Harry Ray Biles


Harry Ray Biles
dedicated scoutmaster who influenced the lives of many local boys and helped them become successful and honorable men, Harry Ray Biles died May 29 at his home in Concord. He was 90.
Mr. Biles was the leader of Boy Scout Troop 3 at First Presbyterian Church for 20 years. He received the Silver Beaver Award from the Central North Carolina Council, and during his tenure, around 40 members of his troop became Eagle Scouts.
Mr. Biles' former scouts include retired U.S. Army Lt. Col. and government defense contractor Fulton Jones and retired U.S. Navy Capt. Kenneth Swan, a former commander of the USS Tennessee, a ballistic missile submarine. Among the others are dentist Todd Martin, gastroenterologist Chester Stowe, retired attorney Greg Martin and bank executive Stuart Jones.
In the 1973, Mr. Biles and Troop 3 attended the National Scout Jamboree at Moraine State Park in Pennsylvania.
Mr. Biles' assistant scoutmaster was retired Superior Court Judge Erwin Spainhour, and they became close friends who enjoyed each other's company long after their scouting days had ended.
Mr. Biles was an enthusiastic fisherman, and Spainhour frequently took him out on his boat. Spainhour, however, missed one of Mr. Biles' greatest catches - a huge red snapper that he landed off of Edisto Island in 2011.
Mr. Biles was born May 8, 1926 in Concord. He was the son of the late Walter DeBerry Biles Sr. and Sallie Russell Biles.
Mr. Biles graduated from Mount Pleasant High School and King's College, where he studied business, in Charlotte. He also attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
A World War II veteran, Mr. Biles served in the U.S. Army Air Forces from 1944 to 1947. He received aerial gunnery training at Harlingen Army Airfield in Texas and became a tail gunner on a B-24.
Biles worked for the Continental Insurance Company for 27 years. He was the commercial property manager for North and South Carolina.
In addition, Biles was an avid collector. At various times in his life, he collected stamps, political campaign buttons, Thoroughbred racing memorabilia, insurance signs and fishing lures.
In his later years, Biles enjoyed spending time with his grandchildren and great-grandchild.
Mr. Biles is survived by his daughter, Deirdre Beth (Dede) Biles of Aiken, S.C.; his son, Russell Herrin Biles of Greenville, S.C.; three grandchildren, Quentin Biles, Evan Biles and Keri Biles, and one great-grandchild Ava Biles.
Keri Biles is a graduate of Clemson University. Evan Biles is a graduate of the University of Georgia. Quentin Biles is a graduate of Georgia Tech and a first lieutenant and pilot in the U.S. Marine Corps.
Mr. Biles was preceded in death by his wife of nearly 60 years, Geraldine Garmon Biles; three brothers,
Bedford Biles, Walter DeBerry Biles, Jr. and Earl Biles, and two sisters, Odessa Gray and Maxine Wingard.
A memorial service will be held 3:00 pm, Sunday June 5, 2016 at Wilkinson Funeral Home, officiated by Judge Erwin Spainhour. The family will receive friends from 2-3 Sunday, prior to the service.
Memorial donations may be made to the Central North Carolina Council of the Boy Scouts of America.
Wilkinson Funeral Home is handling arrangements for the Helms family.
On-line condolences may be left at www.wilkinsonfuneralhome.com
Funeral Home
Wilkinson Funeral Home
100 Branchview Dr Ne
Concord, NC 28025
(704) 786-3168
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Published in The Aiken Standard and North Augusta Star on June 3, 2016
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