Stephen Glenn Hix, 63, died in Huntersville, NC from ALS on January 12, 2018. Many knew him as a witty, personable, and exceptional dentist who could actually make patients enjoy their time in a dental chair.
His family knew him as a vivid storyteller and master of ceremonies who could recall long-forgotten names, dates, places, and embarrassing stories. He imbued family Bingo, bowling games, beach trips to Kiawah, Wake Forest ball games, and other occasions with funny sayings and lively teasing.
He was born on September 7, 1954 in Pinehurst, NC to Glenn Hix and Mabel Green Hix. He lived in Biscoe, NC until age 3, when his parents went to Taiwan and later to Okinawa as missionaries. He attended Taipei American School for eleven years and graduated from Kubasaki High School in Okinawa. He was an excellent athlete and attended Wake Forest University, following in his father’s footsteps and joining his older brother Dan there. He graduated in 1976 with a degree in biology.
Steve received his DDS in 1980 from the University of North Carolina, where he met his wife, Debra Holcombe Hix. They married on June 27, 1980. He then served for two years as a Commissioned Officer with the Indian Health Service in Phoenix, Arizona.
In 1982, Steve and Debbie started their private dental practice in Huntersville, where he took exceptional care of his patients and staff until his retirement in 2011. He was a man of steadfast and active faith, serving as an elder for 22 years at Southlake Presbyterian Church and chairing the Missions Committee for 18 years. On Sunday mornings for years, worshippers enjoyed his warm tenor voice and guitar skills as part of the worship team.
An avid jogger since he was a teenager, Steve ran as he did everything else: with unwavering discipline. No matter the weather, the place, or the circumstances, he would run on his regularly scheduled days. He often reminded his children that “While you were sleeping, I was out running.” On family hikes, he set a blistering pace and expected everyone to fall in and keep up!
He loved history, war movies, German Chocolate Cake, music, sports, and family stories. He despised decorative pillows of any kind, dinner served before the divinely appointed time of 7:00 p.m., potato soup, a messy car, and squirrels. Especially squirrels.
He personified the term Hixy, which was coined to describe his grandfather Van Hix, and is defined as a man who is charming, unique, quirky, funny, and most of all, stubborn. Somehow, he managed to make his hard-headedness likeable enough that most folks (usually) just laughed and gave up on trying to change Steve’s mind. Good thing, because changing his mind was not in Steve’s skill set.
This Hixiness served him well as he battled ALS, charming caregivers and refusing to let go of things he enjoyed. In his last weeks, he bundled up, sat in the freezing cold, and watched his beloved Demon Deacons win a thrilling bowl game.
He was a loving and faithful husband for 37 years to Debbie, and a devoted father to his daughter Laura Elise Hix of Winston-Salem, NC and his son Aaron Ryan Hix of Cambridge, MA.
He is survived by his wife and children, parents Glenn and Mabel Hix of Hendersonville, NC, brothers Daniel Hix (Pam) of Maryville, TN, Mark Hix (Mary) of Lewisville, NC and Philip Hix (Monica) of Greensboro, NC and by nephews and nieces Todd Hyatt, Andrew Hix, Emily Dothard (Andy), Anna Rodenfels (Jack) Lesley Ann Tommey (Blake) and Reid Hix, who will miss his good-natured teasing and embarrassing stories about their fathers.
The family will receive friends from 5-8 PM Friday, January 19 at James Funeral Home. The service to celebrate his life will be held at 11 AM Saturday, January 20 in the chapel of James Funeral Home with Rev. Adam Mumpower officiating. Interment will be private at Northlake Memorial Gardens.
Memorials may be made to the Joe Martin ALS Foundation and Brookstone Schools.
James Funeral Home of Huntersville is serving the family. www.jamesfuneralhomeLKN.com