Myrtle Westmoreland

Myrtle Westmoreland passed away on February 3, 2018 after a brief illness. Myrtle was a child of God, having declared her faith in Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior in her formative years. She was born on a tobacco and peanut farm in Plymouth, NC to the late Kenneth and Inez Hopkins. She graduated from Plymouth High School as Valedictorian of her class. She then went on to graduate from East Carolina Teachers College, now ECU, where she majored in Home Economics and Science. Myrtle later established the Myrtle Westmoreland Scholarship Fund at ECU which supports a student in the Department of Child and Family Relations. She lettered on the varsity basketball team in both high school and college. After graduating she pursued her Home Economics career having taught Home Economics in Durham and then served as nutritionist with the Dairy Council of Durham, Burlington and Raleigh. She married Glenn Westmoreland in 1945 after which she taught Home Economics in Harmony. She then served as Home Demonstration Agent of Iredell County with the Agricultural Extension Service for 7 years and then became the Southwestern District Agent over 13 counties for 3 years. Myrtle was a Trustee of Iredell Memorial Hospital from 1974 until the present, serving as a member of and secretary of the Board of Directors for 22 years. She wrote the history of Iredell Memorial Hospital which was published in the handbook, Fifty Years of Caring. She was instrumental in making the community aware of the need of a hospice program and in starting the Hospice of Iredell County. She served as a charter board member and president of 2 years, as it struggled during its early years. She continued to be supportive of the program through the years. Upon semi-retirement, she had time to author a book which she titled, I Married a Funeral Director which was published in 1997, and related her true experiences in funeral service in the Statesville community for over half a century. Then after her husband Glenn passed away, Myrtle published her second book in 2007, entitled Left Behind Spouse. Myrtle has also written a family history for her children. She then joined Glenn in funeral service and became a licensed funeral director. She and Glenn eventually owned Bunch Funeral Home and the Johnson Funeral Home, which they combined and built the Bunch-Johnson Funeral Home on Davie Avenue in Statesville. They also acquired the Reavis Funeral Home of Harmony and operated the funeral homes for many years until retirement. Myrtle was very active in local and state civic and church activities, having served as President of the Broad Street United Methodist Women and taught adult Sunday school classes for many years. She is a past President of the former Junior Service League of Statesville, the Statesville Woman’s Club, and the Statesville Altrusa Club. She also belonged to the Town & Country Garden Club and Friends of the Library. She is also is a past president of the former NC Funeral Directors Auxiliary and the former NC Home Economics Association. She has been a member of the Senior Center Advisory Council for many years, having served as Fund Raising Chairman to purchase the building for the Center, located on East Front Street in Statesville. Myrtle and Glenn started the Community wide Widow Persons Organization 35 years ago, a support group for widowed persons. Myrtle has served as Sponsor Coordinator through the years. Myrtle was predeceased by her beloved husband of 62 years, Glenn on January 25, 2007. Myrtle is survived by her daughter, Patti Malpass and her husband Mike of Cary, NC; 3 grandchildren, Allison Lynch and her husband Seth of Fuquay Varina, NC, Kristen Ennis and her husband Nathan of Indian Trial, NC and David Malpass of San Francisco, CA; 6 great grandchildren, Braden, Eliana, Karis and Lucas Lynch, Kylie and Harper Ennis; her brother Robert “Bob” Hopkins and his wife Linda of Statesville; many nieces and nephews and an unofficial adopted Japanese daughter, Yuko Barron of Los Angles, CA. Myrtle will lie in state on Tuesday, February 6, 2018 in the Westmoreland Chapel of Bunch-Johnson Funeral Home from 10am to 4pm. The family will receive friends on Wednesday, February 7, 2018 at Broad Street United Methodist Church, in Memorial Hall 1 hour prior and 1 hour after the funeral service. The funeral service will begin on Wednesday at 1pm with Rev. Dr. Michael Gehring and Pastor Michael Malpass officiating. The family has requested that the following Honorary Groups please be seated on the left side of the church facing the alter: Christian Forum Sunday School Class, UM Women Circle #5, Statesville Women’s Club, Town & Garden Club, Bridge Club and the Neighborhood Bible Study. A private burial with the family will be held at Oakwood Cemetery following the services at Broad Street United Methodist Church on Wednesday. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made in Myrtle’s memory to either the Caring Fellowship Fund of Broad Street United Methodist Church, 315 W. Broad St., Statesville, NC 28677,or the Hospice & Palliative Care of Iredell County, 2347 Simonton Rd., Statesville, NC 28625 or Iredell Senior Center, 344 E. Front St., Statesville, NC 28677. An audio interview of Myrtle’s discussing her life can be found at www.digital.lib.ecu.edu. Online condolences can be sent to the family at www.bunchjohnsonfuneralhome.com. Bunch-Johnson Funeral is honored to be serving the family of Myrtle Westmoreland

Gary Overcash