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WILLIAMSBURG – Elbert J. Puryear, born on Aug. 24, 1928, was called home for eternal rest on Oct. 2, 2016. During his early years, he attended Metropolitan A. M. E. Zion Church in Norfolk, Virginia and later accepted Christ into his life, while attending Bethel Church, of Hampton.
Elbert attended the Public Schools of Norfolk and went to Booker T. Washington High School. He continued on to the United States Navy, at the age of 17 and served his country in the Armed Forces and civil service collectively for 45 years.
Soon after entering into the service, on Dec. 20, 1952, he married Hazel O. Cooke, in Williamsburg, Virginia. This marital union lasted for 65 years. They gave birth to two daughters, Yvonne and Courtney.
During his 30 years in the United States Navy, Elbert advanced to the level of Master Chief Petty Officer (E-9). He was highly praised for his outstanding leadership and encouraging spirit. He received numerous medals, citations and letters of appreciation, along with an Associate Degree and was granted the opportunity to travel the world with his wife and two daughters.
Elbert was a faithful and active member of the Flying 20’s Retirement Club and the DAV. His other hobbies included shooting pool, singing, boxing and bowling. He was a man who truly enjoyed being around other people and loved putting a smile on everyone’s face.
Elbert J. Puryear is survived by his wife, Hazel O. Puryear; his two daughters, Yvonne Hamilton and Courtney Daggs (Eddie); his four grandchildren, Kymberli Parker, James Hamilton, Kenneth Wilson and Kathryn Wilson; his four great-grandchildren, Madison Parker, McKenzie Parker, Riley Hamilton and Marley Hamilton; his two younger sisters, Gloria Solomon and Sallye Puryear; along with his nieces, nephews and a host of other loving family and many caring friends.
A memorial service, celebrating his life, will be held 11 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 8, 2016, in True Vine Baptist Church, 695 J Clyde Morris Blvd. Newport News, VA 23601. Professional services entrusted to the staff of Whiting’s Funeral Home, 7005 Pocahontas Trail, Williamsburg, Virginia 23185. 757-229-3011. Condolences to whitingsfuneralhome.com