City of Oaks Funeral Home & Cremation

Obituary
Ronald Earl Heath

Raleigh, North Carolina

Age 80.
Died 08/07/2023.

Ronald Earl Heath
Ronald Earl Heath, Sr, 80, of Raleigh, NC, passed away the evening of August 7, 2023, barely two months after his wife of 60 years, Charlotte, passed. A couple of weeks ago his heart began to fail, seemingly broken from grief. He is free now from all the pain he has endured for so long.

He answered to lots of names including Ron, Ronnie, Big Ron, Dad and Papa, and he owned a series of gas and service stations on Six Forks, along Hillsborough Street at the corners of Gorman, Daisy and Glenwood, and lastly on St Mary’s Street at Johnson. He knew his customers, knew their stories, and when it came time for them to pay, he would often ask what they could afford or tell them to pay him when they could.

If you were lucky enough to meet him, you never forgot him. His personality was big and magnetic, and he was so charismatic you would think he was a movie star. In fact, his final service station was selected as a film site for an independent movie called Bandwagon being made in Raleigh. It didn’t take long before they asked him to play the main character’s boss. He even got his own IMDB page out of the deal.

Ron was one of those people who was just good at stuff – not just sports like baseball, racquetball and golf, but also mechanics, poker and the gift of gab. He watched football with his family on Sundays and taught the rules and maybe a little about betting odds too. When the Hurricanes came to NC, he bought Hockey for Dummies and was soon teaching us the game. His pig pickins were legendary and all major Heath milestones were celebrated with one. As he got older, he read constantly, devouring several books a week and could tell you the plot of them all.

The thing he excelled at the most in his life was being Papa to his grandchildren. He loved Emma, Anna, Maggie and Henry so much. He held them as babies and sang to them, and as they got older, he spent hours reading to them, watching cartoons and coloring. He colored so many sea creatures and dinosaurs; the walls of the living room were covered with art. Papa was patient and kind and so very proud of them.

Ron was born on January 28, 1943, to Appie Clyde Fields Heath and Bill Heath, in Greene County, NC. He joined the Marine Corp in 1960 at the age of 17 and not long after was medically discharged due to a heart murmur. His girlfriend, Charlotte, broke up with him when he joined, but they kept writing to each other anyway. Perhaps even then his heart couldn’t handle being away from her. After he was discharged, he went back to her, they married on November 17, 1962, and were together the rest of their lives. In 1969, they relocated to Raleigh where they raised their four children, all of whom stayed in the area. He is survived by his children, Ron (and Becky) Heath, Jr., Mark (and Amy) Heath, Shelly Heath (and Barry Pierce) and Helen (and Malcolm) Green; his three beautiful granddaughters, Emma, Anna and Maggie; as well as his sisters Penny and Linda, and many nieces and nephews.

Ron was predeceased by his wife, Charlotte, his parents Appie Clyde and Bill, stepmother Ledar, his sisters Becky, Beverly and Ruth, and his grandson, Henry Green.

His family will receive visitors at the location of his last service station which is now home to My Way Tavern at 522 St Mary’s St, Raleigh, NC 27605, between 4:30 – 6:30 p.m. on Monday, August 14, 2023.

Ron’s children will carry their parents’ ashes to the family’s river house in Charlotte, NC, for a celebration of life to be held on September 9, 2023. Ron’s and Charlotte’s ashes will then be interred next to their beloved grandson, Henry, at Oakwood Cemetery in Raleigh. In lieu of flowers, please donate in Ron’s memory to the American Heart Association at heart.org/donate.

His family gives thanks to the staff of Litchford Falls Nursing Home, ProMedica Heartland Hospice and City of Oaks Cremation for their support.

For additional information or for service details, please reach out to the family directly.


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City of Oaks Cremation and Funeral Home is a full-service funeral home in Raleigh, serving all of North Carolina and beyond. We provide an alternative to costly funeral homes and every day we help families in Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and all over North Carolina make simple, affordable funeral arrangements.

Simply having to reach out to a funeral home can feel overwhelming. Our goal is to simplify the entire funeral home experience and make the process as easy as possible. We hope to eliminate any unnecessary surprises by publishing our total cost and the services we provide directly on our website. All of our obituaries are provided free of charge as a way to help families celebrate and commemorate the lives of their loved ones.

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Apples to Apples

Just like all other licensed funeral homes in North Carolina, City of Oaks Cremation, LLC is regulated by the NC Board of Funeral Service.


The same laws that apply to the big corporate funeral homes also apply to the modest independently owned firms like ours. All crematories in North Carolina, regardless of who owns them, are inspected annually by the state and must adhere to the same rules and laws.

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We're committed to providing families within our community unsurpassed service before, during and after the time of loss.


Our staff will provide clear communication to your family through each step as we move forward from the original phone call notifying us of a death to the time we deliver the urn back to your family. We will treat your family with the utmost respect, as we honor the wishes of your loved one.


We promise to make this process affordable and as endurable as possible.

State Wide

Our Funeral Home is located in Wake County NC; however, we provide our services to families throughout the entire State.


Unlike other funeral homes, we don't charge an additional mileage fee. Regardless of what county you live in, we can help your family with making simple, affordable funeral arrangements. From Asheville to Wilmington, we're proud to help families statewide.

Our Services

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Direct Cremation

$1196.75

Nobody likes surprise costs added in at the last minute. We guarantee you will not find any hidden charges here. We include everything you need for a simple or direct cremation. Simple, affordable and reliable. We have not changed the cost of our direct cremation service since we opened City of Oaks in 2012.

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Cremation with Visitation

$1917.84

City of Oaks Funeral Home and Cremation provides an affordable cremation option with onsite visitation. Nobody likes surprise costs added in at the last minute. We guarantee you will not find any hidden charges here. Simple, affordable and reliable.

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Immediate Burial

$2497.50

An immediate burial has the same end result as a traditional burial; however, we have eliminated the extra (sometimes unnecessary) services prior to getting to the cemetery. Not everyone wants an open casket for viewing or a limousine for the family. Despite the term immediate, we can move as fast as you need or as slow as you like. This option simply allows you to save money by eliminating some of the fancy extras at the funeral home.

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Traditional Funeral

$5866.98

We offer the same traditional funeral services as the big corporately owned funeral homes in the area; however, we cost about half the amount. You might consider a traditional funeral service if your family is looking for an open casket visitation, a traditional church service or a funeral service in the funeral home's chapel. A traditional funeral service can be altered to fit the needs of your family.

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Green Burial

$3033.75

This establishment is one of a select number of funeral homes who meet the criteria for providing green funeral service by the Green Burial Council; a tax-exempt, nonprofit organization working to encourage environmentally sustainability in the field of funeral service. Our Green options allow for a funeral to take place without the use of toxic and non-biodegradable materials/chemicals.

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Aquamation

$2640.59

As an alternative to traditional cremation, City of Oaks Funeral Home also offers Aquamation. The Aquamation process, often referred to as alkaline hydrolysis, uses a solution of water and potassium hydroxide to facilitate natural decomposition.

City of Oaks Funeral Home & Cremations