Pearline (McDonald) Scarborough

October 28, 1928 ~ September 14, 2022 (age 93)


The Celebration of Life Service for Mrs. Scarborough will be live streamed on the Facebook Page of Fisher Memorial Funeral Parlor.


Pearline McDonald Scarborough, born October 28, 1928, in Durham County, North Carolina, departed this life peacefully on September 14, 2022, and entered into eternal rest.

Pearline was the older daughter of the late Mattie Hall McDonald and the sister of Betty Lou McDonald Robinson, who also preceded her in death. At an early age, Pearline joined West Durham Baptist Church and remained a member for over eighty years. She was also a member of Mount Vernon Baptist Church, Durham, NC, for ten years.

In 1946, Pearline graduated from Hillside High School, Durham, NC, and then attended Payne Business College in Raleigh, NC. Her secretarial career spanned six decades. She began in the employ of Dr. C. D. Grandy, Durham, NC, for ten years, followed by thirty years of service at UNC Hospitals, Chapel Hill, NC, and culminated with twenty years at the Environmental Protection Agency (RTP).

In 1949, Pearline married Ronald Herman Scarborough, Sr., a union blessed with three children: Brenda Joyce, Ronald Jr., and Deborah Yvonne. Pearline was a caring and dedicated mother and then later grandmother, great grandmother (“Grandma Grandma”), and great-great grandmother. She never tired of sharing family stories about her children and her beloved grands.  Not only was she a mother of distinction to her own progeny, but she also opened her heart and shared her life with several others whom she called her surrogate children. The light of her generous spirit encompassed people of varied ages and ethnicities who were fortunate enough to be in her midst.

Having committed her life to Jesus Christ as a child, Pearline was a faithful servant saint in the church for as long as her health allowed. At West Durham Baptist Church, in addition to her membership in the Martha Graham Sunday School Class, she became one of the first female members of the Trustee Board and one of the first female ushers. She helped to organize the Chancellor Choir, served as president/advisor, and worked with the choir for eleven years, missing only two meetings during that period. Pearline also served on the Pulpit Search Committee and Board of Christian Education. She loved missionary work, as a leader (vice-president of the Adult Missionary Group and district leader of Missionary District 7) and a follower. She enjoyed working with the youth and engaging with the older members of the church as well, arenas in which her genial disposition proved a blessing to all.

Over the years, Pearline’s civic activities included active membership in the NAACP, membership on the M. L. King Steering Committee, membership in the Drucilla Chapter #19 of the Order of the Eastern Star, membership in the Daughters of Zafa Court #41, and coordinator of weekly bingo games for seniors and retirees at a local restaurant.

As a loving mother and grandmother, as a beacon of light and joy, and as a model of one who embraced life with a passion and zeal that belied her years, Pearline will be greatly missed. She leaves to cherish her precious memory, three children: Brenda Joyce Scarborough, Durham, NC; Min. Ronald H. Scarborough, Jr (Toya), Garner, NC; Deborah Scarborough-Newton (Ronald), Durham, NC; six grandchildren, Derek Scarborough, Sr. (Shannon), Augusta, GA; Dayshonda Bumphus (Lee), Durham, NC; Terrence Scarborough (Candi), Durham, NC; Nicholas Scarborough (Chantille), High Point, NC; Remington Scarborough and Deanna Scarborough, both of Garner NC; nine great-grandchildren, and three great-great-grandchild; five nephews of Seattle, WA; one god-daughter, Emily High Daniels; surrogate children: Glenda, Mia, and Andre Small, Joe Sledge, Barbara Lassiter, and Percy, Carol, and Amber Murray; numerous cousins and friends.   




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Memorial Tree
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September 19, 2022

1:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Fisher Memorial Funeral Parlor
3137 Fayetteville Street
Durham, NC 27707

September 20, 2022

10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
West Durham Baptist Church
1901 Athens Avenue
Durham, NC 27707

Funeral Service
September 20, 2022

11:00 AM
West Durham Baptist Church
1901 Athens Avenue
Durham, NC 27707

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