Ervin Brantley Oliver
We share with our family and friends our deepest sorrows as we mourn the loss on March 24th of our beloved father, Ervin Brantley “Brant,” Oliver, a humble man with a generous heart, kind spirit, loving countenance, and a “can do” deliberate work ethic. He left the family farm in Creswell, North Carolina, to join the ranks of thousands who were assigned to the European theatre during World War II. In France, he served in the U.S. Army Air Corp and helped repel the German assault on the Allied Forces in the Battle of the Bulge.
Upon his return, he married the love-of-his-life, his soulmate, his Rock of 70 years, Rosalind Ainsley Davenport, in Washington, D.C., on March 17, 1946. They moved to Portsmouth, Virginia. Subsequently, he began a thirty-one-year career with the Norfolk Naval Air Station—Naval Air Reworks Facility (NNAS-NARF) and welcomed a daughter, Ginny Lynn (Ron Sorrell), and a son, Ervin Brantley “Buddy,” Jr. (Della Gibbs). His grandchildren, Jason S. Oliver, Ellen Oliver Dickerson (Ben), and Michael R. Sorrell, Jr. (Paris Ratliff), remember a most generous, exemplary man who “Lived Love” preaching the Gospel at all times through his actions and words. His family remembers smiles of joy upon seeing and holding his precious great-grandchildren, Ainsley Rose and Bridger Brantley Dickerson.
Beginning as an apprentice with NNAS, he retired as a foreman with a long resume of awards that recognized his adaptations and innovations that helped improve the work, performance, and morale of workers in his charge. Much of his time was devoted to repairing Navy jets and prop planes used in Vietnam and directing the training of new apprentices, which included the first women to attend apprentice school. Always a teacher, he assumed his responsibilities with integrity, distinction, humility, and honor.
Brant was active in Simonsdale Presbyterian Church for fifty years before moving to Virginia Beach, where he became a charter member of Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church of Princess Anne. His life was grounded in faith and service to his Lord; so much so, he was often affectionately referred to as “Saint.”
His parents, Carnie and Bonnie Oliver, raised a family of four, Brant being the oldest. His beloved siblings who survive him are Margie Adams (Allen—deceased), Maurice Oliver (Joyce), and June Toppin (Earl). Connections to extended family and friends are many; his family expresses sincerest appreciation for visits, calls, cards, and prayers. Deepest gratitude extends further to Dr. Susan E. Ring and the Caregivers of Excellent Care II for their skilled, loving, and kind actions to provide the best care and well-being with dignity and respect for our Father.
A Celebration-of-His Life and Witness to the Resurrection service will be led by the Reverend Jeremy Jinkins on Sunday, April 10th at 3:00 PM at Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church of Princess Anne, 2228 Princess Anne Road, Virginia Beach, VA 23456. A reception and time with the family will follow. Honoring his wishes, in lieu of flowers the family kindly suggests memorial donations to: The Building Funds of Grace Covenant Presbyterian of Princess Anne or Simonsdale Presbyterian Church, 5016 Vick Street, Portsmouth, VA 23701.
“The righteous man walks in his integrity; his children are blessed after him.” Proverbs 20:7
Thank you, Dad. We love you.
Ginny and Buddy
Please share a memory with the family via the Condolences & Tributes tab.
Thank you, Brant, for your service to our country.Send FlowersPlant a Tree