Hugh Landis departed his home in Mebane peacefully with his wife Lavonda by his side and entered his Heavenly home on Sunday, March 12, 2023. Hugh was born on August 19, 1933 in Fort Wayne, Indiana. His parents were Geraldine Willoughby and Hugh Landis Sr. He spent his childhood living on the family farm with his mother and daddy and sister Mary Jane. They also spent time at their lake cottage nearby where they relaxed swimming and fishing. Hugh enjoyed riding his horse and playing with his dog Flossie after his farm chores were done. He woke up early and hand milked the cows before going to elementary school. Hugh loved animals and enjoyed farm life even though it was hard work. When the farm was sold, his family bought and operated a furniture store where Hugh was in charge of the used furniture department. He bought a cotton candy machine as a teenager and sold bags of the pink sweet stuff at a local park. He also had a part time job shining shoes at a local barber shop. After high school graduation, Hugh attended and earned a Bachelors of Science Degree at Arkansas State Teachers College. He graduated with honors. He next attended and earned a Masters Degree in Mathematics from Louisiana State University. He taught high school classes and later at Maryville College and Elon University. Hugh was offered a position to train at IBM and accepted and then moved to North Carolina where he developed numerous programs for the company. SAS Institute presented an offer for a position as a computer programmer and Hugh was one of the first hired at RTP. He was the first retiree at SAS. Hugh continued to work part time at Duke University, Lowes Home Improvement, Keane Incorporated, Mebane Arts and Community Center and Tanger Outlet Mall. He enjoyed building wood barns from rough cut lumber and also built several wood play houses that he designed and built from scratch. Hugh was a graceful and amazing ballroom dancer. He and Lavonda taught private dance lessons at venues in Mebane and Hillsborough. He believed that people should dance for enjoyment and not just learn steps. He made the classes fun and relaxed and made many friends sharing his talents. He and Lavonda met at Cary singles, a private club where they danced every weekend. They were married in 1995. They enjoyed dancing at senior centers, private parties, at street concerts, Mebane Arts Center, shopping malls and in their kitchen. Music was important and gave him much joy. They also liked shag dancing and traveled to places where beach music was played giving them opportunities to dance the night away.
Hugh is survived by his beloved wife Lavonda Rowe Landis. He was predeceased by his children Becky and Tom. His surviving family includes daughters Beth and Phyllis, grandchildren, Rebecca, Phillip, Ryan and Maggie and great grandson Corbin. He and Lavonda also have shared her children, Keith, Mark(deceased) and Shari, grandchildren, Andy, Stephen, Brit, Jeremy, Trevor, Jackson and Lauren and great grandchildren, Avery, Donna Reed, Grace, Alaia, Veda Quinn, Wyatt and Maverick.
Hugh has lived an amazing life of 89 years and his faith in God has given him the love, support and guidance he needed and depended on. he was a Christian follower of Jesus Christ who he loved with all of his heart. He was baptized and a member of Temple Baptist Church in Durham, North Carolina. He and Lavonda enjoyed studying the Bible, praying together nightly, reading devotional books, worship, hymns and watching worship programs on TV during the pandemic. His favorite song was, "Jesus Loves Me, This I Know". He had the peace that passes understanding that is promised by our Lord. Psalm 16 was a comforting reading as his health declined. He was not a complainer and fought a brave battle with lung cancer hoping to survive and live longer. He was lovingly treated and cared for by Duke University doctors and nurses at the hospital and the Hillsborough clinic. Hugh was a brave, kind, honest, trustworthy, intelligent, talented, tenderhearted, sincere, generous, and absolutely adorable man. He has been the love of Lavonda's life. He also shared their home with their precious dachshund Penny, a long haired daschund. Hugh will always be treasured by his family and many friends and never forgotten. he looked forward to his eternal home in Heaven. Memorials in honor of Hugh can be donated to Temple Baptist Church in Durham, North Carolina on Umstead Road.
A celebration of Hugh's life will be planned in August. He was my best friend, my sweetheart, my soul mate, my dance partner who made me feel like Ginger Rogers dancing with Fred Astaire. Rest in peace my darling and I will see you soon. Life with you has been an exciting and joyful time! I thank God for giving me the gift of you and the honor of sharing your life.