10/24/04 — JOHN C. FIELDS

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RALEIGH -- John Chesbro Fields, 74, of Raleigh died peacefully on Friday morning in the care of Rex Hospital's Cardiac Care Unit.

John was a wonderful loving Husband, Father, Grandfather, and Friend who served and followed God's will for his life.

John C., as he was known, was born to the late Chesbro Franklin and Ethel Barnet Fields on October 4, 1930 in Wayne County, N.C. His early education took place at the Nahunta School where he excelled in academics, sports and 4-H. John played varsity basketball and baseball at Nahunta High School, where he received further honors for his academic and extracurricular achievements.

A desire to become a teacher and coach led John to pursue higher education at East Carolina Teachers College, which is now East Carolina University.

In January of 1951, John left college to enter the United States Air Force to, as he said, "serve my country as everyone is expected to do." He completed his basic training at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas, and was transferred to Scott Field Illinois for training in radio and electronics. John was stationed in Japan for 31 months as an aircraft radio and electronics technician, Airman First Class. After serving his country, John returned to college where he received his B.S. in education in 1958, and his Masters Degree in 1960.

John's professional career spanned 37 years. He taught and coached at the high school level in Danville, Va., and Washington, N.C. for three years. He served as an elementary school assistant principal in Washington for one year.

John accepted a position with Horace Mann Insurance Company in 1962 as an agent. In 1965 he was promoted to state manager and in 1971 to district manager. John's accomplishments, awards and contributions at Horace Mann were immeasurable. He received countless top honors for sales, service and exceptional performance in the field of insurance. John was awarded the prestigious Horace Mann Insurance Company Manager of Year award in 1980, and was inducted in the Horace Mann Hall of Fame in 1981. John's career with Horace Mann afforded he and his wife, Dot, the opportunity to travel extensively throughout the U.S. and the world.

The highlight of John's career he said was "not the awards or the accolades, but rather being able to help people prepare for their futures." John always credited his success to the outstanding group of agents he had the pleasure to be associated with.

John retired on March 31, 1994. During the next 10 years, John enjoyed spending time with his family and friends. He was an avid golfer and fisherman. John loved to travel and work in his garden, where he grew vegetables to give to a local volunteer food bank. John was an active member of the Seekers Sunday school class at Ridge Road Baptist Church for the past 35 years. The things John held in highest importance were his relationship with God and his family; the education of his two sons, who graduated from East Carolina University, and being of service to others in any way he could.

John was preceded in death by his brother, Curtis Gray Fields, of Morehead City, N.C.

John is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 49 years, Dorothy Brown Fields; son John and his wife, Missy, their son, Jordan and daughter, Rachel, all of Albemarle, son Frank and his wife, Andrea, their son, Macon and daughters, Grace, Nora and their expected daughter, all of Winterville; brother, Robert Fields and his wife Nan of Kenly; and sister Marie and her husband, Earl Dale of Wilson.

John is also survived by many friends and a loving extended family of nieces, nephews, cousins and in-laws who were all blessed by the life of this wonderful man!

Funeral service will be held 12 noon Monday at Montlawn Funeral Home, 2911 S. Wilmington St., Raleigh, N.C. Burial will follow in Montlawn Memorial Park.

The family will receive friends from 10 a.m. until 12 noon at the funeral home prior to the service.

(Written & Paid by the Family)

Published in Obituaries on October 24, 2004 9:54 AM