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Ronald Ray Lamb, a well-known apple grower and businessman, died Monday after a long battle with kidney cancer. He was 77.
He was born Aug. 3, 1935, to Ray Van Lamb and Laberta Louise Brown Lamb. He was a loving husband, father and grandfather. He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Mary Louise Orr Lamb; his children, Sheree King and her husband, Allen, Terri Lamb, Dale Lamb and his wife, Geraldine, Cameron Lamb and his wife, Katie, and eight grandchildren, Laura Laughter and her husband, Grant, Lindsey King, Justin Lamb, Rayce Lamb, Dalton Thompson, Holden Thompson, Aly Lamb and Natalie Lamb. He was a loved brother to Flaughn Lamb, Leon Lamb, Shirley Nicholson and Lynn Lamb and an uncle to numerous nieces and nephews.
Lamb began farming at age 6 and loved farming all his life. He raised many crops but the most important thing he raised, he believed, was his family. Living his motto of "Strive to Persevere," he taught family members that "Money is not what is important in life. What's important are people and your relationship with them." He developed lifelong friendships and was always available to lend a helping hand.
He owned and operated Lamb Fruit Company from 1969 to the present. He sold chemicals, fertilizer, Myers and John Bean sprayers and parts. Among the boards he served on were FHA Advisory Committee, North Carolina Apple Growers Association, Mountain Bank Board of Directors and Carolina First Board of Directors. In 2010, he was inducted into the Western North Carolina Agricultural Hall of Fame.
He was the Grand Marshal of the NC Apple Festival Parade in 2011 and received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Blue Ridge Apple Growers Association that same year.
He will be missed by his family and friends. Visitation and funeral will be held at Kings Grove Baptist Church, where he was a member. The visitation will be held on Wednesday night from 6:30 pm to 9:00 pm and the service will be 2 p.m. Thursday with the Rev. Phillip Capell officiating. Burial will follow at Forest Lawn Memorial Park.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Kings Grove Baptist Church building fund, in care of Wilma Summey, 3034 Pace Road, Hendersonville, NC, 28792.
Condolence cards may be sent to the family at www.jacksonfuneralservice.com or P.O. Box 945, Hendersonville, NC, 28793.