Southern Christian Advocate, November 23, 1944 issue, Vol 108 #46 pg 4 col 2: From the Sandor Teszler Library Archives of Wofford College:
D W Bethea
David W Bethea, 80, one of Dillon county's most prominent churchmen and farmers, died November 10 following a lingering illness. He had been a steward of the Dillon church since shortly after his graduation from Davidson college in 1882, and had been through the years one of the church's most loyal and faithful members and one of its most liberal supporters. He gave freely of himself and his means to various causes of the church. Particularly close to his heart was Epworth Orphanage, and it was his wish taht his relatives and friends send no flowers to his funeral but rather send contributions to the orphanages of your choice. He played a large part in aiding his church to realize this year a long-time dream of his, to make a contribution of at least $1000 in one year to Epworth. Mr Bethea was co-author some years ago, with Col. William C Harllee, of the well-known genealogical work, "Kinfolks." He was the son of David Walker Bethea and Mrs Sara Jane Manning Bethea. His wife, the former Miss Harriett Bethea, died three years ago. Mr Bethea is survived by five children, Mrs W W Harris, Clinton, whose husband is editor and publisher of the Clinton Chronicle, Miss Louise Bethea of Annapolis, Md., Miss Margaret Bethea and Tom Bethea of Dillon, and Col David W Bethea, Jr., USA, now on duty in France. The funeral services were conducted by his pastor, Rev Pierce E Cook, Rev E K Garrison of Darlington, former pastor, and Rev F J Hay, of the Dillon Presbyterian Church.
(THIS IS A SECOND OBIT FROM THE ADVOCATE FOR HIM---has more genealogical info)
Southern Christian Advocate, January 18, 1945, issue, Vol 109 #3 pg 12 col 1: From the Sandor Teszler Library Archives of Wofford College:
David William Bethea
David William Bethea, prominent churchman and farmer, passed away Friday, November 10 at McLeod;s Infirmary. News of his death was received with great sorrow by all who knew him.
David William Bethea was born January 9, 1864, in Dillon County, formerly a part of Marion District and county. The house in which he spent his life was built in 1855 by his parents, the late David Walker and Sara Manning Bethea.
He was educated in country schools, by private tutors and at Davidson College, from which institution he graduated and received his A B degree in 1882. He was a member of the Kappa Alpha fraternity.
He taught school in 1885 at Plum Branch, Edgefield County, now McCormick County. Thereafter he engaged in farming on the ancestral plantation near Dillon and was so engaged at the time of his death. He was school trustee for many terms and for fifteen years Sunday school superintendent and steward in the Methodist church in Dothan.
On November 19, 1896, he married Miss Harriet MacIntyre Purcell of near Red Springs, Robeson County, NC. She died three years ago on December 21, 1941.
Mr Bethea was a genealogist of note, collector of records on Bethea family history and collaborated with Gen. William Curry Harllee on "Kinfolks."
The deceased was a devoted member of the Dillon Methodist Church and for twenty-five years was on the board of stewards. Three years ago he was elected a life member of the board. He had also served as treasurer of the Sunday school. He was chairman of committee on permanent improvement and beautification of Dothan cemetery; trustee of Swinton Legare Bethea fund provided for perpetual care and upkeep of Dothan Church and cemetery in Dillon County and life president of Bethea Family Reunions.
He was an ardent and devoted adherent to the traditions of his father and a loyal and consistent supporter of all patriotic and welfare organizations and all movements that had for their objective the betterment of man.
He was a loyal supporter of Epworth Orphanage and it was his request that any who should desire to send flowers when he passed away, should take that money and send it to the orphanage of their choice. This desire of his was observed by a number of freinds (sp as written in obit).
Mr Bethea was a true Christian in the broadest sense of the word. Quiet, cultured, unassuming, conscientious, his life was a benediction to all with whom he came in contact. His daily life exemplified the tenets of the Golden Rule. He was a man of splendid parts and intrinsic worth, he counted his friends by the number of his acquaintances. He possessed the ability and character to fit him for higher places and conspicuous service, but he had the rare virtue of self effacement.
Despite his unassuming nature he possessed a personal charm and magnetism which drew people to him and made them his friends. He was gentle and sincere and it was with true affection that he was spoken of as "Cousin Dave," by nearly all who knew him.
He gave unstintedly of his time, strength and means to his church. His place in church and community cannot be filled and in his passing Dillon County has suffered an irreparable loss. It could truly be said of him "he lived in a house by the side of the road and was a friend to man."
Surviving are the following children: Mrs W W Harris, Clinton; Miss Louise Bethea, librarian at Annapolis, Md; Miss Margaret Bethea and Thomas C Bethea, Dillon; and Col D W Bethea, Jr., with the army in France.
Funeral services were held from the Methodist Church at 3:30 o'clock Saturday afternoon, conducted by Rev E K Garrison, assisted by Rev Pierce E Cook and Rev F J Hay, and interment followed in Riverside cemetery. Mr Garrison, with whom Mr Bethea had been closely associated in church work and religious activities, paid a beautiful and touching tribute to his life and memory. Mrs Morris, case worker at Epworth Orphanage, and five of the children came to pay a last sad tribute to their beloved friend. The honorary pallbearers were the stewards of the Methodist church.
Active pallbearers were Frank Thompson, W L Bethea, Brown McCallum, Dolph Braddy, Steed Stackhouse, Walter Higgins, F L Caughman and R Lee McLaurin.
Submitted by Carolyn Klear, 5 Aug 2002.