Armstead Lester Hayes, beloved husband, father, grandfather, and great grandfather, left his earthly home to be with the Lord on Tuesday, September 1, 2020, at the age of 91. Born and raised in Notasulga, Alabama, Armstead graduated from Macon County High School in 1946. He earned a bachelor's degree in Industrial Management from Auburn University, where he served in the Army ROTC program. Upon graduation from Auburn University in 1950, Armstead married his hometown sweetheart Shirley Kirby Hayes at the First United Methodist Church in Notasulga where he served many years as superintendent. He and Shirley then moved to Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Through his army commitment, he was transferred to Fort Knox, Kentucky. While serving in the military at Fort Knox, Armstead achieved the rank of captain and commanded a tank battalion, acting as an instructor for new recruits. He later moved back to Notasulga and was appointed US Postmaster by President John F. Kennedy in 1963. After serving as postmaster in Notasulga for 37 years, Armstead retired from the US Postal Service, and he and Shirley moved to Auburn, where he remained until his death.
While in Auburn, Armstead was involved in church, community, and university activities. Armstead and Shirley were long time members of Auburn United Methodist Church, where he served on the administrative board and was the president of the Joel McDavid Sunday School Class. He also served as president of the Auburn-Opelika National Association of Retired and Active Federal Employees. Armstead had a deep love and passion for Auburn University Athletics, particularly men’s basketball. He served as president of the Auburn Tip-Off Club, receiving the Distinguished Service Award and the 6th Player Award. In 2006, he received the David Housel Auburn Spirit Award.
Armstead loved his wife and family dearly. He was a man of character and the highest integrity. More importantly, he loved the Lord and his Auburn UMC church family. He was always a gentleman, putting the wishes of others first. He was so appreciative of his friends, the people he met, and the opportunities he was given in life. A man of deep convictions and a strong faith, Armstead was a living example of the Auburn Creed and its ideals. He is survived by his wife, Shirley, to whom he was married for 70 wonderful years. He is also survived by his daughter Debbie Hayes (Kelley) Mossburg of Santa Rosa Beach, FL; son Les (Jennifer) Hayes of Auburn, AL; grandchildren Kel Mossburg of Eastaboga, AL; Landon (Danielle) Mossburg of Stockholm, Sweden; Stead (Martha) Hayes of Birmingham, AL; Wylie Hayes of Montgomery, AL; Will Hayes of Atlanta, GA; and great-grandchildren Chase, Charlotte and Aria Mossburg.
The family extends a heartfelt thanks to Dr. John Abrams of Auburn, AL, and his staff for their loving care, as well as the doctors and nurses at East Alabama Medical Center. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Joel McDavid Sunday School class at Auburn United Methodist Church, PO Box 3135, Auburn, AL 36831, or Rainbow Omega, a caring facility for intellectually challenged adults at PO Box 740, Eastaboga, AL, where his grandson Kel resides. A private family graveside service will be held at the Notasulga Cemetery on Thursday, September 3, 2020, with Rev. George Mathison officiating and Rev. Cory Smith and Rev. Charles Cummings participating in the service.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Armstead Lester Hayes, please visit our floral store.