Billy Rex Stephens: Wilmington

    Billy Rex Stephens of Wilmington died Monday,  Sept. 22. He was 73.
    Rex was born Dec. 20, 1940, in Columbus County to the late William Venoy Stephens and Reba Jernigan Stephens.
    He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Joyce Hardee Stephens; two sons, William Christopher Stephens and wife Shannon Parks Stephens of Wilmington and Warren Timothy Stephens and wife Rebecca Hodder Stephens of Chapel Hill and six grandsons Shane, Cameron and Chase Stephens of Wilmington and Connor, Trevor and Derek Stephens of Chapel Hill; one brother Michael Kent Stephens of Colorado and Texas and several nephews.
    Rex grew up in the construction and real estate business. His father started a construction company in 1945 and a local building supply business in the 1950’s which the family operated for 55 years. He graduated from Tabor City High School in 1958 and from Mars Hill College in 1960. Rex worked with Riegel Paper and then as an investment broker with Interstate Securities and A. G. Edwards & Sons before returning again to the real estate business.
     Rex was one of the original principals and founders of the Landmark Companies which began in 1985 in Wilmington. During the past thirty years, the Landmark Companies have developed more than two dozen residential communities, two golf course communities, built more than 3,500 homes and townhomes in a wide range of styles and price ranges. The commercial division of Landmark has developed four industrial parks and many other retail, office, and commercial properties.
    A second generation builder, Rex handled the strategic direction of the Landmark Companies overseeing the development of subdivision, master planned communities, industrial and commercial sites, and the acquisition of major assets including raw land and commercial properties.
    In addition to his real estate involvement, Rex was actively engaged in a number of professional, community, civic and church activities. He was an avid reader and had a love of woodworking, hunting and fishing. Rex was a Board member of the Cape Fear Region Boy Scouts of America having been awarded the Silver Beaver award, and was honored with being inducted into the Home Builders Hall of Fame in 2008.
    Visitation was planned from 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 25 at Andrews Mortuary Valley Chapel.
    Funeral service were planned for 1 p.m. Friday, Sept. 26 at Winter Park Baptist Church, Wilmington.
    In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to a charity of your choice or to Winter Park Baptist Church.
    A guest register is available here.

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