Benjamin Linton Spearman Jr.
Ben Spearman, of Brookhaven, died peacefully in his home onMarch 10, 2008. Born in Anniston, Ala., in 1916, he was the onlyson of Benjamin L. Spearman Sr., and Chester Bell Spearman. Hegraduated from Anniston High School in 1934 and from TulaneUniversity in 1938. He then studied music (clarinet and saxophone)in New York for two years during the Big Band music era. Heenlisted in the United States Army in January 1941 and served hiscountry for five years in the Finance Department during World WarII in the European Theater and the Philippines, discharged with therank of Chief Warrant Officer.
Mr. Spearman moved to Brookhaven in April 1946 as a partner in alaundry and dry-cleaning business. Until 1970, he remainedself-employed in business, including the Brookhaven Oldsmobiledealership from 1951 until 1958. As an accountant, he joined theMississippi State Tax Commission as an auditor, and he retired fromthat agency in 1979.
A longtime member of the First United Methodist Church, Mr.Spearman was a member of the Administrative Board since 1954. Heserved as chairman of that board and also as chairman of thechurch’s Board of Trustees.
An avid and competitive sportsman, he loved and participated inmany sports throughout his life. He won the Alabama State DoublesChampionship in 1939. During his Army service, he played andrefereed USO ping pong. In Brookhaven, he bowled and golfedregularly, winning many trophies in both sports.
A participant in many community activities and charity drives,Mr. Spearman helped found the Brookhaven Touchdown Club, servingone year as president. He was active in the Brookhaven-LincolnCounty Chamber of Commerce, having served as a director, and in theBrookhaven Country Club, having served a year as president and twoterms on the Board of Directors. He also served as chairman of theLincoln County Cancer Crusade for 1982. He was elected King of theHarvest Ball and later served as president and treasurer of theKrewe of Ceres.
Mr. Spearman will be remembered by all who knew him as afriendly, loyal, persistent, determined and generous man of hisword. His reputation as a reader, traveler and learner is legend inBrookhaven.
He is survived by his beloved wife of nearly 60 years, theformer Phyllis Moreton Johnson, of Brookhaven; three daughters,Pamela Spearman Womack and husband/son-in-law, Wil Womack, ofChattanooga, Tenn., Terry Spearman, of Whitehouse Texas, and CarolSpearman Kern, of Camp Hill, Pa.; and five grandchildren, BenjaminJames Sulser, Claire Moreton Sulser, Alexander Gerald Miller, EmilyMoreton Miller and Stephenie Robbin Kern.
A memorial service for Mr. Spearman will be held at the FirstUnited Methodist Church in Brookhaven on Friday, March 14, at 11a.m., with visitation at the church beginning at 9:30 a.m.Riverwood Family Funeral Service is in charge of arrangements.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be madeto one of Mr. Spearman’s many favorite charities: The BrookhavenFirst United Methodist Church Building Committee; the BrookhavenKing’s Daughters Hospital Foundation; or The Smile Train(www.smiletrain.org).