Ernest McCullough Hilton, age 88, of 715 Williamsboro Street died Sunday, October 11, 2009. A native of Davie County, he came to Oxford in 1940 where he opened and operated a sawmill business. He was the son of the late Roland A. and Sallie McCullough Hilton. In 1960, he became the owner and operator of the firm Hilton and Morgan Lumber Company in Oxford, which he operated for 25 years. He was a land owner and raised cattle for 40 years and cruised timber in Granville County. Hilton graduated from Shady Grove High School in Advance and was a former member of the Presbyterian Church in Bixby, NC. Upon moving to Oxford he became an active member of Hester Baptist Church, where he served on the deacon board and was also on the trustee and property committee. He was the oldest male member of Hester Baptist church. He was former president and a charter member of the Granville County Rescue Squad. He was a member of Oxford Masonic Lodge 122 A.F. & A.M., member of the Cattlemen’s Association and Granville County Wildlife Club.
Funeral services will be conducted at 11:00 A.M. on Tuesday, October 13, 2009 from Hester Baptist Church by Dr. Lavelle Waters and Rev. James C. Shelley, Jr. Burial will follow in the church cemetery.
He is survived by his devoted wife of 66 years, Marvell Currin Hilton of the home; one daughter, Martha Hilton-Willett of Oxford, NC; and one beloved granddaughter, Claudia McCullough Willett; and one sister, Madelin “Pat” Coppley of Lexington, NC. Mr. Hilton was preceded in death by a daughter, Claudette Hilton.
Mr. Hilton was highly respected by his family and friends. He was a devoted husband, father and grandfather and was the happiest when he was surrounded by his cherished granddaughter. He loved nature, wildlife, his farm and raising cattle.
Visitation for the family will be one hour prior to the service in Hester Baptist Church parlor and at other times at the home. Flowers are accepted or memorials may be made to Hester Baptist Church, Hwy. 96 North, Oxford, NC 27565.
Gentry-Newell & Vaughan is in charge of assisting the Hilton family. For online memorials go to www.gnvfh.com, select obituaries.