Carl Robert “Big C” Bender, 76, of Manson, passed away peacefully on Sunday, May 19, at his home. Pastor Corey Brooks will conduct funeral services at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, May 22, at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Ridgeway, with burial in the church cemetery.  

Carl Robert was born Feb. 19, 1943, in Ridgeway, the eldest son of the late Albert George Bender and Anna (Lena) Seaman Bender.  

He was a lifelong baptized and confirmed member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, where he served as president, vice president, trustee, Sunday school treasurer, Sunday school teacher, and was an elder at the time of his death.  He spent many hours studying the Bible and was a wealth of knowledge to others. He shared the abundance of his garden with the community. He enjoyed deer hunting and was a member of Ridgeway-Drewry Hunting Club.

After his graduation from Norlina High School, Carl Robert worked for Roses Stores for 44 years in the Fixture Division. He served two years in the U.S. Army, reaching the rank of sergeant. He later enrolled in Vance-Granville Community College, earning a degree in heating and air conditioning.  

He is survived by his wife of 49 years, Annie Kee Lifsey Bender; his two children, Melanie Bender Burnette (Scott) of Drewry and Brian Bender of Henderson; one grandson, Jonah Burnette; his brother Richard Bender (Lou Ann) and sister, Doris Williams (Randell) as well as several nieces and nephews.

Visitation will be held at Blaylock Funeral Home in Warrenton,  on Tuesday, May 21, from 7-8:30 p.m. 

Pallbearers will be Jonathan Bender, James Randell Williams, Eric Bartholomew, Kent Daeke, Claiborne Holtzman, and L. B. O’Neal III.  Honorary Pallbearers will be members of the Ridgeway-Drewry Hunting Club.

Memorials may be sent to St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, 114 Poplar Mount Road, Norlina 27563.

Arrangements are by Blaylock Funeral Home in Warrenton. Online condolences may be made at