Mason Spiller Hicks 1921-2010 Obituary

Mr. Mason Spiller Hicks of Fayetteville, North Carolina, died peacefully at home on Sunday, January 31, 2010, with family at his side. He was 88 years old.Mason was born in Bluefield, West Virginia, on November 8, 1921, the youngest of four children of William Bane and Mary Baylor Hicks. His family moved to Buckhannon, West Virginia, in 1931. Mason was a 1939 graduate of Buckhannon-upshur High School, where he excelled in manual and graphic arts. As a high school student he turned a four-poster bed from American black walnut that was exhibited across the state. He went on to study mathematics and art at West Virginia Wesleyan College in Buckhannon, but was drafted in 1942 and sent by the Army Air Corps to study meteorology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Mason and Grace Brown of Buckhannon, his sweetheart of ten years, were married in August 1943.After a distinguished career as a meteorologist in Europe during the Second World War, Mason was discharged as a Captain in 1946. Under the GI Bill he went on to study Architecture at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, from which he earned a Masters in Architectur in 1949. In 1952 Mason and Grace and their growing family moved from Chapel Hill NC to Fayetteville. In solo practice Mace was responsible for numerous schools and public buildings during a career that spanned more than 40 years. He also served the City of Fayetteville as a member and as chairman of its Planning Board in the 1950s thru 1970s. In 1986 Mason was selected by a jury of Fellows of the American Institute of Architects for advancement to membership in the College of Fellows. The Fellowship citation referred to the quality of his design work and to his contributions to the Fayetteville region in the field of city planning. Mason is survived by daughters, Jan Engel Hicks of Rocky Mount NC and Baylor Hicks of Fayetteville; son, Daniel Mason Hicks of Fayetteville; granddaughter, Mary Grace Hicks of Washington DC; and grandson, Jacob Mason Hicks of Lillington NC. He was preceded in death by his siblings, their spouses, and his bride of 63 years. A memorial service was held in Fayetteville on February 3 at Highland Presbyterian Church with Dr. Ernie Johnson officiating. Family and friends are invited to a commemoration of his life and interment of his remains, to be conducted by the family at Heavner Cemetery in Buckhannon on May 22 at 11 a.m. In lieu of flowers, donations in his name may be made to Nature Conservancy North Carolina, 4705 University Drive, Durham NC 27707. Indicate “Mason Hicks” on a note line; a memorial fund in his name has been established, with all donations to be used for the purchase and preservation of land in North Carolina.

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