John Clyde Tate Jr.
June 27, 1922 – October 29, 2019
John Clyde Tate Jr., age 97, native and long-time resident of Greensboro, passed away at The Oaks at Mayview in Raleigh on October 29, 2019.
John’s life centered around his devotion to family and friends, his 43 year career with Burlington Industries, and his lifelong love of tennis. He grew up in Greensboro and attended Guilford College for one year on a tennis scholarship. While there, he met his wife Shirley Marshall of Brooklyn, NY and her identical twin sister Betty. They had been encouraged by their Quaker family to attend Guilford. John and Shirley were married in 1944 and raised 3 sons—Jack (John C. III), Robert and David.
John’s championship high school tennis career caught the attention of J. Spencer Love, founder and CEO of Burlington Industries and an avid tennis player himself. Mr. Love’s friendship and mentoring led to John’s career at Burlington Industries. Spencer Love challenged him with executive manufacturing positions in Greenville, SC and Watertown, CT. John returned to Greensboro and was given additional manufacturing responsibilities. Ultimately he served as the Director of Industrial Engineering for Burlington Industries, the largest textile company in the world. He was honored to have been selected to attend the newly-established UNC Executive Development Program in Chapel Hill, and he attributed much of his success to the training provided by both Burlington Industries and UNC.
John’s activities ranged from major fundraising efforts for tennis to individual tutoring of disadvantaged youth. He was a former president of Carlson Farms County Club and a member of the Greensboro Country Club and the Greensboro Kiwanis Club. John was honored to be selected to complete training for the Leadership Greensboro Seniors Program where he could mentor and share his business experiences and knowledge of Greensboro with others. The most special to John however, was a commendation he received from the Greensboro Tennis Association in 1974 for his outstanding contributions to tennis in Greensboro. These included participation in a very successful fundraising campaign to initiate and complete the J. Spencer Love Tennis Center. This tennis center continues to be a state of the art public tennis facility in Greensboro complete with 13 courts, a stadium court, and instructional equipment to aid and encourage those just learning the game. In this endeavor, John was able to honor the game he loved and pay tribute to Mr. Love.
John and Shirley were long-time members of the UNC Rams Club and followed UNC sports (especially basketball and football) for many years. They provided memorable tailgate lunches for over 20 years for their sons, dates, and friends when they were students there. There are also fond memories of their famous "Sunday Night Cookouts" at Carlson Farms where family and friends congregated to enjoy time together after an afternoon of tennis.
John was preceded in death by his wife, Shirley Marshall, his parents John C. and Mabel Privette Tate, his brother Charles and nephew Michael. He is survived by 3 sons —John C. Tate III (Jack) and wife Anne, of Raleigh, Dr. Robert M. Tate and wife Judy, of Longmont, CO, and Dr. David A. Tate and wife Dr. Karen Davis, of Chapel Hill; 4 granddaughters-Meg Tate, Emily Tate (Will Rounds), Natalie Tate, and Dr. Rebecca Tate Jones (Dr. Dane Jones), as well as 4 great-granddaughters-Ellie and Kate Ergenzinger of Raleigh and Eliza and Sophie Rounds of Longmont, Colorado; sister-in-law, Gay Adams Tate Fischer of Greensboro, nieces and one nephew-Diane Morris Turner, Lynn Morris Martin, Vickie Tate, Chuck Tate, and Nancy Tate Blackwelder and their children.
The family would like to thank Dr. James Parsons, Dr. William Dunlap, and the many staff members at Mayview who attended to John over his more than 7 years there and the caring professionals of Transitions LifeCare who also cared for him during his decline.
A visitation will be held on Saturday, Nov. 9, 2:00-4:00 at Brown-Wynne Funeral Home, 300 St. Mary’s St., Raleigh. Memorial services will be held in the Mausoleum at Westminster Gardens, 3601 Whitehurst Road, Greensboro, NC on Sunday, Nov. 10 at 1:00.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials to Transitions LifeCare (250 Hospice Circle, Raleigh, NC 27607—“transitionslifecare.org"), Greensboro Tennis Foundation (3802 Jaycee Park Drive, Greensboro, NC 27455, gtpfoundation.org/donate-now), or a charity of one’s choice.
Arrangements by Brown-Wynne, 300 Saint Mary's Street, Raleigh.
- Visitation Saturday, November 9, 2019
- Committal Service Sunday, November 10, 2019
John Clyde Tate Jr.
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November 5, 2019
It's been 50 years but I remember your dad. So sorry to learn about his passing. Know that he will always be with you. Wishing you Peace.