CANTON — Paul Leon Hamlett, 94, of Canton, passed away May 11, 2019, at Emerald Ridge in Asheville.

Paul was born in Canton on Aug. 26, 1924, to the late Henry G. Hamlett and the late Fannie L. Crawford Hamlett. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his loving wife of 72 years, Helen Christopher Hamlett. He was also preceded in death by brothers, James Hamlett, and Oliver “Bub” Hamlett; and a sister, Alma Holcombe.

Surviving are a son, David Hamlett (Alana) of Weaverville; grandchildren, Amy Peterson (Jeff) of Weaverville, and Heath Hamlett (Chris) of Huntersville; a great-grandson, Andrew Peterson of Fletcher; a step-great-granddaughter, Bayleigh Mann of Huntersville; and many cousins, nieces and nephews.

Mr. Hamlett was a member of Canton Free Will Baptist Church where he helped his wife, Helen, with the Crusaders for Christ. He always supported community events, church events, and school fundraisers. Paul was employed by Champion International Paper Company for 41 years until his retirement in 1988.

A veteran of World War II, Mr. Hamlett served with the 2nd Army, Company A 505 Military Police Battalion. He served in the European theatre of combat and participated in the Central Europe, Ardennes, and Rhineland Campaigns. Paul had been a member of the American Legion Post #61 in Canton. The patriotism Mr. Hamlett learned in the Army never left him, as family and friends will attest.

The family wishes to acknowledge the kindness, compassion, and care provided by the Emerald Ridge Care Center.

A funeral service was held Wednesday, May 15 in the chapel of Crawford/Ray Funeral Home and Cremation Service. Pastor Larry Collins officiated. The family received friends at the funeral home one hour prior to the service. Burial followed at Crawford/Ray Memorial Gardens in Clyde with military honors.

Memorial gifts in honor and remembrance of Mr. Hamlett may be made to Canton Free Will Baptist Church, PO Box 1346, Canton, NC 28716.

Crawford / Ray Funeral Home and Cremation Service is honored to be caring for the Hamlett family and words of comfort may be shared at

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