Earl McIlwinen Hubbard

December 20, 1926 ~ February 20, 2018 (age 91)

Beloved family patriarch, Earl M. Hubbard of Fayetteville, NC passed away Tuesday, February 20, 2018. He was 91 years old.  

Born on the Hubbard family farm in Fayetteville NC on December 20, 1926 to John and Mary McIlwinen Hubbard, home and family were always foremost in his heart and mind. On November 25, 1956 in front of the fireplace of their new home Earl married Betty Holtzclaw and so began 61 years of life together. 

In 1953, Earl and his friend Bill Lee opened H&L Auto Service on Reilly Road in Fayetteville, NC. Earl was actively involved in the operation of the business up until his death. Over a span of 65 years, under his thoughtful management he formed a close knit family of employees and loyal customers.
Among his many interests, one very dear to his heart was his love for and deep abiding interest in nature and the preservation of wildlife. His passion for conserving all species of wildlife in their natural habitats lead him to work with the Sandhills Area Land Trust to protect  41 acres of natural wetlands along both sides of Persimmon Creek on the family farm in Fayetteville.

Additionally, he was instrumental in the preservation of 143 acres of Hubbard land along the Cape Fear River. Located across from the Cape Fear River Trail, this conservation easement will forever protect the scenic beauty of the land for future generations to enjoy. 

Earl was an expert mechanic, master craftsman, extraordinarily skilled machinist, lifelong radio control airplane enthusiast, voracious reader, historian and woodworking artisan. He was an avid collector of antique engines, cars, tractors, tools, books, and art.

Never bored and constantly engaged, Earl always anticipated with immense enthusiasm the next big project, holiday, family gathering or camping trip. Earl was a gifted story teller, intelligent conversationalist and he reveled in lively debate.  He loved fireworks, fruitcake, homemade ice cream, teacakes and cookies. He loved working in his shop, flying airplanes with his friends, listening to the low rumble of Harley Davidson Motorcycles, and relaxing with Betty on their deck at Lake Waccamaw.  

Earl was a sensitive man with a brilliant mind. His warm, generous spirit will be profoundly missed by all.  

Earl MacIlwinen Hubbard is survived by his wife Betty, his son Earl “Mac” Hubbard, Jr (Jeanette), daughter Nancy Mabes (David), grandchildren: Justin, Hannah, Charlene, Mattie, Cristin, and great grandson Colton. He is also survived by his sister Barbara Wilson (David) and numerous nieces, nephews and their families. He was preceded in death by his brother John “Jack” Hubbard, Jr (Mabel)

The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 pm Friday, February 23, 2018 at Rogers and Breece Funeral Home.  A funeral service will be held at 2 pm Saturday, February 24, 2018 at MacPherson Presbyterian Church. 

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Sandhills Area Land Trust, PO Box 1032, Southern Pines, NC 28388.

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