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Ernest Gilstrap

Ernest Gaines Gilstrap

Thursday, July 7th, 1927 - Monday, September 9th, 2019
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Obituary

Ernest Gaines Gilstrap, age 92, passed away peacefully in his Easley, SC home to be with our Heavenly Father on September 9, 2019. Born in Liberty, SC, Ernest was one of nine children born to William Henry and Elsie Aiken Gilstrap. His beloved wife of 62 years, Margaret Louise, passed away in 2009.
Ernest is survived by one sister, Emma Jean (Arnold) Beard of Easley; his three children, Constance Louise Truesdail (Richard), David Gaines Gilstrap (Sharon), and Charles Logan Gilstrap (Jane); five grandchildren, six great grandchildren, and two great great grandchildren.
After serving as a decorated U.S. Navy gunner in WW II, Ernest attended Brevard College from 1947-1949. Ernest and Louise made Brevard their home for over 70 years, where they were faithful members of the First United Methodist Church. Ernest worked with Olin Corporation for 34 years and retired in 1985. In 1968 he was appointed as one of the first district magistrates in North Carolina and served in that capacity until his retirement in 1992 at the age of 65.
For his committed services to Transylvania County, Governor James G. Martin presented Ernest with the State of North Carolina’s Order of the Long Leaf Pine. Because Ernest exemplified a public -spirited citizen, he was appointed to serve on the Transylvania County Board of Social Services from 1998 to 2001. In 2012, the Transylvania County Sheriff’s office recognized Ernest for his 40 years of service to the families and children of Transylvania County. He spent every Christmas Eve as the voice of Santa, calling county children to ask what their Christmas wishes were...including his jingle bells and his deep-throated, jolly “Ho-Ho-Ho". Ernest was also well-known as the “Voice of the Brevard Blue Devils”, announcing football games from the press box from 1954-2004. In 2015, Ernest was presented a handmade Quilt of Valor, a unique quilt designed especially for him, for his WW II service on the USS Massachusetts from 1942-1945.
Growing up in the foothills and living in the North Carolina mountains, Ernest had a passion for Bluegrass music and attending shaped-note singing events, where he would be called on to lead congregational singing. As a young man, he enjoyed acting with the Brevard Little Theater group as well as the Vagabond Players at Flat Rock Playhouse near Hendersonville, N.C. He always looked forward to Clemson University football weekends with his family and friends gathered to have huge tailgates prior to watching the Tigers in Death Valley. Devoted to the mission of Clemson University, he was an IPTAY lifetime scholarship donor.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to First United Methodist Church of Brevard.
A memorial service to celebrate the blessed life of Ernest G. Gilstrap will take place at Brevard First United Methodist Church, 325 N. Broad St., at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, September 22. Following the service, Ernest’s family will receive friends in the church fellowship hall.
Online condolences may be left at www.moodyconnollyfuneralhome.com
Moody-Connolly Funeral Home is assisting the family.



 
 
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Service Details

  • Service

    Sunday, September 22nd, 2019 | 2:30pm
    When
    Sunday, September 22nd, 2019 2:30pm
    Location
    First United Methodist Church of Brevard
    Address
    325 N. Broad St.
    Brevard, NC 28712
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    Officiant
    Rev. Mike Holder
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Matt and Rebecca's friends at MGN & Associates and Rodney and Bethyl Smith have sent flowers to the family of Ernest Gaines Gilstrap.
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MA

Matt and Rebecca's friends at MGN & Associates

Posted at 08:49pm
Please accept our most heartfelt sympathies for your loss... Our thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time.
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Matt and Rebecca's friends at MGN & Associates purchased the Dreams from the Heart Bouquet for the family of Ernest Gilstrap. Send Flowers

SS

Samuel Simmons

Posted at 10:23am
Uncle Ernest was a real prince of a man. He was always so pleasant to be around and treated me with respect every time I saw him. He and I held a running joke about him wearing a girdle ( it was his back brace) that lasted somewhere around 40 years, right up until the last time I saw him at Aunt Peggy's memorial service. He made a great impact on his family as well as his community. He will be missed greatly. Samuel Simmons
SE

shirley and dickie etters

Posted at 11:31am
logan and family i am sorry to hear of your loss your dad was a well liked man and did his jobs well i know y
he will be missed he married me and dicke on the steps of his home across from franklin park that was a beautiful house and was the service we wanted our thoughts and prayers are with you all
RS

Rodney and Bethyl Smith

Posted at 09:49am
With love and gratitude for your guidance, council and support With our deepest sympathy to Connie, David, Logan and family
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Rodney and Bethyl Smith purchased flowers for the family of Ernest Gilstrap. Send Flowers

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