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Thomas Edward Ipock

October 30, 1945 ~ November 17, 2022 (age 77)


Tommy Ipock passed away peacefully, Thursday, November 17, 2022, surrounded by his wife and children at the North Carolina Veteran’s Home in Kinston.  He was born October 30, 1945, to Thelma Coombs Ipock and Fred Pollock Ipock in Elizabeth City, N.C., but moved to his parent’s hometown of Kinston as an infant due to a life-threating medical condition which required the skilled hands of the locally famous Dr. William Keiter, Sr.

A lifelong Kinston native and 1963 graduate of Grainger High School, Tommy joined the Army in 1964 and served with the Army Security Agency in Korea until 1968.  He returned to Kinston after his tour of duty and met his lovely bride, JoAnn of 53 years at Carlyle’s drive-in in Kinston.  They made their home here while Tommy worked at Kinston Wholesale Grocery at night and attended the Marine Fisheries Program at Lenoir Community College during the day.  Wanting to provide more for his family, he taught himself to drive tractor-trailers and maintain them as well.  In 1976 he successfully bid on and won the first USPS mail contract, a career which lasted for 37 years.  To know him was to know that he loved classic country music and his voice could be heard over the airwaves many days while driving down Hwy 70 calling into the local 97.9 (The Bear) radio station with his requests.  While he loved being on the water, especially flounder-gigging at night in Core Sound, his greatest joy was found in the presence of his children and grandchildren.  He was a hard-working, self-made man who never met a stranger.  He had an infectious smile and was generous beyond measure.  As childhood friend and local businessman Lloyd Moody said, “Tommy was a Kinston icon.  He was one of the success stories to come out of our beloved East Kinston neighborhood.  Tommy was a savvy, hard-working businessman.  Every conversation I ever had with Tommy included stories of his children, Thomas, and Teresa, all told with a big smile on his face.”

In addition to his parents, he is preceded in death by brothers, Robert L. “Bobby” Ipock and Fred P. “Freddie” Ipock, Jr., sister-in-law Blanche D. Ipock and nephew Fred P. “Teko” Ipock, III.  He is survived by his wife, JoAnn Bostic Ipock; daughter, Teresa Ipock and partner Paul Horne; son, Thomas E. Ipock, Jr. and wife Nicole; granddaughters, Sarah Ann Burk and Raelann Rose Ipock and grandson, Aiden Thomas Ipock who lovingly referred to him as Papa; sister-in-law, Burlene O. Ipock; nephews, Lee Ipock, Kirk Ipock, (Lynette) Keith Ipock, and niece Cathy Maddux and many other beloved family members.

The family would like to thank the staff members who cared for him at Spring Arbor Cottage and the NC Veteran’s Home in Kinston.  A special thanks to Pruitt Hospice staff Lori and Abi whose end-of-life assistance was immeasurable. A celebration of life service will be held at a later time. Memorial donations may be made to the Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration.

Howard-Carter Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements. 



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