MYRTLE BEACH—Gene Anderson, 83, husband of Geri E. Anderson, passed away Oct. 1 at Embrace Hospice House of Myrtle Beach following an extended illness.

 Born Dec. 2, 1935, in Conway, he was the son of the late Levi Owen Anderson and the late Maude Jane Chestnut Anderson.

Gene grew up in Conway and attended Conway High School and Coastal Carolina College. He earned his bachelor’s degree with honors in English from Campbell University and a master’s degree in higher education administration from Appalachian State University. 

He was a communications supervisor for four years in the U.S. Navy and held the same position from 1956 to 1960 in the U.S. Air Force Reserve. Mr. Anderson became director for admissions at USC Coastal Carolina College in 1970. He developed a team-taught course called “The History of Horry County,” which was popular in the community. As a member of the Horry County Higher Education Commission from 1989 to 1991, Mr. Anderson played a role in Coastal Carolina’s breaking away from the University of South Carolina by making the motion to seek independence. He served on the first Board of Trustees of the newly-formed university; he was named trustee emeritus following his term. Mr. Anderson was named an honorary founder of Coastal Carolina University in 2009. 

For 27 years, Mr. Anderson was a restaurateur and owned Aunt Maude’s Country Kitchen, Aunt Maude’s Seafood and Beef and New Town Cafe. Active in civic affairs, he is a former president of the Myrtle Beach Rotary Club and the Horry County Historical Society. He is a graduate of Leadership South Carolina. 

Other boards on which he served include the South Carolina Hall of Fame, S.C. Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce, S.C. Baptist Courier newspaper, among others. Mr. Anderson has received commendations and honors from the Rotary International, the S.C. House of Representatives, American Cancer Society, S.C. March of Dimes, American Heart Association and Grand Stand Citizens for Life. Mr. Anderson was a founding member of the Myrtle Beach Community Church and a life-long member and former deacon of Ocean View Baptist Church.

Survivors include his loving wife of 57 years, Geri Elvis Anderson; son Greg Anderson and wife Joannie of Florida; grandchildren Michelle Hopper, Andrew Gregory Anderson (Kacie) and Lauren Hope Anderson; great-grandson Parker Owen Anderson and brother William F. “Cudgie” Anderson. 

Gene was predeceased by his great-granddaughter, Kennedy Drew Anderson and seven brothers and three sisters.

 Funeral services were held Oct. 4 at Ocean View Baptist Church, officiated by Pastor Terry Scalzitti and Pastor Greg Anderson. Burial followed at Hillcrest Cemetery. 

Memorial donations may be made to Ocean View Baptist Church, 7300 N. Kings Highway, Myrtle Beach, SC 29572.

Goldfinch Funeral Home, Conway Chapel, was in charge of arrangements.

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