess Marie; one great-grandson – Lucas Reid; and a host of nieces and nephews.

During the early years of his ministry, Dr. Montgomery was often a guest preacher for “a week of services” in various Presbyterian churches. His particular interest and calling, however, was working with young people in the church and community.

Starting early in his own Scouting life, he attained the rank of Eagle Scout, Order of the Arrow, and was later honored with the Silver Beaver Award, having successfully led over one hundred young men through the God and Country Award of the Boy Scouts.

Dr. Montgomery served as chaplain at several Boy Scout Jamborees and also as Chaplain to the Clan Montgomery Society International for several years. Dr. Montgomery was a stranger to no one.

In the many church families he served, he was counselor and comforter to many, serving those in need with great compassion. His gentle and caring nature made him well suited to live the life of a servant leader. He will be remembered by all who heard him conduct a church service as a giver of exceptional sermons.

Dr. Montgomery’s preaching was both intellectually engaging – filled with historical context and scholarly references – and spiritually stimulating and enlightening.

Dr. Montgomery was active in the Civil Rights movement in Greensboro in the 1960s, and welcomed diversity of all types into his life and mission.

He was a life-long blood donor with the Red Cross and delivered countless Meals-on-Wheels after retiring from full-time ministry.

As a husband, father, grandfather, and uncle, he valued and loved each of his family members, especially his partner in life, parenting, and ministry, Martha. Dr. Montgomery took time to care, teach, and lead by example for his children and grandchildren by taking them to volunteer, work in the garden, play games, and go into nature for hiking, camping, and canoeing.

Dr. Montgomery was very quick-witted. He loved puns and good play on words. Many of his stories are legendary in the Montgomery family.

Throughout his life, Dr. Montgomery loved sports; he played football in high school and college, attended his children’s sports events, and was a devoted fan of Davidson College’s many teams. He was very much loved and will be greatly missed by his family and friends.

The family expresses much gratitude to the entire staff at The Pines for the excellent, devoted care they have given to Dr. and Mrs. Montgomery over the years, and particularly during these recent difficult weeks.

A memorial service in the Chapel of Davidson College Presbyterian Church will be announced at a later date.

For those wishing to make a charitable donation in Dr. Montgomery’s memory, the family requests gifts to the Pines Residents’ Fund or to Davidson College Presbyterian Church.

Published in Charlotte Observer on Apr. 26, 2020