Cover photo for Bobby Henry Thornburg's Obituary
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1933 Bobby 2023

Bobby Henry Thornburg

October 18, 1933 — December 26, 2023

Siler City


Bobby Henry Thornburg passed away in Pittsboro, NC, on December 26, 2023, at the age of 90, following a brief illness.

He was born in Greensboro, NC on October 18, 1933.  On April 11, 1952, Bobby married Margaret Mattie Bowers in Greensboro, NC, where they lived for well over 40 years.  In September 1955 they had a daughter, Debra.  While living in Greensboro, Bobby worked for Cone Mills, Merita Bread Co., Edgcomb Metal, and finally Friedrich Metal Products where he fabricated stainless steel meat smokers for grocery stores and restaurants.

After both Bobby and Margaret retired, they moved from Greensboro to Chatham County, NC to be closer to both of their families.  There, they lived in Siler City, NC for over 20 years and were members of the Hickory Mountain United Methodist Church (Now Hickory Mountain Chapel) in Pittsboro.

Bobby’s interests and hobbies were gardening, general yard work, metal work, wood working, car washing, cooking (especially cornbread), grilling steaks, daily calls with his cousin Newby Phillips, watching The Price is Right, splitting wood for their wood stoves, and nightly phone calls with his daughter Debra (7PM – on the dot).  Each summer, Bobby enjoyed taking Margaret and Debra in their camper to Miller’s Campground in the NC mountains.  After the move to Siler City many locals called him “the candy man,” as he loaded up his pants pockets with candy when he left the house to run errands.  He gave the candy to children he ran into, as well as the pharmacy staff and others.

Bobby is survived by his daughter and son-in-law, Debra, and Wayne Hucaby, of Raleigh, NC, as well as several cousins.

Bobby is preceded in death by his wife of 69 years, Margaret Bowers Thornburg; and by his sister, Irene Thornburg Brisson.

On Thursday, January 4, 2024, the family will receive visitation from family and friends, from 1PM to 2PM, followed by a brief Funeral Service and Committal, all at Smith & Buckner Funeral Home, 230 N. Second Ave, Siler City, NC.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Saint Jude Children’s Research Hospital, per Bobby’s wish.  Address:  ALSAC/St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.  Online:  https//

Bobby will be interred at the Hickory Mountain Chapel Cemetery in Pittsboro beside his wife, Margaret.

The family is extremely grateful to the wonderful staff of Cambridge Hills Assisted Living in Pittsboro, where Bobby lived after the passing of Margaret.  Thank you all so much for taking such good care of “Mr. Bobby.”  We think of you all as family.

Smith & Buckner Funeral Home will be assisting the Thornburg family.

Online condolences can be made at 

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Bobby Henry Thornburg, please visit our flower store.


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