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Ottis Lee “Cecil” Etheridge, 84, of Roanoke Rapids, NC left his earthly life for an eternal one on October 22, 2023.

Cecil was born on September 24, 1939, in Weldon, NC.  

He was the son of the late Fannie Odell Knox Etheridge.  

He graduated from Weldon High School in 1959, and attended East Carolina University briefly until he was hired by the Seaboard Air Line Railroad in May 1960.  

Cecil loved his job, loved to work, and loved overtime.

In 1957, Cecil met the love of his life Beverly Tripp while cruising in his 1949 Mercury Coupe.  She was riding with her cousins in a Studebaker.  

This courtship and marriage lasted for 66 years.  

They went on to have two children, Leigh Dunning Etheridge, and Robert “Jason” Etheridge.

In 1986, Cecil retired from CSX due to injury and became a stay-at-home dad, caretaker of the family, handyman of all things, an excellent gardener and incredible cook.

Cecil was preceded in death by his mother Fannie Knox Etheridge, sisters Margaret Etheridge, Annie Mae Etheridge, Mabel Marie Etheridge, Lizzie Etheridge Carroll; brothers Jackie Ray Etheridge, Al Smith “Buck” Etheridge; three nieces, and the man he knew as a father Samuel Worth Dunning.

Cecil is survived by his wife of 60 years Beverly Tripp Etheridge, daughter Leigh Dunning Etheridge, son Robert Jason Etheridge and wife Heather Hux Etheridge; grandchildren Allie Elizabeth Etheridge, Jackson Cole Etheridge, Emma Claire Etheridge, and Layne Grady Hux; his sister Effie Etheridge Pearson; eight nieces, and five nephews.

A graveside service will be held at Cedarwood Cemetery Wednesday, October 25, 2023, at 1:00PM with Rev. Sue Owens officiating.  

A visitation will be held the same day prior to the service starting at 11:00 A.M. at Hockaday Funeral & Cremation Service.  Friends can sign the online register by visiting www.hockadayfs.com