Harold "Wayne" Conner, 74, of Oak Hill, died Monday, October 9, 2017, at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, NC, following a short illness.
Born March 11, 1943, in Handley, WV, he was the youngest son of the late Clifford and Mildred (Massau) Conner.
Wayne married the love of his life in June of 1964 and together, they had two daughters. He attended East Bank (Riverside) High School before enlisting in the U.S. Army. He studied criminal justice at WV State College and Bluefield State, and was a graduate of the WV State Police Academy. He was a city police officer in Oak Hill and Meadow Bridge before becoming a Deputy Sheriff with the Fayette County Sheriff Department. He retired from the Sheriff Department after serving the county citizens for 17 years.
He was a long-time member of the Oak Hill Gospel Tabernacle and loved southern gospel music, and was known far and wide for "his" famous black walnut coconut pound cake. He was a member of the WV Deputy Sheriffs Association, the Fraternal Order of Police, American Legion, the Oak Hill Civitans Club, and the National Postmaster Auxiliary, where he served as state president, national vice president, and was awarded the Star Award from the WV Chapter.
He enjoyed watching movies and attending as many southern gospel concerts as time allowed. He had a wonderful sense of humor, an infectious laugh, and was known for his Baby Whisperer abilities - babies and children adored him. He never met a stranger and was well loved and respected by all who knew him. Once retired, and after a cold day in February, his whole world revolved around his grandson, BJ. Two of his proudest moments were watching BJ graduate high school, and then his graduation from basic training at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, TX.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his eldest sister, Betty (Conner) Rogers of Birmingham, AL, and his two older brothers, Larry Conner of Fayetteville, NC, and Ralph Conner of Wesley Chapel, FL.
He leaves behind his loving & devoted wife of 53 years, Sharon (Watkins) Conner, their two daughters, Nancy Huffman of St. Albans, WV, and Kelli Riddle of Fayetteville, WV, son-in-law Randy Riddle, and his one and only grandson, Barry "B.J." Bailey, who is following in his Paw-Paw's military footsteps as he serves in the U.S. Air Force's 130th Air Guard Unit in Charleston, WV. He is also survived by his sister, Carol (Conner) McBrayer of Handley, sisters-in-law Wanda Conner of Wesley Chapel, FL, and Sue Conner of Fayetteville, NC, along with several nieces and nephews, his "adopted kids," a multitude of extended family and friends, and his good friend Tim Bullins of Asheboro, North Carolina.
Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. Saturday, October 14, 2017, at High Lawn Funeral Home Chapel in Oak Hill, with Pastor Jim Keaton officiating. Burial with military honors will follow in High Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery. Friends may call from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. Friday evening, and one hour prior to services on Saturday at the funeral home.
Serving as pallbearers will be BJ Bailey, Randy Riddle, Lee Bibb, Tim Bullins, Benny Conley, and Robby Pauley.
Published on October 13, 2017