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Canton - Morris Eugene Mitchell, age 91, passed away on Friday, February 15, 2013 at his residence after a long and courageous battle with cancer.
Morris was born on March 29, 1921 in Sevier County, Tennessee to Lavator Ware Mitchell and Jocie Brown Mitchell. He moved at age seven to Canton, North Carolina where he played football at Canton High School. After completing Coyne Electrical School in Chicago, Illinois, Morris enlisted in the United States Marine Corps 2nd Radio Company and was promptly deployed into the Pacific Theater during World War II. As a radio operator, in Iwo Jima, Japan, Corporal Mitchell helped in the war by successfully radioing in the correct coordinates of a Japanese bunker to the USS North Carolina, thus turning the tide of the battle. After the war, Morris settled at home with his young bride and soon raised his two girls, Jane and Margaret. Always a hard worker, Morris worked at Champion Paper for approximately 18 years and at Eaton Corporation for approximately 15 years until retirement. Always possessing a great love for his Father, Morris taught Sunday school both in brick and mortar style at First Baptist Church in Canton, and through a local Christian radio station including a time as Sunday School Superintendent. He also served the Lord as a church Deacon. In his golden years, Morris loved to travel and never turned down an opportunity to visit places such as Germany, Italy, England, France, Montana, and others. A devoted family man, Morris also surrounded himself with his grandchildren, great-grandchildren, family, and friends at every gathering and was surrounded by his loved ones as he peacefully departed to be with his Heavenly Father. Morris touched a multitude of lives.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by two brothers, Rex and Fred Mitchell; and four sisters, Delma Patton, Ruby Goodson, Juanita Razee, and Helen Mitchell; brother-in-law, Daniel Lovelace.
Morris is survived by his loving wife of 67 years, Rachel Lovelace Mitchell; two daughters, Jane Mitchell Rhinehart, husband Phillip Baxter Rhinehart, of Canton and Margaret Mitchell Robinson, husband Jonathan Crawford Robinson of Athens, Georgia; grandchildren, Mitchell Andrew Rhinehart and wife Leslie McGaha Rhinehart; Keri Rhinehart Hill and husband James Eric Hill; Rachel Robinson Benson and husband Craig Christopher Benson II; and Todd Nicholas Robinson and wife Laura Duke Robinson; great-grandchildren; and two sisters, Lois Mitchell Mills of Houston, Texas and Elizabeth Mitchell Gilbert of Durham; brother-in-law, Reid Lovelace and his wife, Billie; sister-in-law, Glenda Lovelace; and three caregivers, Mary Hope, Rita Phillips, and Linda Shepherd.
Funeral services will be held at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, February 17, 2013 at Canton First Baptist Church with the Reverend Dr. Jack Sammons, Reverend Dr. T. David Phillips, and Reverend Steve W. Miller officiating. Burial will follow at Bon-A-Venture Cemetery on Old Clyde Road. The family will receive friends from 1:30 until 2:45 p.m. prior to the service at the church.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks for all gifts and donations to be sent to the
, PO Box 22718, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73123-1718; MedWest Haywood Hospice, 560 Leroy George Drive, Clyde, NC 28721; and the Rockwood UMC Youth Group, 288 Crabtree Mountain Road, Canton, NC 28716.
For those who desire, an online memorial register is available at "Obituaries" at www.wellsfuneralhome.com
Published in the Asheville Citizen-Times on Feb. 17, 2013