Julian McIver Pleasants ’60

Julian McIver Pleasants, 82, of Davidson, North Carolina passed away September 7, 2021 at The Pines at Davidson. Pleasants was born on November 12, 1938 in Moore Memorial Hospital in Pinehurst, North Carolina, son of the late James McIver Pleasants and Jean McIver Pleasants.

Raised in Sanford and Southern Pines, North Carolina, Julian graduated from Southern Pines High School in 1956. He played tennis and basketball for the Southern Pines teams, nicknamed “The Blue Knights.” For the remainder of his life, he was known to friends as “The Blue Knight” or just “Blue”. He earned a B.A. Degree from Davidson College in 1960 and continued his education with a M.A. in American History (1962) and in 1971, a Ph. D in American History from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.

Pleasants began his forty-six year teaching career as an Instructor at Converse College, Spartanburg, N.C. in 1962. Pleasants was an Instructor at the UNC History Department from 1967-1969 and spent one year, 1966-1967, as an Assistant Professor at Western Carolina University in Cullowhee, NC. In September 1969, he began a thirty-nine year career as a history professor at the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida. He retired as a full professor in 2008.

While at Florida, Pleasants taught over 10,000 students and won thirteen teaching awards including Teacher of the Year, Most Inspiring Professor at UF (1989) and one of Ten Outstanding Professors at UF (1974). He was the first Director of the Upward Bound Program at UF and for a brief period, served as Director of Minority Affairs. He later organized the Collegiate Scholars Minority Program at Florida and acted as the Director of the UF Overseas Program at Cambridge University in England in 1994.

Pleasants was one of the founders of the University of New Orleans-University of Florida Summer School in Innsbruck, Austria and functioned as Associate Director and Director from 1976-1992. The summer school is now in its 45th year and has educated over 10,000 students. He directed the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program at the University of Florida from 2002-2008, helping the program achieve the status of one of the premier programs in the nation. Pleasants was a member of the Board of Presidential Counselors for the National World War II Museum in New Orleans, LA from 2002-2009.

Pleasants wrote ten books, including: Hanging Chads: The Inside Story of the 2000 Presidential Recount in Florida; Frank Porter Graham and the Senate Election of 1950 In North Carolina; The Political Career of W. Kerr Scott, winner of the Ragan Old North State Award for best non-fiction book on N.C. during 2015; and Home Front: North Carolina During World War II. Also: Buncombe Bob: The Life and Times of Robert R. Reynolds; Seminole Voices: Reflections on Their Changing Society, with Harry Kersey. Awarded the Silver Medal for Non-Fiction, Florida Humanities Council, 2010 and the Harry T. Moore Award for Civil Rights Publications, Florida Historical Society, 2011; and Orange Journalism: Voices from Florida Newspapers. He acted as a consultant and script writer on the documentary, “Dr. Frank: The Life and Times of Frank Porter Graham.”

Pleasants was included in Who’s Who in America; Who’s Who in the World; and Who’s Who in International Education. He was awarded a Rotary International Fellowship for study in Australia in 1965-1966 and received an Award of Merit for outstanding service to the city of Innsbruck in 1985 and 1991. He served his country as a First Lieutenant in the U.S. Army from 1962-1964.

Julian loved to travel and visited over 120 countries during his peripatetic wanderings. He was a devotee of Dixieland jazz, Springer Spaniels (Mandy and Sunshine), public television, reading, and college basketball. Most of all he treasured the many friendships he was fortunate enough to make during his lifetime and loved to reminisce about all the wonderful times spent with those special friends.

He is survived by his brother, James Rodney Pleasants and Rod’s husband, Steve Godwin. Also by his niece Jessica Pleasants Oncel, her husband, Okan Oncel, and their two children, Olive Rose and Leonardo James. Julian is also survived by his dear friends, Beth and Nick Mueller and their family.

In lieu of flowers, memorials should be directed to UNC-TV and Davidson College.
Condolences and memories may be shared at www.kepnerfh.com.
Julian McIver Pleasants '60

Published by Charlotte Observer on Sep. 12, 2021.

Robert L. Avinger, Jr. ’60

Robert Livingston Avinger, Jr. died on June 23, 2021 of advanced dementia. Born on April 26, 1938 to Frances Haltiwanger and Robert Livingston Avinger, Sr., Bob grew up in Columbia, South Carolina in a happy neighborhood filled with family and life-long friends.

Bob was an Eagle Scout and graduated from Dreher High School in 1956, where he was a proud member of the 1956 State Championship basketball team. Bob attended Davidson College and thrived academically, socially, and athletically. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa, was president of Beta Theta Pi, and played on Dr. Tom Scott’s golf team. Bob developed a deep love for Davidson College and his network of college friends remained incredibly important to him. After graduating from Davidson in 1960, Bob served for two years as a lieutenant in the United States Army. Bob then earned his PhD in Economics from Duke University.

Returning to Davidson College in 1967, Bob taught Economics and served as the Dean of the Center for Special Studies. He received the first ODK Award given by students for outstanding teaching. His relationships with his students were deep and influential; he remained closely connected to former students throughout his life. That influence continues today through the Avinger Impact Fund – providing annual grants awarded through the Jay Hurt Hub for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Davidson College to current students to support the development of business start-up ideas. Indicative of Bob’s influence, the fund was established by his former students.     

In 1980, Bob left Davidson College and joined his friend Olin Nisbet at Sterling Capital Management, an investment advisory firm in Charlotte, North Carolina. After retiring from Sterling in 1998, Bob continued to pursue his passion for entrepreneurial endeavors.

Bob and Jane McRae Jackson married in 1962. For over fifty years, they have lived in and served the Davidson community. Bob was a devoted member of Davidson College Presbyterian Church, where he was an Elder. Together, Jane and Bob received the Algernon Sidney Sullivan Award for service to the community – and most notably for their leadership in developing the Pines Retirement Community. Bob served on the Board of Trustees at Davidson College and on the Board of the Union Seminary.

Through the years, the family spent summers at Pawleys Island, South Carolina. While at Pawleys, Bob shared his love for sailing, flounder fishing, and spending time in the creek. Their home at Pawleys, “Lagniappe,” was a joyful haven for friends and family. Bob adored music and reading. He entertained many with his mean jazz piano playing and was a founding member of the Davidson Book Club.

Bob is survived by his wife of 59 years, Jane Jackson Avinger of Davidson, his children Mary Charles Avinger Montgomery, Asheville, and Robert Livingston Avinger, III (Jane Price), Nashville. Bob was affectionately called “Grandbobby” by his six grandchildren: Findley Dean Montgomery, Catherine Stuart Montgomery, Whitney Harris Montgomery, Jr., Anna McNair Avinger, Robert Baker Avinger, and Caroline Coker Avinger.

His brothers and sisters-in law and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins from the Avinger, Haltiwanger, Jackson, and Rivers families were all important to him.

The family is profoundly grateful to the many loving and compassionate caregivers both at home and at the Pines Health Center and is especially grateful for Eddy Beam. 

A worship service in celebration of Bob’s life will be held at 2:00 pm on Sunday, June 27, in the Lilly Family Gallery in the Chambers Building on the campus of Davidson College. A reception will follow. Unvaccinated attendees are requested to please wear a mask.     

The service will be live-streamed on the Davidson College Presbyterian Church Facebook page. A video will be made available in the days following the service.

There will be a visitation at the Avinger home on Saturday, June 26 from 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm.

In lieu of flowers, memorials gifts can be made to the Avinger Impact Fund at Davidson College or to The Pines at Davidson. 

Avinger Impact Fund
Davidson College 
Box 7170
Davidson NC 28035-7170


The Pines at Davidson
400 Avinger Lane
Davidson, NC. 28036

Harry Lee Broome ’60

Dr. Harry Lee Broome was born in Salisbury, NC in 1937. He was Valedictorian at Needham Broughton HS in Raleigh NC graduating in 1956, where he also became an Eagle Scout and a champion tennis player. He went on to play tennis for Davidson College graduating in 1960. He then attended UNC School of Medicine and served as a physician in the US Army as a Major stationed overseas in Korea.

Returning to Fort McPherson in Atlanta, he completed his training in orthopedic surgery at Georgia Baptist (now Atlanta Medical Center) and opened a practice, Chattahoochee Orthopedic Clinic, with his longtime friend and partner, Dr. Lyn Crooms.

He later practiced at Pinnacle Orthopedics.Harry was a family man, a dog lover, a student of history, a tennis player and a bass fisherman. Mostly, however, he was a charming, honest and sincere friend to so many people and those who were lucky enough to be counted amongst them have learned the true meaning of loyalty and friendship.

He was preceded in death by his daughter Mary Elizabeth Broome and his beloved dog Allie.

He leaves behind his wife of 43 years and best friend, Sandra Jean (Sandy). His adoring children – Harry Jr., married to Karen, Trey, and Shawn, married to Paul Castino. His grandchildren include Payson, Evan, Anna, Jake, Abby and Michael who loved him dearly. It was mutual. His sisters, Betty and Bonnie and their extended families in North Carolina.

Finally, he also leaves behind his two Portuguese Water Dogs, hundreds of dear friends, and thousands of largemouth bass fish that he put back into the water at the Suwannee River. He is and will be deeply missed.

Visitation will be held at Roswell Funeral Home, 950 Mansell Road, Roswell, GA on June 18, 2021 from 12 noon until 2 PM with a celebration of Harry’s life following at 2 PM.

In Lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Atlanta chapter of the Humane Society.

Copyright: Copyright (c) 2021, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Jack Caldwell Carter ’60

Jack Caldwell Carter, 82 years of age, passed away on April 6, 2021, in Jacksonville, Fla.

Dr. Carter was born in Atlanta, Ga., to Hugh D. Carter Jr., and Ruth Moore Carter. He married Carajean “Jean” Langston, and together they raised their child, Hugh “Paul” Carter in Atlanta and Americus, Ga. Mrs. Carter recently passed away on Dec. 28, 2020, while residing in Jacksonville, Fla.

Jack received his formal education at Davidson College, Florida State University, Georgia State University, and received his doctorate from the University of Georgia. He originally had planned to obtain his degree in theology at Davidson College.

Dr. Carter was a retired professor of genetics. He taught for many years with a passion. He mentored and developed many friendships while working at Georgia Southwestern College in Americus, Ga. Dr. Carter instilled the importance of higher education, integrity, and resourcefulness to his family and grandchildren who loved him dearly.

Paul and Jack were not only father and son, but also best friends. Imagine being a child of two lifelong educators. Paul fondly remembers many, many adventurous trips with his parents to Ocala, Fla., the Florida Everglades, camping and road trips covering many places with his parents as a child.

Dr. Carter and Jean retired and moved to St. Simons Island, Ga., where they spent many days enjoying the sunrises and sunsets together with family and friends over the years.

Jack and his best friend, Terrell, and their families spent many days together as one as well throughout Paul’s younger years. Jack and Terrell also enjoyed the trips to Las Vegas and Biloxi.

Dr. Carter and Mrs. Carter leave the following to cherish their wonderful memories – their only child born to this loving couple, Hugh “Paul” Carter and their daughter-in-love, Tiki C. Carter of Fayetteville, Ga.; their granddaughters, Cherisa and Chiara Hawkins, both of Stockbridge, Ga.; and their great-granddaughter, Gabrielle Pinkney of Stockbridge, Ga.

We would like to thank Dr. Carter’s friends and fellow educators for their support over the last couple of months, such as Mr. Terrell and Mrs. Janie Turner and their family; Dr. Hap and Mildred Tiegen, Mr. Henry and Nancy Peabody; the many friends at Riverwatch Condominiums, St. Simons Island, Ga.; Brooks Assisted Care and Baptist Medical of Jacksonville, Fla.; and his dear friend, Anne Vroom, of Brunswick, Ga.

Services will be planned for a later date.

Arrangements by Hardage-Giddens Funeral Home of Mandarin, 11801 San Jose Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 904-288-0025.

The Brunswick News, April 14, 2021

© Copyright 2021, Brunswick News, Brunswick, GA.

Robert Wilson ’60

Robert Anderson Wilson, 82, of Lynchburg, Va., died on Monday, January 25, 2021. The third of four sons of the late Moena Hand Wilson and Lowry Reed Wilson, he attended public schools in Lowell, N.C., became an Eagle Scout, and grew up in the Presbyterian church. Summer visits with his family to Montreat Conference Center were formative.

He earned degrees from Davidson College, Columbia Theological Seminary (M Div), and McCormick Theological Seminary (D Min).

During 39 years in the ministry, he was Associate Presbyter for Blue Ridge Presbytery and served churches in N.C. and Va., Westminster Presbyterian in Lynchburg, Va., Second Presbyterian in Salisbury, N.C., Shiloh and Dixon Presbyterian in Grover, N.C., Unity and Machpelah Presbyterian in Lincoln County, N.C.

An active volunteer, he served terms as Trustee at Davidson College and Westminster Canterbury in Lynchburg and served on many synod and presbytery committees.

He was a founding board member of the Free Clinic of Central Va., for many years a weekly volunteer at Lynchburg General’s Cardiac Rehab unit, a longtime board member of Lynchburg Literacy Council as well as Churches for Urban Ministry and its Timothy Club. He received a NCCJ humanitarian award in 2002 in recognition of these activities.

He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Martha Goodwin Wilson; three children, Lynn Watkins (Gordon), Susan Schaumburg (Eric), and Andy Wilson (Michelle Day); four grandchildren, Kate Watkins, Sarah Watkins, Conrad Schaumburg, and Mattie Schaumburg; one brother, John Wilson (Anne); and several nieces and nephews.

In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by two brothers and a sister-in-law, Parks Wilson and his wife, Kitty, and Lowry Wilson Jr.

The family will plan a memorial service for a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to Westminster Presbyterian Church, the Free Clinic of Central Virginia or a charity of your choice.

Tharp Funeral Home & Crematory, Lynchburg, is assisting the family. To send condolences, please visit www.tharpfuneralhome.com.

© Copyright 2021, The News & Advance, Lynchburg, VA