Thomas Russell Grant, who was born in Syracuse, NY on December 1, 1928, passed away at Duke Hospital in Raleigh, NC on November 21, 2014. He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Cornelia Love Grant and three children, Cynthia Grant, Thomas R. Grant, Jr and wife Janet Stewart, grandson Thomas S. Grant, and Terence R. Grant and wife Tammie Dunlap, grandsons Laird C. Grant and Elliot D. Grant. He is also survived by nine siblings and their families, and is predeceased by his father, Ernest C. Grant, mother, Frances A. Grant, two brothers and one sister.
Tom enjoyed a long and successful 48-year career in the soft drink industry, beginning at age 15 with Syracuse Pepsi, when in Middle School. After a four-year service in the Air Force from 1950 to 1954, he returned to Syracuse Pepsi in route sales, later transferring to Auburn, NY as the Sales Manager. He moved to Lumberton, NC, in 1968, to become the Plant Manager for PepCom Industries’ move into Eastern NC. With the consolidation and growth PepCom Industries, and move of the corporate office, the Grant Family relocated to Raleigh in 1978. At that time, he became Executive Vice President of Operations serving in this position until his retirement in 1995. After retirement, he worked for Suntory International's Crystal Springs Water Group in Atlanta, GA for two years.
Tom served as President of the NC Pepsi Bottler's Association in 1976 and 1977, and from 1969 to1972 on the Board of Director's of the NC Soft Drink Association. In 1964 he was the recipient of the Outstanding Jaycee of the year in Auburn, NY as well as the Jaycee Boss of the Year in 1972. In the 1970’s, he served on the Board of Directors of the Lumberton Chamber of Commerce and the First Union National Bank. Much of his community involvement during those years supported the Cape Fear Council, Boy Scouts of America. He served on the Cape Fear Council Board of Directors, was Central District Chairman, Central District Finance Chairman and recipient of Scouter of the Year Award in 1972.
New York State born, he was a southern gentleman who lived the majority of his life in North Carolina. He was an avid outdoorsman and sportsman who loved the Outer Banks of NC where he and Connie built a cottage in Duck in 1983. His strong sense of family was anchored from his early years as second oldest of a large family. His sense of duty to family stayed with him his whole life. He felt fortunate, with no regrets, for a long life of honest, hard work, opportunities to serve his community, close friends, and his deep love of family.
There will be a memorial service on Saturday, January 3, 2015 at 11:00 AM at the First Presbyterian Church of Raleigh.
If friends care to remember Tom, the family suggests Meal on Wheels of Wake County and First Presbyterian Church of Raleigh.