Joseph Graham Rutledge, III

Published 7:27 pm Monday, July 15, 2019

Joseph Graham Rutledge, III, 93, of Salisbury, died Saturday, July 13, 2019, at the Lutheran Home at Trinity Oaks.

Born Aug. 22, 1925, in Gastonia, Mr. Rutledge was the son of the late Joseph Graham Rutledge, Jr., and Junie Catherine Warlick Rutledge.

He attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill for one year before receiving an appointment to the United States Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, Long Island, New York, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Nautical Science. Following his graduation, he served as a naval ensign aboard a U.S. troop transport in the North Atlantic for two years. Upon his return home, he completed his Bachelor of Science degree in Commerce at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and later graduated from the Stonier Graduate School of Banking at Rutgers University.

He married Ola Ross on Aug. 16, 1952. He is also survived by daughters Catherine Rutledge Singer, Raleigh, Anne Rutledge O’Berry and husband Thomas, Winston-Salem, Elizabeth Rutledge Woodson and husband Paul, Salisbury, and Nancy Rutledge Sanders and husband Thomas, Winder, Georgia; and six grandchildren, Catherine Singer Adcox, Greensboro, James Raymond Smith, III, Winston-Salem, Kristin Woodson Harvey, Beaufort, Sidney Sanders Patton, Athens, Georgia, Joseph Graham Rutledge Smith, Winston-Salem, and Thomas Tharpe Sanders, Jr., Atlanta, Georgia; and three great-grandchildren.

Mr. Rutledge had a distinguished, 40-year career in banking. During the last 30 years of his banking career, he acted as President, Chairman and CEO of Security Bank and Trust Company. He was a longtime member of the First United Methodist Church and served on many boards including the Parents’ Advisory Board for the University of North Carolina System, NC Bankers’ Association, Southern States Bank Card Association, NC Citizens for Business and Industry, First United Methodist Church, where he served as Treasurer, Rowan Memorial Hospital, Rowan Cabarrus Community College and Rotary Club.

A memorial service will be held on July 17 at 11 a.m. First United Methodist Church Chapel, in Salisbury, conducted by the Rev. Dr. Mark Conforti. The family will receive friends immediately following the service in the Stanback Room of the First United Methodist Church.

Memorials may be made to the First United Methodist Church, 217 S Church St, Salisbury, NC 28144.

Summersett Funeral Home is serving the Rutledge family. Online condolences may be made at