HOOPERS CREEK-Donald J. Rhodes, 83, of the Hoopers Creek community, died Tuesday, November 12, 2013, at his home following a lengthy battle with cancer.
He was born on April 30, 1930 and the son of Joseph Ossie Rhodes and Hattie Eliza Jane Rhodes. He was baptized in Bremerhaven, Germany on January 14, 1968. A native of Fletcher, NC, he was a resident of Dale City, VA., from 1968 to 1985 when he moved to Henderson County.
He enlisted in the Navy in 1948 and graduated from basic training in San Diego, California. Following a tour of duty at Whidbey Island, Washington, he was transferred to Commander Columbia River Group, Pacific Reserve Fleet at USNS Astoria, Oregon. He transferred to the Naval Recruiting Station on ONOP in Raleigh, North Carolina until discharged in June 1953. He re-enlisted in September 1954. He served in NSG assignments with RPMIO No. 1 aboard the USS PIEDMONT (AD-17), USS AJAX
(AR-6), USS DIXIE (AD-14), USS PRARIE (AD-15) in the Pacific area, National Security Agency, Washington, D.C., TUSLOG DET 28, Karamursel, Turkey, NAVSECGRUHDQTRS Washington, D.C., NSGA Bremerhaven, Germany, CNO (OP-009-G) Pentagon, retiring 19 September 1969 at NAVSECGRUHDQTRS. He was promoted to Chief Petty Office in May 1963. His awards included the Korean Services Medal (1 bronze star), National Defense Service Medal (1 bronze star), United National Service Medal, Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation (1 star) and Good Conduct Medal (4 bronze stars).
His post retirement employment included Naval Intelligence Support Center, CNO (OP-009U), Naval Intelligence Operations Center, and State of North Carolina Employment Security Commission. Mr. Rhodes volunteered as a VFW Service Officer at the Asheville Medical Center. He served on the Henderson County (North Carolina) Color Guard Detail. He was Past Commander of American Legion Post 77, American Veterans Post 665, Disabled American Veterans Chapter No. 14 and the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the Unlisted States Post 5206. Mr. Rhodes received an associate's degree in general studies from Northern Virginia Community College in Woodbridge, Va.
He is preceded in death by his wife, Peggie Priest Rhodes, in October of 2003. He is survived by his wife of two years, Lorraine Host Rhodes. He is survived by two sons, Christopher Donald Rhodes and his wife, Wendy, of Yadkinville, and Jeffrey Joseph Rhodes and his wife, Cari, of Fletcher; two daughters, Brenda Jane White and her husband, Paul, of Stafford, VA, and Michele Renee Clark of Cumming, GA; nine grandchildren, Joshua, Justin, Matthew, Megan, Evan, Emma, Nichole, Ashley and Brandon; one sister, Freida Justus of Edneyville, NC.
The funeral will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, November 16, 2013 at Hoopers Creek Baptist Church with Reverend Phillip Youngblood, Reverend Michael McFarland and Rev. Dr. Mark Fitzsimmons officiating. The family will receive friends from 7:00PM until 9:00PM on Friday, November 15, 2013 at the funeral home.
In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the American Cancer Society, www.cancer.org/donate, 1-800-227-2345 or the Wounded Warriors Project, www.woundedwarriorproject.org/donate, 1-855-448-3997.
An online register book is available online for family and friends by visiting www.thosshepherd.com. Thos. Shepherd & Son Funeral Directors is in charge of arrangements.
Thos. Shepherd & Son - Hendersonville
125 South Church Street Hendersonville, NC 28792
Published in The Times-News on Nov. 15, 2013