Mr. Julius S. Vines

Published 4:04pm Monday, November 26, 2012

Mr. Julius S. Vines, of LaFayette, died Tuesday, November 20, 2012 at George H. Lanier Memorial Hospital, Valley.

Funeral services were held at Mt. Pisgah Baptist Church, 11322 Veterans Memorial Pkwy, LaFayette, AL on Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 1:00 p.m. (CST) with Rev. Cecelia Broome and Rev. Ed Vines officiating.  Interment  was  at Handy Cemetery, LaFayette.

Mr. Vines was born March 19, 1922 in Tallapoosa County to the late Adolphus and Ada Allen Vines.  After graduating from Chambers County Training School, Mr. Vines entered into the Army during WWII, serving as an ambulance driver.

He landed on Omaha Beach in France during the D-Day invasion and later was assigned to the Third Army under the command of General George S. Patton.  Mr. Vines was on the front lines at the Battle of the Bulge helping wounded American soldiers and civilians.  He received several decorations and citations including American Service Medal, European African Middle Eastern Service Medal with three Bronze Stars, Good Conduct Medal AR 600-68 and The World War II Victory Medal.

After the war, Mr. Vines attended and graduated with a degree in Mortuary Science from the Gupton Jones College of Mortuary Science in Nashville, TN.  He was licensed to practice in both Tennessee and

Alabama.  In the spring of 1952, Mitchell Angelo Deloach, a noted local builder, commenced work on builiding Vines Funeral Home.

Once Mr. Vines’ funeral home was built and open for business, he married LeMerle Brooks, the schoolteacher that faithfully wrote to him while he was overseas.

For more than fifty years Mr. Vines was the sole proprietor of Vines Funeral Home.  During that time, he made a significant difference in the lives of many people in the Chambers, Tallapoosa, Randolph, Lee and Troup counties and other surrounding communities.  One of the greatest honors, Mr. Vines received was when The National Park Service, United States Department of the Interior, listed Vines Funeral Home and Ambulance Service in  The National Register of Historic Places, October 15, 2008.  The property was determined to be significant as as example of the mid-20th century rural African American owned funeral home.

Mr. Vines was a member of the Ozias Baptist Church, Camp Hill and an adopted member at Sardis Baptist Church and New Canaan Baptist Church.

He served on the Board for the Industrial Development for the City of LaFayette, he worked in Red Cross drives and served one term on the Alabama Board of Funeral Services, being appointed to the post by then

Governor George C. Wallace,  Mr. Vines was a member of the Alabama Funeral Directors and Morticians Association, which honored him with a lifetime achievement award on June 10, 2002.

Surviving are: Mr. Vines is survived by two devoted daughters, Merilyn F. Vines, LaFayette and Dr. Angela Vines, Duluth, GA; one grandson: Austin S. Vine, Duluth, GA; two sisters: Anne V, Traylor, Altadena, CA, and Inez V. Stephens, Tuskegee: two sisters-in-law: Clifford Vines, Inglewood, CA and Jennie Vines, Los Angeles, CA; devoted nephew, Roger Vines, LaFayette; devoted cousins: Roy Kimble, Montgomery, AL and Perry Tolbert, Camp Hill; caregivers: Diane Miller, Camp Hill and Lucille Melton, LaFayette and many, nieces, nephews, great-neices, great-nephews, cousins, other relatives and friends.

Vines Funeral Home, Inc., LaFayette handled the arrangements.