Francis Stuart Carson, 63, of Orange County, NC, passed away on March 21, 2016, after a lengthy struggle with MDS. He was a gentle, kind and generous man and we are grateful for his life and friendship. Stuart was preceded in death by his parents, Lloyd Milford and Ruth Johnson Carson of Bladenboro, NC. He is survived by his wife, Frances Wilkinson Marshall, stepson Eric Lewis of Williamsport, PA, brothers LM and wife Filena Carson of Autryville, NC and Arnold Carson and wife Becky Hines of Wilmington, NC, nieces and nephews, and a host of relatives and friends.Memorial services will be held at the Eno River Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Durham, NC, on April 2, 2016, at 3:00 pm. In lieu of flowers, the family wishes that donations be made to one of the following: The MDS Foundation (www.mds-foundation.org
), 4573 S. Broad St., Suite 150, Yardville, NJ 08620; and Music Maker Relief Foundation (musicmaker.org
), PO Box 1358, Hillsborough, NC 27278.Stuart was born in Bladen County on February 18, 1953 and was graduated from Elizabethtown High School in Elizabethtown, NC. He attended UNC-Chapel Hill and earned an undergraduate degree in psychology from UNC-Wilmington. He later earned a degree in Civil Engineering from NC State. As a Professional Engineer, he served the Triangle area for many years helping to manage water resources, with employment at Hazen and Sawyer in Raleigh, at The Durham County Water Division in Durham and at Owasa in Carboro.Retiring in 2015 from Orange Water and Sewer Authority in Carrboro, NC, his illness interrupted plans to spend more time with Fran, traveling, playing guitar and writing songs, gardening and raising small farm animals. However, his illness became manifest shortly after retirement, and he spent much of the past seven months undergoing intensive treatment. During this time, true to his character, he planned for both his recovery and for his death, to ensure he had taken care of all that he could. His family wishes to thank UNC Medical Center's Cancer and Bone Marrow Transplant Teams for their care.Stuart loved Americana music and had a deep respect for singer-songwriters. He was Guy Clark's biggest fan and had planned on attending the Americana Music awards in Nashville, TN last fall, but his illness prevented his attendance. He studied guitar and songwriting for many years with Jon Shain of Durham, NC, and was excited to have more time for music with retirement.Stuart loved his wife and home and worked hard for their life together. They enjoyed doing many things together--movies and TV shows, gardening, music, and traveling to the beach. He loved all his pets, but Eli the maltipoo was his special puppy who always received plenty of lap time.Stuart was remarkably kind, thoughtful and straightforward. You knew how he felt and you knew he was generous in spirit and action. He was recognized at work for leading efforts at inclusion and diversity. If he met a stranger on the streets in need, he helped them out. Friends and family knew he could be relied on for anything. We will miss him, his laughter, his appreciation of music, food and drink, and his love for us all.