Lilian Audrey Caswell Mercer, 80, of Cape Carteret went home to be with her Lord and Savior June 15, 2014.
A memorial service will be Thursday at 11 a.m. at Emerald Isle Chapel by the Sea with Pastor Clay Olsen and Pastor Robert Kornegay Officiating.
Audrey was born in Toronto, Canada, to Gordon and Eva Caswell. She was on a trip south when she met Rookie State Trooper Bert Mercer, who was stationed in Jacksonville. After a correspondence of several months, Audrey took out the paperwork required to obtain a visa and came to North Carolina. She stayed with the Jones family (Tim and Bess) while she planned her wedding and put her new home in order. Bert advanced in his career, moving to different areas around the state. They had four sons and she was challenged trying to keep everything on an even keel. Audrey stayed at home with the boys until Bobby, their youngest, was in first grade and she entered the workforce to help supplement the income. Her field was accounting, all phases of it, and worked until Bobby graduated from high school. They were a camping family and camped at Salter Path for years when Bert could get an occasional weekend. They found a lot at Emerald Isle and decided to build a home for their retirement. Bert was his own contractor and Audrey his gopher. It took approximately 10 years to complete, which was done on weekends and vacations. Audrey moved in 1984 and Bert retired in 1986, Audrey was very active in her Church, serving and chairing most of the committees over a period of years. She taught Sunday School, was instrumental in getting the Cook Book printed for a fundraising project. She was faithful in her Nursing Home ministry which she and others were committed to going every week for more than 20 years. She was a charter member of the NCSHPA and held several offices in that organization. She loved to travel and hosted tours for the Retirees of the Highway Patrol, taking them on bus tour to Nova Scotia and then a cruise to Alaska and another cruise to Nova Scotia. She worked in crafts and made baskets, ceramics and flower arrangements, but her passion was her family and her extended family. She was on call always for whatever was needed.
Audrey was preceded in death by her parents, Gordon and Eva Caswell of Victoria Harbor, Ontario, a sister Joan Strudwick of British Columbia. She is survived by her husband Bert of 60 years, four sons; Johnnie of New Bern, Danny and wife Ellen of Aurora, Tommy of Bogue and Bobby of Morehead City. Three grandchildren; Gena Lashley and Brian of Chester, Va., Kellie Mercer of Greenville, Clint Mercer of Washington State and step granddaughter Lindsay Goodman of New Zealand, two great-grandchildren, Ben and Lilian Lashley of Chester, Va. There are also four sister-in-laws; Love Whitfield, Ila Whitfield of New Bern, Blanchie Smith of Panama City Beach, Fla, Sylvia Ross of Lowland and many nieces and nephews, and her little sweetheart Gracie.
The family will receive friends Wednesday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Jones Funeral Home, Swansboro. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Crystal Coast Hospice House, 100 Big Rock Weigh, Newport, N.C. 28570.
Condolences can be left online at JDNews.com.
Electronic condolences can be sent to Jonesfh.org.