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William Felton Roper, Jr.

William Felton Roper, Jr


Hickory Tavern



William Felton Roper, Jr., age 91, of the Hickory Tavern Community and widower of Verlie Whelchel “Red” Roper passed away Saturday, April 24, 2021, at the PRISMA Health - Laurens County Hospital in Clinton, SC.


Born in Laurens, he was a son of the late William Felton Roper, Sr. and Mertie Abercrombie Roper. Mr. Roper was retired from the US Army having obtained the rank of Command Sergeant Major. He was also manager at the Milliken Gilliland Plant, owner of Roper Wee Shop, co-owner of The Rapid Shop, manager of Rabun Creek Water Authority and a farmer. He was very active with the Hickory Tavern Fire Department and was a member of Rabun Creek Baptist Church.


He is survived by: children; Norma Reed of Hickory Tavern, Butch Roper (Sue) of Woodruff, Lewis Roper (Susan) of West Union and Melody Sarmento of Hickory Tavern; grandchildren: Hollis Yearwood (Scottie), Heather Tucker (Scott), Brad Roper (Katrina), Matt Roper, Christina Ayers (Kevin), and Will Rishovd (Abby); 14 great-grandchildren and one great-great grandchild.


In addition to his wife and parents, Mr. Roper was predeceased by sons-in-law, Gene Reed and Bill Sarmento.  


The funeral service will be held 3:00 PM Saturday, May 1, 2021, at Rabun Creek Baptist Church outside at the “preaching porch” conducted by Rev. Jayson Payne and Staff Sergeant E6 Matthew Roper with Military Honors. There will be a private family burial immediately following in the church cemetery.


Please consider in lieu of flowers, memorials to Rabun Creek Baptist Church, 17045 Hwy 101, Gray Court, SC 29360 or to Hickory Tavern Fire Department, 73 Hickory Heights Drive, Gray Court, SC 29645.


Condolences can be expressed to the family at www.thekennedymortuary.com.

To plant memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of William Roper, Jr., please visit our flower store.


Melody, your father reminded me of my Dad who passed in 2008. When I first met your Dad he was so welcoming. My husband Steve and I loved him and will miss him. So sorry for your loss.

Karen L Godfrey May 1 2021 12:00 AM

Dear Norma,
Our family was sad to hear about your dad. We are praying for you and your family.

The Rankins May 1 2021 12:00 AM

I am so sorry for your loss. It is actually the entire community's loss on the passing of your father. He was always smiling and kind and full of love for others. I admired him greatly. You will be in my thoughts and prayers .

frankie jacobs Apr 30 2021 12:00 AM

Melody and Norma, so sorry to learn of our beloved Santas passing. Now he can spend eternity with Jesus and Red, the love of his life. My love and prayers for each of you.

Laura Dennie Apr 28 2021 12:00 AM

Mrs Norma, I am soo very sorry for your loss. You KNOW how much I loved my Santa! He will be dearly missed. Praying for you and your family.

Jane Simpson Apr 26 2021 12:00 AM

To all of the Roper Family, I am so sorry to hear about Felton. Felton was a good man and a good friend. I met him and became acquainted while he worked with the early stages of the creating a much needed County Utility Commission. Always ready and willing to lend a helping hand for the community. Family, I extend my most heartfelt condolences.

BETTY WALSH Apr 25 2021 12:00 AM

Lewis and family, We are so sorry about the loss of your dad. We will keep you in our thoughts and prayers. Mike and Janice Banks

Mike and Janice Banks Apr 25 2021 12:00 AM

Each of you is in my prayers..I'm so sorry...

Myrna Quinton Apr 25 2021 12:00 AM

A candle was lit in memory of William Roper, Jr.

Catherine Holder Apr 25 2021 12:00 AM

Melody, so sorry for the loss of your Dad. My prayers are with you and your family. Marilyn

Marilyn Nimmons Apr 25 2021 12:00 AM

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