Emily Finklea Kelly

September 30, 1928  –  January 27, 2023

Emily Finklea Kelly, 94 years of age, passed away on January 27, 2023. Emily was born and raised in Monroeville, Alabama. She attended Ward Belmont Junior College (Belmont University) in Nashville, TN for her senior year of high school and 2 years of college, being very active in their music program. In 1950 Emily received a degree in Medical Technology from the Franklin School of Science and Arts in Philadelphia, PA. Emily moved to Bennettsville, SC after accepting a job at Marlboro General Hospital. It was here that she met and married Bill Odom, moving to Chapel Hill where they lived 4 years while Bill attended Dental School, then returning to Bennettsville where Bill worked and they raised their three girls. After Bill’s death in 1965 Emily married Ralph Kelly, attorney. Ralph passed away in 2008. Emily moved to Charlotte, NC in 2020 to live with her daughter (Diane) and son- in –law.

Emily was a very active member of the First United Methodist Church, serving on the Altar Guild and playing the piano for her Sunday school class. She spent 11 years as a Girl Scout Leader, highlights being camping and attending the 1965 New York World’s fair with 21 seventh graders (described as memorable). Emily was a member of the VA Alleghany Chapter of the DAR with her daughter Phyllis. Emily enjoyed being with her family and living in Bennettsville with her friends and neighbors. She especially loved when her girls were able to get together with her. Emily enjoyed gardening, nature, science and traveling, having visited 44 of the US states and going on adventures with church friends to Canada and Europe.

Emily is preceded in death by her parents, Charles and Evelyn Finklea, husband Bill Odom and husband Ralph Kelly. She is survived by her daughters Phyllis Odom Eschenmann (Kurt), Diane Odom Jackson-Szymczyk (Roger), Sharon Odom Infinger (Marvin), 6 Grandchildren (Ashley, Chris, Graham, Miller, Emily and Charlotte), and 9 Great Grandchildren (Olivia, William, Maggie, Pierce, Ace, Grant, Scott, Ada and Charlotte).

Family and friends will be notified of a Memorial Service to be held in Bennettsville, SC at a later date. Memorials may be made to First United Methodist Church in Bennettsville.

Earl Lindsay Daniel

April 30, 1928 – October 30, 2022

Bennettsville, SC

Earl Lindsay Daniel, 94 of Bennettsville, SC died Sunday, October 30, 2022. A native of Charlotte, NC, he was the son of Edgar Bowles Daniel and Winifred Graham Daniel.  He was preceded in death by his wife Gladys Gaster Daniel. Three brothers also preceded him in death- Howard Graham Daniel, Walter Freeman Daniel and Clyde William Daniel.

He is survived by his daughter, Lindsay D. Bennett and son-in-law Robby Bennett of Cheraw, SC.  Mr. Daniel is also survived by his grandson, Daniel McArn Bennett of Washington, DC and his wife, Dr. Katie Jeter Bennett of Charlotte, NC.  He is survived by a sister, Virginia Daniel Ewart, of Atlanta, Ga.

Earl attended Charlotte schools and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He served in the United States Air Force and was stationed at Ft. Knox Kentucky.   He retired from the transportation sector having spent most of his career in sales in the trucking industry.   Also, he was employed as Personnel Manager at Crown Cork & Seal Cheraw for several years.

He was a member of First United Methodist Church in Bennettsville.  Earl enjoyed all sports, playing baseball in his youth and golf in his adult years.  He was an avid fan of college basketball and the UNC Tarheels. In 1971, he was coach to the Marlboro Academy Boys Basketball State Champions.  Mr. Daniel and his wife along with longtime friends returned to the Bluegrass State for over 30 years to attend the Kentucky Derby. In 2013 he was named a Kentucky Colonel by the Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

A graveside service will be held on Thursday, November 3 at 11:00am at Old St. David’s Cemetery – 91 Church Street in Cheraw, SC.

The family is appreciative of his FUMC Bennettsville friends and Magnolia Restaurant Breakfast buddies for their calls, cards and visits.  Also, the family will remember the kindness shown to Mr. Daniel by his caretakers and staff from Crescent Hospice group.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the McArn Community Ministry – PO Box 372- Cheraw, SC 29520, or to the St. David’s Cemetery Association – PO Box 1196 – Cheraw, SC 29520 or to Old St. David’s Episcopal Church c/o The Chesterfield County Historic Preservation Commission -230 Third Street- Cheraw, SC 29520

Dear First United Methodist Church Community,

What strange times we’re living through! So many tragic losses… so much fear and worry.  And yet, we know ourselves to be blessed. As beloved children of God, we recognize our blessings no matter the current circumstance.

We see blessings in being part of this congregation, and we respond by inviting others into our worship and fellowship. We see blessings in being part of this community, and we respond by inviting our neighbors to share a meal on most Wednesday nights. We invite our neighbors to join us in our Fall Festival, and we look forward to returning to other invitational traditions.

We see blessings in being together, and we respond with fellowship and with mutual support. We know that First UMC is there for us: with a meal, with counseling and prayer. We’ve found an extended “family” with whom we can share our worries and our joys.

This is the way that First UMC responds to our many blessings: generosity. As Christians, we strive to be generous, improving the lives of our neighbors, local and global. Perhaps even more importantly, living generously improves us. It changes our relationship with our “stuff”, and, in doing so, changes our relationship with God. Generosity moves our perspective to trusting in God instead of only relying on ourselves, our hard work, our knowledge, and our resources. What a relief to understand that we can rely on more than ourselves!

This year’s Stewardship drive must be different in some ways because these past years have put all of us in different circumstances. Some of our community is suffering from the health impacts and the economic consequences of the pandemic. On the other hand, some find themselves with reduced expenses, because they are spending more time at home. The uncertainty of this time will make First UMC’s budgeting very difficult. Your pledge is the best way to let our congregational leadership know how much financial support First UMC is likely to see next year. If you can afford to increase your pledge, please consider that First UMC is poised to expand our engagement with the community, and that that fulfilling these plans will depend on our funding. As always, please be aware that a pledge is a statement for your planned giving, not an immutable contract.

We will celebrate the gathering of our planned offerings on Sunday, December 4th. You can bring your pledge to First UMC for that celebration or mail it to FUMC, PO Box 456, Bennettsville, SC 29512.

Please know you are welcome to contact Pastor Taylor, or any member of the Stewardship/Finance Committee to help determine your pledge. We thank you in advance for your commitment to First UMC and wish you many generous blessings!


November 6, 2022

On November 6, 2022, we will celebrate “All Saints Day” at First United Methodist Church in Bennettsville.  It is the tradition of many churches throughout the world to commemorate this day each year.  It is a day that we remember those who have entered The Church Triumphant.  We will be remembering our members and constituents who have passed away since our last “All Saints Day.”

We want to invite you to join us on this day as we remember our members who have entered The Church Triumphant during our worship service and then join us in the Methodist Family Center for our All Saints Day Luncheon. Our menu will be fried chicken, roast beet, mashed potatoes and gravy, macaroni and cheese, broccoli salad green beans, bread, dessert and drink.

We hope to see you and your family on November 6th for this time of remembrance.