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Jonathan R. ‘Reed’ Whitesell, 64, founded the Road House Blues Band

Jonathan R. 'Reed' Whitesell
Jonathan R. ‘Reed’ Whitesell

CAROLINA BEACH — Jonathan R. “Reed” Whitesell, 64, died Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018, at Lower Cape Fear Hospice & LifeCare Center.

Reed was born Feb. 10, 1953, in Albany, N.Y., son of Katherine Dugan Whitesell and the late Jonathan Reed Whitesell. Two of his brothers, Jim Whitesell and Stephen Whitesell, preceded him in death.

Reed grew up all over the United States. One of his many childhood accomplishments was achieving the rank of Eagle Scout at the young age of 14. After graduating from The Lawrenceville School in New Jersey, Reed attended Carleton College in Minnesota where he earned his B.A. He moved back to Wilmington in the mid 1970’s and briefly worked at the North Carolina Underwater Archaeology Center at Fort Fisher. He then joined Talbert, Cox, and Associates where he made lifelong friends with whom he shared many unforgettable Friday night cookouts. After working for Rick Catlin Engineers and Scientists, he settled at Holland Consulting Planners. Whether it was writing proposals or driving all over eastern North Carolina (where he found some amazing barbecue places), Reed was extremely dedicated to his job and knows everyone at HCP will continue to hold down the fort for him.

Affectionately known as “Mr. Reed” by all who loved him, he was an amazing cook; his barbecued ribs were famous (he loved the charcoal grill). He was a frequent contender in many local chili cook-offs, as well. He was a talented musician; he played the guitar, harmonica and sang. He founded the Road House Blues Band many years ago. Whether it was The Pony Express, Burrito Bob’s, Katy’s, The Ice House, or Kefi’s, they always kept the house rocking. He also loved to play the acoustic guitar and played many gigs on The Island in recent years with his fellow Tide Traveler.

Reed was a dedicated, die-hard Minnesota Vikings fan who bled purple and gold. He never missed a game on T.V. and enjoyed many live games with his siblings.

Reed was a true friend to many and was always willing to lend a helping hand to anyone who needed it. Once you met “Mr. Reed,” you never forgot him.

In addition to his mother, he is survived by his two sons, Jim (Rasika) Whitesell and Joe Whitesell, both of Wilmington; one grandson, Rowan Whitesell of Wilmington; sister, Kathy (Ed) Walser of Manassas, Va.; brothers, Davis (Heather) Whitesell of Eliot, Maine; sister, Beth (Jack) Andruszkiewicz of Tucson, Ariz., Andrew Whitesell of Round Pond, Maine, and Dan Whitesell of Morehead City; sister-in-law, Marisa Whitesell of Chapel Hill; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.

A funeral service will be held at 1 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 13, at Andrews Valley Chapel with the Rev. Bob Kus officiating. Prior to the service, the family will receive friends from noon until the service hour. Interment will follow in Oleander Memorial Gardens.

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