Norman Fred Weatherly, age 83, died Monday in Durham, NC at Duke Hospice, Hock Family Pavilion, ending his struggle with Alzheimer’s. He was born in Scottsburg, Oregon, in the farmhouse where he was raised. He graduated from Elkton High School as valedictorian of the class of 1949, but as Norman often reminded others he was not in the top ten percent of his class because there were only nine seniors, including several relatives. Norman attended Oregon State University, where as a sophomore he met the love of his life, Eileen Lehman. They married on August 3, 1952. He was ROTC and graduated with a B.S. in agriculture (1953). While at OSU, he was a member of Phi Kappa Psi fraternity, as well as a member of Phi Kappa Phi, a scholastic honorary society.
After graduation he received a regular Army commission and served in the 82nd Airborne stationed at Fort Bragg, NC, and later in Germany with the 9th Infantry Division, attaining the rank of First Lieutenant. Following his tenure in the army, he, Eileen, and three year old Norma returned to Oregon where he completed an M.S. in marine zoology at Oregon State (1960) followed by a PhD in veterinary parasitology (1962) at Kansas State University. He, Eileen, and by then three children moved to Chapel Hill, NC in 1962 on a one-year post-doctoral appointment and never left. He became a full professor in 1972 in the Department of Parasitology and Laboratory Practice in the School of Public Health at UNC. Norman mentored over 30 PhD students as well as Doctor of Public Health (DRPH) students. In addition, he taught parasitology to first-year medical students at UNC and Duke. Norman received the Edward G. McGavran Award for teaching excellence in 1980, as well as the Bernard G. Greenberg Alumni Endowment Award for excellence in teaching, research, and service in 1986. As a member of the Public Health Delta Omega Society, he was a National Merit Awardee in 1988. Norman loved teaching and especially enjoyed the life-long relationships he nurtured and maintained with former students around the country and world.
Norman was an active community member. He served on the Chapel Hill-Carrboro School Board for nine years, two of them as chair, during the turbulent 1960s and 1970s, putting, in the words of a Chapel Hill Newspaper Orville Campbell editorial, his “time, heart and soul into the responsibility that goes with the job.” He was an involved member and past president of the Kiwanis Club, and Deacon and Elder of the University Presbyterian Church, volunteering in the church office as recently as June 2015. Norman also served on the Board of Directors of Carol Woods Retirement Community and was a member of the Orange County Economic Development Commission.
After retiring from UNC in 1989, Norman and Eileen hit the road, traversing the country many times for a total of 135,000 miles with Norman at the wheel of their 30 foot motor home. They explored national parks and visited friends and relatives far and wide. Norman had an exceptional gift for being able to talk with persons in all walks of life and make others feel valued and respected. He never forgot the life lessons he learned growing up on the farm in the close-knit community of Elkton, Oregon, and cherished trips back to his childhood home. He was equally at ease in his professional life and thrived in the scientific and academic environment.
Norman is survived by his wife of nearly 63 years, Eileen Lehman Weatherly; sister Janetta Mae “Zan” (Vince) Stone of Elkton, OR; step-sisters Joyce Stevenson of Sutherlin, OR, and Bonnie (Francis) Albro of Elkton, OR; children Norma (Stewart) Schwab, Ithaca, NY; Scott, Carrboro; Jay, Hillsborough; Jill, Lumberton; Dawn, Chapel Hill; and Vance, Pittsburgh, PA; 13 grandchildren, 9 great-grandchildren, and numerous cousins, nieces, nephews, and grand-nieces and –nephews. He is predeceased by his father Norman B. Weatherly, mother Mabel Henderer Weatherly, step-mother Irene Weatherly, brothers Henry and Harry Weatherly and sisters Betty Jane Weatherly and Normabelle Goesch.
A memorial service will be held at 2:00 pm on Monday, July 20, at the University Presbyterian Church. Memorial gifts can be made to the University Presbyterian Church, P.O. Box 509, Chapel Hill, NC 27514, and directed to the Faith Forward Campaign; or Duke Hospice, Hock Family Pavilion, 4023 N. Roxboro Rd., Durham, NC 27704.