Michael Cornelius Gerald, 71, respected banker and community leader, passed away in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, Thursday, November 19, 2020 after a short battle against COVID-related pneumonia. He touched the lives of many and will be deeply missed by his family.
Born March 6, 1949, he was the son of the late Thelma Todd Gerald and Cleeland Talbert Gerald. His brother, Dr. William Levi Gerald, also predeceased him.
He is survived by his wife of forty-four years, Monnie W. Gerald, his son, Michael C. “Neil” Gerald, Jr. and his wife Amanda, and his two grandchildren, Michael C. Gerald, III and Samuel Corley Gerald.
Mike graduated from McClenaghan High School, Florence, the University of South Carolina, Columbia and, the University of Texas, Austin. He joined Coastal Federal Savings and Loan in 1974 engaging in many successive roles before joining the Board of Directors in 1986. In 1989 he became President and CEO, holding that title until Coastal Financial Corporation was acquired by BB&T in 2007. During those 33 years, the organization grew to become a very substantial participant in the financial services industry serving northeastern South Carolina and southeastern North Carolina. He was a member of the South Carolina Bankers Association. During his tenure in the banking business, Mike helped found the Waccamaw Community Foundation, later becoming board chairman. In this position he participated in the considerable growth of the Foundation’s endowment, which significantly increased its ability to support regional non-profit organizations and the overall communities of Horry and Georgetown Counties. Mike also supported his Alma Matter by serving on the University of South Carolina Business Partnership Foundation facilitated through the Moore School of Business. He was a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Myrtle Beach and served as an Elder and member of the audit committee.
Mike had a passionate love of his family and friends and his southern beginnings. He treasured the coast, the outdoors, philanthropy, and beach music.
Funeral services will be held at 1:00 PM, Monday, November 30, 2020 at the First Presbyterian Church of Myrtle Beach with the Rev. Dr. John C. Brearley and the Rev. Dr. Charles D. Elliott officiating. Entombment will follow in the Mausoleum at Southern Palms Memorial Gardens. The family will receive friends at McMillan-Small Funeral Home Sunday, November 29th from 3:30 - 5:30 pm. Due to COVID-19 social distancing will be observed and masks required.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the First Presbyterian Church, PO Box 70127, Myrtle Beach, SC 29572 or to the Waccamaw Community Foundation for the Waccamaw Community Trust Fund, 3655 South Hwy 17, Murrells Inlet, SC 29576.
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