Cecil Truitt Neal

July 27, 2017

Cecil Truitt Neal, 96, died Thursday, July 27, 2017 at Carrington Place in Mathews, NC. Cecil was born in Kershaw, S.C. on June 26, 1921. He graduated from high school and had one-and one-half years of college prior to enlisting in the Navy on September 7, 1942. He was commissioned as a Lt. JG on April 16, 1944 and proudly served his country as a naval aviator in World War II as an F6 fighter pilot on the USS Cowpens. The Cowpens became the first US warship to enter Tokyo Bay at the Japanese surrender.

He met his wife Bettye Lee Blair on a blind date and they married in October of 1951. Their only child, Helen Patricia Neal was born in 1957. His love for flying opened the door to his career with Springs Mills – first as Colonel Springs’ private pilot and later as a salesman for the company. His engineering skills enabled him to work on all types of engines and textile machinery. Upon his retirement from Springs he aided the Matthews postal office by being a letter carrier. In 2013 he was thrilled to visit Washington, DC through the Flight of Honor program and spent an entire day visiting numerous sites and memorials in our nation’s capital.

In addition to his parents, Cecil was predeceased by his daughter, and several in-laws.   He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Bettye Blair Neal, and a nephew Edwin Blair Plyler and his wife, Ellen. Cecil loved his family and his country and lived a good and full life.

Graveside services will be held at 10:00 AM Tuesday, August 1, 2017 at Forest Lawn West Cemetery, 4601 Freedom Drive, Charlotte.

Memorials can be made to the National WWII Museum, 945 Magazine Street, New Orleans. LA., 70130.

Arrangements are in the care of Kenneth Poe Services, 1321 Berkley Avenue, Charlotte, NC 28204. Condolences may be sent online at www.kennethpoeservices.com. 704-641-7606.

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  • Marion Ratliff

    Blair - Today is Tuesday and I am thinking about you. Sympathies. Marion