Oct. 12, 2021
Date Posted:  Tuesday, October 12, 2021   September 2021 - December 2021 Faculty and Staff Richard Faix, 91, departed this life on October 16, 2021 surrounded by his wife and daughter. Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, he was raised in Milford, Delaware. After attending Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, Virginia, he served three years in the Air Force, […]...

Date Posted: 
Tuesday, October 12, 2021

 

September 2021 - December 2021


Faculty and Staff

Richard Faix, 91, departed this life on October 16, 2021 surrounded by his wife and daughter. Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, he was raised in Milford, Delaware. After attending Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, Virginia, he served three years in the Air Force, including a tour in Korea. After working for several years at Sear, Roebuck & Co. in Richmond, he went to Fork Union Military Academy where he taught physics and chemistry for 36 years. He played several instruments and played with the Second-Wind Band in Charlottesville, Virginia for many years. Besides being a talented musician, he was an artist and built many clocks as a hobby. He was predeceased by his parents, Gus and Ethel Faix; a sister, Marjorie; a brother, Bill; and a son, Tom. He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Euxine Dolbeer Faix; a daughter, Tracy Faix of Glen Allen, Virginia; a grandson, Aiden; a brother, Thomas L. Faix of Detroit Lakes, Minnesota; and many nieces and nephews.

 

Alumni

 

1940s

Raymond Edward Dobyns '45, Jr., 95, passed away at his home in Monaskon on December 16, 2021. Born August 7, 1926, he was the son of the late Raymond Edward Dobyns Sr. and Jennie Mae Towles Dobyns of Monaskon. He attended local schools as a young boy and later, graduated from Fork Union Military Academy in Fork Union, Virginia. Raymond completed high school during World War ll and immediately entered the Navy and served as Hospital Apprentice First Class. He was discharged in July 1946. Raymond entered the University of Tennessee and majored in Business Administration. He was inducted into Delta Sigma Pi, a professional business fraternity, in 1949. After graduation, Mr. Dobyns was employed by the Commonwealth of Virginia Department of Taxation. He worked there for 40 years, retiring in August 1991. He ended his career as Assistant State Tax Commissioner. Mr. Dobyns continued to live in Richmond a number of years after retirement. He then moved back to Monaskon and built a house on family property next to his birthplace. As a child, he was a member of Bethel United Methodist Church and he joined Bethel a second time after returning home. While in Richmond, he and his wife, Jane Morris Dobyns, were members of Westhampton United Methodist Church. They were active in their church and in many other areas of the community. In later years, Mr. Dobyns was an avid golfer and throughout his life, he was a boating enthusiast.

Ellis Grey Winstead, Jr. '49, 90, died September 2, 2021 at his residence in the Teloga Community of Summerville, Georgia.  Mr. Winstead was born Dec. 19, 1930. He was the son of the late Dr. Ellis G. Winstead, Sr. and Anne Murphy Winstead. In addition to his mother and father, he was predeceased by his two sisters, Leah Dae W. (James) Younce and Anne W. (Charles) Clark and their husbands.  Ellis married his childhood sweetheart, "Julie." They fell in love at the tender age of seven (Ellis) and six (Julie), and they often told the story of how Julie would ride on the handlebars of Ellis's bike in the little town of Belhaven, N.C., where they were raised.  They remained sweethearts through his school years at Fork Union Military Academy, Va. and her school years in Pantego, N.C. Ellis married Julie in 1952, the same year he graduated from NC State University with a degree in civil engineering. Soon after, he entered the Air Force, serving during the Korean War. In 1953, they began raising a family of their own.  After the Air Force, Ellis worked in the home construction industry and fire insurance underwriting field before settling into a career as a life insurance agent in the early 1960s. Over his six decades in life insurance, he served many clients, most of whom stayed with him until their deaths and then helped the families settle their estates.  Many of his clients and fellow agents became lifelong friends and they shared many adventures together camping, fishing, houseboating on Lake Lanier, raising children, enjoying the fruits of their labors, and helping neighbors in their north Atlanta communities. In 2003, Ellis and Julie moved from Atlanta to Summerville to join their eldest son, Grey, and his family in the Teloga community. They built a new home on Grey’s farm, and Ellis learned how to become a remote, digitally engaged life insurance agent, long before remote working was the norm. He worked until his failing vision made it too difficult to see and gave up his last two clients in 2020.  Ellis loved working with his hands and used his at-home "shop" to build and repair everything from furniture to boats to electronics. He loved all kinds of fishing and boating. He loved telling jokes and having a good laugh. He loved his family and friends, and they loved him. Most of all he loved the only sweetheart of his life, his wife of 69 years, Julie. He will be missed by all who came to know him. 

 

1950s

John Darby Coffee '54, 85, Rainier, died Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021, at Providence St. Peter Hospital, Olympia, Washington.

Walter "Wheatbread" Edward Douglas '51, COL, Ret., 89, of Richmond, passed away on Saturday, October 16, 2021. He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Sue W. Douglas; son, LTC Michael E. Douglas, USA, Retired; and his wife, Margarita, St. Petersburg, Fla.; and daughter, B. Delaine Douglas, Glen Allen. He was a graduate of Victoria High School, University of Richmond, Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, the Federal Executive Institute in Charlottesville and attended a one-year graduate study at Fork Union Military Academy. He served 30 years in the active Army reserve program, retiring with the rank of Colonel. He retired from State Service in 1991 after completing 33 years. Ten years was spent with VDOT as a Traffic Engineer, 14 years with the Department of Highway Safety as Assistant Director and nine years with DMV as the Director of Planning and the Administrator of General Services. He was a member of the Richmond West Breakfast Lions Club for over 20 years. In 2005, he was named a Melvin Jones Fellow by Lions Clubs International, the Foundation's highest form of recognition. Douglas was an active member of Ridge Baptist Church from the early 1960s up to his death. He served on numerous committees during that time, including a Co-director in 1997 to 1999 of a building fund project, the Finance committee and the Day Care committee. His activities were varied and many. To name a few, he served as an Arbitrator with the Better Business Bureau for seven years, was a class agent at University of Richmond, served on the Executive Council of the Friends of Boatwright Library for three years and was a board member of the Victoria Alumni Association. For those who knew Douglas well, he had many passions. He loved his family, his God and his church, Victoria High School, Fork Union Military Academy, good food, especially hot dogs, The Richmond West Breakfast Lions Club and an out-of-state trip every now and then. A visitation will be at Bliley's – Staples Mill Chapel, 8510 Staples Mill Road, on Thursday, October 21, 2021 at 1 p.m. with service to follow at 2 p.m. In lieu of flowers, please consider sending a donation to the following: Fork Union Military Academy,

Robert “Bob” Townsend Knox '53, 86, of Elon passed away on Sunday, October 10, 2021 at Alamance Regional Medical Center.  Born in Ashland, KY, he grew up in Huntington, West Virginia. He was the loving husband of Jean Hendley Knox, who survives and the son of the late Emory Knox and the late Beatrice Townsend Knox.  Bob attended Fork Union Military Academy for five years, graduating in 1953. He went on to graduate from Marshall University and later Duke Divinity School with a master’s degree in sacred theology. He also had extensive studies at Butner Rehabilitation Center and Dix Hill Mental Hospital in Raleigh, NC.  Bob served the United Methodist Church in the Virginia Conference. He served as an associate in Fairfax, then went on to start a thriving new church, Messiah Methodist in Springfield. He served churches in Waynesboro, Salem, Alexandria and Arlington, where he retired from Cherrydale United Methodist Church in 1999 and was awarded Pastor Emeritus of that church. He was a member of the Virginia Conference Board of Education, Conference Board of Pensions, Boards of Trustees for Ferrum College and Randolph- Macon Woman’s College. He served as Chairman for the Committee on Higher Education, Chaplain of the Practical Nursing Program, President of the Conference Board of Higher Education and Campus Ministry and three years as Chaplin of the Virginia Senate. He was active in the community, taking part in the local Councils on Mental Health, Rotary Club and Kiwanis Club. Bob was an instrumental part in starting the program “Life of Elon” at Elon University.  Fork Union Military Academy changed his life and gave him confidence in his abilities and a strong religious foundation. He preached at the Alumni Memorial services and addressed students on various occasions. He always tried to convey to the cadets at the academy an appreciation for both the education and character-building values that they were receiving.  Bob was an accomplished musician. He was an excellent pianist and played many other instruments. He enjoyed painting and was a big supporter of the arts.

John Poague MacLeod '56, renowned Virginia artist and medaled athlete John Poague MacLeod passed away on May 25, 2021. This Lynchburg son, VMI alumnus, and Army veteran was predeceased by his parents, Charles Campbell MacLeod Jr. and Margaretta Carper MacLeod.

Daniel Roy Tournay '51, Sr. of Weirton, a selfless husband, father, grandfather, and great grandfather, passed away on Thursday, December 2, 2021. He was 89.  On June 7, 1932, Daniel was born in McDonald, PA, to Gustave and Nancy Poudervigne Tournay. Dan grew up in McDonald, PA, wherein the seventh grade met the love of his life, Nancy Veydt. In his high school years, Dan attended Fork Union Military Academy in Fork Union, Virginia, where he was an expert swimmer/diver and graduated with the honorable title of Swordsman.  On December 7, 1951, he married Nancy Adeline Veydt. In their 70 years of marriage, they were blessed with a son, four daughters, seven grandchildren, and fourteen great-grand- children. Nancy worked outside their home as a teacher’s aide for Hancock County Schools. Daniel retired after 35 years from Weirton Steel, where he was the superintendent of the B.O.P. Dan was one of four men who traveled to Europe to research the basic oxygen plant and returned home to build the “Mill of the Future.” Sadly, with tears in his eyes, he was the only one of the original four living when they imploded the B.O.P. on March 9, 2019.  Anyone who visited the Tournay home knew that Dan not only took pride in making steel, he took pride in his home. There was no blade of grass or a tool in his woodshop out of place. His flower gardens were magnificent. But, most of all, Dan was a hero to his family and many neighborhood children; his calming guidance and selfless, sacrificial, and sometimes ornery nature will be cherished for years to come.  Even though Dan was generally a private person, he was a member of the Fork Union Military Academy Alumni, AARP, American Baptist Men, and the Weirton Heights Memorial Baptist Church. At the church, he served as Chairman of the Board of Trustees and a Member of the Board of Deacons.

 

1960s

Donald Eugene Oates ‘60, 81, of Hilton Head Island, SC, formally of Augusta, GA and Winchester, VA, passed away September 18th, 2021, after a short illness.  He was born October 6, 1939, the son of Clarence S. Oates, Sr, and Eva Pearl Cooper Oates.  He was the youngest of seven siblings, Wilbur (Buddy) Oates, Clarence (Sonny) Oates, Jr, Audrey Grimes, Elizabeth Madagan, Lillian McKown and Dorothy Cox Dodson, all deceased.  He is survived by three children, David W. Oates and Michael W. Oates of Winchester and Susan Oates Jones (Thomas) of Hilton Head Island, SC.  He is also survived by five grandchildren, Julia Oates Marple (Brandon) of Stephens City, Andrew Oates of Ranson, WV, Lindsay Jones of Mauldin, SC, Patrick Jones of Virginia Beach, VA, and Christopher Oates of Winchester, two great-grandchildren, Bryce and Lila Marple and numerous nieces and nephews.  Donnie attended John Handley High School where he excelled in football and basketball, winning numerous awards for his outstanding athletic achievements.  He was inducted into the Judges Athletic Association Hall of Fame in 1990. He continued his athletic career at Fork Union Military Academy graduating in 1960.  He then attended Shenandoah College, where he was a leading scorer for the Hornets, graduating in 1962.  Don was the consummate salesman.  His career began during his college years at Kern Motor Company.  He then began working in the construction industry starting at Moore’s Lumber Supply Stores.  From there, he joined Frederick Block Company in Winchester, Riverton Corporation in Front Royal and finally, Medusa Cement in York, PA and then relocating to Augusta, GA.  He maintained his residence in Augusta from 1984 until moving to Hilton Head Island, SC in October 2020.  Quite the accomplished athlete, Don’s talents were always acknowledged whether on the football field, basketball court, baseball diamond or the golf course.  He was one of the first members of Carper’s Valley Golf Club in Winchester and it soon became his “second home”.  He won numerous tournaments there over the years as well as in other parts of Virginia, West Virginia, and Maryland.  In his spare time, he developed, produced, and marketed his own brand of barbeque sauce called “Southern Gentleman” and his own Bloody Mary mix called “Country Club Mix”. Perhaps his greatest asset was his ability to engage people from all walks of life, whether in debates over politics, sharing his latest “best” recipe, or sharing his views of the sporting world.  He was definitely a “people” person who enjoyed life and lived it to its fullest.

William Edwin Webb, Jr. '60, 79, passed away peacefully at home with his family by his side on Thursday, December 2, 2021.  Bill, better known as "Big D" to family and friends, was born in Wilson NC to Eddie and Rose Webb. He graduated from Fork Union Military Academy, served in the US Army's Army Security Agency, and enjoyed a successful career in the insurance industry as a managing partner at CEBA, Inc with his lifelong friend, Candler Bumgarner. He was a brother of the Phalanx 31 Masonic Lodge in Charlotte.  During his life Bill enjoyed fishing in the Pee Dee River, singing in the choir of Wadesboro's First Presbyterian Church, his chair, reading cowboy and mountain men books, sharing unbelievable, but true, childhood stories, hunting arrowheads with the boys in Anson County peach orchards, breakfast at Cherry Grove with the Deals, lunches with friends and coworkers, boating on the Intracoastal, and traveling with Sara and friends to faraway places. Recently he enjoyed meeting new friends while keeping up with old ones via the telephone. He and his sister talked on the phone every day. But most enjoyable was watching his boys, the grandchildren and great grandchildren grow while offering sage advice and encouragement. He was a good listener. He was a good man, truly one of a kind, and will be missed by many. He loved them all, especially his sons.

 

1980s

Rodney Arthur “Moose” Myles ’85, Mr. Myles passed away unexpectedly Sept. 19 in Myrtle Beach. Born Sept. 18, 1966 in Charleston, W.Va., he was the son of the late James Nelson Myles and Ruth Ella Myles. Rodney attended St. Albans High school in St. Albans W.Va., where he played basketball. He went on to play basketball at Fork Union Military Academy, Radford University, and then Alderson-Broaddus University. After earning a bachelor’s degree in communications, he returned to West Virginia where he pursued a career in sales, occasionally working with sports-related industries for leisure. 

 

2000s

Jonathan Charles Waters '03, son of Jack and Cyndi Waters, died peacefully on Friday, September 24, 2021.  Jonathan was born in Spartanburg, South Carolina on June 23, 1984. In the sixth grade, Jonathan received the White Star Award in Upward Basketball. He graduated from Fork Union Military Academy in Fork Union, Virginia where he lettered in lacrosse, soccer, and indoor soccer.  He received his two-year business degree from Spartanburg Community College and before his illness, worked at TD Bank in Greenville.  He loved animals, sports, reading, music, and video games.  Although he was not the most patient person in the world, Jonathan had a kind heart and was quick to give his Mom and Dad a hug and say “I love you” even through the terrible teenage years.

 


 

Errors and Omissions - Our goal is to honor all Fork Union Military Academy alumni, staff, and faculty that passed away during the stated period.  If we failed to include someone from our community, please email calltoquarters@fuma.org with the information, preferably an obituary.

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