In Memory

Russell Wilburn 'Rusty' Beard (Tuscola Tigers) - Class Of 1936

Russell Wilburn 'Rusty' Beard

September 1, 1919 - February 28, 2016


Russell Wilburn Beard, 96, of New Bern, formerly of Carteret County, passed away Sunday, Feb. 28, 2016, at CarolinaEast Medical Center in New Bern.

His service will be held at a later date at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va.

Russell was born in Karnes City, Texas, on Sept. 1, 1919, to a struggling tenement farmer, the late Wesley Elijah Beard and his wife, Bertie Jordan Beard. Motivated by a life of hard labor and deprivation, as well as a pledge to one day move his parents and siblings off the farm, Russell worked his way through college, attained a bachelor’s degree in biology from Sul Ross University in Alpine, Texas, and in 1941 married the love of his life, Mildred Jeanne Crawford. In 1943, he was commissioned at Harvard Business School into the U.S. Army Air Corps and completed his military service in 1946.

Following his military service, he and Jeanne settled in the Washington, D.C., area. His civilian career began at the Veterans Administration led him to the Navy Polaris program as principal analyst on the very first undersea launch of a ballistic missile and ended with retirement as director of program management for the Advanced Research Projects Agency, more recently known as DARPA. As a measure of the man he became, his first act when he had saved enough money was to move his parents off the farm and into their own home.

Russ and Jeanne retired to Emerald Isle and later to Pine Knoll Shores.  He was active in civic affairs as a member of the County Planning Commission, president of the Pine Knoll Association and president of Bogue Banks Country Club. Always a religious and church-going man, he was an active and productive member of First Presbyterian Church in Morehead City, serving in several capacities.

Russell is survived by his loving wife of 75 years, Jeanne; five daughters, Shirley Bolish of Fairfax Station, Va., Lorraine DiJoseph of New Bern, Barbara Snow of Boise, Idaho, Sandra Beard of Emerald Isle and Mary Sinkay of Cedar Edge, Colo.; 11 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the First Presbyterian Church in Morehead City or to the American Red Cross.

Arrangements are by Cotten Funeral Home of New Bern. Online condolences may be made to the family at

In Memory of

Jeanne Crawford Beard

September 9, 1922 - April 23, 2016


Arrangements under the direction of Cotten Funeral Home, New Bern, NC.

Couple celebrates 75 years

Russell and Jeanne Beard of New Bern celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary on Feb. 16, 2016, with a small family gathering at their home.

 Posted Feb. 19, 2016 at 6:35 PM

Russell and Jeanne Beard of New Bern celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary on Feb. 16, 2016, with a small family gathering at their home.

They have five daughters, Shirley Bolish and her husband, John, of Fairfax Station, Va., Lorraine DiJoseph and her husband, John, of New Bern, Sandra Beard of Wilmington, Barbara Snow and her husband, Brad, of Boise, Idaho and Mary Sinkay of Cedaredge, Colo.

They have 11 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren.

Jeanne is the former Mildred Jeanne Crawford of Dallas, Texas.

The couple met at Sul Ross State Teachers College in Alpine, Texas.

Russ is retired from the Department of Defence’s Department of Advanced Research Projects Agency and Jeanne is a retired homemaker.

They were married in Washington, D.C. on Feb. 16, 1941 and lived in the northern Virginia area until they retired to Emerald Isle and, later, Pine Knoll Shores. They have lived in New Bern for nearly 6 years.