Douglas Allen Parris, 66, of Salem, passed away peacefully at his home on Saturday, December 9, 2017. Doug was diagnosed with Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS) the summer of 2017. He fought a good fight and far outlived expectations.
Doug was born February 5, 1951 to the late Everett and Virginia (Duffy) Parris. He lived his entire life in the Roanoke/ Salem area.
He was employed by Corrugated Container Corporation for 44 years. He held several positions with the company throughout those years and was a very beloved member of their team. He was dedicated to the company and considered the Higginbotham family a part of his family. He has many friends at Corrugated that will always remember him for his generosity and work ethic. He worked many days while ill and always wanted to go back to his job. Many of his fellow employees visited Doug and he appreciated each visit and every caring thought.
Doug loved life in general, but specifically, he really loved cars and owned many classics during his life. He loved food and loved to feed his friends. But mostly, Doug loved animals and could not bare to see one hungry or abused. At the time of his passing, he is survived by his last two kitties, Phoebe and Roz. He liked all forms of racing and did his share of drag racing in his youth. He shared many cups of coffee with the Bill Cundiff family of Vinton in their garages and car lots. A special person in Doug’s life was his late cousin, Mike Duffy, who he considered his brother. They were born nineteen days apart and shared life’s adventures with many tall tales to tell. Most Sunday evenings they could be spotted in their shared driveways kicking gravel and solving the world’s problems.
He is survived by his long-time friend and companion, Joyce Martin of Salem; along with her daughter, Diane, and son, Jim Martin and his wife, Teresa. Jim’s girls, Hannah and Carleigh, held a special place in Doug’s heart. Also surviving are his cousins, Brenda Ann Bloss of Florissant, MO, Margaret Brown of Raleigh, NC, and Norma Bushnell of Salem.
A very special person in Doug’s life was his friend and caregiver, Pam Withrow. Pam worked with Doug at Corrugated and she provided excellent care to him, his home, and his cats when he needed her most. She was dedicated to him and he was so thankful for her friendship.
He is also survived by special friends, Carolee Lautenschlager, who successfully could “talk trash” with Doug with a smile on her face, and who was so helpful to him in his last weeks. Julie Duffy, his “sister-in-law” and neighbor; Mike and Julie’s daughter, Heather Parisi and her family; Kathy Blackburn and Gary Boyd, who visited nearly daily and provided friendship, comfort and many treats for him; and longtime friend, Kay Day of Roanoke.
Doug was a sweet, generous, fun loving man and his many friends are all better knowing him and sharing his life. May he and Mikey race many cars, eat plenty of great food, and kick gravel again, although he said they would probably just sit in their rocking chairs and watch the cars pass on by.
A period of visitation will be held from 2 until 4 p.m. and 6 until 8 p.m. on Tuesday, December 11, 2017 at John M. Oakey & Son Funeral Home. A funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, December 13, 2017 at the funeral home. An interment will follow at Sherwood Memorial Park, Salem.
Online condolences may be expressed at www.johnmoakey.com.