Former East Spencer alderman dies at 73
By Karissa Minn
MARIETTA, GA. — Bishop Clarence Carr, a former East Spencer alderman and pastor, died Wednesday at his Georgia home.
Carr spent two years on the East Spencer Board of Aldermen, where he held the position of mayor pro tem, from 1969 through 1971.
He also served as pastor of Southern City African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Zion Church and director of evangelism for the Salisbury district of the AME Zion Church.
Alderman John Noble, who was working for the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office when he knew Carr, said Sunday that the bishop was “an all-around fine person.”
“He always tried to help people in the community,” Noble said. “He wasn’t from East Spencer, but he pastored out here. … And he was a great mentor for the kids at school.”
Carr, 73, of Marietta, Ga., died of complications from diabetes. A news obituary published Friday in the Atlanta Journal Constitution gives the following details of his life:
Carr was born on Feb. 7, 1938, in Orangeburg, S.C. He grew up in Washington, D.C., and Jamaica, N.Y., graduating from Woodrow Wilson High School in the Long Island city.
The bishop began his ministerial work in 1961 in Jamaica. He served in churches in New York, North Carolina and Missouri. He was admitted to the annual conference in 1963, and was ordained a deacon in 1964 and an elder in 1966.
Carr attended Salisbury schools for his secondary education. He earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Livingstone College in 1970 and a master of divinity degree from Hood Theological Seminary in 1972.
Carr was elected to the episcopacy from the pastorate of Washington Metropolitan AME Zion Church. He was consecrated the 89th Bishop of the AME Zion Church on July 28, 1992 by the 44th General Conference meeting in Atlanta.
The bishop served on the NAACP national board, and as board chairman of Clinton Junior College in Rock Hill, S.C., and a trustee on the boards of Livingstone College and Hood Theological Seminary.
Carr is survived by his wife of 49 years, Barbara. The couple moved from St. Louis to Marietta in 2005, and he retired as bishop three years later.
A public viewing will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. today at Willie A. Watkins Historic West End Chapel in Atlanta.
A wake service will be held at 7 p.m. today at Shaw Temple AME Zion Church in Smyrna, Ga.; and a homegoing service, at 11 a.m. Tuesday at the church.
Interment will follow immediately at Mount Harmony Cemetery in Mableton, Ga. Willie A. Watkins Funeral Home is handling arrangements.
Contact reporter Karissa Minn at 704-797-4222.