Salem Funeral Home, Main St. Chapel
120 South Main St., Winston-Salem, NC 27101
Tuesday, Apr 02, 2013
Holly Hill Memorial Park
Mar 24, 1931 - Mar 29, 2013
Lloyd C. “Sonny” Dillon Jr., a man of quiet confidence, kindness and good humor and whose immense love of family brought him lifelong joy, passed away on Friday, March 29, 2013. He was 82 and died of complications from a stroke, surrounded by adoring loved ones.
Lloyd’s life was rich in achievement and satisfaction, not only in his personal life but through his service as a fighter pilot in the U.S. Marines and later as a general contractor. He led the design and construction of many of the Winston-Salem area’s finest custom homes.
Born in High Point, N.C., to Lloyd C. Dillon and Margaret S. Dillon, Lloyd grew up in Thomasville, N.C. As a boy and young man, he put his considerable athletic skills to work on the local basketball and tennis courts, made occasional mischief and found himself drawn to the excitement of aviation.
Lloyd graduated from Thomasville High School in 1949, studied at Guilford College and served in the Marines from 1952 to 1956, taking to the skies and flying exercises over North Carolina, Asia and Europe. His adventures as an aviator served as a source of countless stories that he took great pleasure in sharing and that his family and friends loved to hear. He nearly lost his life in one harrowing instance, when engine failure forced him to crash land in a rice paddy in Korea. He walked away with just a few scratches.
It was a beautiful fall day when the handsome young Lloyd met former beauty queen Ida Rose Bruton, who would become his wife on April 3, 1958. Together they raised a family, instilled enduring values into their sons and grandchildren, and supported each other in immeasurable ways during 55 years of marriage.
During his career, Lloyd worked for Globe Furniture and Burlington Industries before joining Hanes Corporation as an industrial engineer. Nothing gave him more fulfillment professionally, however, than building homes. After nearly 25 years working in an office, he took a risk and broke out on his own, establishing a general contracting business that created a bricks-and-mortar legacy of numerous stately and beautiful homes in the region.
His nickname of “Sonny” was given to him as a boy and stuck with him throughout his life. In fact, he was man of several nicknames, including “Hook Dillon” (for his basketball prowess) and in recent years “Papa,” the name his grandchildren used and that he took great pride in.
Among his other passions were sailing on the open water, driving his beloved Volkswagen Beetles and most recently his sleek Mercedes E320, and perusing the Internet to catch up on the latest news. But nothing took priority for him like the love of family, especially the sons he raised and the grandchildren he absolutely adored.
Lloyd was a man of strength and self-assuredness, calm and reason, understated brilliance and, above all, kindness and warmth. He will be greatly missed and fondly remembered by his family and friends.
In addition to his wife, Lloyd is survived by his three sons, James Matthew (Matt) and his wife, Alison, of Charleston, S.C.; Paul and his wife, Kjerstin, of Orlando, Fla.; and Lloyd III of Winston-Salem; and four grandchildren, Matthew Dillon, Caroline (Carrie) Dillon, Jackson Dillon and Lucy Dillon. He was preceded in death by his mother and father; a son, David Lloyd Dillon; and his sister, Marian Dillon Morel.
Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, April 2, 2013, at Salem Funerals & Cremations, 120 South Main Street, Winston-Salem, N.C. Burial will follow at Holly Hill Memorial Park in Thomasville.
Flowers will be accepted or memorial donations may be made to the Salvation Army, Winston-Salem Area Command, 130-A Stratford Road, Winston-Salem, N.C. 27103, or made to Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, KS 66675.
Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.salemfh.com.
Scott and Jo Ann Trethaway
Ida Rose, our deepest sympathies to you and your whole family. We will be keeping you in our thoughts and prayers.
Matt and Alison- my thoughts and prayers are with you and with your family, The obituary made me wish I knew him much better than the few times our paths have crossed. You were blessed with a wonderful father who is now reunited with his son and other family that has gone on before us.
Love and Blessings- Terry
Debbie Houston, RN
I have had all of you in my thoughts and prayers. The written story of his life and adventures make me slightly sad that I didn't know him under different circumstances. Take care of each other and lean on one another to get from this day to the next.
Dear Lloyd -
I'm so sorry to hear about your loss. When looking at the obituary I couldn't help but notice how much you resemble your Dad. Simply for having raised a son like you, I know he must have been a great man. You and your family will be in my family's prayers during this difficult time.
Sincerely - Brad
To the Dillon Family:
May the memories of a life well-lived help comfort you during this difficult time. And may the strength that God provides, sustain you. (Psalm 46:1)
Glenn and Sylvia Yarnell
Dear Ida Rose,
We were saddened to read of the death of your dear husband. You have always had a special place in our hearts and we've thought of you often over these almost 28 years since we met you. Please know that we will continue to keep you and your family in our thoughts and prayers. You truly are an inspiration to others!
Sylvia and Glenn Yarnell, Colleen and Kelly