ELON - Delmer Dee Atkinson Sr. died peacefully Friday morning, June 21, 2013, at his home with his wife of 58 years by his side. He was born February 24, 1931 in Surry County to the late Sidney and Sadie Atkinson. Along with his wife, Mona Scott Atkinson, Dee is survived by three children, Sheree Pedigo of Ruffin, Delmer Dee Atkinson Jr. and his wife Jan of Wake Forest, and Luci Spivey and her husband Mike of Kimesville; grandchildren: Brandi Miller, Emily Atkinson, Callie Pedigo, Hannah Spivey, Rachel Atkinson, and George Spivey; great grandchild; Victoria Miller, brother in law - Kemp Scott (Diane) of Elon; sister in law - Doris Scott of Lowgap. He was preceded in death by granddaughter April Smith, sisters Oberay Phillips, Senia Welborn, and Doris Shinault; and grandson-in-law Leigh Miller.
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Dee was a lifetime athlete, sportsman, and educator. He graduated from Beulah High School, Lowgap, NC; received his A.B. from Elon College; Master of Education from East Carolina University; and Education Specialist from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. In his early career he taught and coached at Star, Fremont, and Burgaw before going into school administration. He was a teacher and assistant principal at Turrentine, principal at Forest Hill Elementary School, Elon College Middle School, and Pleasant Grove Elementary School. He also was athletic director at Elon College for two years. He retired in 1987 after 30 years as a teacher, coach and principal.
Dee served in the U.S. Army from 1953-55. He was in the 41st tank battalion of the eighth infantry division. He served as instructor on the M-1 rifle at Fort Jackson, SC and played basketball for the Fort Jackson Screaming Eagles. He achieved the rank of sergeant in his two years of service.
Dee was an active member of Elon Community Church for over 50 years. He worked with youth groups, served on the Board of Deacons, served on various committees, and was a long time usher. Elon's pastor, Randy Orwig has been a comfort and support to the family during Dee's illness.
Dee was a star basketball player in high school, college, U.S. Army, and post college play. At Beulah High School he was three times All Conference and All Tournament, and All State in 1951. He was inducted into the Surry County Sports Hall of Fame. He attended Elon on a full basketball scholarship recruited by Coach Doc Mathis. His teams won three district playoffs and played in three national tournaments. Upon graduation Dee had set nine of fourteen individual basketball records at Elon and was inducted into the Elon University Sports Hall of Fame.
During Dee's lifetime he was an active member in many organizations including: Elon University Phoenix Club; Elon Exchange Club; Chief Judge North Boone Voting Precinct; Alamance Senior Men's Golf Association; Plus 50 Golf Association; Honorary Member "Varney Boys"; Elon Sport's Alumni Golf Group; Alamance-Burlington Retired School Personnel; Elon University Golden Alumni President; National Education Association; North Carolina Association of Educators; and Elon Board of Aldermen. Dee was an avid golfer, beekeeper, gardener, and fisherman.
The funeral will be conducted at Elon Community Church on Tuesday, June 25, 2013 at 11:00 am with burial to follow in the Magnolia Cemetery in Elon. Visitation will be held at Lowe Funeral Home in Burlington, NC on Monday evening from 6-8 pm and other times at the Atkinson home. Memorials may be made to Elon Community Church in lieu of flowers.
You may sign the online register book at www.
Lowe Funeral Home & Crematory
2205 South Church Street Burlington, NC 27215
Published in TheTimesNews.com from June 22 to June 23, 2013