The chairman of the South Carolina Club for Growth died Monday afternoon after a rock climbing accident in North Carolina, according to a report from WHKP Radio.
William McAfee, 40, of Irmo, died after falling about 30 feet off a rock in a popular rock climbing area near Rumbling Bald and north of Lake Lure, N.C.
According to a release dated Oct. 4, 2011, from the S.C. Club for Growth, McAfee was named the chairman of the group’s board of directors.
The S.C. Club for Growth is a politically and fiscally conservative group that advocates public policies that promote economic growth. The group publishes an annual legislative scorecard grading the state's legislators' performance on fiscal issues.
In addition to his duties as chairman, McAfee also was the president and chief investment officer of WHM Capital Advisors.
Those that knew McAfee said he was a leader and brilliant man.
“I was saddened to hear of the tragic loss of Bill McAfee,” Chris Chocola, president of the Club for Growth, said in a statement Tuesday.
“The South Carolina Club for Growth had in Bill a leader whose time came too soon. Our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family.”
Phillip Cease, executive director of the S.C. Club for Growth, said Tuesday that McAfee was "an outstanding leader with a heart for people."
“He truly loved the Lord and his family – and was not ashamed of it. The South Carolina Club for Growth was very fortunate to have him serve as chairman. He will be missed.”
A friend. A mentor. A follower of Christ. A man who believed in good stewardship.
The description is fitting for the man John Barnes, chief operating officer at WHM Capital Advisors, said he knew for the last eight years.
"This is a huge shock," Barnes said. "I can't believe this happened."
"The people that knew him well know he talked a lot about stewardship. When he became involved in a project, he would leave things better than he found it.
"We lost a friend but (we know) he's with the Lord."
McAfee is a graduate of The Citadel where he was a Battalion Executive Officer and Distinguished Naval Student. He is also an honor graduate of United States Marine Corps Officer Candidate School.
McAfee began his financial career in commercial banking and served as an adjunct faculty member at the University of South Carolina’s Darla Moore School of Business for five years.
McAfee is survived by his wife, Teresa, and their three children.
Check back here for more information as it becomes available.