Milton William “Mitch” Mitchell of Axton, Va., formerly of Laurel and Bethany Beach, passed away peacefully Sunday, Feb. 9, 2014. Mr. Mitchell was born Feb. 8, 1927, in Salisbury, Md. to Holland M. Mitchell and Ida Davenport Mitchell and grew up in Delmar.
He was preceded in death by his parents and wife of 36 years, Alycann Harkins Mitchell.
Mr. Mitchell graduated high school early to enlist in the Navy in March, 1944. He served in the Pacific Theater during World War II with the 90th Naval Construction Battalion (Seabees). Mr. Mitchell attended Goldey-Beacom College where he studied accounting and finance.
During Mr. Mitchell’s early career, he worked for Wilmington Trust, Chrysler Corporation, Delaware Park, and Addressograph-Multigraph in various accounting and sales positions.
Mr. Mitchell always said he was born with ink in his blood and worked in the newspaper industry for several decades. He started his career at Coastal Communications in advertising with the Delmarva News and Delaware Coast Press in the 1960s and 1970s and then the newly-formed Atlantic Publications in the 198's and 1990s, serving as regional vice president in charge of Delaware as well as vice president in charge of marketing. He finished his publishing career in the 1990s working for Chesapeake Publishing at the Seaford Leader and State Register and the Milford Chronicle as regional advertising director.
Mr. Mitchell was elected as president of the Maryland-Delaware-DC Press Association in 1988 and served until 1989. He was appointed by Gov, Mike Castle to the Tourism Advisory Board during his publishing career. Mr. Mitchell also served as past president of the Laurel Lions Club and the Delmar Chamber of Commerce.
After retiring to Virginia, Mr. Mitchell volunteered with the Army Corp of Engineers and was honored as District Volunteer of the Year for providing more than 600 hours of volunteer service. Mr. Mitchell will be remembered for tireless commitment to his family and community.
He is survived by his second wife, Linda Mitchell of Axton; daughter and son-in-law, Nancy Phillips (David) of Salisbury, Md.; daughter and son-in-law, Kathy Wootten (Edsel) of Laurel; son, William Mitchell of Newark; daughter and son-in-law, Peggy Mitchell-Elswick (Glenn), Delmar; daughter and son-in-law, Holly Mitchell-Spahn (Lou), Redding, Calif.; daughter, Laura Lee Mitchell, Winston-Salem, N.C.; stepdaughter, Ruth Easley, Martinsville, Va.; stepson and daughter-in-law, Duke Easley (Debra), Martinsville; sister, Frances Fisher, Seaford; sister and brother-in-law, Amanda Morris (Brice), Federalsburg, Md.; 15 grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.
A Catholic memorial service will be held for Mr. Mitchell at 11 a.m., Tuesday, Feb. 18, at the Hannigan, Short, Disharoon Funeral Home 700 West St., Laurel. A visitation will also be held from 10 to 11 a.m. Interment will follow in Odd Fellows Cemetery.
The family requests donations be made to Alzheimer’s Association 240 North James Street
Suite 100A Newport, DE 19804 or the Laurel Lions Club - Journey For Sight P.O. Box 10 Laurel, DE 19956.