LUMBERTON — Robeson County Sheriff Kenneth Sealey said autopsies will be performed today to determine the cause of death for a local minister and his wife whose bodies were found outside of their Lumberton home Wednesday afternoon.
William Scott, 68, and Charlotte Nelson Scott, 64, were found dead in the patio area of their home on the 1500 block of Old Whiteville Road at about 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, according to Sealey.
Earlier reports said the couple’s daughter found them, but Sealey said he now believes the juvenile was their granddaughter. Sealey has declined to elaborate on the injuries the couple suffered until a medical examiner weighs in.
Charlotte Scott was a retired employee of the U.S. Postal Service in Lumberton, Sealey said, and William Scott, known as Bill, was a minister at Charity Baptist Church in Fayetteville. Calls to Charity Baptist Church were not immediately returned.
Bill Scott also served as the treasurer of East Lumberton Baptist Church.
“We have had a tragedy occur within our church family today. Two of our dearest saints, Rev. Bill & Charlotte Scott, have gone to be with the Lord. The details of the situation are still unknown so just be in prayer for the family during this time,” a post on the church’s Facebook Wednesday evening said.
Michael Bowen, pastor of East Lumberton Baptist Church, said he will remember Bill Scott for his “sweet spirit and his hard work.”
“We’re very shocked,” Bowen said. “He was always on time to work, very dedicated. They were both very calm people.”
Bowen said he had known the couple for about a year and a half, and spoke every week with Bill Scott, who sometimes gave sermons in his absence. He said Charlotte Scott was equally involved in the church, working in the kitchen, decorating and serving on the personnel committee. The Scotts had been raising their granddaughter, Bowen said.
Bill Scott spent weekdays serving as an interim pastor at Charity Baptist Church and attended East Lumberton Baptist Church on Sunday nights.
“They all loved Bill, so they kept him as long as they could,” Bowen said of the Fayetteville congregation.