Obituary For Robert Carson Oakley, Sr.
November 6, 1927 - May 19, 2023

Robert Carson Oakley, Sr., 95, passed away Friday, May 19, 2023 at UNC Health Care and Nursing Center.

A funeral service will be held Wednesday *(May 31st* next Wednesday) at the Spray United Methodist Church, 803 Morgan Road, at 10:00 am with Military Honors to follow at Ridgeview Memorial Gardens.  Per Carson’s wishes, a breakfast will be served in the fellowship hall prior to the service from 8:30-9:45am.

Robert Carson Oakley, Sr., better known as Carson, born in Danville, VA, on November 6, 1927 to the late Robert M. Oakley and Bessie Haraway Oakley. Raised in Providence, NC, Caswell County, he attended Cobb Memorial High School, a graduate of Lees McRae College, Banner Elk, NC.  After college, employed by Dan River Mill as Supervisor from 1947 to 1950 in the Sheeting Department.  He worked from February 1950 to May 1, 1990 at Fieldcrest Mills in Eden, NC.   Carson served in the US Army from October 1950 to October 1952 and was in the 43rd MP Co being discharged as Staff Sergeant.  Returning to NC, Carson served as various Department Heads with the last 20 years as Superintendent of Dyeing and Finishing area of the blanket division before retirement.  Mr. Oakley was an avid bird hunter, golfer, woodworker and volunteer helping others.  He led many work missions to repair homes and churches that were damaged in floods and storms.  He took teams to Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina and Kentucky or anywhere needed.  He was an active member in his earlier years with the Cherokee Council Boy Scouts, also a member of the Spray United Methodist Church where he held many jobs as a Lay Leader and all other committees and chairmanship.  He taught Sunday School for many years and was a Certified Lay Speaker for the Western NC Methodist Conference.  He also served on various Northeast United Methodist District Committees.  He was very active in the Hispanic Community and Church.  Carson served on the Steering Committee to establish the “Upper Room Dan River Emmaus Community in Danville, VA.  He was also involved in Kairos prison ministry in Virginia, going to the State Prison taking the Word of God and the salvation of Jesus Christ to the prisoners.  Mr. Oakley believed the gospel in Matthew 25 and tried to live as Jesus Christ had called him to do.  He was also known by many as the “Cross Man” where he had made over 6,000 small walnut crosses.  These crosses were sent all over the world as part of this witness for Jesus Christ.

Left to cherish his memories are three sons, Robert (Sue) C Oakley, Jr., William (Nancy) Oakley, Thomas (Reena) Oakley; daughter Sharon Ann (Ed) Price; grandchildren, Heather (Kevin) Barker, Grady (Patricia) Price, III, Will Price; great grandchildren, Cody Barker, Levi Barker, Grady Price, IV, Maggie Price; numerous nieces and nephews.

He is preceded in death by his wife, Jo Ann Ballard Oakley and brother Louie Oakley.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be given to Spray United Methodist Church, PO Box 690, Eden, NC  27289; St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital, 262 Danny Thomas Pl, Memphis, TN 38105; Kairos Prison, Buckingham Correctional, VA-20, Dillwyn, VA 23936

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