Brown-Wynne Funeral Home

1701 East Millbrook Road, Raleigh, NC


Cledis Junior Fort

May 17, 1942July 19, 2020

Cledis Junior (Clete, CJ) Fort, 78, of Wendell, NC, left this life July 19, 2020 in Raleigh, NC, surrounded by his family, after a 4-day battle with pneumonia.

Clete was born in Kennett, MO, to Roy Calvin Foster Fort and Dottie Mae Boyd on May 17, 1942. Raised in Missouri and Central Florida, he graduated from Apopka High School in 1960, Clete served in the US Coast Guard from August 1960 - August 1964. He then started his career in law enforcement with the Orlando Police Department (OPD) in August 1964. After completion of the OPD Police Academy in June 1965, he served as a patrol officer, and in the Fall of 1967 he was assigned to the Motor Squad. He later served as a detective in the Crimes Against Property Section and was promoted to Sargeant before leaving OPD in 1973. Clete earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice from Rollins College in May of 1977. Clete also had a long career in hotel management, but he was always proudest of his service with the Orlando Police Department, where he formed his strongest lifelong friendships. His hobbies included flying and boating, and his greatest joy was being surrounded by family and friends.

Clete is preceded in death by his parents, brothers James Fort and Billie Joe Fort, sister Phyllis Heskett, grandparents, aunts and uncles, niece and nephew, cousins, in-laws, and dear friends.

He is survived by his devoted and loving wife and partner of 37 years, Carol Fort, his son Charles Fort (and his partner Karen Rule) of Raleigh, NC, his sisters Freida Mae Dixon of Smithfield, AR and Juanita (Earl) Johnson of Apopka, FL, his grandson James “Jamie” Fort, his brother-in-law Robert DeJoseph of Ellwood City, PA, nieces and nephews and valued lifelong friends. His surviving sister Freida passed away 3 days after Clete passed.

The family of Cledis Fort wishes to extend our sincere thanks to Rommel P. Lu, M.D., and his caring staff at Rex Hematology & Oncology in Raleigh, NC for their kindness over the past year, and to the nurses at UNC Rex Hospital/Raleigh for providing exceptional care and comfort to Clete and our family during his final days.


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.


Cledis Junior Fort

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Cassandra Davis

July 29, 2020

I am so glad I got to meet Uncle Clete. Grandma always talked about her siblings and loved them dearly. So when I met him, it felt just like I always knew him. Watching the two of them together was priceless. He is missed!

Ariane Zeidwerg

July 26, 2020

Carol, so very sorry to hear about Clete’s passing. May the years of fun and good memories give you strength and peace now. Condolences to you and the family.....I think about you and our years working together often.
Take care and know many share your pain. Ariane

Charles Rahn

July 25, 2020

I was so surprised see that Clete passed away. He Was always Smiling! I enjoyed knowing him during his time with OPD. HE will be fondly remembered. May God rest his soul. Carol, you are in our thoughts and prayers.