Dr. Samuel M. Holton, 87, of Chapel Hill, NC died on March 17, 2010. Dr. Holton was born in Durham, NC on May 29, 1922, the son of Holland and Lela Young Holton. He graduated from Durham High in 1938. He graduated from Duke University, New York University and Yale University where he received his Ph.D. in Education in 1948.
During World War II, he served in the US Army Air Corp in India and China as a meteorologist, leaving the service as a Captain. His academic career as a professor at UNC-Chapel Hill in the School of Education began in 1948, retiring in 1987. He was principal from 1953-1955 at Bartlett-Yancy High School in Yancyville, NC while on professional leave from UNC. He wrote the textbook “Understanding the American Public High School” and numerous education publications. He served on the Chapel Hill-Carrboro school board from 1968-1975. He was on the board of trustees of NC Wesleyan College in Rocky Mount, NC and Goodwill Industries of Eastern NC. Sam was an Eagle Scout and a Boy Scout leader. He was awarded the Boy Scouts’ highest honor, the Silver Beaver Award by the Occoneechee Council in 1966 for over 30 years of service to the Boy Scouts at Duke Memorial United Methodist Church in Durham. He was honored to be a member of the Kiwanis Club for over 50 years. Sam and his wife Margaret have established the Samuel M. Holton Distinguished Professorship in the UNC School of Education.
Sam is survived by his loving wife of 57 years Margaret Umberger Holton, his four children Robert W. Holton and wife, Beverly of Boone; Margaret Meg D. Holton and husband, Jerrel Kesling of Chapel Hill; Grace H. Holton of Durham; Elizabeth Betsy H. Carmichael and husband, John of Davidson; and six grandchildren, Lori A. and Kelly A. Holton of Boone, Alexander H. Kesling of Chapel Hill, and John Samuel “Jack”, Robert W. and Andrew H. Carmichael of Davidson; and two close cousins, Edith Murphy of Durham and Mary Grace Anderson of Kennesaw, Georgia. He was predeceased by his parents and two brothers, Winfred Quinton Holton and Holland Young Holton.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, March 20, 2010 at 2:00 pm at the University United Methodist Church in Chapel Hill. The family will receive friends and family on Friday from 5:00-7:00 pm at Hall-Wynne Funeral Home, Durham, NC. A private family burial service will be held.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the School of Education Foundation, Inc., for the “Samuel M. Holton Distinguished Professorship in the School of Education,” Attn: Wendy Borman, University of NC at Chapel Hill, 101 Peabody Hall, Campus Box 3500, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3500, or to your local Boy Scout Council.
Arrangements for the Holton family are under the care of Hall-Wynne Funeral Service. www.hallwynne.com.