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Bill Pace, trombone player and loyal Rotarian, dies at 93

EAST FLAT ROCK — William Lee “Bill” Pace, a Henderson County native who played trombone in local ensembles for more than 80 years and never missed a Hendersonville Rotary Club meeting in more than 60, died on Saturday, Dec. 26, at the Elizabeth House surrounded by his loving family. He was 93.

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The won of J. Willie and Alice G. Anders Pace, Bill married the love of his life, Jeanne, in Spartanburg, S.C. in June 1944. Together they raised two daughters and two sons while he was a self-employed building and painting contractor. He served many customers over the years through the business, Ace Building and Painting.

He enjoyed playing the trombone for over 80 years and had perfect attendance in the Rotary Club for over 60 years. Bill was active in the Hendersonville Symphony, and Buddy-K Band and the Community band. He enjoyed playing golf but especially loved to read his Bible. He loved to tell jokes and stories to anyone who would listen, as he never met a stranger, but nothing topped the love he had for his family and Henderson County. Local history has it that he was a descendant of Solomon Jones, the pioneer road builder of Western North Carolina and Henderson County.

He is survived by his wife, Jeanne, and their two daughters; Alice-Marie Darnell and her husband Tony of Huntersville, and Karen Davis and her husband Gene of Mills River, and two sons; Bill Pace, Jr. and his wife Carolyn of Raleigh, and Terry Pace and his wife Becky of Winston Salem, two brothers; Roy Lee Johnson and his wife Peggy of East Flat Rock,  and Robert Johnson and his wife Barbara of Woodruff, SC and one sister; Julia Ann Mullis and her husband Jake of Macon, Ga. He is also survived by eight grandchildren, five great-grandchildren, several nieces and nephews plus several step-grandchildren and step-great-grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, memorial bonations may be made to the Rotary Club of Hendersonville – Charitable Corporation at P.O. Box 901, Hendersonville, NC 28793 or of the donor’s choice. An online register book is available for family and friends at www.thosshepherd.com. Thos. Shepherd & Son Funeral Directors was in charge of arrangements.