Society. He was honored in 1997 as Distin- guished Numbered Scholar by the Puerto Rican Academy of Arts and Science. At UNC, he was a member of Sigma Xi, Pi Mu Epsilon and Ganmla Sigma Delta, and he was former president of the CANs Carolina Club in Puerto Rico. Elizabeth Ann Baucom (' 53 AB), 70, of Pompano Beach, Fla., financial adviser and municipal bond coordinator with Merrill Lynch;June 19, 2001.A member of the National Women's Stockbroker's Associa- tion, Baucom was formerly employed with the u.s. State Department's diplomatic corps. She was a member of Chi Omega at UNC William Rodney Bradshaw (, 52), 71, of Vista, Calif., retired propulsion test specialist with TRW Defense Systems Group; Feb. 10, 2001. Bradshaw was honored by NASA for his work with the Apollo program. B. H all Carson Jr. (' 53 BSBA), 69, of Pawleys [sland, S.C;July 19,2001. An Army veteran, Carson had owned Hall Carson Yarns and formerly worked in marketing and sales with Stonecut- ter Mills. At UNC, he was a member of
counsels families coping with a disabled
child or parent. He also conducts weddings, funerals and Bible studies.
And, best of all, he becomes Santa Claus.
Since first appearing as the legendary
gift-giver at a Georgia mall years ago,
Butchart has adopted the role of old St.
Nicholas as much more than an alter ego.
Take his office at FODA, for example.
There are toys everywhere, including
three-foot replicas of Disney's seven dwarfs.
Almost everything else is Santa-related -
dozens of miniature figurines, the artwork
adorning the walls and even the nameplate
on the desk.
His inventory of Santa costumes is worth
a whopping $3,000, with a closet packed
with three red suits, vests, shirts, two pairs
of black boots, white gloves, belts and hats.
He wears his beard long and naturally
white. His wife contributes by transforming
herself into Mrs. Claus.
"With her there, we are truly, unbelievably authentic," he said, adding that she is
the"cutest Mrs. Claus you will ever see.
I'm serious about this. To do it right, you
have to want to live that role."
The children who come to FODA are
Lambda Chi Alpha. Dennis Edward
Cathey (, 58), 64, of Jefferson, Ca.; May 23,
2001. Cathey was a former field representative
with Wachovia Bank. R owlin Melvin
Cecil (' 50 BSCOM), 75, of Charlotte, district
manager with the National Ca h Register
Co.;Aug. 17, 2001. An Army Air Corps veteran of WWn, Cecil was past president of the
Camellia Society. James Foxx DeBruhl
(' 52 ABED), 70, of Asheville, retired teacher
with North Buncombe High School;July 6,
2001. ill 37 years of teaching, DeBruhl served
as dean offaculty, established the drama and
French deparrn1.ents and produced the annual
musicaL Honored as the 1980 Buncombe
COW1.ty Teacher of the Year, he was a board
member of Southern Appalachian Repertory
and produced SU1111ner musicals for the Bun-
combe County Parks and Recreation. He was
a veteran of the Korean War, serving as a trans-
lator for the Secret Service. A charter member
of the North Buncombe Optimist Club, he
was on the gymnastic team at UNC Sam
B. Ferrell Jr. (, 52), 76, of Virginia Beach, Va.,
ushered into a room equivalent to a candy
store for the youngsters' little eyes. Toys
light up, music plays and Christmas trees
and about 200 donated stuffed animals fill
the floor space. Most little ones leave with
a toy and are "convinced that their wheelchair or other equipment is from Santa,"
And the children who sit on Butchart's
lap during the holiday season leave with a
sense of love if he gets his way. He recalls a
mother who hesitantly brought her 6-yea....
old daughter to visit Santa at the mall. The
little girl's body was riddled with birth
defects, and the last Santa she'd attempted
to meet had refused to touch her.
Butchart picked the girl up out of her
wheelchair and held her close.
"I try to project the love that Christ
had for me to every kid I meet," he said
adamantly."No child has ever been treated
with anything but love when they come see
this Santa Claus. That's my goal, to reach
out and love the unlovable."
More tangibly, he would like to tackle
the million-dollar mortgage hanging over
his organization's head. The nonprofit survives mostly on donations, and it is not
retired employee with Traveler; May 27,
2001. Ann Allmond Fowler (' 57 MED),
66, of Thomasville, English instructor with
Davidson County Community College;July
10,2001. Fowler, a former staff writer with
the UNC News Bureau, served on the David-
son County Morehead Scholarship selection
cornrrlittee and was a Paul Harris Fellow with
the Rotary Foundation. She was a member of
Xi Alpha Sigma and the National Council of
Teachers of English. Wilkes Suttle Hall
(' 59 BSBA), 66, of Charlotte, retired real estate
investor;June 25,2001. Hall was a former
apartment complex manager, leasing agent and
c1a:in1.S adjuster. A Navy veteran, he was a jet
pilot for private companies. Lois Eliza
Harper (, 52, ' 51 MED), 84, of Tignall, Ga.,
retired teacher; May 29, 2001. William
Lassiter H ester (' 50 BSCOM), 77, of Tulsa,
Okla., retired real estate agent; Nov. 29, 2000.
Hester, a former marketing superintendent
with Royal-Globe Insurance Co., was a member of Phi Eta Sigma and Alpha Kappa Psi at
UNC Fletcher M. Hollingsworth (' 51),
unusual for money to be scarce or nonexistent. When he can get the finances straight,
Butchart said he'd like to take a less
prominent role. More than 7,000 people in
36 states and S6 countries will be rolling in
FODA wheelchairs by then.
This self-described "geezer" doesn't
plan on slowing down, however. During the
summer, he dresses as a railroad engineer
and entertains visitors at Stone Mountain
Park's train depot. But, he said, the children
there usually want to know if he's actually
Santa in disguise.
He's also working on two books, one on
the history of his church and the other on
the miracles that have kept FODA afloat
since 1986. He's already published one book
about his experiences playing Santa Claus.
And of course, he'll spend this holiday
season donning the duds he adores. It will
be his I Ith year playing old St. Nick at
Stone Mountain Park, and Butchart doesn't
foresee ending this jolly gig any time soon.
"I will continue to do this as long as I
can be nimble and quick," he said.
Sounds like believers everywhere are in
- Colleen Jenkins
CAR0LINA ALUMNI REVlEW