Annabelle Lundy Fetterman, beloved by all who knew her, passed peacefully from this world on Aug. 22, 2019.
Born to Burrows T. and Mabel L. Lundy on April 14, 1921, in Montoursville, Pennsylvania, Annabelle was raised in nearby Berwick where she was graduated as Berwick High’s top commercial student in 1939.
Though an artist at heart and recognized for her musical talent on the violin, depression-era pragmatism led Annabelle to find work experience at a local bakery before ultimately joining her father’s meatpacking company. Still, a night out at the symphony would forever be a most treasured occurrence.
A lady of many firsts, Annabelle learned to pilot an airplane at a time when there were few pilots, especially women. She met a fellow adventurer in Lewis Fetterman and married him in 1947, walking down the aisle in a dress of her own design and making.
Lew and Annabelle left home for North Carolina in 1949 to help her father establish and manage The Lundy Packing Company. The plant began operations on May 23, 1950 — the same day their first child, Lew Jr. was born. Daughter Mabel May (Molly) added to their joy a few years later.
Annabelle was a true business leader who enjoyed a thriving career at The Lundy Packing Company, starting as its office manager and working her way up to chairman and CEO. She served the company with remarkable acumen, undaunted courage, and steadfast dedication. Along the way, she was listed as one of the Top 50 Women Executives in the United States by Working Woman Magazine and honored with inductions into both the North Carolina Pork Council’s Hall of Fame and North Carolina Business Hall of Fame.
Annabelle retired only after the company was sold, after 51 consecutive years of service. She forever valued the thousands of associates, hog producers, customers and the community members who made the company vision a reality.
She was not all business. After moving south, the winter-blooming camellia flower immediately captured her attention. Beautiful and delicate, camellias would provide Annabelle a lifelong retreat as she and Lew grew blooms and exhibited them all over the world. She became a world-renowned camellia judge, the first woman president of the American Camellia Society, and a director of the International Camellia Society. The American society’s headquarters was named in her honor, as was an exceptionally rare and beautiful pink camellia cultivar.
While her professional and avocational accomplishments were many and significant, she felt a strong duty to support her community and the folks of eastern North Carolina when she could — particularly in the areas of education, the arts, and healthcare.
She developed a particular fondness for “the school at Buies Creek”, and with husband Lew helped found Campbell University’s Lundy-Fetterman School of Business along with several academic scholarships. She was a long-serving member of the University’s Board of Trustees and Presidential Board of Advisors. Having not had the opportunity to attend college herself, she was delighted to receive an honorary degree from Campbell in celebration of her commitment to bettering the lives of her community through education.
The State of North Carolina recognized Annabelle’s contributions to her adopted home state by twice bestowing its highest honor and inducting Annabelle into the Order of the Long Leaf Pine.
Annabelle was preceded in death by her husband of 63 years, Lewis M Fetterman; her son, Lewis M Fetterman Jr.; and her brother, B T Lundy Jr.
Her beautiful spirit, sense of adventure and kind example will be greatly missed by her surviving family: daughter, Mabel “Molly” Fetterman Held; her grandchildren, Charlotte Elizabeth Fetterman Harrell and husband Mark of Clinton, Lewis M “Trey” Fetterman III and wife Madeline of Clinton, Bradford Kyle Held and wife Jennifer Doorey of Charlottesville, Virginia; and her great-grandchildren, Carter Louise Harrell, John Franklin Harrell and Theodore Aiden Held.
The family wishes to thank the enumerable friends, neighbors, caregivers, and loved ones who enriched her life and cherished her as we did.
A celebration of Annabelle’s life is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 24. A private graveside burial will precede a public service at 2 p.m. at Graves Memorial Presbyterian Church, where she served faithfully as a Ruling Elder, Sunday school teacher, and in countless other ways. Drs. Stephen Wilkins, James Goodloe, and Jerry Wallace will officiate. The family will receive friends at the church following the service.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Graves Memorial Presbyterian Church, 201 Fayetteville St., Clinton, NC 28328; Campbell University “Lewis and Annabelle Fetterman Scholarship Fund,” P.O. Box 116, Buies Creek, NC 27506; or to the American Camellia Society, Massee Lane Gardens, 100 Massee Lane, Fort Valley, GA 31030.
Royal-Hall is honored to serve the Fetterman family.