Mr. Selwyn B. O’Quinn, 87 of Lillington died Thursday, Sept. 20, 2012 after a period of declining health.
Born November 21, 1924 in Harnett County to Redden B. and Lillie Byrd O’Quinn, Selwyn graduated from Lillington High School in 1941. He was a veteran in World War II, serving in the European Theater. He attended Campbell College before graduating from Gupton Jones Mortuary School in 1947.
In 1946, he married Betty Sue Allred and began a partnership with his father as O’Quinn & O’Quinn’s Men’s Store and Funeral Home. For many years, the funeral home ran the only ambulance service in the southern part of Harnett County. Selwyn’s father retired from the business in 1974 and he continued in the operation of O’Quinn’s Funeral Home and the men’s clothing store.
In 1991, Selwyn officially retired, but continued to serve families for many years and maintained an active funeral director’s license until his death. Selwyn was a member of the Lillington Baptist Church, serving as former Sunday School teacher and deacon. He was a member of the Lillington V.F.W., American Legion, and the Lillington Masonic Lodge #302. He was a Shriner and a former Scottish Rite, having served as a former president of the Harnett County Shrine Club. He also served two terms on the Lillington Town Board and one term as secretary to the Lillington Chamber of Commerce.
Although he was active in his church and community, his lifelong love and passion was funeral service. He was the first fully licensed funeral director and embalmer in the Lillington area. His life embodied the essence of a funeral director and set the standard for others to follow. He will be sorely missed by his community and the people that he loved.
Funeral service was conducted at 3 p.m. Sunday, September 23, at the Lillington Baptist Church with Rev. Ken Smith and Rev. Martin Groover officiating. Burial was be in Harnett Memorial Park with Masonic Rites. The family received friends from 3 —8 p.m. Saturday at O’Quinn-Peebles Funeral Home, other times at his home. Memorials may be made to the Harnett County Shrine Club, c/o PO Box 368, Bunnlevel, NC 28323.
Mr. O’Quinn is survived by his wife, Betty Allred O’Quinn; son, Raymond B. O’Quinn of Florida; daughters, Beth O. Flanagan and her husband Jim of Raleigh, Kay O. Peebles and her husband Cecil of Lillington; sisters, Azalea Hinkle of Pennsylvania and Henrietta Murray of Lillington; five grandchildren, Rebecca West, Angela Holbrook, Lesli P. Grandy and her husband Ashley, Jamie Arnold and her husband David, and Julie Admassu and her husband Beruk; 10 great-grandchildren, Nicholas Tasios, Rachel Tasios, Kasey West, Amy Horton, Zoe Holbrook, Caleb, Karis and Selah Grandy, Annie and Noah Arnold.