Gene Ray Stewart, 89, of North Wilkesboro passed away Sunday, Feb. 9 2020, at his home.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2020, at Welcome Home Baptist Church, with the Rev. Lyn Lambert, the Rev. John Triplett, the Rev. Jeff Collins and the Rev. Dean Crane officiating. The family will receive friends from noon to 1:30 p.m., prior to the service at the church. Burial, with military honors provided by Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1142, will be held at Welcome Home Baptist Church Cemetery.

Gene was born Aug. 18, 1930, in Watauga County to Edward “Eddie” and Blanche Luther Stewart. He served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. He was a graduate of Clevinger Business School.  He retired from Holly Farms Poultry/Tyson Foods as a manager in the accounting department. Gene was a member of Welcome Home Baptist Church, where he served as secretary-treasurer for many years.

Mr. Stewart was a member of the Silver Striders through the YMCA. He loved fishing, gardening and spending time with his grandchildren. He was a devoted husband, father and grandfather. He was a faithful church member and was known for his mild-mannered spirit. Gene was a Tar Heel fan and Braves fan, and loved watching his grandkids’ involvement in sports. He enjoyed watching West Wilkes High School basketball.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Opal Faw Stewart, and two brothers, John Stewart and Jimmy Stewart.

He is survived by a daughter, Jeannie Stewart Stinson and husband, Joel, of North Wilkesboro; two sons, Stephen Ray Stewart and girlfriend, Jayme Love, of Statesville, and the Rev. Dean Crane and wife, Betty, of Purlear; seven grandchildren, Lucas Stinson, Jackson Stinson, Mackenzie and Christopher Stewart, Matthew Crane, Adam Crane and Josh Crane; seven great-grandchildren; and three sisters-in-law, Bonita Greene Stewart of Wilkesboro, Linda Stewart of Lenoir and Babe Faw of Wilkesboro.

Flowers will be accepted or memorials may be made to Hope Ministry Toy Store, C/O Brushy Mountain Baptist Association, 514 Elkin Highway, North Wilkesboro, N.C.  28659 or Nichols For Kids-Wilkes County Schools, C/O April Marr, 613 Cherry Street, North Wilkesboro, N.C.  28659.

The family would like to thank Pruitt Health Hospice and Home Instead for excellent care of their dad. A very special thank-you to Lucille Johnson, Katherine Comer, Pam Osborne and Gloria Wood for helping to make our dad’s last years wonderful. We love you.

Online condolences may be made at

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