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T. E. Cumbey, 77 Retired Jeweler, Dies On Monday

MAY 19 – Thomas Edward “Tommy” Cumbey of Farmville, went to be with his heavenly Father on Monday, May 18, 2009. He was born on July 18, 1931 and was a lifelong resident of Farmville for his 77 years. Tommy was preceded in death by his wife of 52 years, Adelle Wood Cumbey, and their son, Thomas E. “Eddie” Cumbey Jr.

He is survived by their son, Gary (Grace) and granddaughters, Stephanie Michelle Cumbey and Christina Suzette Cumbey of Calhoun, Georgia; two brothers, L. F. “Butch” Cumbey and wife, Virginia of South Boston, and J. H. “Johnny” Cumbey of Franklin; niece, Lisa Cumbey of Richmond, and nephews, Bobby and Dean Cumbey of Franklin.

After graduation from Farmville High School in 1948, Tommy went to watchmaking school on Chebeague Island, Maine. He then embarked on a 48-year career as a professional watchmaker and jeweler in Farmville.

Tommy married Adelle in 1952 at the Farmville United Methodist Church parsonage. He was the watchmaker and jeweler at Martin the Jeweler in Farmville for 23 years, until opening Cumbey Jewelers down Main Street in 1971. He was always a fair and square businessman whose motto was “Where the 'Watch'-word is Service.” Tommy served his community and supported many organizations, including the Farmville United Methodist Church, and the Jaycees. He was a charter member of the Farmville Downtown Merchants Association and a charter member of the Farmville Exchange Club, holding the post of Treasurer for many years.

As part of an athletic family, Tommy umpired little league, high school, college, and semi-pro baseball for many years. As in business, he was known as a fair and square umpire. In baseball, his motto was “I call them like I see them.” He and Adelle were avid gardeners, having one of the best gardens in town when they lived on Longwood Avenue. Tommy was a diehard Redskins, Red Sox and Dale Earnhardt fan who very much enjoyed bowling in retirement with his friends.

Visitation to celebrate Tommy's life will be Wednesday, May 20, 6:30-8:30 p.m., at Doyne-Burger-Davis Funeral Home.

A memorial lunch will be at Farmville United Methodist Church at noon Thursday, followed by funeral service at 2 p.m. and interment at Westview Cemetery.

Please consider contributions to The Prince Edward County Volunteer Rescue Squad in Farmville.

Special recognition goes out to Tommy's sister-in-law, Mrs. Joyce Wood Edwards, for her unselfish love and care shown Tommy during his illness.