Brantley Small Vann, Jr., 93, of Fayetteville, North Carolina, passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by family and entered into eternal life on Friday, August 27, 2021.
Brantley was born in Fayetteville, NC, on October 19, 1927, to the late Brantley Small Vann, Sr. and Ada Snipes Vann. He was drafted into the Army during his senior year at Fayetteville High School. Following his honorable discharge, Brantley completed high school and graduated from Presbyterian Junior College in Maxton, NC. While at the lunch counter of a Maxton drug store, Brantley first set eyes on Jewel Prevatte. Completely enamored, he followed her out of the shop, with his ice cream dish still in his hand. Brantley and Jewel married and were lovingly devoted to one another for 67 years.
An adventurer, Brantley rode his 1948 Cushman motor scooter as far north as Illinois and south as Florida, as a young man. He explored educational and technical training in both Indiana and Florida before becoming a rural mail carrier, and he retired after 43 years of service.
Brantley enjoyed sports, especially playing tennis, and his dedication to the game continued well into his 80's. Later in life, pickleball became one of his favorite pastimes. He was an avid Carolina Tar Heel basketball and football fan.
A deeply caring person, Brantley developed many special friendships through the years, including those at First Presbyterian Church of Fayetteville where he served as Deacon and was an involved member for over 70 years.
Foundational in the lives of his family members, Brantley’s children and grandchildren were shaped by his life examples and unconditional love. He was endlessly proud of his three children, and he wholeheartedly supported all six of his granddaughters through attending sports games, recitals, graduations, and weddings. His granddaughters have treasured memories of “Papa’s” inquisitive nature and never-ending spark for life; his smile and backrubs; his love for travel and adventure; that he gave the BEST hugs (many people can attest to this); that he was a great storyteller and had a wonderful sense of humor; and his child-like appreciation for the simple things in life. Brantley was also a brilliant problem solver who could build or fix anything, and he passed along his innovativeness and ingenuity to each of his children and grandchildren in some compacity. Brantley modeled a life of integrity, faith in action, a love for learning, devotion to family, humility, selfless love, and an “even keeled” calm demeanor.
The love of God flowed through Brantley to others. He was able to strike up a conversation with anyone and left people with a smile on their faces. He will always be lovingly remembered by those who were lucky enough to have had him in their lives.
Brantley is survived by his wife Jewel Prevatte Vann; their children: Mark Vann (Angie) of Cameron, NC, Rose King (Gardner) of Chesapeake, VA, and Tracy Fletcher of Chapel Hill, NC; six granddaughters: Lauren, Jamie (Nick), Rachel (Doug), Sarah, Grace (Joel), and Avery; three great-granddaughters: Nicoya, Willow, and Laurel.
He was predeceased in death by his brother, Harold Vann, and sister, Emma Ritter.
A celebration of life service is to be held at First Presbyterian Church of Fayetteville on Tuesday, August 31, at 10:00 a.m. with visitation following the service. A committal service will be held at a later date. The family requests that any charitable donations be made to First Presbyterian Church of Fayetteville or to Cape Fear Valley Hospice and Palliative Care.
The family is exceedingly grateful to the hospice team of Cape Fear Valley Hospice and Palliative Care for their exceptional support and assistance. Additionally, the family would like to express gratitude for the many types of loving care expressed to them by the pastoral staff of First Presbyterian Church and so many loving friends who have blessed them now and through the years
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