Samuel Martin Inman III ’56

A devoted husband, father, preacher’s son, brother, uncle, mentor, coach, raconteur, trouble-shooter, carpenter, repairman, friend, and church leader, Samuel Martin Inman, III, age 88, passed away May 15, 2023, of old age: a venerable way to exit this modern era and begin a refreshed life with his Lord.

The Reverend Samuel M. Inman and Margaret Garwood Inman raised Sam and his older and surviving sister Margaret first in Richmond, Virginia, and then in Charlotte, North Carolina. Following his being among the first class to graduate the new Myers Park High School, Sam played tennis for Davidson College and graduated in 1956, having majored in mathematics and minored in physics. Within 18 months thereafter, Sam also graduated with an industrial engineering degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech). During his time in Atlanta, Sam found a focus of his love and attention for the next 67 years: the outgoing, intelligent, transplanted Arkansas Presbyterian Sue Sanders Lile, whom he married in 1958. As he began his career in the newfangled field of commercial plastics, he also served in the United States Army Reserves for 6 ½ years, with a year of active duty at Fort Benning, Georgia, during the Berlin and Cuban Missile Crises.

Sam worked for Celanese Corporation in Rome, Georgia, followed by a transfer with the company to Greenville, where he was a part of the design team that built the Greer (SC) Celanese Polyester Films Plant. Over the course of his professional career, Sam became the manufacturer’s go-to guy in solving problems in production, quality control, research and development, and technical service. In 1992, the successor to Celanese – Hoechst Diafoil – sent him and Sue to Japan, where he spent a year as liaison representative for the joint plastics venture that included operations in Germany (Hoechst AG), the USA (Celanese), and Japan (Mitsubishi Diafoil). A Japanese colleague dubbed him “Mr. Polyester,” which we think was a supreme compliment.

Active in Greenville’s Westminster Presbyterian Church since 1963, Sam served as an elder, deacon, Sunday school teacher, youth advisor, basketball coach, and a member of a pulpit nominating committee. For several years, he taught in the “Life Skills” program at United Ministries as part of the pre-GED Program. He served as chairman of the chemistry advisory committee at Greenville Technical College, chairman of the Presbyterian Pastoral Counseling Center, advisor to the Foothills Presbytery for various church strategies and operations, and as a board member and a lead carpenter for The Warehouse Theater. And in his “spare time,” he co-coached youth baseball teams with the YMCA and City League to multiple undefeated seasons.

His passions were rooted in his energetic church and dynamic family, both now spread like a proverbial banyan tree that his father often used in parable. Sam loved walking in the woods, whether in northern Georgia, the two Carolinas, or the West. He loved American history, especially of the Southeast, and was known to breeze through and retain the thoughts and facts of the thickest historical novels that The Open Book stores in Greenville could offer.

Sam is survived by his wife of 64 years, Sue Lile Inman, and their adult children and spouses: Virginia and Steven Postrel, Los Angeles; Sam and Jamie Inman, Greenville, SC; Drs. John and Amy Inman, Mt. Pleasant, SC; and Bill and Karen Inman, Bend, OR. His four treasured grandchildren – Rachel, Nathan, Andrew, and Katherine – also survive him.

A memorial service will be held at Westminster Presbyterian Church on Saturday, June 17, 2023, at 12:00 p.m., followed by a reception in the church atrium.

Memorials may be made to Westminster Presbyterian Church Endowment Fund, 2310 Augusta Street, Greenville, SC 29605,; United Ministries, 606 Pendleton Street, Greenville, SC 29601,; or a charity of one’s choice.

James D. Davis ’56

James Dilley Davis, age 89, passed away peacefully in the early evening of April 6, 2023 in Harrisonburg, Virginia after a challenging battle with Alzheimer’s. Jim was born on March 22, 1934 in Marlinton, West Virginia to James Layman Davis and Helen Dilley Davis. He was preceded in death by his parents, his sister Sybil Davis Compton, brother Larry Davis, and brother William Davis.

Jim grew up in the Allegheny Mountains in the prosperous little town of Marlinton in Pocahontas County, West Virginia. He was raised in the family apartment above Davis Motors, his father’s auto garage, farm equipment and automobile dealership. He spent his younger years repairing trucks and delivering John Deere tractors & American Motors cars for his dad to customers across the state – sneaking away to swim in Knapps Creek with his friends whenever he had a free moment. Jim was a voracious reader, a lover of classical music, and a passionate student of history and was always very proud to have won West Virginia’s prestigious Golden Horseshoe Award for excellence in state history in 1948.

After graduating from Marlinton High School in 1952, Jim started his university education at Davidson College, intending to become a Presbyterian minister. As graduation approached, he found himself at a crossroads and left college, volunteering to join the U.S. Army. Jim served for two years in Germany and Lebanon. While posted to Heidelberg, Corporal Davis met and fell in love with a young university student, Gunda Elise Ursula Stassen. Jim returned to the U.S. in 1959 to complete his undergraduate studies in History and English at West Virginia University and authored many letters to Gunda back in Germany. Inspired by their time together and her own spirit of adventure, Gunda decided to join him in America and they married in 1960 in Jim’s hometown of Marlinton. The young couple settled soon after in Morgantown, West Virginia where Gunda worked at the local hospital and Jim continued his education. Jim received his law degree from the WVU College of Law in 1963.

With diploma in hand, Jim took a job with Deere & Co, joining the Industrial Relations Department and the young couple moved to East Moline, Illinois. Jim began his career at the John Deere Plow Works, rising to eventually become Deere’s Global Vice President of Industrial Relations when he retired in 1988. While Jim’s professional responsibilities required that he represent the company, his Mountaineer upbringing gave him a unique ability to connect in a truly personal way with his counterparts in the United Auto Workers, the International Association of Machinists & the Patternmakers Unions and he was always very proud of the lifelong friendships he built with union and management colleagues alike. Post retirement, Jim served as the President of the Quad City Symphony Orchestra, the Chairman of the Scott County Republican Party, the Chairman of the USS Iowa recommissioning task force and as a member of the board of the Principal Financial Group funds. During these years, he also partnered with regional businesses and political leaders to bring to life a new Midwest-based airline – AccessAir – and built a successful consulting practice, a true public-private partnership that brought numerous steel and other heavy manufacturing jobs to Iowa.

In his later years, Jim had more time to indulge his ever-present passion for gardening and could often be found on his tractor, planting hostas, and fighting off the deer that came to view his little Eden as a buffet. Throughout his life, he remained extremely active in community life – with State and County government, the Quad City Symphony Orchestra, the Bettendorf Presbyterian Church and in organizing and fighting for causes about which he felt strongly – particularly protecting the rights of retirees. His last great battle was a multiyear effort to level the playing field for Iowa with respect to the taxation of retiree pensions. The bill that he had pushed so hard to create was passed by the Iowa legislature and signed into law just a year before his passing.

Jim is survived by his wife Gunda Stassen Davis, his children Matthew Davis, Andrew Davis, and Sybil Johanna Davis, his grandchildren Max Davis, Emma Davis, Jack Davis, Avery Davis, Brinley Davis, Graham Davis, Aubrey Davis, and Alastair Davis-Spence.

Jim’s ashes will be inurned at Mountain View Cemetery in Marlinton, West Virginia at a date to be determined in the Fall of 2023. A Celebration of Life ceremony will be held on August 5, 2023 at the Weerts Funeral Home, 3625 Jersey Ridge Road, Davenport Iowa. Visitation will be from 10am-12pm with the funeral service to follow at 12pm.

In lieu of flowers the family asks that any memorial donations or contributions be made to The Quad City Symphony Orchestra, Bettendorf Presbyterian Church, or the Alzheimer’s Association.

Joseph Kirkland Hall III ’56

Charlotte Joe Hall passed away March 17, 2023, comforted by his family and faith, content in knowing he lived by the principles he held sacred: hard work, integrity, and honor. He was 87 years old.

Joe was born on March 22, 1935, the son of Joe and Lucille McGowen Hall. He grew up in Belmont, working in the family peach orchard and then in a local textile mill when he turned 16. Later, he spent teen-age summers working at Carolina Pad & Paper, the school supply company his father started in 1945.

He became the third generation in his family to graduate from Davidson College, earning a B.S. degree in Economics in 1956. Like so many of his generation, Joe served his country for four years in the U.S. Navy, attending Officer Candidate School in 1956. Following this service, he was in the active reserve until he met his wife, Sally Ann Pierce, whom he married in 1964. They put down roots in Charlotte, raised three children, and shared a wonderful life until cancer took her in 2005.

Joe devoted his career to Carolina Pad, rising to the position of owner and CEO, traveling the world to buy products, making lifelong friends with customers, and sealing deals with a handshake. He spent considerable time in South America, China, and India, being one of the first school manufacturers to develop partnerships with suppliers in those areas. Before retiring in 2002, he built the business from a regional company to one with national distribution. He served on the board of the School and Paper Products Association and was presented with a national award in 1994 for contribution to the industry.

After his first wife, Sally Ann, passed away he was fortunate enough to find Heidi Layton, whose husband had passed away in 2006. Joe and Heidi married in May of 2008.

Joe is survived by his wife, Heidi; his three children, Spencer Hall Guthery of Charlotte, and her children, Allen and Henry Guthery, Katherine “Kitty” Hall of Charlotte, Rev. Dr. Joseph Kirkland Hall IV and his wife Amy of Salisbury, CT, and their children, Fae and Evelyn Hall; Joe’s sister, Jane Hall Coley, and her husband Bill, of Charlotte; Heidi’s children, Gil Layton of Parker, CO, and his children, Catherine and Sam Layton, Dr. Thomas Layton and his wife Anne of Charlotte, and their children, James, Thomas, and Ellie Layton; Heidi Berger and her husband Chris of Charlotte, and their children, Molly and Lucy Berger. He is also survived by his cousin and close friend, Emily Hall Bigger and her husband Bill, of Raleigh.

Joe Hall lived a wonderful and full life. He enjoyed and supported Opera Carolina and the Charlotte Symphony, loved spending winters in Florida and summers at Grandfather Mountain, and traveled all over the world for work and pleasure, always learning and appreciating other cultures. Joe was very easy-going, he loved life and his many friends. He was interested in everyone he met and never had an unkind word to say about anyone.

A service to celebrate his well-lived life will be held at 10am on Saturday, March 25 at Myers Park United Methodist Church, 1501 Queens Road, Charlotte. Visitation will follow at the church.

The family greatly appreciates the care and concern of friends. Anyone wishing to make a memorial gift may do so to Myers Park United Methodist Church, 1501 Queens Road, Charlotte, NC 28207 or the charity of the donor’s choice.

The family is also deeply grateful for the love and excellent care shown by Dr. Jane Harrell, the staff at Sharon Towers, Hospice of Charlotte, and McEwen Funeral Service.

Jim Beaumont Marshall ’56

Jim Beaumont Marshall died on Thursday, January 19, 2023, at his home. He was 88 years old. Jim was the son of Jim Polk Marshall and Mary Beaumont Marshall.

Jim was born at his parents’ home in Rossview, TN, outside Clarksville, on April 1, 1934. He attended Clarksville High School and Davidson College.

He joined the United States Foreign Service and was posted during his career to US Embassies in Canada, Brazil, India, Indonesia, Holland, and Switzerland and to the US Department of State in Washington, D.C. He graduated from the Royal College of Defence Studies in London and received a Ford Foundation Fellowship to attend Princeton University where he studied population demographics. He was a Delegate to the United Nations’ Population Commission.

Jim retired to Clarksville where he was active with Trinity Episcopal Church, The Roxy Theatre, the Montgomery County Library, and other charitable organizations.

Jim is survived by his brother Jack Fry Marshall, (his other three siblings having predeceased him), four nephews, five nieces, and numerous great-nephews and great-nieces.

The family appreciates the home care and personal attention provided to Jim by BJ, Roger, Beverly, Parker, Larry, and Mila of Home Instead and the medical staff at Tennova Hospice.

Hubert Royster Chamblee ’56

Hubert Royster Chamblee, Jr., MD passed away on January 18, 2023 at age 88. Born in Raleigh, NC on December 14, 1934, he was the son of the late Dr. H. Royster Chamblee, Sr., and Georgia Riddle Chamblee.

Royster attended Ravenscroft School in Raleigh, Admiral Farragut Naval Academy in St. Petersburg, FL, Davidson College, and Duke Medical School. He then joined the US Navy as a Naval doctor, and afterwards, attended The University of South Carolina Medical School in Charleston, specializing in ophthalmology. He faithfully served the Raleigh community as an ophthalmologist for over 50 years.

While in the US Navy, Royster spent much of his time in the Mediterranean theater, including the Black Sea. On his last tour in 1963, Royster worked in sick bay aboard the carrier USS Kearsarge in the Pacific when Astronaut Gordon Cooper landed after his solo 34-hour Mercury space flight.

A highlight of his adolescent years was his time spent at Camp Morehead, where he developed his enthusiasm for sailing. As an adult, he enjoyed his 28-foot sailboat with family and friends. Royster had a propensity for all things mechanical and could talk widely on the subject. He was instrumental in the restoration of the merry-go-round at Pullen Park, which is beloved by a new generation of children. He also had a real love for music. His avocation was playing the French horn in several community brass bands and enjoying the camaraderie of fellow musicians.

Royster had no siblings, but his aunts, uncles, cousins and life-long friends were important to him, especially the Lampe family. He was particularly devoted to his step-mother, Elizabeth Ponton Chamblee, who provided much love and care. Many thanks and much gratitude to his loyal friend, Willard Ross, who looked after his welfare these last years.

A Celebration of Royster’s Life will be held at the The Royal Baker Building, located at 3801, Suite 109, Hillsborough St., Raleigh, NC 27607, on Sunday, February 26th, 2023 from 3 PM to 5 PM. Memorial donations may be made to a charity of your choice.