01/14/08 — EDWARD C. VINSON JR.

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Died Jan. 13, 2008

Edward C. Vinson Jr. died at his home on Sunday surrounded by his family. He was born in Wayne County, N.C., and was the son of Edward Sr. and Minnie Mae Taylor-Vinson.

He attended Goldsboro High School and graduated in 1951. While attending high school, he met a man whom he felt greatly influenced his life personally as well as beginning his love for the western United States, especially Washington State. Coach Chick Doak would take Goldsboro High School graduates to Lake Chelan, Wash., to work in the apple orchards during the summer, and Ed was fortunate enough to be one of those students. This was the beginning of his love for the West and his study of the American cowboy and the American Indian.

When he returned to Goldsboro, he enlisted in the army with his best friend, Coy "Sonny" Gainey and fought in the Korean War as an Army Medic Sergeant of the 224th Infantry Regiment. Upon being discharged from the army, he returned to Goldsboro, once again, and found a position with First Provident Finance Company. He worked his way to becoming executive vice president of First Provident, which became a nationwide finance chain under his leadership. He also played a significant part in writing the Consumer Finance Laws of North Carolina while at First Provident. He eventually left Provident and founded his own company, Smithfield Finance, in Smithfield, N.C. with his friend, Ben G. Best, of Dunn, N.C. Later, he formed his corporation, Imperial Finance Company, and opened in Goldsboro in the early 1970s. Later, he acquired North State Finance Company from the late David Reaves' widow, Betty Jo, and operated North State Finance for the next 16 years, as his home office, until his illness, Limited Systemic Scleroderma. He closed his office in June 2007 after 52 years in consumer finance.

Mr. Vinson was preceded in death by his eldest son, Michael Franz. He is survived by his son, Douglas York and wife, Joy, and children, Chelsea and Kyle of Goldsboro; his daughter, Lisa Lorraine and her husband, Mark Kitris, of Belmont, and daughter, Mychael Lorraine; his son, Edward Scott of Gastonia and daughters, Summer and Savannah; his daughter, Jennifer Kelly of the home and her daughter, Shelby (his princess); his son, Corey Todd and wife, Nicole, of Littleton, Colo., and their son, Edward Xavier.

He is also survived by his wife, Sarah, and his brother, Russell Sr., of Goldsboro, and his sister, Audrey Vaglienti of Morehead City.

Ed was a life member of the Elk's Lodge 139 and loved his Elk brothers. He was an avid poker player, loved raising game chickens, his business, family, sports, especially football, and the love of the Wild West.

A service to celebrate Ed's life will be held Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Seymour Funeral Home Chapel. The family will receive friends Tuesday at the funeral home from 6 to 7 p.m. and other times at their home, 2833 Old Mount Olive Highway, Dudley.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to Scleroderma Foundation, Attn: Donations, 300 Rosewood Drive, Suite 105, Danvers, Mass. 01923 (www.scleroderma.org). Please send in memory of Edward C. Vinson.


Published in Obituaries on January 14, 2008 3:13 PM