Beaufort News

Former Beaufort County treasurer, councilman integral to banking industry dies at 91

Eldrid Moody in May 1983
Eldrid Moody in May 1983 The Island Packet

A former Beaufort County councilman and treasurer who played a key role in developing the county's banking industry on both sides of the Broad River died last week.

Elrid Moody, 91, died at Helena Place in Port Royal on Friday.

Moody served as Beaufort County treasurer from 1980 to 1990 and as a county councilman in 1991 and 1992, but he was instrumental in opening both the Bank of Beaufort and Hilton Head National Bank in the 1960s and 1970s.

Born in Dillon, SC, on Sept. 29, 1924, to the late Aaron and Mattie Butler Moody, he spent his childhood and early adult life in Dillon County.

Moody graduated from Lake View High School and the Citadel before joining the US Army Air Force, serving in the 8th Air Force as an engineer gunner on a B-17 bomber during World War II.

He returned home after the war and began working with the SC National Bank in Charleston in 1949. Moody would transfer to the SC National Bank in Dillon soon afterward, serving as the branch's manager for 10 years.

Moody organized the Bank of Beaufort in 1960 after relocating to Beaufort County, serving as president and chief executive officer of the bank for 14 years. In 1964, he moved to Hilton Head Island, opening what would become the Hilton Head National Bank. He served as that bank's president for five years.

In 1980, Moody was tapped to fill an unexpired term as the Beaufort County treasurer. He was re-elected twice and retired from the position in 1990, but quickly joined the Beaufort County council, serving as a councilman in 1991 and 1992.

Beaufort County Council held a moment of silence for Moody at their meeting Monday.

Councilman Bill McBride, who served as council chairman during part of Moody's tenure as treasurer and was vice-chairman during Moody's stint on county council, remembered Moody as "very, very conservative fiscally" as treasurer.

"He was very dedicated as a county councilperson, very detailed," McBride said.

"He was treasurer for some years, so he immediately came in and questioned the cost of everything the council purchased," McBride recalled with a laugh.

Skeet Von Harten, who was county council chairman while Moody was a councilman, said he also knew Moody from his many different roles in the county.

"I knew Elrid as a banker, as county treasurer, as a county councilman, and as a water festival commodore," Von Harten said. "He was always professional, highly competent, and an achiever. His contributions to Beaufort County, and to his fellow citizens, will be long remembered. I could always count on Elrid for his candid opinion, and full support."

In addition to being the 14th Beaufort Water Festival commodore in 1964, Moody was active in a number of organizations -- as president of the Beaufort County Chamber of Commerce and the Beaufort Rotary Club, and serving on the SC Ethics Commission, the SC State Development Board and the Small Business Advisory Committee -- and was the recipient of many community awards.

Moody was also active at Port Royal Baptist Church and Hilton Head First Baptist Church after transferring from First Baptist Church in Dillon.

Moody was predeceased by his first wife, Evelyn Biggs Moody.

He is survived by his second wife, Kay Lumpkin Moody, sons Richard and Dwidght Moody of Beaufort and Charlotte respectively, four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Funeral services were held Tuesday.

Memorials may be made to

First Baptist Church, 400 North 4th Avenue, Dillon, 29536,

or to

Port Royal Baptist Church, 707 Pinckney Boulevard, Beaufort, SC, 29935.

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