Cover photo for Stuart Watson Epperson, Sr.'s Obituary
Stuart Watson Epperson, Sr. Profile Photo

Stuart Watson Epperson, Sr.

November 2, 1936 — July 17, 2023

Winston Salem

Stuart Watson Epperson, Sr.

 

Stuart Watson Epperson, Sr. or "Big Stu" has fought the good fight, finished his race and is now in the Presence of Jesus, the One he loved, served and told everyone about. Stuart Epperson was Chairman and co-founder of Salem Media Group, a Christian broadcasting company with over 100 radio stations including 67 stations in all of the top 25 markets. Salem also  operates SRN News which has over 2,700 Affiliates. Salem became a publicly traded company in 1999 and is listed on NASDAQ. Stuart served as Chairman since founding the company in the 1980's with brother-in-law, Edward Atsinger. He has been involved in broadcasting since he was 7 years old when his late brother Ralph Epperson built a radio station in the home farm house in Ararat, VA, in 1943. He loved hearing testimonies of hundreds of listeners whose lives have been changed by the Power of the Gospel heard over the air. Stuart worked in all areas of broadcasting, even as a disc jockey. He built his first radio station in 1961 in Roanoke, VA, and soon after, he built WKBX, Winston-Salem, and WRBX. Chapel Hill. He was inducted into the North Carolina Broadcasters Hall of Fame in 2015. In 2005, Stu was named by Time Magazine one of The 25 Most Influential Evangelicals in America. In 2004, Stu was honored as the American Free Enterprise Medalist, by Palm Beach Atlantic University. He was the Republican nominee for U.S. Congress 1984 and 1986 for the North Carolina 5th District. Stuart was deeply involved in helping at-risk kids and the homeless in Winston-Salem, NC, Jacksonville, FL and other cities. He was one of the founders of the Winston-Salem Rescue Mission. He was the founder of Salem Pregnancy Support Center, One Kid At A Time - a mentoring program and the Christian Association of Youth Mentoring, a national effort to find mentors for at-risk kids. He also started Kidz Xtreme, an inter-city Christian Youth Program focusing on Section 8 Housing, as well as the Promise Farm in Ararat, VA., a wonderful ministry to our wounded warriors and active duty families. He just celebrated 60 years of marriage to Nancy Atsinger Epperson, the love of his life. Stu was born and grew up on a small tobacco farm in Patrick County, Virginia. Nancy was born in Honolulu, Hawaii and grew up in Southern California after her family was evacuated following the attack on Pearl Harbor. They met at Bob Jones University. Stu is survived by his wife Nancy A. Epperson, his 4 children; Kristine Pringle (Doug). Stuart Epperson, Jr. (Julie), Karen DeNeui (Todd), Kathryn Fonville (John), 24  grandchildren and 1 great grandchild (plus 2 on the way). Stuart is also survived by his sister Mary  Lee King. His favorite verse is Romans 8:1 "There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus." Celebration of his life will be Friday, July 21 at 3:00 PM at Calvary Baptist Church on Peace haven Road in Winston-Salem, NC. The family would be honored to receive guests at 1:00 PM. There will also be a viewing and graveside celebration  on Saturday, July 22nd at 10:30 AM  at Unity Presbyterian Church in Ararat, VA. In lieu of Flowers, gifts may be made to Delmarva Educational Association, a non-profit outreach started by Big Stu to continue supporting his many ministry passions. The mailing address is: 7235 Bentley Road, Jacksonville, FL 32256 or online: www.thepromisefarm.com

 

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Past Services

Visitation

Friday, July 21, 2023

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Funeral Service

Friday, July 21, 2023

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Visitation

Saturday, July 22, 2023

10:30 - 11:00 am (Eastern time)

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Funeral Service

Saturday, July 22, 2023

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Eastern time)

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