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Ann C. Campbell, “Matriarch of Mannington,” passes

Ann C. “Buffy” Campbell—mother to Keith Campbell, chairman of the board, Mannington Mills, and grandmother to Zack Zehner, president, Mannington Residential—passed away peacefully on Wed., Sept. 25, at Stonegates in Wilmington, Del. She was 98 years old.

Among her loving circle of family and friends, Buffy will be remembered as a devoted mother, compassionate caregiver, thoughtful friend and the “Matriarch” of Mannington Mills. “Although she was petite in stature, her legacy is large,” Keith Campbell said. “She was the matriarch of our family—the Campbell family as well as the Mannington family—and we will all miss her keen sense of humor, kind heart and quiet strength.”

Buffy, whose maiden name was also Campbell, was born on Aug. 5, 1921, in Milton, Mass., to Malcolm D. Campbell and Emeline Evans Campbell. She graduated from Milton Academy in 1939 and Wellesley College in 1943.  During World War II, she joined the Women’s Naval Reserve (the WAVES), rising to the rank of Lieutenant J.G., specializing in communications cryptology.

She was married to U.S. Marine John B. “Johnny” Campbell II on Feb. 11, 1944, just prior to his being dispatched to Iwo Jima. Upon his return in 1946, they settled in Salem, N.J., where Johnny went to work at his family’s business, flooring manufacturer Mannington Mills, Inc.

A staunch believer in the value of a good education, Buffy became involved in the Mannington Township School Board, where she served for 13 years. During her tenure she helped build an integrated school, replacing nine separate schoolhouses scattered throughout the rural township. She also was a board member at Woodland Country Day School and gave generously of her time as a Girl Scout leader, Red Cross “grey lady” and with the First Presbyterian Church of Salem.

Buffy Campbell was predeceased by her husband, John B. Campbell, II, who passed away in 1998. She is survived by her children Joan (Bob) Eliot, Carolyn (Martin) Brown, Laura Campbell, and Keith (Shirley) Campbell as well as nine grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren.

There will be a visitation on Friday, Oct. 4, 2019, from 5 p.m. – 8 p.m., and a memorial service on Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019, at 11 a.m. Both will be held at the First Presbyterian Church of Salem, 88 Market Street, Salem NJ 08079.

In lieu of flowers, the Campbell family requests donations be made to Lighthouse Ministry, a ministry for youth development in Salem, N.J. Contributions may be sent to: Lighthouse Ministry c/o First Presbyterian Church of Salem, 88 Market Street, Salem NJ 08079.