May 29, 2007
Dr. Cleet C. Cleetwood, 84, of Carthage died at his home on Tuesday (May 29, 2007). A funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday at First Presbyterian Church of Carthage, with the Reverend Rick Martindale officiating. Burial will follow at the church cemetery. The family will receive friends at the church following the service and other times at the home, 5100 Glendon-Carthage Road, Carthage.
A native of Carthage, Cleetwood served North Carolina students as a teacher, coach, principal, superintendent and university professor. Following his career in public education, he worked as a starter/ranger at Pinehurst Resort, retiring in 2007 after 20 years of service.
After earning a bachelor's degree in 1943 at Appalachian State University and lettering in football, basketball and baseball, he was called into service with the U.S. Air Force. He served during WW II as a B-17 navigator. The proud veteran then enrolled at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he earned his masters degree and lettered in varsity baseball. Following a period of playing professional baseball, he began work at Duke University toward his doctoral degree. Professional honors include induction into the Education Hall of Fame at East Carolina University. He was also awarded membership into the prestigious Rhododendron Society at Appalachian State University which recognizes a distinguished alumnus annually.
Cleet worshipped and held positions of leadership, including deacon and elder, at several Presbyterian churches. Most recently, he was a member of First Presbyterian Church of Carthage. He also participated in several community, civic and professional organizations. His lifelong love of athletics continued with his participation in Senior Games at the local, state and national levels. In later years, he was widely recognized as "Uncle Sam" at various community events in Moore County and surrounding areas.
He was preceded in death by daughter Suzanne Cleetwood and aunts Ollie Nall and Bessie Williams. He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Margaret Lewis Cleetwood; daughter Lucinda Casey and husband David of Carthage, Daughter Nancy Carter of Carthage and husband Nick of Martinsville and son John Cleetwood of Carthage; grandchildren, Chris Casey and wife Mackenzie of Durham, Brian Casey and wife Jeanna of Eagle Springs, Nicholas Cleetwood Carter and Caroline Suzanne Carter of Carthage; and four great-grandchildren.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials to be made to the Cleet and Margaret Cleetwood Education Foundation, c/o BB&T, 502 Monroe Street, Carthage, NC 28327 or to the charity of your choice.