Zeb Vance Caudle Jr.

MARION Zeb Vance Caudle Jr. of Marion, formerly of Asheville, passed away Monday, July 9, 2018, two days shy of his 81st birthday.

Mr. Caudle was born in Henderson County to the late Zeb Caudle Sr. and Alice Odessa Case Caudle. Mr. Caudle served in the United States Air Force and was a capsule controller in the early days of the U.S. Space Program including tracking John Glenn's orbit of the earth. After his time in the Air Force, Mr. Caudle began work in the energy industry. He was the project manager on the Trans-Alaska Pipeline, commissioned the first coal-electric plant in the Middle East, helped build a nuclear power plant in east Africa, and worked on many other projects throughout the United States and abroad. An avid and life-long learner, Mr. Caudle never met a problem that he did not try to solve.

After retirement, Mr. Caudle was active in community organizations throughout McDowell County. He served as chairman of the McDowell County GOP for 18 years, and was instrumental in the establishment of the McDowell County Habitat for Humanity. Mr. Caudle was a member of Pleasant Garden Baptist Church, and was active in the Baptist Men of the Blue Ridge Association. He went on many mission trips, and also helped build dozens of handicap ramps for the needy within Western North Carolina. Even as his time on earth was ending, Mr. Caudle was adamant in his desire to continue making a difference in the world. In his spare time, Mr. Caudle enjoyed bowling, fishing, talking with friends, and traveling the world with the love of his life, Marge.

Mr. Caudle was preceded in death by his parents as well as his siblings, John Wesley Caudle, Ray Forest Caudle, Peggy Caudle Sherlin, and Guy Eddie Caudle.

His memory will be cherished by his loving wife of 59 years, Marjorie Powell Caudle. He is also survived by his sisters-in-law, Betty Powell Chandler, Judy Powell, Faye Caudle, and Jean Caudle; as well as many cherished nieces and nephews.

Funeral services for Mr. Caudle will be held Sunday, July 15, at 4 p.m., at Kirksey Funeral Home in Marion with the Rev. Josh Hayes officiating. The visitation will be held from 2 to 4 p.m., at Kirksey Funeral Home. Interment will be held at the Western Carolina State Veterans Cemetery, Monday, July 16 at 10 a.m.

The family would like to extend their heartfelt thanks and gratitude to the staff of Mountain Ridge Health and Rehabilitation Facility for their excellent care of Mr. Caudle during his illness and passing.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Baptist Men of The Blue Ridge Association, 337 Garden Creek Rd., Marion, NC 28752 and to the Fishers of Men Sunday School Class of Pleasant Gardens Baptist Church, 214 PG Baptist Church Rd., Marion, NC 28752.

Kirksey Funeral Home is honored to be assisting the Caudle family with arrangements.

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