Truett Bickham

Published 2:37 pm Thursday, February 22, 2018

Truett Bickham, 95, entered into rest Saturday, Feb. 17, 2018, at his residence in Rolesville, N.C., with his wife and son present.

Truett was born in Bogalusa to James O. and Maude (Smith) Bickham. He was preceded in death by his parents; beloved siblings, Larue Fleming of Bogalusa, James “Bo” Bickham of Bogalusa, Karl Bickham of Franklinton, La.; and his brother-in law, Wyatt Fleming of Bogalusa.

He is survived by his sisters-in-law, Jo Mary (McGowen) Bickham of Bogalusa and Lois (Fontenot) Bickham of Franklinton, La. Truett is also survived by his Bogalusa High School sweetheart and wife of 75 years, Evelyn (Pertalion); son, B. Michael (Sandra) Bickham of Franklinton, N.C.; and daughters, Janet Gardner of Rowlett, Texas, Deborah (Frank) Szymelewicz of Burnsville, N.C., and Denise (Michael) Kerr of Taft, Texas. Also surviving are 11 grandchildren, 16 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild.

Truett started his career as a welding apprentice with the Gulf, Mobile and Ohio Railroad (G.M. & O.) in Bogalusa; aided the war effort at the Chrysler-Michoud Ordnance Plant near New Orleans; built airplanes for Lockheed Aircraft in Marietta, Ga., and was a tool and die maker at American Safety Razor in Staunton, Va. For the remainder of his career, he worked as a Processing Engineer for Sperry Rand Corporation in Charlottesville, Va., until his retirement in 1983. There, he facilitated the development and assembly of submarine periscopes and expansion of the modern-day Sperry Gyrocompass.

Truett and Evelyn loved to travel and took several international trips together, visiting all continents except Antarctica and South America. They particularly enjoyed visiting China. Truett’s favorite pastime was an annual spring or autumn trip to gather with friends in Highland County, Va., at a hunting camp owned by his long-time friend, William Jones of Charlottesville. He deeply cherished the friendships he amassed from these trips. Although Truett and his hunting buddies always proclaimed the gatherings were hunting related, those of us who were not present have reason to believe there was more eating and telling of wild stories than tracking and shooting of wild game.

In lieu of a memorial service in North Carolina, Truett and Evelyn requested to be taken home to Louisiana to rest with loved ones in the family cemetery.

We would like to give a special thank you to the staffs of Avendelle Assisted-Living at Heritage in Rolesville, and Kindred Hospice Care in Oxford, N.C., for their loving care and support.

A service of Bright Funeral Home, 405 S. Main St., Wake Forest, N.C.