Obituary for Larry Lee Upole Jr. of Southern Pines

Larry Lee “Sonny” Upole Jr., 67, of Southern Pines went to be with the Lord on July 28, 2022. He was preceded in death by his father Larry Upole, Sr. He is survived by wife, Ellen, daughter Sarah McElroy (Josh), sons Daniel Higgins (Amy) and Chris Higgins (Taryn), grandchildren Elizabeth and Jonah Higgins, mother Linda Upole, sister Audrey Chacon (Vic), and many beloved aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews.

Sonny was born March 13, 1955, in Southern Pines, NC. He graduated with the first full class from Pinecrest High School in 1973. He attended NC State, where he studied Civil Engineering, and he remained a devoted fan of the Wolfpack for life. He began his career with the NCDOT in 1976 in Aberdeen as an Engineering Aide. He held multiple positions within multiple divisions, and became a licensed Professional Engineer for North Carolina. He retired from the NCDOT in 2013 as the Division 6 Bridge Program Manager, after serving for 37 years. He continued doing engineering work until his passing. He leaves behind many cherished friends and coworkers.

Sonny was an avid outdoorsman, where he enjoyed fishing, hunting, and even gardening. In his younger days, he was also a champion powerlifter, a black belt in martial arts, and active sports enthusiast. He loved music and singing, and was a member of numerous groups throughout his lifetime. Sonny personified his name, as he radiated sunshine and kindness to those around him. He was a true servant to God and his fellow man.

The viewing will be held at 2:00 pm Sunday, July 31, at Culdee Presbyterian Church, followed by the funeral service at 3:00 pm and burial at Culdee Cemetery. Reception to follow. The service will also be live streamed on Boles Funeral Home & Crematory’s Facebook page.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Sonny’s name to Culdee Presbyterian Church’s Grand Piano Fund.

Online condolences may be made at    

Services entrusted to Boles Funeral Home of Southern Pines.   

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