Connie Sluder Pfaff

connie pfaff
Conyers Sluder (Connie) Pfaff (88), of Asheville, went to be with her Lord on Monday, January 29, 2007, from the John F. Keever, Jr. Solace Center after several months of declining health. Visitation will be on Friday, February 9, at 7-8:30 p.m. at Groce Funeral Home on Patton Avenue, and a graveside service will be held at 3:00 pm Saturday, February 10, at Green Hills Cemetery with the Rev. Margaret Torrence officiating. A service of music, worship and praise celebrating Connie’s life will be at 2:00 p.m. Sunday, February 11, at First Presbyterian Church, Asheville, led by the Revs. Margaret Torrence and Pete Peery. Connie was born July 1, 1918, in Anderson, SC, daughter of Lester and Ruby Fisher Sluder. Connie is survived by her husband of 32 years, Alfred Pfaff; by her sister and brother-in-law, Belle and Morris Lance of Asheville; and in Tobaccoville, NC, by brother-in-law, H.F. Pfaff and wife Rachel, and by sister-in-law, Roberta Merritt. There are numerous nieces, nephews, and great-nieces and nephews. Connie was preceded in death by only ten days by a sister, Nell Ensley, of Fayetteville, NC. Connie was a graduate of Lee Edwards High School and spent almost her entire career with Southern Bell Telephone Co. At First Presbyterian Church, Connie was active in choir (where she and Al met) and in Women of the Church (now Presbyterian Women). In the community, she was active in Asheville Community Concerts (now Bravo) and participated in founding a business and professional women’s sorority and Telco Credit Union. Much of her time and devotion was dedicated to the Telephone Pioneers of America. She held every office in the Asheville Council and was Life Member Representative for North Carolina Chapter 35 at the national convention in Boston. She continued being active in the Pioneers in her retirement. Memorials may be made to the Parkinson’s Foundation, 1359 Broadway, New York, NY 10018; Care Partners Solace, 68 Sweeten Creek Rd., Asheville, NC 28803, or to the Music Program at First Presbyterian Church, 40 Church Street, Asheville, NC 28801.

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Memories Timeline


  1. Al and Family, We remember you from the Board of Visitors at Montreat College. Regardless of age, health, or any other circumstance we are never ready to lose our loved one. Only our Faith in the Sovereignty of God and caring friends can sustain us. We are thinking of you and hope in some small way it helps to know others do care. You will recall that as an Old Wachovian I was one of the few who knew where Pfafftown was located. Joe and Zunita Clark

  2. Al, I am truly sorry to hear of Connie’s passing. She was a special person, and she will always have a special place in the hearts of her Moravian sisters and brothers. God bless you and your family.


  3. Well, where do I start? I haven’t always been the greatest niece/’daughter’ in the world (slight understatement there), but words can never express my feelings as I sit down to talk to Connie for the last time. You raised me until I was 12, when you married Uncle Al. What a happy time that was, to see you finally receiving the blessings you so richly deserved after giving so selflessly all those years. (Thanks, Uncle Al, for taking such good care of her and making her so happy all those years.) My kids have listened to my stories all of their lives and have you to thank for alot of our family traditions. Gosh, I remember baking Christmas cookies from scratch every year and distributing them to friends and family; how you walked back and forth to work every day for years, stopping to drop me off and pick me up at daycare; the smell of newly applied wax on a Saturday morning; the hours you spent knitting and embroidering the most gorgeous Christmas stockings for me, Al, and my three kids, never taking the time to make one for yourself; even more hours making all of your own clothes and making me those stylish crocheted vests and hats and ponchos that the other mothers probably paid outrageous amounts of money for; the Halloween costumes you made that were so much better than store-bought (like Raggedy Ann and Andy with red yarn sewed to the top portion of a pair of red tights for hair); notes on the napkins in my lunchbox every day (and for Al too); those wonderful Easter baskets and cakes for every holiday; riding in the mountains every Sunday afternoon with Mama (I sure hated that back then, but now I wish we could do it again, of course); and vacations every year even though I now know there was very little money to spare – you know, all those things I didn’t appreciate when I was growing up. And we can’t forget the ‘little black book’ you kept in your vanity drawer – that book was the pulse of your life and held all the information you needed to keep things running smoothly – Lord knows what would have happened if you had ever misplaced it! I’ve listed a lot of things, but all they really boil down to is that Connie spent her life taking care of everyone with patience and love, and I only remember her losing her temper maybe two or three times in all those years – I do remember hearing that she threw a fork at Al one day, but I’m sure he deserved it. 🙂 Well, the tears are flowing as I travel down memory lane, but I can’t really be too sad because she’s in a better place now, and God is taking care of HER instead of her taking care of US, and that’s as it should be. As inadequate as it sounds, thanks for everything, Connie – I love and miss you!

  4. Okay, I guess my name was too long since it only showed Diane instead of my whole name, but it’s Dedee. Love you Connie!

  5. It has been a long time since we have been in touch with Connie. We knew her through the phone co. and she worked with Nick’s sisters, Leila and Woody Posey in the past. Connie was a very gracious lady and was well liked by all who knew her. I am sure she will be greatly missed and it was a pleasure having known her.

  6. Dear Al –
    We’ve known you and Connie for all 32 years and remember how you helped encourage us to make this wonderful part of the world our retirement home some 17 years ago. We’ve been grateful ever since. Our thanks and prayers for you both.

  7. To Al and family:

    I am glad to have been acquainted with such a fine person as Connie. She had a warm smile and gentle way about her. My condolences to you.

    Love, Gail

  8. Our memories of Connie are of a sweet, patient, kind-hearted and loving person,only seeing good in everyone. We were all so happy when she and Uncle Al got married -they suited each other perfectly, as the many happy years together have proved. We know the times ahead will be difficult, Al,and we hope we can be there for you to help ease the pain.

  9. Dear Al,
    All my sympathy on the loss of your beloved Connie.
    Hazel B. Gregson
    Admin. Asst., NHRC

  10. Al,
    It seems like yesterday when we were neighbors in Poughkeepsie and then friends in Raleigh. You and Connie were like grandparents to Leigh and Mary Beth. I know how much you adored Connie and she you, so I appreciate how great a loss you must feel. I wish I could be there for you. Say goodbye to Connie for me and keep on keeping on.

  11. Al.
    Vickie and me would like to express our sincere sorrow for your loss.Connie was a dear friend and a wonderful lady. I know you were her greatest comfort. I know that you gave every ounce of care anyone could give. Our prayers are with you and your families. She was a blessing to so many people who she came in contact with and she will be greatly missed.
    May God always Bless you and give you strength in these following days. As always if you need anything please call.
    Eddie & Vickie Cagle

  12. My sympathy to all of Connie’s family in this loss of a loved one.

    Marie Shuford Cody
    (Co-worker at Southern Bell)

  13. Alfred, I am writing for my mother ‘Lib’ Talley. She too has Parkinsons Disease and is unable to write. Please keep in touch with her and pray for her.

    Mom and Dad thought the world of you two and we were all so pleased to be invited (at Mizpah) to you wedding via phone.

    Mother and my husband and I send our deepest sympathy to you in the loss of Connie. Remember the good times and Gods love.

    Joanne Talley Long

  14. Uncle Al,

    We were so sorry to hear of Aunt Connie’s passing. It seems like just yesterday that Scott and I were in Asheville and were able to stop by and see the two of you. What a wonderful example you were of two people who truly loved and respected each other. I know you will miss her. Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time.

  15. We cannot remember a day when we did not know Al Pfaff. He and his wife Helen were our neighbors in Houston. There were days when we lived at their house. When Helen died, we were living in Canada, packing boxes for another move. Shortly afterwards, Al spent Christmas with us in our new home in the Netherlands. And, although he was always a very cheery fellow and fun to be with, it was obvious to us that the man missed a soul mate. It was not unti later that we actually met her. And although we did not attend their wedding, it hardly seemed so. We had been kept abreast of each step of the impending courtship, so that the wedding itself was scarcely a surprise. Harlequin, Mills & Boon, and other such romance writers will never be able to top this romantic story.
    True to form, Al took his new bride, Connie, to Europe for a honeymoon and a few introductions to us. But who was this Connie he had been talking about? Well, turns out Al had known Connie all his adult life. Helen and he had met her years before at a church in the mountains, they also visited with their friend, Connie.
    It is impossible to imagine anyone as unassuming, sweet and considerate as Connie was. Then again, Connie had spent the greater part of her life taking care of others and she was good at it! While none of us had ever taken Al for a fool, Connie turned out to be living proof of his impeccable taste in women. Little did we k now that the partnership they embarked on then was to last another 32 years; it was a good marriage.
    We visited one another regularly, during business trips and while on vacations. Being in Asheville was like being home. As time wore on, we all got older. Then, a time came when travel was no longer an option for Connie, so we visited Asheville a little more often. Our last visit before her death was a memorable one and it is also one we will never forget. It was to be a surprise to help Al celebrate his 80th birthday. In preparation for it, we phoned the Market Place Restaurant in Asheville from the Netherlands and asked the staff if they were game for a little fun. Given the distance from which we were attempting to do this, we were surprised by the ease with which it was all organized. Al and Connie were invited by the restaurant for an intimate evening dinner, never knowing what lay in store. On cue, the staff of the Market Place escorted the graceful elderly couple in. That night, people turned to us to ask us just who this elegant Southern couple were. Well, we said, they are ‘just’ a couple of our oldest friends. And so, it is a difficult farewell, indeed. We will remember Connie with the greatestlove, affection and respect. May she rest in peace.
    Dieke & Henrrik Leusen-van Wijnen Reina van Wijnen
    Singel 205, 3311 KR Dordrecht, The Netherlands & van Offenberglaan 1, flat 26, The Hague, The Netherlands

  16. Belle & Morris,

    We are so sorry for the recent loss of your loved one. You are in our thoughts and prayers.

  17. We are deeply sorry for your loss.

    Remember what Jesus told us in
    John 16:32,33 So that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.

  18. We are so glad that earth has no sorrows that heaven can not heal. Your family are in our prayers.

  19. Betsy, your mom and uncle Al,

    We are so glad that earth has no sorrows that heaven can not heal. Your family are in our prayers.

  20. Al, you already know that we both love you and loved dear, long-suffering and even longer-loving Connie. Our hearts go out to you as our prayers go up to God, thanking Him for the life of one–make that two–of his best creations.

  21. What a wonderful lady. A shining star in this world of darkness. We will always remember the good times.

    ‘Should not I for gladness leap
    Led by Jesus as His sheep?
    For when these blest days are over
    to the arms of my dear Saviour
    I shall be conveyed to rest.
    Amen, yea, my lot is blest’

    Dennis and Bari

  22. Dear Al,

    Your letter to my Aunt Fran arrived today, along with the program for Connie’s service.

    It’s my sad duty to inform you that my aunt, Fran Stevenson, passed away on November 16, 2006 of cancer.

    I see from her obituary that Connie spent her working life with the telephone company, as did Fran, so I’m sure they were long time friends.

    I am so sorry for your loss! Like you, I have had multiple losses in the past few months, and wish you well in this time of grief!

    By coincidence, my husband and I will also be in Holland on April 17. It’s our first time there, but it seems as if it will hold many memories for you. Bon voyage.


    Aleita Downer

  23. Dear Al, Your Trinity Family extends our deepest sympathy on the loss of your dear Connie. We will be upholding you in prayer. Love, Pastor Dawn

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