Oliver R. “Ben” Carter, age 91, of Little Rock, Arkansas, went to be with the Lord on Saturday, February 28, 2015. Born in the Rodgers Community in Pike County, Alabama, to John Arthur Carter and Ruby Louella Rodgers Carter, Ben began his education in the one-room Rodgers Schoolhouse and graduated from Goshen High School before receiving his undergraduate and master’s degrees from Auburn University. He married the love of his life, Elizabeth “Betty” Abbott Carter, on Christmas Eve in 1948 in Talladega, Alabama.
During World War II, Ben served his country as a technical sergeant, top turret gunner, and flight engineer with the Army Air Force, flying 31 missions over Germany in a B-17 bomber before his 21st birthday. He was stationed in Polebrook, England, as a member of the 351st Bombardment Group.
Professionally, Ben was a soil scientist for the Soil Conservation Service, United States Department of Agriculture and then a consultant for the State Department. He was also a published author. Throughout his career Ben worked in Alabama, Arkansas, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, Liberia, Yemen, Indonesia, and Suriname. He also traveled extensively, reaching six of the seven continents.
Ben was a proud descendent of heroes of the American Revolution and Scottish and German Colonial-American ancestors, arriving as early as the 1680s. Ben enjoyed playing golf with dear friends, even in his last weeks, and was a faithful Presbyterian. He was an avid reader who had an appreciation for people of all faiths and cultures. He loved life, his family, Auburn football, bad jokes, and never missed an opportunity to hug a pretty lady.
He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Elizabeth “Betty” Abbott Carter of Little Rock, two daughters, Toni Carter Cullum of Little Rock and Cynthia Carter of Mountain Home, one son, Mitchel Carter (Laurie) of Oviedo, FL, a sister, Vera Carter King of Albany, GA. He is also survived by five grandchildren, Erin Cullum Marcussen (Jeff) of Little Rock, William Dyer, Jr. of Fayetteville, Daniel Dyer of Memphis, TN, Olivia Dyer of Mountain Home, and Emmaline Carter of Oviedo, FL, a great-granddaughter, Cora Marcussen, and many beloved nieces and nephews.
A celebration of his life and committal service will be held Saturday, June 27, 2015, at 4 p.m. at Elam Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery in Goshen, Alabama, with Green Hills Funeral Home directing. Friends and family can sign the guestbook online at www.greenhillsfuneralhome.net. The staff of Green Hills Funeral Home is honored to serve the Carter family.