Reverend Dr. Clyde Taft McCants, 87, of Winnsboro, passed away on Good Friday, April 10, 2020.
Following his first career as a college faculty member, he served as a minister in the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church denomination. Born in Anderson January 8, 1933, he graduated from Erskine College, earned Masters degrees from Erskine and Duke University and a doctorate from Columbia Theological Seminary.
Dr. McCants taught English at Elon University, Erskine, and Gaston Community College where he also served as department chair. He served for four years on the faculty of Erskine Theological Seminary.
Rev. Dr. McCants began his 40-year career as a minister in the Associate Reformed Presbyterian (ARP) Church denomination in 1970 including service at Bethel ARP Chuch in Winnsboro and 11 years as pastor of Greenville ARP Church. He was elected as Moderator of the ARP denomination.
He published four books related to opera: two on the works of Verdi; an overview of American opera singers and their recordings; and a reference work, Opera for Libraries. He was elected to the Erskine Academic Hall of Fame, was state chair of the Friends of South Carolina Libraries, and Chair of the Fairfield County Library Commission.
At an age when most people have long since retired, he continued to serve his community as a teacher at Richard Wynn Academy in Winnsboro and as pastor of White Oak ARP Church.
Clyde McCants was the son of the late Edwin Clyde and Mary Rachel Taft McCants. He was predeceased by his sister, Mary Ellen McCants Evans; and nephew, William Evans.
He is survived by loving nieces and nephews and their spouses: Ed Evans; Gracie Farrow (Glenn); Emalee Dillard (Mark); Chris Evans (Norma); and Jeannie Everett (Kent). Also great nieces and nephew: Mary Farrow Dean, Rebecca Farrow Scott, Sydney Evans, Carson Evans, Amie Freeman, Alison Forbes, Ellis Evans, Zack Chapman, Andres Blandon, and Daniel Saavedra. He had four great-great nieces, Mia and Abigail Freeman, Emily Dean, and Rowyn Scott. He had three great-great nephews, Griffin Scott, Parker Dean and Rory Major.
Clyde was a knowledgeable enthusiast and collector with interests not only in opera but also the circus and country music. His collection includes over 12,000 opera CDs. He was known for his outgoing personality and positive, uplifting sermons. He enjoyed a circle of loyal friends and had a deep appreciation for their support in his later years.
A private committal service will be held at White Oak ARP Church Cemetery conducted by Reverend James McManus. A public memorial service will be held at a later date.
Memorials in lieu of flowers may be made to: White Oak Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church, 284 Patrick Rd, Winnsboro, SC 29180; Bethel ARP Church, 101 North Zion Street, Winnsboro, SC, 29180; or Erskine College Giving, 2 Washington St., Due West, SC 29639.