Edward Purnell Drudge, Jr of North Topsail Beach, NC peacefully passed away at the age of 81 on Thursday October 29, 2020 at Lower Cape Fear LifeCare.
Born in King & Queen County VA on April 4, 1939 he was the son of the late Edward Purnell Drudge, Sr and Robinette Ellen Kemp Drudge.
Surviving are his high school sweetheart and wife of 60 years Rebecca Anne Wyatt Drudge; son Kevin Scott Drudge and fiancé Chelsea Ann Renno and grandchildren Drake and Olivia Drudge of Concord, NC; and son Sean Christopher Drudge and grandchildren Noah & Sadie Drudge of Hermitage, TN. Sister Nancy D. Fawcett and husband Raymond of Farmville, VA and brother-in-law Alvah L. Wyatt and wife Bonita of Richmond, VA also survive.
Ed Drudge was a 1957 graduate of West Point High School in VA and went on to earn his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Virginia Polytechnical Institute in 1961.
He was a highly accomplished self-made businessman. Growing up in a small farm town in Shacklefords, VA he grew up working hard at an early age delivering the Richmond News Leader and loved selling “The Grit” magazine on weekends as well as working on his parents farm. After graduating from Virginia Tech, he was a top route salesperson for Proctor & Gamble for many years. Following P&G, he entered the temporary staffing industry and worked his way up from branch manager to VP of US Operations with Manpower and then Senior VP of Adia Services. He then founded and was Chairman and CEO of Personnel Group of America, his own IT and commercial staffing company, which he grew to over 65 staffing companies and was publicly traded on the NYSE. He retired from PGA in 2000.
Ed Drudge spent plenty of time away from his work as well and enjoyed traveling to Canada, Europe, the Caribbean, Bermuda and all across the United States. He thoroughly enjoyed quality time with his family, and especially spending time at North Topsail Beach, which after retirement became home. They hosted many events and people at their home and loved cooking and sharing gourmet meals and great wines and time with friends and family.
Ed and Becky also devoted their lives together to serving god and serving in the communities wherever they lived. He had a gifted voice and a passion for singing. In fact, he was in a quartet “The Tech Tones” in college and loved singing in the choir at church. He spent countless hours leading youth groups and youth choirs, leading bible study groups, and most recently leading the capital stewardship campaign and serving as a personal advisor to the pastor at his church, Faith Harbor United Methodist Church. He had a servant’s heart and personally donated to help complete the building of a fellowship hall for his childhood church. He and Becky also ran the Snead’s Ferry Food Bank for the church for over 10 years. He was truly a blessed and giving man as well as a loving and devoted husband, father, and grandfather who will be deeply missed.
A celebration of life will be held at Faith Harbor United Methodist Church 14201 NC-50 in Surf City, NC 11:00 AM Saturday, May 22,2021. Pastor David King will officiate the service.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in his memory to Faith Harbor United Methodist Church – Building Fund, 14201 NC-50, Surf City, NC 28445 or Lower Cape Fear Hospice, 1414 Physicians Drive, Wilmington, NC 28401.
The family asks that if you find it in your heart, that you please take the time to write about him. Feel free to share a story or a memory of him so that we can all celebrate his wonderful life together. You can share your thoughts with the family by clicking on the “Condolence Tab” below.
Wilmington Funeral & Cremation 16076 US Hwy 17 N Hampstead, NC 28443. 910.821.1713