Henry W. “Woody” Needham, age 86 of Spartanburg, South Carolina died Sunday, October 28, 2018 at his home after a courageous battle with cancer.
Born July 4, 1932 in Fort Myers, Florida he was the only son and the youngest of four children of the late Dr. Henry Moncrief Needham and Christine McCormack Needham. Woody, as he was known to family and friends was a 1950 graduate of Fort Myers High School, a 1959 graduate of Western Carolina in Cullowhee with a B.A. in History, and received his Masters in Education from the University of North Carolina- Chapel Hill in 1962. Additional graduate work was earned from North Carolina State University, George Washington University, as well as the DOD Comptroller School in Birmingham, AL.
Woody was director of Guidance at four High Schools in Polk County, North Carolina to include Saluda, Polk Central, Edmund Embry and Tryon. He later moved to a similar position at the Arrowwood Job Corps Center in Franklin, NC. A veteran of the Korean War, Woody handled the Tuition Aid Program and the Naval Academy while at the Bureau Personnel. He also served as Budget Officer for the U.S. Navy during President Nixon’s transition to an All Volunteer Force. As Finance Officer, he instituted an integrated Budget and Accounting System for the newly formed Navy Recruiting Command. Woody moved to the Navy Recruiting area 3 in Macon, GA where he served as Director of the Educational Liaison Program in seven southern states, and then served as Comptroller for the Naval Reserve Readiness Command in Jacksonville, FL before accepting a budgetary position with HQ, U.S. Army, Europe, Heidelberg, Germany and Worms, Germany. His final years were spent as Budget Officer for the DOD Dependent Schools, Atlantic Division, London, England.
Woody and Ann retired to Columbus, NC and before falling in love with St. Francis Anglican Parish which resulted in a final move to Spartanburg in 1999.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Ann Staton Lyle Needham in 2007 who was the daughter of the late Samuel Harley Lyle who served as Mayor of Franklin and owned the Tremont Inn and the late Elizabeth Hendrix Lyle, a son, Michael Johnson Higdon in 2014, and three sisters, Christine Needham Massie (Mrs. Joseph L.), Virginia Needham Byle (Mrs. Richard C.) and Jeanne Needham Praytor (Mrs. John E.).
Woody is survived by his son, Jonathan Moncrief Needham of Spartanburg, SC ; a daughter-in-law, Jean Higdon of Daytona Beach, FL; a sister-in-law, Laura Lyle Kallam of Greenville, SC and her family; a special cousin, James K. Reap and his wife, Carol of Athens, GA; a niece, Carol Needham Massie of Lexington, KY, and a nephew, Kenney Logan Massie of Durham, NC.
Graveside services will be held Tuesday, November 20, 2018 at 12 o’clock noon at the Woodlawn Cemetery in Franklin, North Carolina with the Reverend Jonathan Stepp officiating. A reception will follow the service in the Parish Hall of Saint Agnes Chapel, 84 Church Street, Franklin, North Carolina.
In lieu of flowers, memorials contributions may be made to the St. Luke’s Free Clinic, P.O. Box 3466, Spartanburg, South Carolina 29304.
The Padgett & King Mortuary is in charge of arrangements and an online guest registry is available at www.padgettking.com.