Sarah Sutton Tomlinson

March 27, 2013 

Sarah Sutton Tomlinson moved on to another life on March 26, 2013, after 91 years of good health and a brief illness.

She was born on Oct. 13. 1921 in Raleigh where she spent most of her youth, graduating from St. Mary’s High School, and then from UNC-Ch where she was a Pi Beta Phi, the chapter founded in her grandmother’s attic. Sarah was born to a family of high achievers - grandfather Francis Preston Venable, President of the University of NC; father Louis V. Sutton, President and CEO of Carolina Power & Light, and mother Cantey Venable Sutton, artist, author, actor, community leader - and was married for 65 years to Larry Tomlinson, an outgoing, outstanding businessman of many talents who predeceased her in 2009.

Sarah provided love and support to family members in and out of the limelight, and excelled in her role as a beautiful and gracious hostess and partner in the very social world in which she lived. But she was most comfortable in her study with her Bible, her books, and journals. She chose to devote her life to her family and to a lifelong search for knowledge of God the Father and His Son Jesus. A student and teacher of the Bible, she was beloved by the many who attended her classes over the years and sought her counsel. She was a member of the Charlotte Jr. League, the Colonial Dames, the Charlotte Debutante Club, Charlotte Country Club, Blowing Rock Country Club, and Quail Hollow Country Club, but had special affinity for her long term relationship with Christ Episcopal Church and Southminster Retirement Community.

Among those who will miss her most are her four children: Cantey Tomlinson Kelleher of Charlotte; Sally Tomlinson Earnhardt and husband Ray of Roaring Gap; Lawrence Archdale Tomlinson, III and wife Teresa of Davidson, NC; and Jessie Tomlinson Jones and husband David of Charlotte; nine grandchildren: Preston McDowell Gannaway and her partner Nicole Fruge, Gray Harrington Gannaway, Carrie Seymour Eckert and husband Matt, Curtis Sargent Seymour and wife Akasemi, Jessie Carroll Tomlinson, Britania McKinley Tomlinson, Sutton Best Jones, James David Jones III, Hunter Lawrence Jones; and two great-grandchildren: Colin McGuire Eckert and Bennett Lawrence Eckert. And Dolly, her loyal and loving canine companion of 13 years.

She was predeceased by her parents, her brother, Louis V. Sutton, Jr. and her husband, Lawrence A. Tomlinson, Jr.

The family expresses sincere appreciation to extended family member of 60 years, Selma Bordeaux. And many, many thanks to the wonderful staff of Southminster’s medical wing and to Constance McKinley who cared so tenderly for her at the end of life.

In lieu of flowers memorial gifts may be made to Southminster Foundation, 8919 Park Road, Charlotte 28210 and to Christ Episcopal Church, 1412 Providence Road, Charlotte, 28207.

Memorial service will be held in the Great Room at Southminster Retirement Community at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 28, followed by a reception. Interment will be private.

THRobertson Funeral Service is serving the Family.

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