LEXINGTON - Thomas Rinehart "Bop" Chewning, 85, formerly of Holly Hill, went home to be with the Lord on Monday, May 28, 2012. The funeral will be 3 p.m. Thursday, May 31, Holly Hill United Methodist Church with Rev. Cooper Stonestreet and Rev. Albert Cox officiating. Burial will be private. Visitation will be this Wednesday from 6 to 8 p.m. at Avinger Funeral Home, Holly Hill. Rinehart was born November 3, 1926, in Pinewood, SC a son of the late Leland Felix Chewning and Alma Felder Chewning. He joined Andrews Chapel Sept 12, 1935. A graduate of Pinewood High School, he joined the US Navy in 1943, and serving in the South Pacific until 1946. He married the love of his life, Billie Bull Chewning, on February 9, 1947 and they were faithfully married for 65 years. He bought and operated Rinehart's Esso from July 9, 1954 until Aug 19, 1983, and served under Governor Edwards on the Small Businessmen's Board. For the final 10 years of his career, from 1983 until 1993, he was a leading agent for Liberty Life Insurance Co., having earned many awards, such as the Order of the Blue Vase , Hall of Fame, and had the top award for being the leading company agent. During the 1970's he and Billie formed a Christian musical group of teenagers called the 'Beacons'. They sang at many churches throughout SC and GA. Rinehart was an active member of Holly Hill United Methodist Church, where he served as Sunday School Superintendent, Sunday School teacher, active in the Methodist Men, and served in many other ministries. He served as Holly Hill Fire Chief, a Mason, a longstanding Lion's Club member and was instrumental in the Fishers of Men. Rinehart also maintained an on-going personal prayer ministry in his community, and Grace Home Ministries of Santee enjoyed his support for several years. One of his many hobbies was writing his weekly article in the Times and Democrat newspaper, "Reminiscing with Rinehart." These writings, which were stories from his heart of his childhood, his family and his beloved community, were eventually published in his book, Lest We Forget. Having been gifted with a green thumb, Rinehart took pride in his yard and flower garden. His irises and hydrangeas were enjoyed by all who viewed them, and his lawn was always green. Years spent in his yard were some of the dearest times he enjoyed with his Lord and Creator . Aside from his many interests, his primary love was for his family. He devoted his life to the happiness of his wife and children, Cheryl Metz, Carol Jackson, Billie Reeder and Tommy (Kim) Chewning. "Bop" adored his 10 grandchildren, Johnny (Tina) Metz, Jamey Metz, Angie (Marty) Sample, Mary Frances (Larry) Reaves, William (Bri) Jackson, Joseph Reeder, Hart Reeder, Clark Chewning, Sarah Chewning, and Daniel Chewning; and his 10 great-grandchildren, Ryan Metz, Sabrina Metz, Bailey Metz, Maryanne Metz, Angel Metz, Caleb Sample, Abigail Sample, Leland Sample, Griffin Reaves, and baby Reaves. For 30 plus years he and the entire family enjoyed an annual beach trip, 28 of which were at the same house. At the beach he enjoyed making chocolate milkshakes, sculpting alligators in the sand, cooking French fries, and getting anything else the family wanted or needed. He epitomized devotion. His greatest, most endearing love was for his children and grandchildren and his greatest joys were being a father, son, and husband. His children know that no one will appreciate the beauty of Heaven more than their father. He was preceded in death by brother John, who died at birth, and sisters, Mary, Kitty McLeod and Margaret Way. Grandsons serving as pallbearers are Johnny Metz, Bailey Metz, James Rinehart Metz, Sr., Clark Chewning, Daniel Chewning, Will Jackson, Hart Reeder, and Joe Reeder. Honorary pallbearers are James Rinehart Metz, Jr., Marty Sample, Caleb Sample, Larry Reeves, Barney Atkinson, Billy Ray Reeder, Donny Bobo and Phillip Proveaux. Memorials may be made to Grace Home, P. O. Box 407, Santee, SC 29142 or Holly Hill United Methodist Church, PO Box 398, Holly Hill, SC 29059. Cards may be sent to Billie Chewning, 123 Gibson Rd, Unit 4, Lexington, SC 29072.