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GABLE - Samuel Eugene “Sammie” DuRant Sr., 90, widower of Jane Bailey DuRant, died Friday, March 31, 2017, at his home.
Born Aug. 11, 1926, in Alcolu, he was a son of the late Henry Eugene DuRant and Gertrude Oliver DuRant. Sammie finished Gable High School in May 1943 and began his education at Clemson University, where it was interrupted when he entered the Army in World War II in November 1944. After basic training at Camp Blanding, Florida, he was sent overseas to serve in Patton’s 3rd Army.
"Sammie," as he was known, served in the occupational forces with headquarters USFET in Germany. After returning from the service, Sammie finished his education at Clemson in 1948 and returned home to farm for 50 years. He served as head veterans teacher in Manning and as an assistant rural mail carrier for a number of years.
Sammie was a member and past president of the Clarendon County Farm Bureau and also the Gold Kist Board. He was on the board of the former Sumter Federal Land Bank Association and then the Farm Credit Association of Florence for more than 30 years.
He was on the founding board of Laurence Manning Academy and named the Business Man of the Year for Clarendon County in 1997.
Sammie was a lifelong member of New Harmony Presbyterian Church. He loved his church and the New Harmony Community, where he served as an elder for 40 years. He was a Bible class teacher and served in many other capacities.
Survivors include two sons, Samuel Eugene "Gene" DuRant Jr. (Melanie) of Gable and Harry Bailey DuRant (Kim) of Alcolu; two daughters, Cary DuRant Graham of Columbia and Kathryn DuRant Sims (Daryl) of Buford, Georgia; a sister, Mary Gertrude Baker of New Zion; a brother-in-law, Ralph Bleasdale Sr. of Alcolu; nine grandchildren, Samuel Eugene “Sam” DuRant III (Elizabeth), Christopher Ryan DuRant (Ansley), Caroline DuRant Thompson (Charlie), Harrison Bailey DuRant (Mary-Michal), John Ashton DuRant (Kendall), Gena DuRant Reeder (Graham), William Cork Graham, Jr., Matthew DuRant Graham and Caleb DuRant Sims; and seven great-grandchildren.
In addition to his wife and parents, he was preceded in death by a sister, Annette DuRant Bleasdale.
A funeral service will be held 3 p.m. Sunday, April 2, 2017, at New Harmony Presbyterian Church, with the Rev. Dr. Gordon K. Reed officiating. Burial will follow in the DuRant-New Harmony cemetery.
Grandsons will serve as pallbearers.
Honorary pallbearers will include Billy McNair, Robert McNair, Thomas Wilson Sr., Frank Bleasdale, Ralph Bleasdale Jr., Edgar Baker, John Rutledge DuRant, Bob McNair, Bruce McNair, Thomas DuRant, Joe Wilson, Dr. John Tennant, Don Cole, Lee Reaves Jr., Len Brown and Phillip Thompson.
Visitation will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday, April 1, 2017, at the home, 10932 Brewington Road in Gable.
The family would like to thank the staff of Embrace Hospice, and caregivers Lois Mickens, Betty Williams, Janet Reed, Ora Nelson, Tyson Robinson and Peggy Hicks.
Memorials may be made to the New Harmony Presbyterian Church Building Fund, 1174 New Harmony Church Road, Alcolu, SC 29001.
Stephens Funeral Home and Crematory, 304 N. Church St. in Manning, is in charge of arrangements, (803) 435-2179.