Funeral services were arranged for former State Senator Jean Preston, who died on Dec. 10 from complications of a bad fall. She was 77 years old.
Preston's family would receive friends from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 13, at Taylor-Tyson Funeral Service, at NW Third Street in Snow Hill.
Funeral Services would be held at 11 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 14, at the chapel of Taylor-Tyson Funeral Service. Reverend Dr. Stewart LaNeave and Pastor Scott Hardy were scheduled to officiate. Preston's internment would be at the Fairview Cemetery in LaGrange.
A memorial service was scheduled to be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 19, at the Cape Carteret Presbyterian Church, at 100 Yaupon Drive in Cape Carteret. Preston was a member at that church.
Preston suffered a bad fall on Jan. 2, while visiting friends in Connecticut. Family said she passed away on Jan. 10.
Senate President Pro Tempore Phil Berger issued the following statement:
"Jean Preston was a pioneer in the field of special education who dedicated her life to ensuring our children have the brightest future possible ... As a legislator, Sen. Preston worked tirelessly on education reform and on achieving better results for our students. She was legendary in her district for an amazing work ethic and commitment to providing outstanding constituent service. Sen. Preston was a dear friend, and my colleagues and I will miss her greatly."
Governor Pat McCrory also issued a statement on Preston's passing:
"I am deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Jean Preston today. She and I became very good friends over the years and I will miss her. Emerald Isle and all of North Carolina has lost a tremendous leader and committed public servant."
State House Rep. Pat McElraft released this statement:
"We have lost an angel here in North Carolina but God has gained an angel in Heaven. I will miss my good friend, Jean Preston. We were sisters from the beginning of our friendship. Sen. Preston was loved and respected by everyone in the General Assembly and by everyone she ever met. She worked tirelessly not as a politician but as a true public servant. Our hearts are broken with the loss of one of the most gracious ladies that God ever created, Jean Preston. My prayers are with her family."
Preston was the joint Republican caucus leader of the North Carolina General Assembly, representing the state's second district, including constituents in Carteret County. Preston also served as co-chair of the Education/Higher Education and the Appropriations Education/Higher Education Committees.
Preston was originally from Emerald Isle. She served seven terms in the North Carolina House and is in her third term in the State Senate. Norman Sanderson took over her seat after she did not seek re-election.