December 30, 1930 ~ October 28, 2016
Born in: Allegheny Co., PA,
Resided in: Asheville, NC
Dr. E. Melvin Soles, Jr., O.D., LTC, United States Army (Ret.) passed away on October 28, 2016 in Asheville, NC, at age 85. He was pre-deceased by his daughter Marilyn Dash of Belcamp, MD. Surviving are his wife Martha, son Brian Soles (wife Joyce) of Springfield, VA, and daughter Debbie Dillard (husband Bruce) of Asheville, NC. Also surviving are three grandchildren: Cameron Dillard, Samuel Dash, and Karina Soles. After graduating in1949 from McKeesport High School in PA, Mel attended Waynesburg College, followed by the College of Optometry in Philadelphia, PA, where he graduated with a Doctor of Optometry in 1955. Mel was initially drafted into the Army in 1956. After serving for two years, he returned to McKeesport and entered into his father's and uncle's optometry practice. In 1961 he re-entered into the Army and served at various posts in the United States and Germany. His lasts two assignments were at the Army Environmental Hygiene Agency in Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD, and as the Chief of Optometry at Ft. Meade, MD, where he retired in 1983. Mel returned to government service until his retirement in 1992. Mel was a member of the American Optometric Association and the Armed Forces Optometric Society. In Joppatowne, MD, he was an active member of Good Shepard Presbyterian Church, the Joppatowne Civic Association, and the Lions Club. After retiring, Mel and Martha moved to Shallotte, NC, for several years until declining health caused a move to Asheville, NC. A memorial service will be held at Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church in Joppatowne, MD, on Saturday, January 21, 2017, at 1:30pm. Interment will be held at Arlington National Cemetery at a date to be determined. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the Alzheimer's Association.
Mel, my first cousin, was like a brother to me when we were growing up. I will miss him.
My sincerest sympathy to the family in the loss of your dear loved one. It is hoped that fond memories will be comforting to you; as well as knowing God is close to those broken at heart and crushed in spirit. He cares for you. (Psalm 34:18).