Cover photo for Donald Avery "Donnie" Richardson's Obituary
Donald Avery "Donnie" Richardson Profile Photo

Donald Avery "Donnie" Richardson

May 18, 1947 — June 22, 2023

Donald Avery "Donnie" Richardson

Donald Avery Richardson, known as “Donnie”, of Ellerbe, left this earth Thursday, June 22 and joined his heavenly father and many others who passed on before him and is now having that long awaited reunion like no other he’s ever attended.

Donnie was born May 18, 1947, the second son of the late Arthur G. and Gladys Priddy Richardson and spent most of his young life helping his family farm their land in Ellerbe. It was there he learned the value of hard work, but mostly how important family was. It was also where his fondness for burning up the roads began, as he snuck out of the house more than he would ever admit.

Donnie graduated from Ellerbe High School in 1966 and began his career with Southern Bell in 1968. He married his sweetie Sandra Spivey, who he met at school, a year later in 1969.

After 30 years with Southern Bell, a job he recalls “the best job I could ever have, I loved what I did,” he retired, only to go right back to work in the same capacity as an independent contractor. In 2011, he found himself ready to hang up the telephone for good. He had worked across the Southeast for many  contractors but felt it was time to get back to his roots, farming. He started working with his brother Edwin, which gave him time to venture into some of his other favorite pastimes.

Donnie loved people, he never met a stranger, or they weren’t one for long, and even down to his last hospital visit, he was sharing stories with staff from when he was a member of the Ellerbe Rescue Squad. But he was more than a member, he was one of the founding members of that squad and helped build it to what it is today. He enjoyed being part of things and making them grow, making them better, attributes he took from when he was boy on the farm. He was a Board member of the Richmond County Farm Bureau, Richmond County Hospice, Soil & Water Conservation and Mt. Pleasant Community Club. He was also a member of the Price Richardson Hunting Club, Lions Club and Sandhills Rod & Gun Club.

He enjoyed being part of the community and always tried to give back. For years, he assisted with the Fourth of July Fireworks in Ellerbe and often loaned his hay trailer for rides for events within the county or drove himself.

Donnie was a man that loved and loved hard…he loved his family (especially his girls and all those reunions in Mayodan, Willis, VA or anywhere his family took him), he loved his friends, he loved Bluegrass music, he loved his Dodge truck (you always saw him running the roads), he loved Tilley hats (you never saw him without one), he loved to hog hunt, he loved his Monday night card games, he loved Ellerbe and he loved telephones (who else had a children’s phone back in the early 80’s).

He was preceded in death by his parents, Arthur G. and Gladys Priddy Richardson, brother and sister-in-law, Edwin and Margaret Richardson and daughter, Anita Richardson Shepard.

He is survived by his ‘bride’ of 54 years, Sandra Richardson; daughters, Karen Wilson, of Ellerbe; Erin Richardson of Greensboro; granddaughters, McKenzie Knight of Ellerbe, and Jordan Griffith (Josh) of Hamlet; grandson, Chason Wilson of Ellerbe, and his precious great-grandson Owen Avery Knight of Ellerbe and sister Linda Russell (Bobby) of Ellerbe.

Funeral services will be at 3 p.m. Sunday at Carter Funeral Home in Ellerbe with Kevin Thompson officiating. Interment will follow in Mt. Pleasant Church Cemetery.

The family will receive friends from 6-8 p.m. Saturday at Carter Funeral Home in Ellerbe and other times at the home, 864 Grassy Island Road, Ellerbe.

The family would like to offer their sincere thanks to Dr. Bo Kopynec of FirstHealth Family Care Center in Ellerbe and the staff at Richmond County Hospice for their love and support during these last few months. In lieu of flowers, it is their request that donations be made in Donnie’s memory to Richmond County Hospice, 1119 US Hwy 1 North, Rockingham, NC 28379.


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Past Services

Visitation

Saturday, June 24, 2023

6:00 - 8:00 pm (Eastern time)

Carter Funeral Home Ellerbe Chapel

143 Church Street, Ellerbe, NC 28338

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

Funeral Service

Sunday, June 25, 2023

Starts at 3:00 pm (Eastern time)

Carter Funeral Home Ellerbe Chapel

143 Church Street, Ellerbe, NC 28338

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

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