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Stewart Precythe, president and CEO of Southern Produce Distributors, dies at age 68

David Stewart Precythe, president and chief executive officer of Southern Produce Distributors Inc. in Faison, NC, died Thursday, April 20, at his home, surrounded by family and friends. He was 68 years old.Stewarts-Picture

Mr. Precythe, a 50-year veteran of the produce industry, laid the foundation for Southern Produce Distributors’ ongoing and continuing success.

A native of Duplin County, NC, Mr. Precythe was known as a man of great integrity, loyalty and dedication. He was recognized as a leader in the produce industry and the foundation for his family, friends and community for over 45 years.

He was the son of the late Harold S. Precythe and Lois Williamson Precythe. He is survived by one son, Kelley Steward Precythe, of Wilmington, NC, and his wife, Patricia Linares, of Faison.

“We are saddened with the passing of Stewart," Sterling Cook, chief financial officer for the company, said in a press release. "He was a wonderful father, leader and man who will be greatly missed in the company and in the farming community.”

He added that the future of the company will be in line with the principals set by Mr. Precythe.

“We will continue to honor his commitment to the industry through hard work and determination in honoring the man that meant so much to so many,” added Cook. “He will be greatly missed.”

A memorial service is scheduled for April 24 at the Faison Methodist Church. Entombment will follow at the Faison Cemetery.

Brenda Oglesby, a longtime friend and employee of Southern Produce Distributors, said, “To the customers and friends of Southern Produce, we ask that you keep the Precythe family in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time. But, be assured in knowing that we will continue to offer you the best products and service available in the industry.”

Memorials may be made to the Harold S. Precythe Memorial Scholarship Fund in Kenansville, NC.