03/30/09 — Plummer, local vet and WWII pilot, dies at 84

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Plummer, local vet and WWII pilot, dies at 84

By Staff Reports
Published in News on March 30, 2009 1:46 PM

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Dr. William Plummer

"Bill Plummer was one of the first people I met when I came to Goldsboro," Price said. "He took me with him as he made his rounds, treating farm animals around the county. His life gave a special dimension to dedicated veterinary service. Throughout the years, he was one of my closest friends, and the area never had a finer citizen."

Plummer and wife, Mary were members of joined St. Paul United Methodist Church, where they both sang in the choir.

He was a charter member of the J. Paul Edwards Sunday school class and contributed generously to the class, said class member Peggy Seegars.

"He was a person who loved life," she said today. "He enjoyed people. And he did a lot for other people without anyone knowing what he was doing for others."

A member of the Wayne County Historical Association's Wall of Fame, Plummer was never interested in blowing his own horn. At the ceremony at which he was named to the Pork Council Hall of Fame, Plummer was his usual modest self.

"I don't feel like I deserve it," he said, "but I appreciate it."

As a young man, Plummer learned to fly quickly.

"He went from being someone who had no experience with flying whatsoever to being a fighter pilot over there," said Dr. Roy Heidicker, 4th Fighter Wing historian. "That's pretty impressive."

And so were his war tales.

Heidicker remembers each conversation he had with Plummer as "a pleasure."

"What a neat guy," he said. "From the minute I met him, I thought, 'What a genuinely nice man -- a gentleman.'"

Berkeley Veterinary Clinic veterinarian Dr. Whit Whitley remembered Plummer as someone he looked up to all his life.

"He introduced me to veterinary medicine in 1962 when he was working on the cattle on my father's farm in northern Wayne County," Whitley said today. "I grew up working over there at his place."

Plummer set the "standard for ethics and commitment among vets in eastern North Carolina," Whitley said

"When you consider man and all the four-legged animals in Wayne County, Dr. Plummer has likely touched more of God's creations in one way or another than any other man in the county," he said.

Whitley said that he has many stories of Plummer -- too many to mention.

Plummer will be remembered as a "kind, God-fearing man that always believed in serving the people of Wayne County," Whitley added.

"And he will be greatly missed."

Dr. Stan Griffith, one of the original veterinarians at Berkeley Veterinary Clinic, said he held Plummer "in the highest esteem."

"He was an excellent veterinarian and community member for Wayne County for 59 years," he said. "I will miss him."

George Pettus, environmental manager with Goldsboro Milling Co., said Plummer was one of the most respected employees of the company.

"He was just the epitome of what people should be," Pettus said. "He was an individual who would giving of his time. He was an individual who was willing to stop and talk with people. He was an individual who shared his experience with life and strength and hope with other people.

"He is just what you would want your children to be. He set the example for what Christ wants us to be and why we're here and why we're chosen to serve Him."

"He will be missed. He will missed extremely bad."