July 17, 1932 – January 11, 2018
RODANTHE- Garreld A.M. “Pete” Covey quietly left this world Thursday, January11, 2018, after a long courageous battle against a relentlessfoe. Pete was a Great Depression era baby born on July 17, 1932,the second of five children to Peter and Pearl Covey. He wasknown by many and to many by several different names. Raised asBill but known to his friends as Wild Bill. Perhaps because ofhis remarkable prowess firearms, or maybe due to him receiving aspeeding ticket on his hometown’s main street whilst driving a Shermantank for the local Unit of the U.S. National Guard.
Pete was Willy to his youngest brother, Gary Covey, married to Linda,of Tulsa, Oklahoma. However, his shipmates in the U.S. Navy knewhim simply as Covey. His service started and ended on surfaceships; the USS MT OLYMPUS and USS ORION, respectively. ButCovey’s true love was the navy’s submarines, or silent service. His Cold War era duty on subs began on the USS REQUIN, a diesel –electric boat. It is now a museum exhibit on Pittsburgh’swaterfront. Next was time in Groton overseeing welding done inproduction of his next assignment, the USS NATHAN HALE.
Covey’s Navy career took him far and wide. His sea time took himthrough the Bering Straits to above the Arctic Circle, to theMediterranean and Caribbean Seas, to the North Atlantic and to CentralAmerica during turbulent years. His REQUIN duty experience visitsfrom Prince Ranier and Grace Kelly while in port at Monaco, and alsofrom President JFK. His next submarine assignment, the USS NATHANHALE was commissioned the very next day after JFK’s assassination.
After submarines came a role as an instructor at sub school in Groton,Connecticut, and then finishing as a career counselor. However, thoseon the East coast knew the retired sailor as Pete, who moved to hiswife’s hometown Rodanthe, where he has resided ever since. In 1972, hebegan Covey’s Construction which he owned and operated for 45 years. Hewas married to Irita Midgett for 45 years and delivered him two sons,Melvin Covey and Robert Covey. Mel is father to Sarah CoveyBlount, married to Thomas Jordan Blount at Tarboro, NC. They have twosmall children Thomas Blount, Jr. (Jordy) and John Covey Blount. Mel’s other child is Nathan Joshua P. Covey married to Tatiana, ofBuxton, NC. Irita passed in 1996.
Robbie and his wife Trisha of Rodanthe. Robbie has two children,a son Daniel Covey and wife Gina of Salvo. They have two childrenDylan Robert Thomas and Chloe Elizabeth. His Daughter Erika Coveyand Nick Eggert of Ashville, NC. Sister-in-law Patricia MidgettConklin and Husband Dale Conklin of Nauvoo, IL.
Pete is also survived by his wife of 18 years, Bonnie Sasser CahoonCovey and four step-children. Thomas Cahoon and wife Melinda ofWaverly, VA, Scott Cahoon of Rodanthe, David N. Cahoon and Teresa ofWanchese, NC, and Natasha Willis Klomp and Husband Andrew of Raleigh,NC. Thirteen step-grandchildren and eightstep-great-grandchildren.
He is also survived by his sister Beverly Nobel and husband Joe Nobelof Eugene Oregon, and a brother Gary Covey and wife Linda of Tulsa,Oklahoma.
Pete was also preceded in death by his parents Peter and Pearl Covey ofOxford, Nebraska, his older brother Darrel and wife Hazel Covey ofPortland, Oregon, an infant sister Naomi and his beloved Uncle Mel,brother to his father, and a step-daughter Alisa Bryan.
Pete was an avid volunteer with a strong work ethic who had acompelling desire to see Dare County prosper. He was the foundingfather of Chicamacomico’s Volunteer Fire Department (Badge No. 1 washis.) and served many years on the County’s Planning Board, and theCounty’s early efforts to jetty Oregon Inlet. Among several otherendeavors, he served as president of the Sound and Sea Fisherman’sCooperative in Dare County.
To say Pete will be missed is a huge understatement. A celebration oflife will be held and the RWS Community Building on Sunday, January 21,2018, beginning at 2 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Pete’s name may be made to theChicamacomico Banks Fire and Rescue, PO Box 125, Rodanthe, NC 27968 ora charity of one’s choice.
Twiford Funeral Home, Manteo is assisting the family with arrangements. Condolences may be expressed at www.TwifordFH.com.