Wayne Christopher Umfleet

March 5, 1971 - November 25, 2023
Wayne Christopher Umfleet

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Wayne Christopher “Chris” Umfleet, 52, passed away unexpectedly on November 25, 2023 at his home in Bath, North Carolina. An “Air Force baby,” he was born on March 5, 1971 in Lahr, Germany, to Wayne and Patricia Umfleet of Greensboro, North Carolina. Chris attended Ben L. Smith High School in Greensboro, graduating in 1989 before entering the United States Air Force. A pirate through and through, Chris graduated from East Carolina University with degrees in history and religious studies in 2000.

Chris married the love of his life, LeRae Sikes, on August 15, 1992, and they spent over 30 years together to raise their children, make many friends, travel, and share their love of history. Chris was especially proud of his sons, Alexander and Fletcher. He would take every opportunity to share their successes whether it was a new piece of music from Alex, or a new design for a piece of equipment by Fletcher.

A teacher/storyteller at his core, Chris enjoyed educating students of all ages about all types of history, from pirates to American military history, to beer-making, Vikings and ancient Celts, his ancestry. Chris was quick to make friends, and he loved his friends like family, working to make everyone feel valued. A patriotic American through and through, Chris was proud of his military service and that of his father and grandfathers, tracing his lineage of American military activities with his Aunt Donna Farlow “all the way back.” Chris was involved in many civic and non-profit organizations over the years, pulling a plane for cancer research, volunteering with the Boy Scouts for many years, active in living history demonstrations, participating in Masonic fundraising, assisting with the North Carolina Pork Council as a BBQ judge, and, most recently, serving as a member of the Scottish American Military Society.

Chris leaves behind the legacy of a large circle of friends and family who will celebrate his life. His wife LeRae Sikes Umfleet, sons Alexander Chadwick Umfleet (Elia Feldman) of Los Angeles, CA and Fletcher Harrison Umfleet of the home; mother, Patricia Snow Umfleet; mother-in-law Donna Ormond Sikes; brother Jason Umfleet (Christy) of Greensboro and nephew Connor. All of his friends and family know of his outsized love for strays of all types—especially animals--most recently helping foster a set of newborn raccoons to adulthood and release. He loved his cats Ethan and Floof, and generations of purring and pawing past favorites, including Baron, Belvedere, Little Kitty, Dottie, and Tabitha.

Services to honor and remember Chris’ life will take place 11:00am , Friday December 1, 2023 at the Trinity Episcopal Church, Chocowinity, NC. A visitation will be held on the evening of November 30, 2023 from 6:00pm until 8:00pm at Joseph B. Paul, Jr. Funeral Service.

In Lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to either of the following charities that were all close to Chris' heart by clicking on the links below

ALS Association

Paws and Love

Trinity Episcopal Church

During this difficult time, Joseph B. Paul Jr. Funeral Service of Washington, NC is honored to serve the Umfleet family.


Tribute Video


Memorial Service

Friday, December 1, 2023
11:00 AM

Trinity Episcopal Church - Directions
182 NC-33
Chocowinity, NC 27817
(252) 946-9958

Visiting Hours

Joseph B. Paul Jr. Funeral Service - Directions
4500 US Highway 264 E. Washington, NC
  • Thursday, November 30, 2023
  • 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM

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  • December 06, 2023
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  • December 01, 2023
    Karl L. McKinnon says:
    LeRae I am so sorry for your loss. May the wonderful memories of Chris and your journey together flood your mind and heart to ease the loss and grief.

  • November 30, 2023
    Karen Ipock lit a candle:
    Lit since November 30, 2023 at 11:47:03 PM

  • November 30, 2023
    Michelle B Britt lit a candle:
    Lit since November 30, 2023 at 11:54:36 PM

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  • November 29, 2023
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    Lit since November 30, 2023 at 11:58:40 AM

  • November 29, 2023
    Kevin Kreiner says:
    My condolences on your loss. It has been several years since I last saw Chris, but I fondly remember his enthusiasm and passion for history along with his good natured personality. I am grateful for the opportunity to have known him and to call him a friend. He will be missed by all who knew him.

  • November 29, 2023
    Karl Walker lit a candle:
    Lit since November 30, 2023 at 11:35:19 AM

  • November 29, 2023
    Karl Walker says:
    I haven’t seen Chris in a long time but I will never forget what a friend he was to myself and others and cared more than most. Many prayers to all his family and those close to him. I know he will be missed.

  • November 29, 2023
    Luette Cuthrell says:
    LeRae, I’m so sorry for the loss of your husband at such a young age. He had so much to offer his community and his family. God bless you and your family during this difficult time.

  • November 29, 2023
    Jade Harris says:
    Lerae, I am so sorry to learn of you and your boy's loss. I know you will have many sad times as you go about living your life without him. Remember all the good times that the two of you shared while watching your boys growing and becoming your proudest products! They will be a source of pride to you for the rest of your life. You and Chris had a wonderful marriage to be proud of. His memory will help sustain the rest of your life.

  • November 29, 2023
    Leisa Greathouse says:
    LeRae, Jim and I are so very sorry. I can't recall a time when we were together that you didn't speak of Chris and your sons with glowing affection. Hoping you find a small corner of peace in the midst of your sorrow.

  • November 29, 2023
    Kevin Tirpak says:
    I had the privilege of working with Chris professionally over the past couple of years. He was always dependable and willing to move mountains to help get things done. This news was shocking, and hugely disappointing. He will be greatly missed...

  • November 29, 2023
    Pamela Throckmorton says:
    Jason, Christy & Connor, My sincere heartfelt condolences to you & your family. My thoughts & prayers are with you all! 🙏🏻💗

  • November 28, 2023
    Sharon Moore lit a candle:
    Lit since November 29, 2023 at 11:26:13 AM

  • November 28, 2023
    Susan Dangerfield says:
    Words escape me to say he will be missed as an understatement I feel your pain. Courage, & much love

  • November 28, 2023
    Andrea Schierkolk lit a candle:
    Lit since November 29, 2023 at 11:16:56 AM

  • November 28, 2023
    Julie Rosene says:
    I remember him during the T ball games, he was a proud Daddy. Thinking of you! The Rosenes

  • November 28, 2023
    Penne Sandbeck lit a candle:
    Lit since November 28, 2023 at 11:38:14 PM

  • November 28, 2023
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    Lit since November 28, 2023 at 11:22:20 PM

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    Lit since November 28, 2023 at 11:52:40 PM

  • November 28, 2023
    Rebecca Boyd says:
    Regrets. Deepest sympathy at this time. Be blessed

  • November 28, 2023
    Kimberly Kandros says:
    LeRae, my heart is breaking for you and your boys. I didn't have the honor of knowing Chris for a long time...but my first encounter with him was during our Zoom karaoke parties during the Covid shutdown where he belted out some interesting song choices. Since that time, he never disappointed with his antics and always made us smile. I especially loved watching you both care for the raccoons. This is truly a loss. Sending lots of love to you all.

  • November 28, 2023
    LeRae S Umfleet says:
    Love isn’t something that happens to a person, you know. Love Is a verb. Love is action. Love is the acknowledgement that things will get hard, the butterflies won’t always be there. It is a commitment that even then, when it isn’t easy, you’ll do the work, because they’re worth it.

  • November 28, 2023
    nelma june whiterker says:
    to the family of Chris, I am so sorry for your loss. My prayers are with you all.

  • November 28, 2023
    nelma june whiterker says:
    to the family of Chris, I am so sorry for your loss. May God be with you all. My prayers are with you.

  • November 28, 2023
    Karen Renn lit a candle:
    Lit since November 28, 2023 at 11:56:22 PM

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    Lit since November 28, 2023 at 11:41:41 PM

  • November 28, 2023
    Leigh says:
    My heart aches for you and your family LeRae. I will forever cherish all of the great memories I have of him, especially the intelligent conversations. He had so much knowledge and was not afraid to share it with anyone that wanted to listen. I am glad I listened. I can see him sharing a beer with his pirates and Jimmy Buffet as we speak. Love you!

  • November 27, 2023
    Tammy lit a candle:
    Lit since November 28, 2023 at 11:25:33 AM

  • November 27, 2023
    Beth says:
    I AM SO SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS.HE WAS A GOOD MAN. VERY NICE.HE WILL BE DEARLY MISSED.