The State Paper Sunday August 2, 1903 pg 10 col 2
Death In Dillon
Leading Man of Marion County, Mr John C Bethea
Special to the State.
Dillon---July 30, 1903---Mr John C Bethea died this morning at 3 o'clock, and while, from his long invalidism it was not expected, still the announcement of his death this morning was a great shock to our town. Mr Bethea was a native of Marion County, 42 years of age, and up to six years ago lived on his plantation near Latta. At that time he built a beautiful home here and while his physical condition did not allow him to take an active part personally in the growth and development of the town, yet his was a familiar figure upon our streets and up to within two years of his death, he was "down town" with his friends, from whom he had always met a cordial greeting for, they loved and esteemed him for his worth.
Until his health failed, Mr Bethea was a planter, and a very successful one. His was one of the most valuable places in this section, a portion of which he sold to the Messrs. Manning for $23,000 only a few months ago.
He was a lineal descendant of one of two brothers who came from Virginia about the year 1735, one of whom settled on Buck Swamp, the other on Sweat Swamp, and being among the earliest settlers, the family of Bethea became one of the most influential in Marion County. By blood and marriage he was connected with nearly every family of prominence in the PeeDee section. He leaves one brother, Col Ed Bethea of Latta; a wife, sister of Dr J F Bethea and seven children.
His remains, by his request, will be interred at Mt Holly Cemetery, at 10 o'clock tomorrow, the stores all closing as a mark of respect to the deceased.
For many years a member of the Methodist Church, he held, until recently,
his membership at Dothan, the church of his ancestors. The funeral will be conducted from
the Methodist Church and his body laid away with Masonic honors.