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Mills Yoder Bridges

Posted By Hall-Wynne On April 4, 2018 @ 8:28 am In Durham,Obituaries | 6 Comments

Mills Yoder Bridges, age 72, passed away on March 29th, 2018 after several years of declining health. He was born to Charles S. Bridges and Charlotte A. Yoder Bridges in Burke County, NC. Oldest of five children, he was the kid with the big ears, sitting quietly and listening to the grownups talk. He learned all the family secrets, including which uncle ran the liquor still.

Mills grew up in Hildebran, NC, a small town where everybody knew everybody and if you got in trouble in the neighborhood your mother knew it before you got home. Mills enjoyed some of that. His mother had nine siblings and his father five, so he was blessed with what seemed like countless cousins, too many to name in this writing.

Mills took his fascination with family stories to heart through a lifelong study of family history both through personal connections and genealogy research. If you dared ask him a question about some ancestor or distant relation, you best be ready to pull up a chair and listen for a while. Beyond that, he was a man with a small circle of friends who cared for him deeply and knew him as strong, generous, remarkably intelligent, with a singular love of cats.

He graduated from Hildebran High School in 1963, excelling in basketball and football. He graduated from Catawba College in 1968 and followed a career in accounting work, part of the time for the University of NC at Chapel Hill and later the State of NC.

He is survived by a son, Alan Bridges and Alan’s mother, Sandra Hare. He is also surivived by his current wife, Paula S. Clarke whom he married in 1985, his step-son, Ben Clarke, and step-grandchildren, Henry and Ida Clarke, his siblings, Drew Bridges, of Wake Forest, and three younger sisters, Marilyn Cuaron of Colorado, Nancy West of Glen Alpine, Vickie Sigmon, of Winston Salem.

A memorial service will be announced at a later date. Burial in accordance with his family’s wishes will be private.

The family is under the care of Hall-Wynne Funeral Service. Online condolences:www.hallwynne.com; Select obituaries.

Condolences for the family of “Mills Yoder Bridges”

Condolence from Leonard F. Dean on April 5th, 2018 11:57 am

Mills was a true friend and a diligent researcher. For years I would see him at the State Archives of North Carolina. He was always busy looking for the next ancestor. When I needed help he was always most gracious to share information with me. Mills, you will be missed. I extend my sympathy to his family in this time of loss. Sincerely, Leonard F. Dean, Raleigh

Condolence from Vickie sigmon on April 5th, 2018 11:46 pm

Thank you, Leonard. It is a comfort to me (the youngest sister) to hear your appreciation for Mills.
Vickie Bridges Sigmon

Condolence from Sarah Koonts on April 7th, 2018 9:13 am

On behalf of the staff at the State Archives of North Carolina, I would like to express our condolences on the loss of Mr. Bridges. For years he was a fixture in our search room. I brought him records many Saturdays as a student archivist. Our patrons are like family to us, and we will miss him.

Sincerely, Sarah E. Koonts, State Archivist of North Carolina

Condolence from Julie Wills on April 14th, 2018 11:56 am

Mills was a very close friend and fellow genealogical researcher at the NC Archives that I have known for the past twenty years. He was very dedicated to ancestral research not only for his own bloodlines but also to help others on their ancestral journey as well. He was a walking “encyclopedia” of historical facts and books which he shared with many. To illustrate this, my first acquaintance with Mills decades ago when I was the “newbie” there, I was willing at lunchtime where all the researchers gathered to show my ignorance by stating, “Oh my, I’m starting a new area of Kentucky research and don’t even know where to start!” Mills in less than a minute named 8 to 10 book titles I’d never heard of, and by the blank look on my face, he volunteered to follow me to the genealogy room before he went to his usual place of abode in the archives room, and to gather the books for me he had just spoken of. And to my utter amazement and standing in awe, I watched him quickly move from corner to corner of the room while stacking the books ( yes, 8-10!) before me. I knew then Mills was a VERY special person, a caring and giving person to all that knew him. He became a dear friend who will be EXTREMELY missed! The archives will not be the same without him! Life, for his close friends at the archives, will not be the same without him!

Condolence from Jean Birdsong Tomes on April 29th, 2018 4:11 pm

I just heard today of the loss of Mills. Even though Mills and I did not descend from the same Bridges/Bridger line, he was my “go to” whenever I hit a “brick wall” while trying to document the lineage for someone to join the Bridger Family Association (of which Mills was an Associate Member) or the Jamestowne Society.
If anyone ever truly loved their family heritage/history it was Mills Bridges and only other genealogists understand the deep passion he felt for family knowledge.
Mills will be greatly missed by many.
My best to the Bridges family.

Jean Birdsong Tomes
Roanoke Rapids, NC

President, Bridger Family Association
Governor, First NC Company, Jamestowne Society

Condolence from Karen on July 22nd, 2018 11:54 am

From someone who shared his interest in family history & appreciated his work.

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