Howard Belton Greene

Published 4:58 pm Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Howard Belton Greene, 97, passed into his Heavenly Father’s arms at White Oak Manor in Tryon, N.C., on Monday, Feb. 13, 2017. He was born on March 12, 1919 and was the son of Bessie Foster Greene and Archie B. Greene of Polk County.

In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by a sister, Connie Greene Walker. Left to cherish his memory is his wife of 73 years, Mary Flynn Greene, of Tryon, as well as another sister, Rowena Greene Horne Matson of Tryon. In addition, he has numerous nieces and nephews who loved him dearly.

Mr. Greene served honorably as a Ranger in the U.S. Army during World War II, receiving 22 medals, including a Purple Heart, a Combat Infantry Badge, and a Bronze Star. He and his battalion stormed up the 200 ft. cliffs at Omaha Beach during the invasion of Normandy. He had many interesting stories to tell regarding his time in service. Mr. Greene spent 28 years in the Army and retired as a Chief Warrant Officer.

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He was a very well known business man in Tryon and Columbus his entire life. Many people in the area will remember G&K Appliances, as well as his other businesses. He attended First Baptist Church of Tryon and served in many capacities. He was a member of several civic organizations, including the Kiwanis Club, and was very proud that he never missed a meeting of that organization, until recently as his health was declining. He volunteered for 20 years in the community, including at St. Luke’s Hospital. Mr. Greene was a Mason, and served as a Shriner.

On March 20, 2012, Polk County citizens opened the new Howard B. Greene Human Services Building in Mill Spring, N.C. His portrait was unveiled during the open house ceremony. Mr. Greene was also named the Polk County Outstanding Citizen of the year in 2009. Mr. Greene was nominated and represented Polk County as a World War II hero and the replicas of his hands are on the monument in Fayetteville, N.C. at the Army base.

A graveside service will be held on Friday, Feb. 17, 2017 at 11 a.m. at Polk Memorial Gardens in Columbus, N.C. with Dr. Jeff Harris officiating.

Memorials may be made to Tryon First Baptist Church, PO Box 1287, Tryon, NC 28782; Hendersonville Shrine Club, PO Box 1901, Hendersonville, NC 28793; or to the Masonic Organization Unity Lodge, 662 Ozone Drive, Saluda, NC 28773.

An online guest register is available at

McFarland Funeral Chapel

Tryon, N.C.