Community mourns Marks

Published 10:19 am Friday, April 12, 2013

FRANKLIN—The community lost an avid supporter and friend this week in the death of Paul Camp Marks.

Paul Camp MarksMarks, 88, passed away Wednesday at his home.

“He is really going to be missed,” said longtime friend John Elwood Fox of Capron.

Fox and Marks were the two oldest members of the Indiantown Hunt Club, of which Marks was the last living charter member.

Distantly related, Fox said he hunted and fished with Marks all of his life. “He was a man’s man. He said what he thought but if your opinion differed, he held no grudge.”

“He was a good friend,” Fox said when remembering times when they were both young men going to Cotillion Club and Boykins Fire Department dances.

Another lifetime friend is Roy Lassiter, 94, of Boykins. Lassiter said he was six years older than Marks and that he had known him all of his life.

“We didn’t develop our friendship until after World War II,” Lassiter recalled. He said the two families went on beach trips together and played bridge together. But the “crowning glory” of the friendship, said Lassiter, was during the 11 weeks last year when he was laid up in the hospital with two broken shoulders. “Paul came to the hospital at least five days out of each of the 11 weeks I was there,” saying they talked and reminisced about old times. “You have no idea what that meant to me.”

He stressed, “It was not just Paul and Roy but it’s been family – I loved him like a brother. We’ve been part of each other’s lives for a long time.”

Westbrook Parker, executive director of the Camp Family Foundation, where Marks served as a board member, said, “He is the last of the original trustees.”

“He had a very commanding presence with a booming voice but he quietly helped everybody around here,” said Parker. “He loved Franklin and Southampton County and he loved the residents. He did a lot to keep everything going through the generosity of these foundations.”

Marks served on all three boards under the administrative arm of the Elms Foundation ­— the Ruth Camp Campbell Foundation, the Camp-Younts Foundation, and the Camp Foundation.

Marks was a World War II veteran with the 1st Infantry Division and served at the Battle of the Bulge. He was also a member of the Capron Ruritan Club and the Capron United Methodist Church. He served on the Southampton County School Board, and was a member of the Board of Directors of the Windsor REA for 50 years.