Robert S. Culler

Published 12:40 am Thursday, October 20, 2011

Robert S. “Bob” Culler, a former resident of the Smallwood subdivision of Washington, N.C., passed away on Oct. 17, 2011, in New Bern, N.C., at the age of 83. Visitation will be held at First United Methodist Church from 12:45 to 1:45 p.m. and a celebration of this life will follow immediately at 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 22, 2011, at the First United Methodist Church in Washington with the Revs. Danny G. Allen and Chris Leak presiding. Burial will follow in Oakdale Cemetery. Neal Partrick, Gary Wilson, Guy Stowe, Jim Buckman, Zeno Edwards III and Brian Culler will serve as pallbearers.

Robert S. “Bob” Culler

Mr. Culler was born in Winston Salem, N.C., on Oct. 8, 1928, and was preceded in death in 2000 by his wife of 52 years, Lucy Smith Culler, formerly of Jacksonville, N.C.

He graduated from Griffith High School in Winston Salem and served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1946 to 1958 obtaining the rank of Staff Sergeant. He served in the South Pacific, on Okinawa, Midway Island, in Japan during the post war occupation, and stateside at Parris Island, S.C., and Camp Lejeune, N.C. He was a Marine Corps recruiter in Oklahoma City and western Oklahoma. His military specialty was radio and television journalism and he interviewed many senior military officers, politicians, and Hollywood actors in that role. He was awarded the WWII Victory Medal among other military awards.

From 1958 to 1985, he held positions with radio and television stations with in Gainesville, Ga.; Granite Falls, N.C.; Princeton, W.Va.; and in Washington, N.C. He hosted on air programs, broadcast live high school and small college football games in Georgia and West Virginia, and sold advertising early in his career. In his 21-year career at WITN-TV in Washington, he was a local salesman, regional sales manager, national sales manager, and vice president of sales. He served a term as president of the Triangle Advertising Federation in Raleigh.

In this third career, he was a real estate broker with Century 21 and United Country as broker-in-charge, for 22 years up until 2009 at age 81. He served as president of the NC Board of Realtors, and president the Beaufort County Board. He was a long time member and past president of the Washington Kiwanis Club, and a member and an officer of Optimist Clubs in Georgia, North Carolina and West Virginia.

In his civic and community service he served for many years on the Washington Board of Adjustment, the Committee of 100, and the Chamber of Commerce. He was a longstanding chief usher at the First United Methodist Church in Washington, past chairman of the church council, past chairman of the pastor parish committee, Boy Scout leader of Troop 99, and a Little League baseball coach.

He is survived by two sons: Major William S. (Bill) Culler, USMC retired and wife Dee of New Bern and grandson Brian Culler of New Bern; and Robert D. (Bob) Culler and wife Debra of Overland Park, Kan., and granddaughters Lindsay Hamilton and husband Brett of Fairway, Kan., and Ashley Culler of Overland Park, Kan.

He is also survived by one sister, Mary Pryor, of Memphis, Tenn., and numerous nieces and nephews, and was preceded in death by eight brothers and sisters.

Memorials may be made to the First United Methodist Church, New Horizon Building Fund, P.O. Box 715, Washington, NC 27889.

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