Courier trustee Wayne Sumner passes away at 76

Charles Wayne Sumner, 76, of Taylors, a trustee of The Baptist Courier and self-described “radio man,” died Dec. 9, 2013.

“Wayne Sumner was a godly man with a passion for Christ and ministry,” said Courier editor Rudy Gray. “He was a great supporter of The Courier and a positive encourager to myself and our staff. We appreciate his contribution to our lives and ministry. He will be missed. Our prayers are with his family during these days of sorrow and change.”

Sumner was born Feb. 24, 1937 in Etowah, N.C., and graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1959. He moved to Toccoa, Ga., to work at WNEG and WLET radio stations. The move kicked off a 46-year career in broadcasting and media sales. Sumner married Nancy Crawford in 1961. They moved to Greenville in 1962, where he joined WESC-FM as host of the “Wake Up With Wayne” early morning show. He moved into sales and on numerous occasions was named Best Salesman of the Year by the Greenville Sales and Marketing Club. He was a CBS radio broadcaster for the Masters Tournament and host of the “Sunday in the South” gospel show. He spent 43 years at WESC, retiring in 2005.

Sumner was a member of Taylors First Baptist Church for 41 years. He served several terms as a deacon, including two terms as chairman. He was a member of the building committee, a two-term board member of The Baptist Courier, a longtime member of the choir, coach for his children’s basketball teams, announcer for the Single Mother’s Oil Change, and volunteer at the TFBC Life Center.

He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Nancy Crawford Sumner, two children and four grandchildren.

Visitation will be Dec. 11 from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. at Thomas McAfee Funeral Home, downtown Greenville, and Dec. 12 from 1:15 p.m. until 2:45 p.m. at Taylors First Baptist Church, with the funeral service following at 3 p.m. Burial will follow in the church cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Taylors Free Medical Clinic, 400 West Main St., Taylors, S.C., 29687, or to McCall Hospice House, 1836 West Georgia Rd, Simpsonville, S.C., 29680.