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Isaac Mayo Read
  • In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to:
  • Bishop Gadsden Office of Charitable Giving
    One Bishop Gadsden Way
    Charleston, SC 29412

Pause Looking Back by Bruce H. Zimmerman (ASCAP)
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“Pam and Robert send their deep condolences to you and your family. Mayo was a great person we are so glad to have known him. ”
1 of 4 | Posted by: Robert Dickson - Charleston, SC

“Pam and Robert send their deep condolences to you and your family. Mayo was a great person we are so glad to have known him. ”
2 of 4 | Posted by: Robert Dickson - Charleston, SC

“When I worked at the Horticultural Society, I often worked with Mayo. He was very special to me. He accomplished so much with Charleston Trees. He...Read More »
3 of 4 | Posted by: Sue Kramer - University Park, FL

“Working for Mayo at Palmetto Travel was a joy and pleasure. Everyone appreciated his kindness and generosity. He entertained us at his Tradd Street...Read More »
4 of 4 | Posted by: Sandee White


I. Mayo Read, 84, of Charleston, South Carolina, husband of Ellen Stuart Pringle Read, entered into eternal rest Monday, February 17, 2020. His Memorial Service will be held Saturday, February 22, 2020 in the Chapel at Bishop Gadsden, 1 Bishop Gadsden Way at 1:30 p.m. Burial will be held at a later date in St. Philip's Churchyard. Arrangements by J. Henry Stuhr, Inc. Downtown Chapel.

Mayo was born August 12, 1935 in Charleston, South Carolina, son of the late Isaac Mayo Read and Posey Bacot Myers Read. He graduated from The Gaud School, Episcopal High School, and the University of Virginia. He began his career working with his father's firm, Frost, Read and Simons, as a stock broker. He then became a certified public accountant and worked as CFO for several local businesses. For the last fifteen years of his professional life he and his wife Ellen owned and operated Palmetto Travel Service.

Mayo was an active community leader, serving on the boards of the Historic Charleston Foundation, Spoleto Festival USA the Charleston Symphony Orchestra and the Board of Architectural Review. A passionate tennis player, he was instrumental in founding the Creekside Tennis Club in the early 1970s. He developed an equal passion for planting trees throughout the peninsula city, starting with crepe myrtles on Tradd St. and moving on to spearhead with his friend, Pug Ravenel, the East Bay Avenue of Oaks. Together with the city's urban forester, Danny Burbage, this team was responsible for planting 340 Live Oaks along East Bay Street and Morrison Drive. Mayo then helped form Charleston Trees, a committee first of the Charleston Horticultural Society and now of the Charleston Parks Conservancy. Over the last four decades Mayo Read was the driving force in planting over 1000 trees across the peninsula.

He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Ellen; two sons: Isaac Mayo Read, Jr., of Statesboro, Ga; John Preston Read (Marijean Miller) of Washington, DC; one brother, Peter Bacot Read of Charleston, SC; one former daughter-in-law, Jill Clayton; and four grandchildren: Clayton Elliott Read, Darby Hicks Read, John Preston Read, Jr. and Stuart LeConte Read.

In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to: Bishop Gadsden, Office of Charitable Giving, 1 Bishop Gadsden Way, Charleston, SC 29412 or to a charity of your choice.