2009-01-14 / Obituaries

Laurens (Lonnie) Moore

Laurens Potter Moore, 89, formerly of 500 S. Petty St., died Monday, Jan. 12, 2009, at Summit Hills in Spartanburg.

Mr. Moore was preceded in death by his wife of 62 years, Mary Haynes Fultz of Moncks Corner.

Mr. Moore was born in Gaffney and was the son of Major Henry Carlton and Eloise Potter Moore. He attended Gaffney city

schools, served in the

U.S. Navy during

World War II, and was successfully involved in the entertainment industry for over 60 years in radio, television, major motion pictures, and worked on the stage on Broadway and touring companies, etc., having performed in leading roles in over 75 plays in New York and other locations.

His work in television began during what was called television's "Golden Age," when all of the television entertainment programs were done live and originated in New York City (Hollywood at that time still looked down on television as beneath its notice). He much preferred stage work, saying that acting in front of a live audience gave a sense of immediacy and a "heightened awareness" to the performances.

Mr. Moore's film career was less successful because of strict type-casting as practiced in motion pictures. Although he was in many films, other than one or two of his roles were what he referred to as "sneezer" parts; i.e., if you sneezed while he was being seen, you could miss his entire performance! He was a member of the Screen Actors Guild, the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, and Actors Equity Association.

When Mr. and Mrs. Moore returned to Gaffney in 1965, they were asked by Dr. A. J. Eastwood, at that time president of Limestone College, and Dr. Helen Callison to develop an active and practical theatre program for Limestone. These courses eventually had 17 theatre majors, and the Moores headed the department from 1966 until 1975, when professional acting jobs out of town took precedence, so the two resigned to resume their first love - performing.

When Mr. Moore was elected to the Board of Trustees of the Cherokee County Public Library, the Moores started a weekly 15-minute program, which Mrs. Moore named "Stop, Look and Read." The program continued weekly for 24 years, until the death of Mrs. Moore in 1999. An informal, chatty and entertaining program devoted to the activities of the library, the program built a large listening audience throughout the six States in which the stations, WEAC-AM and WAGI-FM, were heard.

Mr. Moore served on the boards of the YMCA and the Cherokee County Association for Retarded Citizens, and both Moores served as members of the Gaffney Little Theatre Board of Governors and were very active in many of the productions. They had been members of Buford Street United Methodist Church, where Mr. Moore served several terms on the Administrative Board and taught the Men's Bible Class for many years.

Survivors are one son, Robert Laurens Moore and wife, Patricia, of Northport, Ala.; a daughter, Eloise Moore Dickson and husband, W. R. Lambert, of Spartanburg; three grandchildren, Louis Randall Sanders, Charles Ervin Sanders and Laura Elise Moore; three great- grandchildren, Louis Sanders Jr., William Sanders and Austin Sanders; a sister, Carlton Moore Mullinax of Spartanburg; and a nephew, Joseph Mullinax and wife, Carrie.

Memorial services will be held Thursday, Jan. 15, at 2 p.m. at Buford Street United Methodist Church with the Rev. Joseph James and the Rev. Richard Thomas officiating. The family will receive friends immediately following the service.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Mary Fultz Moore Piano Scholarship Endowment at Limestone College, 1115 College Drive, Gaffney, SC 29340 or to the charity of one's choice.

An online guest register is available at www.blakelyfuneralhome. com.

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