Thursday, September 27, 2007

Obituary of Michael Dean Stanfield (1977-2007)

(click on photograph for larger image)

Michael Dean Stanfield, age 30, of 858 Kerr’s Chapel Rd. passed away Monday.A native of Alamance County, he was the son of Stephen M. and Tommie Pattillo Stanfield who survive. He was a HVAC technician with the Carrboro- Chapel Hill School System, a member of Kerr’s Chapel Baptist Church, and the Anderson Volunteer Fire Department. He was an avid hunter and wildlife enthusiast. Survivors include his parents Stephen M. and Tommie Patillo Stanfield of Burlington; brother, Neal Stanfield and wife Laura of Burlington; fiancee, Heather Vernon of Mebane; grandparents, Tommy and Carolyn Pattillo of Burlington and Herbert Stanfield, and the late Sara Stanfield of Burlington and a host of friends.

Funeral services will be held at 3:00 PM Friday September 14, 2007 at Kerr’s Chapel Baptist Church. Interment will follow in Kerr’s Chapel Baptist Church Cemetery. Mr. Stanfield will remain at Lowe Funeral Home and Crematory until being taken to the church to lie in state 30 minutes prior to the funeral service.

The family will receive friends at the funeral home from 6-8 PM Thursday and at other times, the home of the parents; 1205 Union Ridge Rd., Burlington, NC 27217.

The family would like to express a special thanks to the Anderson VFD. Memorials may be made to the Anderson VFD, 225 Baynes Rd., Burlington, NC 27217. You may sign the online register book at

Source: Obituary of Michael Dean Stanfield (Lowe Funeral Home and Crematory, Burlington, North Carolina).

The following was written by Shannon White, Editor of The Caswell Messenger, friend of Dean Stanfield, and is reprinted here with permission:

I had intended to use this week's front page photo of the little boy on the pedal tractor in our special section promoting this year's Hoedown (inside this edition) but I could not bring myself to do so after the unexpected death of Dean Stanfield last week. After making sure it was okay with the Stanfield family, I decided to go ahead and share the photo with the rest of the county, because it so vividly reflects all that is wonderful about Caswell County - everything that we celebrate during the Bright Leaf Hoedown.

You may look at this photo and simply see two men helping a cute little boy on a pedal tractor. However, when I look at this photo, I cannot help but see the future of Caswell County being guided by the strong hands of Caswell's past.

I must say, to those of you who are new to the county, and to those of you who may have forgotten why you love this place so much, that THIS is what Caswell County is all about - community - neighbors helping neighbors and friends becoming family. Raised on a tobacco farm and in the church, Dean Stanfield was the kind of boy you couldn't help but like and the kind of man you couldn't help but respect. He lived a simple life - devoted to God, family, church and community.

His pastor said it best when he stated that "to know Dean was to love him".

Many of us in the county have struggled with his death. It has reminded us how short our stay on this earth can be and there have been countless tears shed over our sorrow in his passing as we mourn not only all that was, but all that could have been.

Yet it will be Dean's life, not his tragic death, that will continue to serve as inspiration for so many of us.

As we go about our daily business of living, it can be so easy to become distracted by all that is ugly in this world - the lying, the cheating, the stealing and the heartache. We tend to lose sight of all that is good - the love, the grace, the glory.

Yet surely there must still be some right, some love, left in this world if God still makes men like Dean Stanfield. And there must still be something pure and good and true at the very heart of this county and its people for Dean Stanfield to have loved them so well.

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