Photo from 1967 - Ducky Birts ad book

COLLIE L. HAIRSTON SR. was born in North Carolina in 1920. He married his wife Charline in 1945, and by 1956 had come to Camden. The Hairston family then lived at 1021 Cooper Street.

Collie Hairston was involved politically as a Democrat committeeman from Camden's Second Ward. He was quite active in church affairs, first at Little Rock Baptist Church, the at First Refuge Baptist Church and Kaighn Avenue Baptist. He retired from Campbell's Soup after 35 years of service,

Collie Hairston was for 25 years the president of the National Hairston Clan, Inc., the organization of the extended Hairston family. He passed away on February 18, 1998.  

.  Memorial from


Precursor and President of the National Hairston for 25 years, Collie was known for his dedication and service to family and friends. He left us to go home February 18, 1998. He will always be remembered and the spirit he gave this family will continue to grow strong as we carry the torch that has been passed down.

Collie l. Hairston, sr., son of the late William and Ruth (Charming) Hairston, was born in Davie County, North Carolina on June 23, 1920. He departed this life to try eternity at his home on Wednesday, February 18, 1998.

Collie was a product of Davie County Elementary School and Dunbar High School, Lexington, North Carolina. In 1945, he was united in Holy Matrimony to Charline Graham. From this union, they were blessed with three daughters.

He joined Little Rock Baptist Church and served on the Board of Trustees. He later founded and was a member of the First Refuge Baptist Church, Camden, New Jersey. In later years, he transferred

his membership to Kaighn Avenue Baptist Church, where he served on the Board of Trustees, Vice Chairman of the Scholarship Committee, and a member of the Men's Fellowship. Collie, was also a member of the Berkshire Noblemen. Collie retired from Campbell Soup Company after 35 years of service.

Collie generously supported any effort which would aid young people in furthering their education. He could always be counted on to assist anyone in need. During his many years of working in church and serving the community, he was the recipient of numerous citations and awards of recognition.

Collie served as 2nd Ward Committeeman, was a member of the YMCA Board of Directors, chairman of the Political Action Committee of Local P80, Meat Cutters Union, Camden; former President of the Camden Chapter A. Philip Randolph Institute; and was serving as President of the National Hairston Clan, Inc. for the past 25 years.

He leaves to cherish his precious memory: a loving wife, Charline; son, Collie L. Hairston, Jr.; daughters, Ethel Maddox-Hicks, Charming Nelson, Coletta Pierce and Charlie Mohammed; brothers, Clarence Hairston, Reverned George T. Hairston; sister, Marie Carter; ten grandchildren; eleven great grandchildren; on great-great grandson; three sons-in-law, Earl Nelson, Albert Pierce and Abdullah Mohammed; four sisters-in-law; one brother-in-law; a host of nieces and nephews; special friends, George Willis and Alvin "Apple" Still; and many other relatives and friends.