Terrence Ahearn, Exxon Executive Who Flew Combat Missions Over Vietnam

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Terrence “Terry” J. Ahearn, succumbed to pancreatic cancer on March 25, 2017 after more than a two-and-half year battle.

Terrence Ahearn obit 04-02-17

Terrence Ahearn passed away on March 25. His funeral is scheduled for April 9.

A native of Worcester, Massachusetts, Terry earned a B.A. from The Citadel in 1963 and was commissioned into the U.S. Air Force where he served for six years as a navigator, and flew 143 combat missions over Vietnam.

Subsequently, he earned a J.D. from Boston College School of Law where he was a member of the law review. He then joined Humble Oil & Refining (later Exxon Corporation) in Texas, serving in various high-level positions during a career that spanned thirty years.

One of the highlights of his career was the seven years he was stationed in Hong Kong, where he served as general counsel of Exxon Chemical Asia Pacific during the late ’70s and early ’80s. He became president of the American Club and led the effort to build beautiful new club facilities.


This obituary was previously published by theCharleston Post & Courier.


He returned to the states in 1989, where he spent two years in Darien before returning to Houston for the fourth and final time where he participated in most of the major mergers and acquisitions done by Exxon Chemical during the 1990s.

He retired in 2002 and returned to South Carolina — home of his beloved Citadel — where he and Carroll made a home for themselves on Seabrook Island. They developed many dear friendships and for almost 12 years Terry continually served on committees, boards or Town Council. This included serving on the Board of Directors of the Seabrook Island Property Owners Association, as vice president and president; serving as Town Council member and later as Mayor of the Town of Seabrook Island (2013-2015).

He was well loved and respected by all who knew him and will be remembered for his bright smile, positive attitude, and his love of people.

He leaves his beloved wife Carroll (Summerville, S.C.), his daughter, Lauren Marie Sullivan (Katy, Texas), two sons, Timothy Michael Ahearn (Columbia, S.C.), and Tristan Ahearn (Isle of Palms, S.C.), as well as, his three beautiful grandchildren, Madison Patricia Greenstreet, Quinn McGrail Sullivan, and John Mcquire Sullivan. He is also survived by his two loving stepdaughters, Jill St. John (Denver, CO), and Jodi St. John (Houston, Texas).

A special thanks to our angel nurse, Pam Larson.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday April 8 at Holy Spirit Catholic Church on Johns Island, S.C.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to The Citadel Foundation, 171 Moultrie St., 29409 and/or Roper Hospice.

Visit our guestbook at www.legacy.com/obituaries/ charleston

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