William A. ?Bill? McFarland Sr.

Published 4:18 pm Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Bill was born Nov. 15, 1923 in Polk County to Robert F. and Maude Newman McFarland. He graduated from Stearns High School in 1941 and served during World War II in the Army Air Corps, maintaining gun turrets on B-29 Superfortress bombers. After the war he earned an undergraduate degree from Lenoir-Rhyne College and his law degree from Wake Forest University in 1951. While attending Lenoir-Rhyne College in Hickory he met the love of his life, Dorothy Abernethy. They were married March 26, 1950, and lived the Biblical definition of marriage, &dquo;the two shall become one,&dquo; for more than 59 years.

He was a member of Columbus Presbyterian Church since age 12, serving as deacon, elder and Sunday School superintendent. He taught Sunday School for 60 years.

Bill was a Columbus volunteer fireman, a Legion of Honor member of the Kiwanis Club of Tryon, a member of the Woodmen of the World and a North Carolina Shriner. He served on boards of directors of many organizations, both local and state, including Presbyterian Homes of North Carolina. He was a proud member of the Democratic Party and was presented a lifetime achievement award by U.S. Rep. Heath Shuler in 2007.

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Bill was a member of the Polk County Bar Association for 58 years. During his nearly six decades in the practice of law he served as county attorney for Polk County and town attorney for Columbus and Saluda. In his personal and professional life, he was faithful to the words of the prophet Micah, &dquo;He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?&dquo;

Bill was a devoted husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather whose greatest pleasure was gathering with his family, giving thanks before meals and reading from the Gospel of Luke at family Christmas celebrations. He set a profound example of Chistian fidelity to God, family and community.

Bill is survived by his wife, Dorothy A. McFarland of the home; three children, Rebecca Hudson (and husband Ray) of Brevard, Margaret Clark (and husband Doug) of High Point, and William A. McFarland Jr. (and wife Kim) of Tryon; seven grandchildren, Anna Stewart (and husband Tim) of Statesville, Erika Potter (and husband Chris) of Thomasville, Andrew Clark of Washington, D.C., Kenneth Clark of Charlotte, Kate McFarland of Charlotte, Belle McFarland of Washington, D.C., and Brett McFarland of Tryon; one great-grandson, Tobias Stewart of Statesville; and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, brothers John McFarland and Robert McFarland and sisters Jeanette White and Elizabeth Lowe.

Funeral services will be held at 3 p.m., Sunday, November 1, 2009 in Columbus Presbyterian Church., Columbus, with Dr. James C. McPherson and Dr. Darryl E. Maxwell officiating.

The family will receive friends from 1:30 to 3 p.m. prior to the service Sunday in the Columbus Presbyterian Church.

Burial will be in Columbus Presbyterian Church Cemetery.

Memorials may be made to Columbus Presbyterian Church, 21 Peniel Road, Columbus, N.C. 28722, or to Hospice of the Carolina Foothills, 130 Glen Drive Columbus, N.C. 28722.

An online guest register is available at www.mcfarlandfuneralchapel.com.

McFarland Funeral Chapel, Tryon.