Donnis W. Adkins
The Carrboro Citizen, August 14, 2008
Donnis (Don) W. Adkins, died August 8, 2008 after an extended illness. Entering the world November 1, 1932 in Maryville, MO, it was not to be his destiny to live in one place. Born of parents who were stunt show aviators, he too would take the reins of his life to the edge. Family farm crop planes werent safe from his daredevil urges with one such daring flight occurring by flying under a trestle bridge, barely clearing the wings.
A member of the Air Force of the United States, Don would go on to be awarded several medals: a Korean Service medal with bronze star, National Defense Service medals, a United Nations Service Medal and a Good Conduct Medal. He took his skills in the skies from family planes to performing rescue helicopter service in the Korean War. After his honorable discharge, Don stayed in government service for several years by working in the Coast and Geodetic Survey. Excitement wasnt lacking in this position. One assignment in Alaska was interrupted by the appearance of an enormous Kodiak bear which had come investigating. Don told his family he had never been so unnerved as by those huge paws scratching on the tent walls.
Criminal Justice soon followed as his next career path, leading to a Chief of Police position in Ranlo, North Carolina. Working also with the Gaston Rural Police, of Gastonia, North Carolina, he used metal detectors to locate weapons of crime and also gold, silver and jewelry lost in various locales. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina eventually beckoned and Don partnered with a mutual friend to purchase and sell hotels to investment companies. Hotel management and the obvious need in that environment for discipline eventually led Don to create his own private security business, Arrowood Security.
Deteriorating health eventually led the family eventually back to North Carolina. Don accepted Jesus Christ as his savior in the 1970s and was baptized into the family of God. Knowing he would see his Father in heaven was a great comfort to him in the final stages of his life. His family will miss beyond measure his wit, guidance and encouraging support. He played the guitar, he traveled the world and the United States, he had a magical touch in growing roses, and his collection of Snoopys threatened to take over a wall. He played minor league baseball in Missouri and once hit a home run that damaged his own car windshield when it flew over the wall. Don was a father, husband, PaPa and friend. He used the same barber for 20 years and believed in loyalty. He will be greatly missed.
Surviving are his wife, Dorothy Mathis Adkins; daughter, Robin Adkins Hewitt; daughter, Kelley Adkins Sparks-Jordan; and five grandchildren, Mitchell Lee Sparks, Heather Rochelle Sparks and Hunter Rochelle Jordan, all of Louisburg, North Carolina; Brittany Gabrielle Hewitt and Chelsea Brianna Hewitt, both of South Carolina; and honorary granddaughter Layla Kinton, daughter of Melanie Kinton. Nieces Jill Adkins Monticue, Joy Adkins Bailey and Kevin Adkins, all of Missouri. Along with other family members throughout the United States, all mourn his passing.
The family would like to thank Hospice of Wake County (www.hospiceofwake.org) for their unfailing support and guidance.
Memorial services, including firing honors and bugler, are pending regarding scheduling for military service at Arlington National Cemetary in Arlington, Virginia.
Cremation will be performed by the Cremation Society of the Carolinas, Raleigh, North Carolina.