ARARAT — Mr. Clifton Baird Atkins, 81, of Ararat, passed away unexpectedly at Northern Surry Hospital in Surry County on Tuesday, April 17, 2012. Mr. Atkins was born in Surry County Aug. 29, 1930, the son of the late John William and Ira Lou Atkins of Mount Airy. He was preceded in death by his brother, Porter Atkins of Ararat; and his sister, Alma Godfrey of Sanford. Mr. Atkins graduated from Rockford High school and Piedmont Bible College. He is a charter member of Temple Baptist Church in Mount Airy. Upon early retirement from RJ Reynolds Tobacco Company, he worked for Hennis and Pilot Freight Carriers. Surviving are his wife, Mary Ruth Atkins; and their seven children, Helen and John Gwyn of Winston-Salem, Nancy Stevenson of Ararat and the late Herbert Lee Stevenson, Johnny and Janet Atkins of Mount Airy, David and Pauline Atkins of Ararat, Va., Audrey and Dennis Freeman of Mount Airy, Twain Atkins of Ararat and Joseph Atkins of Kernersville. Mr. Atkins is also survived by 16 grandchildren; 30 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild. Funeral services will be at Temple Baptist Church in Mount Airy Friday, April 20, 2012, at 2 p.m. Officiating at the service will be the Rev. Zane Fishel. Interment will follow immediately at Little Mountain Baptist Church in Ararat. The family will be receiving visitors from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, April 19, at Moody Funeral Home in Mount Airy. They would like to express a very special thank you to Ms. Sherri McCraw for her exceptional care of both the late Mr. Atkins and her continued care for his wife, Mrs. Mary Ruth Atkins.