|Arthur S. Ferguson Jr.
Dec. 15, 1926 - Dec. 8, 2005
Former Village of South Point Mayor
Jan. 1, 1958 to Dec. 31, 1959
Respected volunteer dies at 78
By Michael Caldwell/The Ironton Tribune
SOUTH POINT — Arthur S. Ferguson Jr. wore many figurative hats during his 78 years: Journalist,
But, it is the literal headwear that causes friends to chuckle as they reflect fondly on the long-time
South Point resident and Boy Scout leader who died today.
“Art never put on airs. He had this old hat that he always wore when he was out in the woods,” said
Grayson Thornton, friend and chairman of the Symmes Creek Restoration Committee group that
Ferguson helped create. “That thing must have been 50 years old but he always wore it. Some
people just have a charisma. Art was one of them.”
Little stories like that flow from friends and peers who reflect on what Ferguson meant to the
community. And he created lots of stories by being involved in a little of everything over the years
including serving as South Point’s mayor.
After working at Allied Chemical in South Point for 22 years, Ferguson put his Marshall University
journalism degree to use by working at The Ironton Tribune.
Ferguson started his journalism career in 1953 as a part-time reporter and climbed the ranks to
become the managing editor in 1971. Nine years later, Ferguson left to focus on one of his
passions — education — by working at Ohio University Southern. He always worked closely with
developing Briggs Lawrence County Public Library.
Even as his health faded, Ferguson continued to be active in the restoration committee and the
Boy Scouts, always working to teach youth and promote the outdoors.
“Art did great things for the youth,” Grayson said. “People would come to him even now and tell
them how much he meant to them and their lives. He was always community oriented.”
Long-time friend Don Edwards visited Ferguson last week, and though Ferguson’s physical health
was poor, his mind was as sharp as always, Edwards said.
“We recalled old times. He even quoted ‘Gunga Din’ to me,” Edwards said. “… He was just Art.”
Him being “just Art,” was what people loved about him most.
“He was very community minded and unselfish with his time,” Edwards said. “He would do
everything he could for somebody else.
“We stood there in his room last Friday and you could see the boats go by. He loved that river.”
And in a way, the Ohio River and its tributary of Symmes Creek, will always pay honor to Ferguson
because the Symmes Creek Restoration Committee has named a canoe trail that is in works in
“That is how much we think about him,” Thornton said.
ARTHUR S. FERGUSON JR., 78, of South Point Ohio, widower of Phyllis E. Lovejoy Ferguson,
died Thursday, December 8, 2005, at his residence. Funeral service will be 1 p.m. Monday,
December 12, 2005, at First Baptist Church of South Point, Ohio, with the Rev. David Tunistra
officiating. Interment will be at Highland Memorial Gardens of South Point, Ohio, with graveside
military rites by VFW Post #8850. The family will receive friends from 6 to 9 p.m. Sunday,
December 11, 2005, at Tracy Brammer Funeral Home, Ironton, and one hour before service
Monday at the church. He was born December 15, 1'926, in Ironton, Ohio, a son of Arthur S. and
Catherine Adams Ferguson. Besides his wife and parents, he was also preceded in death by two
sisters, Peggy Null and Barbara Hall, and one brother, Robert V. Ferguson. He was a retired
program coordinator for Ohio University Southern; former managing editor of the Ironton Tribune,
and was employed 29 years at Allied Chemical Corp. He was a member of First Baptist Church of
South Point, where he served as a deacon and Sunday school teacher; member of the Ironton
Rotary Club; member of the Symmes Creek Restoration Committee; for 50 years served as a
leader of the Boy Scouts of America; member of the VFW Post #8850; member of the UCT;
member of the retired teachers association ; a Kentucky Colonel; recipient of the Ironton Iron
Master Award; member of the Lawrence County Historical Society and veteran of World War II
serving in the U.S. Army; and was former mayor of South Point from 1959 to 1960. He is survived
by three daughters, Leighh Gregg of Madison, Wis., Joy McComas of South Point and Melissa
Flint of Nashville; five grandchildren and two spouses, Brian McComas and Melissa, Shawn
McComas and Cheryl and Sonya McComas, all of South Point, Elliott Gregg of Orlando, Fla., and
Joshua Flint of Nashville; two great-grandchildren, Destiny and Trinity McComas; and two brothers,
William D. Ferguson of South Point and Charles Richard Ferguson of Great Fall, Mont. In lieu of
flowers, the family request contributions be made to Community Hospice, 1538 Central Ave.,
Ashland, KY 41101.