William Preston Aycock II passed away on Wednesday, October 16, 2013 following a five month battle with leukemia. He was born March 5, 1943 in Anniston, Alabama to William Brantley Aycock and Grace Mewborn Aycock. He grew up in Chapel Hill, North Carolina and graduated from UNC Chapel Hill in 1965 with an AB degree in history. From 1965-1967 he served in the U. S. Navy as the CIC Officer on the U.S.S. Waldron. Upon completion of his naval service he attended the UNC School of Law, graduating with honors in 1970. He was Research Editor of the North Carolina Law Review and a member of the Order of the Coif.
Upon graduation from law school, Bill joined Smith Moore Smith Schell & Hunter (now Smith Moore Leatherwood, PLLC) where he worked for seventeen years as an associate and partner. In 1987, along with Braxton Schell, Doris Bray, Mike Abel and Paul Livingston, he was a founding member of Schell Bray Aycock Abel & Livingston PLLC (now Schell Bray PLLC) where he practiced for twenty-five years. In January of 2012 he founded Aycock & Aycock PLLC along with his son, William Brantley Aycock II.
Bill loved the practice of law, respected all of his partners, valued his clients and considered his role as counselor to be a privilege, always guided by the highest standards of the profession. He was a Board Certified Specialist in Real Property Law and a Certified Mediator. He was recognized for excellence in the profession by virtually every organization that rates attorneys, and as Real Estate Lawyer of the Year in 2009 and 2011 by Greensboro’s Best Lawyers.
Bill was also a passionate teacher. He served as a Visiting Lecturer in Law at the UNC School of Law and later as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Elon University School of Law. He was always generous with his time and expertise with new lawyers serving as a mentor to many. He valued his own mentors, Charlie Melvin and Braxton Schell and took pleasure in carrying that role forward.
In addition to his real estate practice he has served as a board member of the Greensboro Legal Aid Foundation; United Arts Council of Greensboro; Rotary Club of Greensboro; Greensboro Country Club; Greensboro Youth Soccer Association, and Carolina Meadows, Inc. His current board memberships included Affordable Housing Management, Inc. and the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center Board of Visitors.
An avid Tar Heel, he also served the University as a member of the Board of Visitors (1998-2001); Chancellor Search Committee (1999-2000); Law Alumni Association Board of Directors (1992-1995); District III Morehead Award Selection Committee (1991-1996) Chairman (1994-1996); Chancellor’s Club; and Educational Foundation (30+ years).
His represented the UNC General Alumni Association as a District Director 1985-1988; as First Vice-Chair 1988-1999; as Chair in 2000; and as Counsel 1994-1998 and 2001 to the present.
Above all, Bill was a father and a family man. Even as a young attorney he was always home in time to sit down to dinner with his family. He participated in all of his children’s soccer and swimming events. One of his most joyful activities was serving as a youth soccer coach for eleven years, along with Harold Johnson and Harry Clendenin, of his daughter’s team, Peaches and Cream, from the girl’s early years through graduation from high school. He was instrumental in GYSA’s initial acquisition of land for the soccer complex at Bran Park, along with Jim Batten, Mike Watts and Art Winstead.
He was preceded in death by his mother, Grace Mewborn Aycock. He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Alexa Smith Aycock; his daughter Laura Guerry Aycock of Arlington, Virginia; his son William Brantley Aycock, wife Solveig Vételé Aycock and their son Preston Claude Aycock of Chapel; his father William Brantley Aycock of Chapel Hill; his sister and brother in law Nancy Aycock and Dan Leigh of Chapel Hill ; his sister-in-law and her husband, LeGrande Smith Renfroe and Norman Renfrow of Thomasville, Georgia; two nieces, Mary Bell Prasit of Waterbury Center, VT and Eleanor Bell Hall of Thomasville, GA; one nephew, Leighton Alexander Bell of Fairview,TN; as well as numerous cousins.
The family wishes to express gratitude to Dr. Gus Magrinat for his care and treatment and all the staff at the Cone Cancer Center as well as Dr. Matt Foster and the staff at the North Carolina Cancer Hospital. Special thanks go to Kelly Berard and Frankie Lucas of Advanced Home Care.
The family requests that any memorial gifts be made to the Cone Cancer Hospital, 501 North Elam Avenue, Greensboro, NC 27403; the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, 450 West Drive, Chapel Hill, NC 27514; or Beacon Place, 2502 Summit Avenue, Greensboro, NC 27405.
On Line condolences may be made at www.haneslineberryfuneralhomes.com