Wayne Christopher “Chris” Umfleet, 52, passed away unexpectedly on November 25, 2023 at his home in Bath, North Carolina. An “Air Force baby,” he was born on March 5, 1971 in Lahr, Germany, to Wayne and Patricia Umfleet of Greensboro, North Carolina. Chris attended Ben L. Smith High School in Greensboro, graduating in 1989 before entering the United States Air Force. A pirate through and through, Chris graduated from East Carolina University with degrees in history and religious studies in 2000.
Chris married the love of his life, LeRae Sikes, on August 15, 1992, and they spent over 30 years together to raise their children, make many friends, travel, and share their love of history. Chris was especially proud of his sons, Alexander and Fletcher. He would take every opportunity to share their successes whether it was a new piece of music from Alex, or a new design for a piece of equipment by Fletcher.
A teacher/storyteller at his core, Chris enjoyed educating students of all ages about all types of history, from pirates to American military history, to beer-making, Vikings and ancient Celts, his ancestry. Chris was quick to make friends, and he loved his friends like family, working to make everyone feel valued. A patriotic American through and through, Chris was proud of his military service and that of his father and grandfathers, tracing his lineage of American military activities with his Aunt Donna Farlow “all the way back.” Chris was involved in many civic and non-profit organizations over the years, pulling a plane for cancer research, volunteering with the Boy Scouts for many years, active in living history demonstrations, participating in Masonic fundraising, assisting with the North Carolina Pork Council as a BBQ judge, and, most recently, serving as a member of the Scottish American Military Society.
Chris leaves behind the legacy of a large circle of friends and family who will celebrate his life. His wife LeRae Sikes Umfleet, sons Alexander Chadwick Umfleet (Elia Feldman) of Los Angeles, CA and Fletcher Harrison Umfleet of the home; mother, Patricia Snow Umfleet; mother-in-law Donna Ormond Sikes; brother Jason Umfleet (Christy) of Greensboro and nephew Connor. All of his friends and family know of his outsized love for strays of all types—especially animals–most recently helping foster a set of newborn raccoons to adulthood and release. He loved his cats Ethan and Floof, and generations of purring and pawing past favorites, including Baron, Belvedere, Little Kitty, Dottie, and Tabitha.
Services to honor and remember Chris’ life will take place 11:00am , Friday December 1, 2023 at the Trinity Episcopal Church, Chocowinity, NC. A visitation will be held on the evening of November 30, 2023 from 6:00pm until 8:00pm at Joseph B. Paul, Jr. Funeral Service.
In Lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to either of the following charities that were all close to Chris’ heart by clicking on the links below
During this difficult time, Joseph B. Paul Jr. Funeral Service of Washington, NC is honored to serve the Umfleet family.
Trinity Episcopal Church - Directions
4500 US Highway 264 E. Washington, NC
- Thursday, November 30, 2023
6:00 PM - 8:00 PM