Sue Smith Applewhite passed from her earthly home at Liberty Commons in Jacksonville, NC surrounded by family to her heavenly home on September 26, 2014. She was born on Nov. 25, 1925 to Myrtle Irene and Robert F. Smith in Benson, NC, the youngest of 7 children. She was preceded in death by her husband of 61 years, James A. Applewhite in 2009.
She is survived by her daughter and son-in-law, Jennifer and Graham Pelletier, grandson and wife, Alex and Allison Pelletier, grandson, Ian Pelletier, of Jacksonville, NC and several nieces and nephews.
Sue got her degree in Social Work at Woman's College in Greensboro, NC (UNCG) and her Masters in Social Work at UNC-Chapel Hill. She began her career as a social worker in Smithfield, NC (Johnston Co.). She continued her career in Wilmington, NC (New Hanover Co.) after marrying Jim. A new job for Jim with the USMC Exchange brought them to Jacksonville, NC in 1950 where she worked in the Onslow County Dept. of Social Services until her retirement as Director in 1988. During that time, she served as President of the Directors Assn. and President of NCSSA. Her accomplishments were numerous and their effects will be felt in the community and state for many years to come.
Even after retiring, she had a "case load" of friends and family to encourage and love; especially in the hospital, nursing homes, assisted living facilities or private homes. Her Papa always called her his "hello/good-bye girl" and how right he was. She never overstayed her welcome, but you knew she was thinking of you with a visit or a card. You might even be honored with a loaf of her banana bread. Part of her ministry was to send cards for any occasion, but always for birthdays. She told her postman she gave him job security.
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She was a faithful servant of her Lord Jesus Christ and member of First Baptist Church where she was a soloist, choir member, founder of their flower/balloon ministry, member of The Elizabeth Class, program chairman for the FFA senior adults dinner, and served on many committees.
Sue was passionate about Lionism; first as the wife of Lion Jim; then as a Lioness; and finally holding many leadership positions in The Jacksonville New River Lions Club, of which Jim was a charter member.
She was a devoted daughter, sister, aunt, wife, mother-in-law, grandmother and friend. She would always say, "There are a lot of things I can't do, but the one thing I do well is love people." And they loved her. She will be greatly missed.
Visitation will be Monday, Sept. 29, 2014 6-8pm at Jones Funeral Home in Jacksonville, NC. A celebration of life service will be Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014 at 11am at First Baptist Church, 1985 Gum Branch Rd., Jacksonville, NC. Burial will be private.
Donations may be made in lieu of flowers to: First Baptist Church Building Fund; Jacksonville New River Lions Club, P.O. Box 7116 NWSTA, Jacksonville, NC 28540 or Baptist Children’s Homes of North Carolina, P.O. Box 338, Thomasville, NC 27361-0338.