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Obituary – Melba Davis Ward

Melba Davis Ward, 88, of Carolina Meadows, Chapel Hill, died unexpectedly November 7th, 2007 at UNC-Hospitals.

The middle daughter of seven children, Melba was born in Bladen County to Rachel Maxwell and Wade Davis on June 22, 1919. She grew up in White Oak, NC and Chapel Hill and graduated from Hardbarger’s Business College in Raleigh. While working on the UNC campus, Melba met and married the late Bernice Lee Ward of Chatham County.

Melba and Bernice made their home in Chapel Hill on Greenwood Road with their two daughters, Lynda and Judy. Melba was a devoted wife, mother and homemaker. She was an active member of the Junior Service League and University Baptist Church where the Mary Martha Sunday School Class was very special to her. She had a passion for bridge, loved to cook wonderful country suppers and could play by ear anything requested on the piano. She was an accomplished seamstress and spent countless hours creating the latest fashions for herself and her girls. Her talent was recognized at state competitions.

In addition to her many accomplishments, Melba’s greatest enthusiasm was reserved for her love of golf. An avid player, she traveled the state with the ladies golf group from the Chapel Hill Country Club, played in tournaments in Linville, and coordinated the golf activities at Carolina Meadows where her last “Hole in One” was at the age of 84!
Melba was preceded in death by her husband of 53 years. She is survived by her two daughters, Lynda Whitehead of Chapel Hill and Judy Burwell (Carter) of Little Rock, Arkansas; four grandchildren: Dana Hope Whitehead of Memphis, Tennessee; Christopher Ward Whitehead (Sonya) of Chapel Hill, Brennan Burwell Blanchard (Nic) of Little Rock and Lewis Carter (Bo) Burwell IV of Pensacola, Florida; four great-grandchildren: Cole and Noah Blanchard of Little Rock; Savannah and Brittany Talbert of Chapel Hill; two sisters: Myrtle Dawson and Jewel Kozak; and numerous nieces and nephews.

A celebration service to honor Melba will be held at Carolina Meadows Auditorium on Tuesday, November 13th at 11:00 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, UNC-CH Campus Box 7295, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7295, Attn: External Affairs.

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