Senator Aaron Wesley Plyler (1926 - 2016)

Obituary
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The Honorable Senator Aaron Wesley Plyler, died Tuesday, August 23, 2016 surrounded by his family in his home in Monroe. Senator Plyler was a former member of the North Carolina House of Representatives and the North Carolina Senate. Aaron was born on October 1, 1926, son of Isom Franklin and Ida Foard Plyler, and was the youngest child in a family of 8 siblings. He grew up and lived his life on the family farm in Monroe, attending Benton Heights School and Florida Military Academy.

Services to celebrate his life will be held on Friday, August 26 at 3:00 pm at Benton Heights Presbyterian Church where he was a lifelong member. Visitation will precede the service from 12:30 until 2:45pm. Conducting the service will be Rev. Britt Hadley, Rev. Coy Blackman and Rev. Paul Saleeby. A private family burial will be held immediately following the service. Pallbearers will be the grandsons.

As a young man, Plyler followed his family into farming and real estate throughout Union County and later became President of Plyler Grading and Paving. He was named chairman of the Union County Chamber of Commerce in 1969 which proved to be the beginning of a long and dedicated career in public service.

Word of his leadership skills and common sense led him to seek a run for the NC House of Representatives in 1974. After serving four consecutive terms in the House, he was elected Senator of the 17th District in 1982. He was reelected nine more times, serving a total of eight years in the House and twenty years in the Senate. Plyler retired from state service in 2014.

Senator Plyler's dedication, business wisdom, integrity and compassion led to leadership roles in state government. Among North Carolina state committees in which he served were Chairman of the Advisory Budget Commission and Appropriations Committee,Vice-Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee and a member of the Agriculture Marine Resources and Wildlife Committee, Capital Expenditures Committee, Economic Development Committee, Pensions and Retirement Committee, Rules and Operations Committee, State Personnel and State Government Committee, Board of Awards Committee and Chairman of the General Assembly's Government Operations Committee.

During his service to the state of North Carolina, he was ranked one of the three most effective North Carolina state senators by the media that covers the General Assembly.

Included in his many honors are Honorary Doctorate of Law at Wingate University, Honorary Doctorate of Humanities at Pfeiffer University, NC National Guard Award, Association of Retarded Citizens of North Carolina Legislative Award, American Cancer Society Outstanding Recognition Award, Autistic Awareness Award, Friends of Hospice Award, NCAE Award for Outstanding Support for Education, Honorary Rotarian for Monroe Rotary Club, Union County Chamber of Commerce Leadership Award, Andrew Jackson Memorial Award and the Union County Man of the Year.

Senator Plyler was always deeply committed to having a strong education system for the citizens of North Carolina from public schools to the UNC and community college systems and private colleges and universities in the state. He was proud to have been a leader in helping establish and build an important state financial aid program for NC students attending private colleges and universities. At one time, Wingate University, Pfeiffer University and St. Andrews University were in his Senate district and he knew the opportunities for a better future that those and the other colleges and universities provide for students and their families.

Aaron's love and respect of people and his genuine desire to lend a hand to others earned him the reputation as a fair and honest man of his word. He was known to work tirelessly to aid the needs of others and to lead with compassion and kindness. He lived his life believing in the goodness of people and all who knew Plyler share the belief that he lived his life to serve people in every way he possibly could. Aaron built his life around the respect and desire to be of service.

Of all who knew and loved Aaron Plyler, none were more important than his family. Aaron and his wife, Dot, were married for 68 years. He is survived by his wife, Dot, daughters, Barbara Plyler Faulk and Diane Plyler Hough (Larry) and three sons, Aaron Plyler, Jr. (Donna), Dewey Alan Plyler, Sr. and Alton Eugene Plyler (Vickie). He is also survived by eleven grandchildren, Barbara McCoy, Wes Faulk, John Faulk, Emily Parks, Aaron Plyler III, Adison Plyler, Alan Plyler, Jr., Brad Plyler, William Plyler, Alston Plyler and Adam Plyler. There are 6 great grandchildren.

The family is grateful to his special caregivers Shaun Mungo, Star Roberts, Kay Lowery and Tammie Moses who treated him with love and warmth throughout his illness. The family also expresses gratitude to Community Home Care and Hospice and Mattie Simpson for caring for Senator Plyler.

Gordon Funeral Service, 1904 Lancaster Ave., Monroe, NC 28112 is caring for the Plyler family. Memorials may be made to the building fund at Benton Heights Presbyterian Church, 2701 Concord Hwy., Monroe, NC 28110.

Online condolences may be made at www.gordonfuneralservice.com.
Funeral Home
Gordon Funeral Service, Inc.
1904 Lancaster Avenue
Monroe, NC 28112
(704) 283-8141
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Published in Charlotte Observer on Aug. 25, 2016
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