Obituary for Eleanor Irvin of Southern Pines

Eleanor “Jean” Irvin, age 72, a lifelong resident of Southern Pines, died peacefully at her home Friday, November 26, 2021. Born November 7, 1949, she was the daughter of the late James Luther and Eleanor Adams Irvin. 

Jean graduated from Southern Pines High School in 1968 and from East Carolina University in 1972, majoring in social work. She followed her passion for helping people by working as head of social work with Moore Memorial Hospital, now known as FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital. Deservingly, she was proudest of her work with hospice. Jean was instrumental in the organizing and implementation of hospice in Moore County- now known as FirstHealth Hospice; serving on the inaugural volunteer committee as the first hospice Social Worker. She continued to volunteer for many years with hospice, outside of her regular hospital social work job, helping to bring comfort and dignity to those dying and their families. Upon her retirement, she re-ignited her hobby of sewing full time and opened The Whole Nine Yards, a fabric, sewing and quilt shop with her best friend since childhood, Susan Trudell. 

Jean’s compassion for caring for others further showed itself when she devoted herself to the full time care of her parents and remained their constant companion and caretaker until their passing. Her love of animals was incredible and she will be desperately missed by her loving adopted fur babies, poodle Zoe and cat Izzy. 

She is survived by her brother James “Jim” Irvin and husband Steven Graves of Southern Pines and a very special cousin Scott Bowers, also of Southern Pines, and two cousins Tom Edwards of Utah and Jeff Edwards of Oregon, their families, her best friend Susan Trudell and her loving friends, too many to mention. She will be missed by all who knew her. 

A graveside service will be 11:00 AM Saturday, December 4, at Pinelawn Memorial Park with the Rev. Karen Allen officiating. 

Jean and her caretakers were blessed to have Hospice as support during her last days and because of Jean’s passion for hospice and her hard work in bringing it to fruition, in lieu of flowers, Jean would be pleased if you donate to FirstHealth Hospice in her honor.

Services entrusted to Powell Funeral Home. Online condolences may be made at

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