Cover photo for Gene Autry's Obituary
Gene Autry Profile Photo

Gene Autry

February 22, 1941 — March 19, 2024

Silas Creek Chapel

Gene Autry

Gene Autry made the world a better place for all those who knew him from his first breath until his last.

Gene’s life began in February 1941, on a farm in Harnett County, the youngest son of George and Verlie.  With three older brothers, Odell, Bill, and Ed along with three sisters, Lena, Carolyn, and Janell, Gene was always surrounded by family.   As a young boy, he learned to work hard and fiercely protect the women in his life.  Forever a thinker, Gene was always finding new ways to do something better.  His family joked that he should have written a “How To…Anything” manual, as it would have been a best seller. Gene believed in and lived the motto if you are going to do something, make sure you do it right or don’t do it at all. 

On a warm sunny day in 1958 his life would forever be changed.  As he stepped from behind an old pie safe, he locked eyes with the girl who would become his forever sweetheart.  It didn’t take long for him to teach her “how to” play basketball.   In the spring of 1962, Gene wed Bernice, the love of his life.  For 62 years they built an incredible life together, working hand in hand to raise children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren, build their business, and enjoy the simple things.

As an avid fisherman and hunter, you could find him most weekends up in a tree or out on his boat the Woodpecker, before dawn, patiently waiting for the perfect buck or fisherman’s catch.  The “creek” knew when they heard the loud rumble of the boat engine starting up, you had about 15 minutes to throw on some clothes and grab your gear before he was headed out to the gulf stream, with or without you.

While his work ethic made him a successful general contractor across several states for more than 55 years, his passion for farming made him one of the best gardeners around.  His beach house fish fries were notorious, while his family Lisa (Cliff), Cindy (Roger), Jennifer (Melissa), Ashley (Adam), Tiffany (Seth), Alexius, Jayden, Jordan, Logynn, Waylon, Leila, Nova, and Maverick looked forward to his special corn, one of a kind slaw, and the best grits ever.

While gone from our presence, but never our hearts, Gene lived a full life with few regrets.   He will live on forever in the family he cared for and loved so dearly.  With every sunrise in the quiet forest and every sunset on the ocean shore, he will be remembered as an amazing husband, incredible dad, loving pops and paw paw, dear friend, devoted brother, fair employer, and protector of all those around him.  The lives of those he touched were forever changed just by knowing him.  His beautiful blue eyes have closed for now and his strong hands have taken a rest, but we will see him again when we reach our heavenly home. 

Visitation will be held at Hayworth-Miller Funeral Home, 3315 Silas Creek Parkway, Winston-Salem, NC 27103 on Friday, March 22, 2024, at 1:00 PM.  A funeral service celebrating his life will follow at 2:00 PM with burial at Crestview Memorial Park, 6850 University Parkway, Rural Hall, NC 27045.   After the burial, all are welcome to join the family at Mayflower Seafood restaurant, 665 Montroyal Road, Rural Hall, NC 27045, to reminisce and fellowship over some good seafood.

So many people deserve a thank you for every kind word said, every prayer prayed, and every call made to just check-in on our well-being over the last several years.    We wish that we could name you all by name, but know that your kindness, in whatever form it came, kept us going.   Know that we appreciate and love each and every one of you.  The family would like to extend a special thank you to the incredible ladies that cared for dad at Brighton Gardens (you know who you are).  When we did not have the skill to do it, we placed in your hands our greatest treasure and you cared for him like your own “pop pop”.  Words can never express how grateful we are for each of you.  You made a difficult time bearable, and you became part of our family in the process. We would also like to thank Mark, our incredible neighbor and friend, for letting us hear the loud rumble of dad’s hot rod when we needed it most.

In lieu of flowers, that none of us but Lisa may be able to keep alive, we ask that you support your local Alzheimer’s Association.  It is a horrible disease that steals life and joy.  Our hope is that through continued research not one more person or family has to experience the effects of such a terrible disease.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Gene Autry, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Visitation

Friday, March 22, 2024

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Eastern time)

Silas Creek Chapel - Hayworth-Miller Funeral Homes & Crematory

3315 Silas Creek Pkwy, Winston-Salem, NC 27103

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Friday, March 22, 2024

Starts at 2:00 pm (Eastern time)

Silas Creek Chapel - Hayworth-Miller Funeral Homes & Crematory

3315 Silas Creek Pkwy, Winston-Salem, NC 27103

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Entombment

Friday, March 22, 2024

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