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Lemuel George Cochran

Lemuel George Cochran, age 84, entered heaven's gates just before sunset on Wednesday, August 1, 2018, at the Wendover Hospice House in Shelby, North Carolina. After several years of declining health issues, Lem received his new body surrounded by family and friends, while under the loving care of the hospice staff. Lemuel George was born along with his twin brother the late Lester Franklin on February 22, 1934 to the late Admiral Dewey McKinley Cochran and the late Eula Mae Crain Cochran. Lemuel was also preceded in death by his son, Lemuel Eric Cochran and great-grandson Jarrett Lee Wellmon and great-great-granddaughter Shealeigh Rose Brooks; his sisters Frances Pruett and infant Ruby Cochran; brothers Lester Cochran, Roy Cochran and infant Charles Cochran; and sisters-in-law Debbie Anthony, Doris Vinesett, and Wilma Vinesett and brothers-in-law Jack Simmons, Hubert Greene, Hoyt Hester, Bobby Blanton, and GC Blanton.

A man of strong Christian faith, Lem was a lifetime faithful member of Flint Hill Baptist Church where he formerly served as teacher of the Bud Long Sunday School class, deacon, choir member and RA Baseball coach. He also sang in a gospel quartet for a number of years. Lem loved his Lord and served him faithfully alongside his church family. He was a loving husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend. Faith and family formed the threads that wove together the very fabric of his life, from his early age until his passing.

A graduate of Blacksburg High School in South Carolina, Lem's early career years were spent mastering the art of baking a perfect pound cake while working as a baker at Bost Bakery, a gift he was known for throughout his life. Nothing brought him greater joy than baking cakes for family and friends in the community. After, he worked at Fiber Industries where he retired following 32 years of dedicated service.

Lem's happiest moments were spent spinning a tall tale or recalling stories of his childhood spent with "Les." These stories brought much laughter as they often began with, "Me and Les" and continued with the promise of mayhem or call it "adventure" imminent for some unsuspecting someone. In the words of Aunt Frances, the twins were a handful! Lem also loved to garden, priding himself in the fruits of his labor. He found joy in keeping his bees and harvesting the honey they made. The stock market captured his attention especially in later years and his mood often rose and fell as the market went. To say he was passionate about '63 Chevrolet Impalas would be an understatement; it possibly was only surpassed by his love for history, especially US history. A jack of all trades, Lem was truly a renaissance man with his hand into a little bit of everything, finding great happiness in living life and making memories. If there was a soundtrack to accompany the images of his life as they pass through our memories, it would most assuredly be filled with the whispers of the bluegrass music he loved so much.

But, above all else, Lem's life was made complete when he spent time with "the wife," also lovingly called "Mother," "Mackie,"or "Snooks." Maxine was the young girl of his dreams who through the years grew to be the partner who would help him to stay at home when his body began to fail him and he could not manage without her. She was ever by his side, seldom being separate in recent years. The love shown between these two was unconditional and formed a bond strong enough for all eternity. Their daughters, who he lovingly called Sparks and Sissy, were blessed to witness daily the life they shared together, a legacy to live by more cherished than all the possessions the world has to offer.

Lemuel leaves to cherish his memory his wife of 63 years, Maxine Vinesett Cochran, daughters, Brenda with husband Kenneth Wellmon and Phyllis with husband Cecil Clark; grandchildren Jamie with husband Chris Wilson, Galen Davis, Elisha Wellmon, Jessica Brooks and Jerry with wife Laura Wellmon (all of Shelby, NC), Ryan with wife Natalie Clark (Cary, NC), and Hillary Clark (Charlotte, NC); great-grandchildren Jackson, Benjamin and Olivia Wilson, Tevin with wife Tori Brooks, Jay and Orlando Brooks; Lily and Julia Wellmon; Elliott and Cooper Clark; and great-great grandson Shiloh Brooks. He is survived by brothers Paul with wife Laura Jean Cochran (Roanoke, VA), and Max Cochran, Sr. (Grover, NC); and sisters Runell Etters (Shelby, NC) and Shirley Owen (Zephyrhills, FL). Lem is also survived by brothers and sisters-in-laws Betty Simmons (Gaffney, SC), Martha Greene, Beuna Hester, Tom Vinesett, Pat and husband Tommy Ledbetter, Jane Raduly, Stan Anthony, Grace and husband Bob Constant, and Shirley Europa (all of Shelby, NC). He is also survived by many nieces and nephews.

A celebration of Lemuel's life will be held at 6:00 p.m. at Flint Hill Baptist Church, 2207 Flint Hill Church Road, Shelby, NC on Sunday, August 5, 2018 with Rev. Shane Kirby officiating. Receiving of friends will be held from 4-6 p.m. prior to the service in the church sanctuary. His family will be at his home at other times. Burial will be at 10:00 a.m. with Rev. Keith Dixon officiating on Monday, August 6, 2018 at Cleveland Memorial Park.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Wendover Hospice House, 951 Wendover Heights Drive, Shelby, NC 28150 or to Flint Hill Baptist Church.

Arrangements are entrusted to Clay-Barnette Funeral, Cremation & Pet Aquamation Center of Shelby.

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