Newton B. ("Skeets") Copelan Jr., age 71, of Cumming passed away Thursday, July 25, 2013. Skeets was preceded in death by Newton B. and Aileen True Copelan.
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Skeets proudly participated in many Masonic Bodies. He began his Masonic career Jan. 21, 1975, when he became a Master Mason of Lafayette Lodge #44. While with Lafayette Lodge #44 he was Worshipful Master in 1983, also served as Treasurer for 24 years and 9th District Convention Worshipful Master from 2002 to 2003.
He was a Charter Member of Charity Daylight Lodge #754 and served as District Deputy Grand Master from 1985 to 2009 and Chairman of 9th D.D.G.M. from 2006 to 2009.
In 1975 he became a member of Scottish Rite Valley of Atlanta Orient of Georgia, member of KCCH, 33 Degree Mason, Recipient of Double Eagle Award, and worked with the stage crew setting up and taking down, raising and lowering of drops and assisting on light board. In 1979 he served as High Priest of the Royal Arch Mason - Silver Shoals #14 and as High Priest 9th Royal Arch District Convention 1990.
He was Illustrious Master in 1992 with the Pickens Council #55. Until recently was the Illustrious Master of Northeast Georgia Council Convention Royal and Select Masters. He served as Illustrious Grand Sentinel 2008 and elected Illustrious Grand Steward in 2009, and Grand Council of Royal and Select Masters.
He served as Commander of the Amicalola Commandery #41 in 1988, served as Prelate from 1989 to 2009 and a member of the Grand Commander's Club in 1998. He was involved with Cherokee Rose Priory #56, Luther G. Palmer York Rite College #123 and Carl F. Lester, Jr. Council #65 Knight Masons. Skeets became a Charter member of Cherokee Council #439 Allied Masonic Degrees and served as Sovereign Master 2004 in Dave H. Keever Council #365 and received the Red Branch of ERI and the Bath Degree's. He was also a member of the Royal Order of Scotland, charter member of the Georgia Highland Association Royal Order of Scotland and member of Yaarab Shriners A.A.O.N.M.S. of Atlanta, Georgia.
In 1994 he was President of Cumming Shrine Club, was a member of Cumming Chapter #346 - Order of the Eastern Star, Clan #6 Highlander, Clan #11 - Grand and Glorious Order of the Hillybilly Degree, life member of Yellow Dog Degree in Tennessee and Atlanta Court #91 Royal Order of Jesters. While with Cumming Chapter #346 he served as Patron six times and was the District Grand Deputy from 2002 to 2003. During his accomplishments, Skeets made numerous friends and touched many lives.
He was a member of the Independent Order of the Odd Fellows and served as Noble Grand of Silver City Lodge. He served as Grand Master of Georgia and was a recipient of The Decoration of Chivalry. He served as Past Department Commander, Past Grand Patriarch, Past 4th District Grand Master, Past Northern Commander and a member of Ruth Rebekah Lodge.
He is survived by his loving wife, Sandra Copelan; daughter, Dee and Michael Rauscher; brother, Robert D. and Gail Copelan of Virginia; sister, Elizabeth and John Robert Lauricella of Alabama; and other loving relatives and numerous friends.
Funeral services will be held Sunday, July 28, at 3 p.m. at Cumming Baptist Church, with the Rev. Danny Orr officiating. The family will receive friends at the funeral home Saturday, July 27, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5-9 p.m. and Sunday, July 28, from noon until the hour of service.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Georgia Masonic Children's Home, 1417 Nottingham Drive, Macon, GA 31211 or to Shriner Hospital's for Children, 2900 Rock Point Drive, Tampa, FL 33607.
Condolences may be made at www.ingramfuneralhome.com.
Ingram Funeral Home and Crematory is in charge of arrangements.
Ingram Funeral Home
210 Ingram Avenue Cumming, GA 30040
Published in Forsyth County News from July 26 to July 29, 2013