Mr. Earl E. Hennessee, 82, of Bostic, died Sunday, April 3, 2016 at his residence.
He was the son of the late H.E. and Mozelle Hennessee, and was also preceded in death by a brother, R.L. Hennessee, and two sisters, Katherine King and Evelyn Sulc.
Earl was a graduate of Sunshine High School. He joined the Navy with friends Verl Waters, Emmett Gettys, and Bud Oates. Their basic training was in Bainbridge, MD. Earl was nominated as Honor Man of Company 90 at Recruits Training Command, VSN & C, Bainbridge, MD. He was highly commended by Captain J. Wolsieffer USN Commanding Officer. Earl was assigned aboard the USS Sage (AM-1111), the minesweeper was based in Charleston, SC. He served as a mechanical engineer and attained the rank of Petty Officer 2/C, and served in the Navy from 1952 until 1956. When Earl returned home in 1956, he attended NC State College for a year. Earl then went to Bailey Technical School, St. Louis, MO, and after graduation he returned home and worked at Carolina Freight in Cherryville. After 18 years of service at Carolina Freight, he worked for Buddy Bennett at Truck Services where he was shop manager when he retired. One of his most memorable accomplishments was when Buddy bought a glider kit and asked Earl to make a truck, Earl assembled the truck and it was sold by Buddy after 1 million miles, and he built 2 other trucks while he was there.
Earl was a faithful member of Salem United Methodist Church, where he served as a trustee, on the building committee, with the choir, and the Methodist Men.
He is survived by his wife, Millie Jean "Mickey" Deese Hennessee; two daughters, Kim Hennessee and Shannon Henson, both of Bostic; his son, Kelly Hennessee of Charlotte; a sister, Peggy Ballew of Morganton; there are three grandchildren, Chad Phillips and his fiancÃ©e Jennifer Childers, Ashley Philbeck and her husband Elan, and Ansley Henson.
The Funeral will be conducted at 3:00 pm Wednesday, April 6, 2016 at Salem United Methodist Church. The Rev. Melinda Penry will officiate. Following the service in the sanctuary, the Rutherford County Honor Guard will provide Military Rites on the grounds of the church. Private burial will be in the church cemetery. Pallbearers are Geary Conner, Rodney Glover, Josh Hallman, Bobby Matheny, Glenn Robertson, and Mark Wilson.
Following the Military Rites, the family will receive friends.
Memorials may be made to Salem United Methodist Church, PO Box 220, Bostic, NC 28018 or Hospice of Rutherford County, PO Box 336, Forest City, NC 28043.
Washburn & Dorsey Funeral and Cremation Service is in charge of arrangements.
Online condolences @www.washburndorsey.com.