the inspiration behind Angels In Action

Elder Seddrick J. Purcell

Elder Seddrick J. Purcell was a man with a huge, compassionate heart. He loved everyone and helped whoever he could. As our namesake for Angels In Action Resource Center we felt it was important to share about who he was and why this mission is so important not only to us but to our community. Seddrick was born December 15, 1977 in Pinehurst, NC to Nathaniel Purcell Jr. and Mary Davis Purcell. He was one of five children. Seddrick’s eldest sister Renee Verbal preceded his death,and was dear to his heart. From his mothers heart she said, “I asked God for a son! I got Seddrick, and gave him back to God when he was born!” 

Even from a young age Seddrick grew up with a very different outlook on life and wasn’t a typical youth. He would often be found helping others; it did not matter who they were, and part of that meant he also spent time with people of all ages and walks of life. Seddrick was a big brother to everyone. When asked to describe this gentle soul, you would hear about his encouraging nature, fun loving spirit, his ability to make people laugh and smile, and that he was a fierce protector, especially of his family. Seddrick loved Jesus and also spent a lot of time in church.  Of course with Seddrick being who he was also had a few of his own hobbies; he loved sports, playing with his sticks he found while on his many walks through the woods, traveling, and his massive collection of comic books. Seddrick was a huge fan of the Minnesota Vikings (Go purple and gold!) and when his team would play he wanted the house silent! Seddrick was thankful for many things and never complained much in life.

Seddrick met Kornelia in August of 2000 and fell in love telling her, “you are the love of my life!” On November 8, 2001 Seddrick married Kornelia at the magistrate office of Hoke County and their life began as one.  Together Seddrick & Kornelia have six children, and three grandchildren. Seddrick’s health began to fail beginning in 2005 while employed at Pinehurst Resort. Initially, he suffered from having multiple seizures. After the first hospital visit, together Seddrick and his wife were informed that he was in very poor health. He was diagnosed with diabetes, high blood pressure, epilepsy, thyroid disease, a brain tumor, and threatening kidney disease. They were devastated but determined to fight! They struggled for many years with treatments and medical bills but Seddrick, still with his heart of purple and gold, continued to help others even though he himself needed help. You could often hear him say, “ if you can’t help me, then help someone.”  

After relocating to Asheville in 2016, Seddrick spent his next few years in the mountains doing what he loved! He became closer to God. Seddrick was also an ordained minister at River of Life in Asheville and loved his pastor and members there. He knew how valuable life was and wanted to live every moment as best he could, so he spent time traveling to Hilton Head Beach, SC, Myrtle Beach, SC, Nashville and Gatlinburg, TN, embracing those special moments and creating memories with his family and friends. In 2019 Seddrick and Kornelia celebrated their 19th wedding anniversary in Myrtle Beach, SC.  Seddrick became very ill following their anniversary trip and was admitted to Mission Hospital in Asheville, NC. His kidneys were failing, but was denied a kidney transplant due to the condition of his health and other illnesses. Seddrick was then transferred to a skilled nursing home facility for the following three weeks for rehabilitation. After nearly thirty days, Seddrick returned home for his birthday. Everyone was so happy to see his smiling face and welcomed Seddrick back home and church with open arms. 

It was New Year’s Eve 2019, Seddrick was feeling a little tired, so they decided to watch the night church service from home and ring in 2020 together. Seddrick and his wife fell asleep on the sofa, as would often happen when spending time together.  Around 1 a.m. Seddrick woke Kornelia up, and said “Happy New Year’s baby!” “Let’s go get in the bed!” Seddrick was scheduled for dialysis the same morning, and after laying down for a few hours; Seddrick woke up breathing heavily. Seddrick was transported to hospital, with his wife and two youngest children traveling behind him.On New Year’s morning, about four hours later, Seddrick told Kornelia she and their children would be alright and at that moment he gained his Angelic wings.

We do what we do in loving memory of Seddrick J. Purcell, to honor and continue his legacy. He was and will always truly be our Angel in Action.