David Christopher Braswell June 2, 1931 - April 22, 2022, Wilkesboro, North Carolina
David Christopher Braswell, age 90, of Wilkesboro, North Carolina passed away at home, resting in the love of his family.
Born in Montezuma, North Carolina in 1931, he was the second son of Linville Lafayette Braswell and Hettie Jane Anderson. After his father’s premature death, David and his brother Dan were sent to live at the Masonic Home for Children, Oxford Orphanage in Oxford North Carolina. At Oxford, David learned many important life skills and made lifelong friends. He thrived and excelled in both school and sports and earned the rank of Eagle Scout. As a child he sang in the Oxford Orphanage traveling choir. After graduating from John Nichols High School in 1949 he joined the Masonic Lodge and founded his first company, Braswell Chain Saw Company in Cheraw, SC, evolving into a distributorship of parts. In 1959 he moved the business to Charlotte, NC and renamed it Specialty Welding Company, becoming a prominent parts and accessory distributor. In 1981 he changed the name to Sunbelt Outdoor Products, Inc., and distributed parts for all makes of outdoor power equipment, rapidly growing throughout the US. In 2000, he sold Sunbelt to Deere & Company.
David married Anne Griffin Howell in 1960 and started a family in Charlotte, North Carolina. David was a certified pilot, flying his own Cessna to his beach home in Ocean Isle, NC and visiting family members. He loved big game hunting and was an avid golfer, often playing 36 holes with his friends. After he sold his business, he turned his attention to winemaking and started the process with his wife to establish a vineyard, Uwharrie Vineyards, in Albemarle, NC. After Anne passed away from a long battle with cancer, he reconnected with widow, Bettie Evans Wyke, a fellow classmate of Oxford Orphanage and John Nichols High School. David and Bettie married in September 2004 and they made their home in Wilkesboro, NC where he quickly became involved in First Baptist Church of North Wilkesboro, Lions Club, the Lunch Buddy and Backpack Buddy Programs. He was both physically active and socially engaged in the Wilkes community until a series of strokes robbed him of his mobility. David was a member of many organizations and held positions of leadership throughout his life, among them, Director of the Royal Order of Jesters and President of the Wilkes Lions Club. He has remained continually active in the Alumni Association for Oxford Orphanage, participating in many fundraising events, an active Oasis Shriner for 63 years, a Master Mason and a member of the Royal Order of Jesters. Highly competitive and driven to succeed, David made many lifelong close friends, and his smile was so brilliant and infectious it could transform a room. His personal life brings to mind a quote from Robert Louis Stevenson, “The man is a success who has lived well, loved much, and laughed often.”
David is survived by his wife, Bettie Wyke Braswell, sons Chris Braswell, MD, of Mobile, AL, Fred (Janet) Braswell and his daughter, Anne Braswell, of Charlotte, NC, stepdaughters Sandra (Matt) Couch of Hilton Head Island, SC, Valerie (Nelson) Granade of Statesville, NC, stepson, Allen Wyke, of Traphill, NC, stepson in law, Greg (Michelle) Dancho of Clemmons, NC, and half-sister, Helen Jenkins of Clinton, TN. David is survived by grandchildren, Mason (Ally), Madison Braswell and David Gray, Callie, Carson and Christopher, step grandchildren, Bryant (RJ), Emily, JD, Noah, Alex, Jaclyn, and Nicholas, along with many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his parents, first wife, Anne, brothers, Dan and Mike Braswell, half-brothers Jackie and Doug Williams and stepdaughter, Evelyn Dancho.
A very special thank you to the wonderful caregivers of Wilkes Home Instead and Wake Forest Baptist Health Care at Home Hospice who provided exceptional home care for David, and to Bettie’s brother, Jerry Evans, who visited daily helping Bettie and David in so many special ways.
Funeral services will be held at First Baptist Church of North Wilkesboro, 510 D Street at 10:00 am, Wednesday, April 27, 2022, and will be livestreamed on YouTube, FBC North Wilkesboro NC. Graveside services will be held at Sharon Memorial Park, 5716 Monroe Road, Charlotte, NC at 3:00 pm, Wednesday, April 27, 2022. In lieu of flowers or for those desiring memorial contributions may be made to The Masonic Home for Children at Oxford, 600 College Street, Oxford, NC 27565 (https:// mhc.oxford.org), First Baptist Church of North Wilkesboro 510 D Street, N Wilkesboro, NC 28659 (https://www.first baptistnw.org), or Wake Forest Baptist Health Care at Home Hospice, 126 Executive Drive, Suite 110, Wilkesboro, NC 28697.
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