In Memory of Arthur Eugene Grier, Jr. “Gene”
Arthur Eugene Grier Jr., was born in the great city of Charlotte, North Carolina at Good Samaritan Hospital on March 21, 1943. Endearingly known as “Gene,” he was one of the most outstanding and legendary Funeral Directors of his time. Gene was an incredible father, friend and an incredible leader in the Funeral Service Industry. His dedication to his family and unwavering deeds of giving carried him until his last days on this side. Mr. A.E. Grier Jr. On the early morning of September 22, 2020, Gene peacefully transitioned. Although no longer with us physically, we are assured that Gene’s golden, giving heart has granted him peace above.
Gene was born to the late Arthur E. Grier, Sr. and Evelyn Latimer Grier. He grew up the only child but was raised in a tight knit family community environment in the old “Grier Town” neighborhood. He would later be coined the nickname “Juice”. Gene’s mother passed and an early age and later his father passed as he was in high school. His grandparents, the late Arthur S. Grier and Mrs. Irma would eventually raise him to become the man he was.
Gene graduated from the historic Second Ward High School in the old Brooklyn community of Charlotte, NC in 1961 and went on to attend Florida A & M University in Tallahasse, FL before joining the U.S. Army. Gene was Honorably Discharged from the Army after (3) years of service in 1966. He then enrolled in school at Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science in Ohio and graduated in 1969.
As a child, Gene was introduced to the funeral industry profession and took interest in every aspect of the business. He was the grandson and son of Funeral Directors. Gene Grier was the second black elected to the North Carolina State Board of Mortuary Science, serving from 1977 to 1982. He served as Vice President, of the Funeral Directors and Morticians Association of North Carolina, was a past State and National Board Member also the past President of the Western District of Funeral Directors Association and past District President. There weren’t many local undertakers or families who didn’t know who Gene Grier was and the same could have been said throughout the entire country as he developed friendships in almost every state in the U.S. Each year he looked forward to traveling to the state and national conventions, introducing and showing his kids the comradery in the great profession of funeral service.
Mr. A. Eugene Grier, Jr. was affiliated with many civic, religious and social organizations prior to health complications. He was a member of Grier Heights Presbyterian Church, Grier Heights Masonic Lodge No. 752, past member and founder of the Ambassadors Club, past Board of Directors of the Big Brothers Association of Charlotte, North Carolina, past member of Grier Heights Development Corporation, Second Ward / West Charlotte Men’s Breakfast Club and several other community outreach programs. Gene was a founding member of Roads Inc., a funeral profession group of Funeral Home owners nationally.
Gene enjoyed fishing, whether at a lake or ocean, he would make the best of a day near the water. He and a group of family and friends would take their kids boating every Sunday afternoon in the summer time. One thing was for sure, that if you were with Gene on a weekend trip, it would be wise to take a suitcase full of clothes as you never knew when you would return back to Charlotte. From FAMU Homecomings, to beach trips, if you were in Mr. Grier’s presence, he made sure you had the best time of your life. As long as you respected him, he respected you as a person. These are the attributes that all should instill to their next generations to follow.
Arthur E. Grier Jr. leaves to carry out his legacy onto sons, A. E. Grier III “Artie”, Allen E. Grier; granddaughters Sheqwena Watson Crenshaw and Tanisha Walker; great-grandchildren Zjbre’ A. Carter, Jakayla A. Watson, Huston Walker, Hazina Rashid; great-great granddaughter D’Ayla A. Watson; his entire staff at A. E. Grier & Sons and numerous friends whom he touched dearly.