Alton Leroy Whitehead

September 2, 1920 - May 18, 2020

09/02/1920 - 05/18/2020

Past Services

Tuesday May 19, 2020
11:00 am - 4:00 pm
Letchworth-Sykes Funeral Service
101 West 7th Street
Scotland Neck, NC 27874
Wednesday May 20, 2020
2:00 pm
Sunnyside Cemetery
4764 US-258
Scotland Neck, NC 27874

Alton Leroy Whitehead, age 99, of Scotland Neck, passed away on Monday, May 18, 2020 at his home in Scotland Neck.

He was the son of the late Roland I. and Pauline Beverly Whitehead of Hobgood.  Alton attended school in Hobgood and by the age of 17 was in demand with local town leagues as a left-handed baseball pitcher.  He moved to semi-pro baseball with the Canadian-American League and then the famous barnstorming team, House of David.  At the start of World War II, Alton volunteered for service.  He experienced heavy warfare in the US Navy’s European Theater from 1941-1945.  He was a LST #1 gunner and a landing craft pilot participating in invasions of Anzio, Italy, and southern France.  He received a commendation from France for his participation in the D-Day liberation.

After World War II, Alton owned and operated Triangle Service Station and, later, Modern Dry Cleaners until its closing in 1972.  Thereafter and until his death, he bought, sold, and managed rental properties.

As a former Jr. Order member, he was instrumental in planning the Scotland Neck Horse Shows.  He was a past board member of the Coastal Plains Horse Show Circuit.  He was a member of the American Legion, the Veterans of Foreign Wars, and he participated in the Flight of Heroes to Washington, D.C.  In his later years, he proudly wore a World War II Veteran’s cap and was humbled when approached by strangers thanking him for his service.

Alton believed the secret to longevity lies in treating people fairly – so there is less stress in your life.  He believed, and his gravestone reads, “An honest man is the noblest work of God.”

In addition to his parents, Alton was preceded in death by his wife of 45 years, Dorothy Woodard Whitehead, and his sisters, Ernestine W. Robertson and Ruth W. Smith.

He is survived by his four children, Beverly W. Whitehurst and husband Murray L. “Sonny“ Whitehurst of Rocky Mount, Dorothy W. Harris of Scotland Neck, Al Whitehead and wife Becky of Scotland Neck, and Bill Whitehead and partner Sue Clegg of Rocky Mount.  Alton leaves five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.  He is also survived by his sister, Billie W. Johnson of Oak City.

Due to the circumstances with COVID-19 restrictions from the CDC and NC Board of Funeral Service, family and friends are welcome to come pay their respects and sign the guest book for Alton on Tuesday, May 19, 2020, from 11:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. at Letchworth-Sykes Funeral Service in Scotland Neck.

A celebration of life graveside service will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 20, 2020 at Sunnyside Cemetery in Scotland Neck, with Rev. Paul Spradley officiating.  The family will receive friends following the service at the cemetery.

Flowers are welcome or memorial contributions may be made to the First Baptist Church of Scotland Neck, 1015 Church Street, Scotland Neck, NC 27874 or online by clicking here, or to Animal Crackers of Rocky Mount, Promoting Responsible Pet Ownership, P.O. Box 8860, Rocky Mount, NC 27804  or online by clicking here.

Letchworth-Sykes Funeral Service in Scotland Neck is handling the arrangements for the Whitehead family and online condolences may be directed to the family by visiting

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Linda Lewis Spencer Jolly
3 years ago

We were so saddened to learn of the passing of Mr. Whitehead. He was a sweet and caring husband to our cousin Dorothy and a great father to his children. I have fond memories of him and his beautiful horses. He was a great man who will be missed by all who knew him. Our prayers go out to all of his family and friends. We know today that he is in Heaven with his beloved Dorothy.

Linda Lewis Spencer Jolly
3 years ago

My family and I are so saddened to learn of the death of Mr. Alton. He was a dear husband to our cousin Dorothy and a great father to his kids. I have fond memories of him and his beautiful horses. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him. What a dear man! We are so sorry for your loss!

Roland W Edwards
4 years ago

I wish to express my deepest condolences and sympathies to Mr. Whitehead’s family and friends. He was an honorable man and always kind. The horse shows that took place at the old elementary school yard are a very pleasant memory of my youth.

Mary Ann Matthews
4 years ago

I’m so sorry for your loss. Mr. Whitehead was a wonderful man who never hesitated to help others. Praying for peace and comfort for his family during this difficult time.

Martha Parker
4 years ago

Dorothy, AL, Beverly and Bill… i am so sorry to hear of your dad’s passing. He was a very sweet man and I always enjoyed talking with him and your mom when I was there visiting Dorothy. All my love and prayers.

Ashley Mills
4 years ago

It was great to work with Mr Whitehead for a short time. Prayers for everyone.

Peggy Smith
4 years ago

Uncle Alton was an honorable man. I have fond memories of him when I would visit as a kid. I know he will be deeply missed by all his family.
With Deepest Sympathy, Peggy Smith

Lee Harrison White
4 years ago

Beverly, I am so sorry for your loss.

John Todd
4 years ago

Bill, I’m sorry to hear of your dad’s death, and you were a great son for him.

Chelle Singleton
4 years ago

I’m so sorry for your loss.