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May 29, 1926 — July 23, 2020
STANHOPE — Florence Craig Bunn, a Southern lady to the core, passed away Thursday, July 23, 2020.
She was born May 29, 1926, to Donaldson Wells and Esther Zollman Craig of Knoxville, Tennessee. Flo, as she was known by family and friends, was raised by her aunt, Mabel Craig, in Asheville, after her father’s untimely death in 1934.
Aunt Mabel made sure that young Flo received her education and had every opportunity available to a young woman in the 1930s and ‘40s. Flo graduated from Lee H. Edwards High School (now Asheville High) in 1943, St. Genevieve of the Pines Junior College in 1945 and Duke University in 1947, where she was a member of the Alpha Chi Omega sorority. She shared many stories of escapades while at Duke with friend Randy Newcomb, and future sister-in-law Sidney Bunn Youngblood. Through Sidney, she met her husband, Charles I. “Charlie” Bunn (1918-64), also a Duke graduate. They were married in 1950 and lived in the Stanhope community. Charlie, his brother Braxton and father, C. Settle Bunn, owned and operated Gold Leaf Farms. The family was designated as a master farm family for their innovative work in dairy and tobacco operations.
She and Charlie built a life together in Stanhope, raising three children, working on the farm and hosting friends frequently for dinners and bridge, until Charlie’s passing in 1964. Prior to her marriage, Flo had been a teacher at an elementary school in Asheville. After her husband’s death, she resumed her career in education, continuing as an elementary school teacher and guidance counselor in Stanhope and Spring Hope, followed by 17 years as director of student services for Nash County Public Schools. During that time, she completed two master’s degrees at East Carolina University, guidance and counseling in 1974 and educational administration in 1979.
Flo was a deeply committed Christian. She was a member of Gibson Memorial United Methodist Church in Spring Hope and also attended White Oak United Methodist Church near Nashville. She was a Sunday school teacher served on many committees, and was an integral part of the prayer circle. In her last years, she was a faithful viewer of Hayes Barton Baptist Church’s televised services, and often watched streamed services of the Duke University Chapel, where her granddaughter-in-law performed with the chapel choir.
She loved to decorate for holidays. Her home was a favorite place to gather for every occasion, and she always had two pound cakes on the counter and another in the freezer for whoever might drop by. Flo loved to give presents to family and friends, and was quick to send thank-you notes for every kind gesture ever made for her.
Flo never stopped giving selflessly to her church community and anyone in need. She was a member of the educational society, Delta Kappa Gamma, and volunteered with Down East Radio (reading for the blind), Faith Christian Ministries, Historic Stonewall Manor, Meals on Wheels, Shawl Ministries (knitting group), the Spring Hope Historical Association and the Stanhope Home Demonstration Club. She cooked many dishes for the church salad luncheons and suppers, as well as fundraisers for the Stanhope Fire Department, and her pound cakes were the best anywhere. She also enjoyed being a part of a very active book club with dear friends. One of her favorite activities was attending the community luncheons hosted by her neighbor, Frankie Daniel, for the Stanhope women.
Flo, or Nana to her grandchildren, will be remembered as a proper lady of the old school and a source of deep love, tireless care and occasional “words of wisdom” for her family. She will always be remembered for her turquoise eyes that twinkled when she laughed.
Surviving are son, Charles I. Bunn Jr. and wife, Catherine, of Smithfield; daughters, Nancy Hall and husband, Robert, of Fuquay-Varina and Susan Wood and husband, Thomas, of Henrico, Virginia; granddaughter, Jamieson Bunn and husband, Justin Wiener; and great-granddaughter, Julia Bunn of Petaluma, California; grandson, Christopher Bunn and wife, Melanie, of Apex; granddaughter, Katherine Wood of Richmond, Virginia; and grandson, Andrew Wood of Washington, D.C.
She spent her last years at Parkwood Village in Wilson. The staff there worked tirelessly to ensure her every need was met. She will be remembered as a member of the Puzzle Club. Flo and her friends there completed dozens of jigsaw puzzles, many of which were framed and gifted away.
A funeral service was held at 11 a.m. Monday, July 27, in the Chapel of Cornerstone Funeral Home. A brief graveside service followed in the Bailey Town Cemetery.
Cornerstone Funeral Home, 1052 S. First St., Nashville, is honored to be caring for the Florence Bunn family. Words of comfort may be shared at www.cornerstonefuneralhomeandcremations.com.