Born in Richwood, WV, Lanty owned and operated Sinking Springs Farms, located in Hillsboro for most of his life. Lanty was on the Bank of Marlinton Board until it was purchased by First Citizens, and he retired at the end of his banking career.
He was proceeded in death by his parents, Richard, and Mabel McNeel. Lanty was survived by two sisters, Martha McNeel Braddock, of Bluffton, SC and Nora McNeel Workman, of Hillsboro.
The woman who gave meaning to his life, Jan has been by his side for 40 years. Together they had a blended family of five children, Elisa Jamey Weber, of Hillsboro, John McNeel II, of Hillsboro, Charlie McNeel, of Masontown, Jacalyn Weber, of Crawley, and Jeffrey Weber, of Morgantown. Also surviving are grandchildren, Hayden McNeel, of Marlinton, Josh Morgan, of Hillsboro, Jesse Weber, of Sinks Grove, Michael Villars, of Daytona, FL, and Calee Villars, of Williamsburg; great-grandchildren include Taylee Morgan and Josiah Weber; and several nieces and nephews.
Lanty attended and graduated from Greenbrier Military Academy where he played basketball and football. He received a B.S. degree in Agriculture from WVU and was a member of Alpha Gamma Rho.
During his life on the farm, he served on the Hillsboro Volunteer Fire Department as well as the Red Cross. He attributed his farming success to the support of many close and personal friends, including: The Hickman family, the Henry Scott family, Sandy McMillion, Clyde Perkins, Ronnie Aldridge, and Jr. Patton as well as many seasonal employees. Sinking Spring Farms was actively involved in record breaking sheep shearing and currently still holds some of these records thanks to the assistance of Calvin McCutcheon. After retiring from farm life, Lanty began a chance of scenery by traveling around the country doing contract work for Barnett Builders with friends including Jim Peachey. In his spare time, he spent many hours with Edgar Starks, a childhood friend, cutting trails and riding four wheelers back on the mountain trails.
He was invested in the preservation of the McNeel Cemetery and worked countless hours with Skip Kite and his son, Charlie, restoring and repairing the gravestones, including, table-stones from the 1700’s.
Lanty was an avid history and genealogy buff and worked closely with the Greenbrier Historical Society contributing donations to support the North House Museum. He recently funded the purchase of 300 books for 3rd graders on the life of Katherine Johnson, White Sulphur Springs native and NASA mathematician.
Lanty and Jan traveled extensively, including stints to New Zealand, the North and South Island as well as Switzerland and Mexico as a chaperone for the high school Spanish class. Lanty traveled west for the National Final High School rodeo to watch his granddaughter participate and to attend conferences on the west coast.
Lanty blessed many with his infectious knowledge of history, and love of community and country. To know him, was to love him.
There will be a celebration of his life and visitation on Friday, Oct. 15, from 5 to 7 p.m. at his farm, Sinking Springs Farms. A service, burial and covered dish dinner will be Saturday, Oct. 16, at 2 p.m. at the same location. Lanty will be taken to the cemetery by horse and carriage and any and all who would like to ride their horse behind the carriage are welcome.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to McNeel Cemetery.