The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

January 17, 2014

Obituaries — Friday, January 17, 2014

Virginia Tully Bailess

EDMOND — Virginia Tully Bailess, 90, widow of the late Herbert “Dick” Bailess of Edmond, died on Thursday, January 16, 2014, at Fayette Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Fayetteville, W.Va.

Born August 2, 1923, at Edmond, she was the daughter of the late Howard B. Tully Sr. and Gertrude Callison Tully.

A son, Winford Bailess (1951), and a daughter, Margaret (2006), preceded her in death as did four brothers, James, Henry, Pat and John.

Survivors include a son, Henry “Hank” Bailess and wife, Ann, of Lansing; three daughters, Lois Holliday and husband, Ted, of Chesterfield, Va., Frances Childress of Tampa, Fla., and Donna Bailess of West Palm Beach, Fla.; eight grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Funeral services will be on Saturday, January 18, 2014, at 11 a.m. at Beauty Mountain Baptist Church in Edmond with Bro. Dana Stalnaker officiating. Burial will be at High Lawn Memorial Park, Oak Hill.

Visitation will be held at Beauty Mountain Baptist Church on Friday, January 17, 2014, from 6 to 8 p.m.

Many special thanks to the caregivers at Fayette Nursing and Rehab for their outstanding care and compassion.

Online condolences may be sent at

Arrangements by Tyree Funeral Home, Oak Hill.

Lonnie Bailey

CRAIGSVILLE — Lonnie Bailey, 42, passed away Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014.

Service will be 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 18, at Simons-Coleman Funeral Home, Richwood, with Pastor Jerry Hayhurst officiating. Interment will follow in the Fleming Cemetery at Cottle. Friends may call from noon until time of the service Saturday at the funeral home.

Arrangements by Simons-Coleman Funeral Home, Richwood.

Richard W. Bland

Richard Warren Bland, age 67, succumbed to brain cancer on January 5, 2014, at Bowers Hospice House in Beckley.

Richard was born in St. Albans, Kanawha County, W.Va., to the late James P. and Betty H. Bland and was raised in Beckley.

After obtaining his B.S. in Aerospace Engineering in 1968 from West Virginia University, Rick took employment in Salt Lake City, Utah, returning to West Virginia in 1970 to accept the position of Design Engineer with Lively Manufacturing & Equipment Co. He became the Contracting Engineer and remained at Lively Manufacturing until 1981 when he ventured out on his own as Richard W. Bland, Inc., an engineering and business consulting company specializing in coal preparation design, economics and valuation. Rick’s clients were country-wide and he was a Registered Professional Engineer in 11 states ranging from WV, KY and PA westward to CA. Rick was involved in many diversified and exciting business ventures, with the world of coal being his forte. He became an Associate with Stagg Resource Consultants, Inc., in Cross Lanes, WV; was Bankruptcy Manager of Slab Fork Coal Company, Debtor-in-Possession for 6 years; Partner in Bland-Fox Development Partners for 10 years; owned over 500 acres of coal property in Raleigh County; and was sole owner of Vitrinite, Inc., of which 50% was sold to Rick’s lifelong friend and business partner, C. Bruce McDaniel. As 50/50 partners, Rick and Bruce set up Nano Drying Technologies, LLC, which holds and owns various pending patents pertaining to the drying of fine mineral particles and other mineral/ coal industry applications.

Rick lived a “big life” and felt that if you weren’t doing at least 3 to 5 things at once then you were wasting time. Rick had a broad range of hobbies and interests, a few of which were cars, anything technological, skiing, cars, traveling, reading, cars, sports and, not to be left out, golf and real estate; however, the Boy Scouts of America was one of his passions. In December of 1959, following in his father’s footsteps, Rick obtained the rank of Eagle Scout and continued the family tradition by participating as a scoutmaster and encouraging his two sons to also obtain their Eagle Scout rankings.

Rick is survived by his wife of 20 years, Melinda Gilmer Bland, his two sons, Richard II and Christopher, his sister, Joyce Skakandy (Stephen Skakandy), his brother’s son Alex (Elisa Conlon), two grandchildren, Duke and Adelynn, special nieces Sydney and Coryn Gilmer and Kendall and Avery Bland, as well as various beloved cousins and in-laws.

A private burial is planned and the family will receive guests on Saturday, January 18, 2014, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Beckley Presbyterian Church on Kanawha St. which is to be followed by a memorial service. Rick’s loved ones wish to extend their sincere gratitude to the kind and compassionate caretakers at Bowers Hospice House. Those wishing to make an expression of sympathy are asked to consider donations to either the Bowers Hospice House, Beckley Presbyterian Church or to a local Boy Scout Troop.

Condolences may be sent to the family’s guestbook at

Arrangements by Melton Mortuary and Cremation Center, Beckley.

Michael Chapman

BLUEFIELD — Michael Chapman, 57, of Bluefield, formerly of Beckley, passed away Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014.

Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 18, at Rose and Quesenberry Peace Chapel in Beckley, with the Rev. Orville Setliff officiating. Burial will follow at the Parker Cemetery at Coal City. Friends may visit from 9 a.m. until service time Saturday at the funeral home.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be directed to a favorite charity.

Private online condolences, floral tributes, and other expressions of sympathy may be directed to the family via our guestbook at

Arrangements are by Rose and Quesenberry Funeral Home, 1901 S. Kanawha St., Beckley.

Nancy Lee Cosby Coleman

LEWISBURG — Nancy Lee Cosby Coleman, 83, of Lewisburg, passed away Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014, at Greenbrier Valley Medical Center.

She was born Nov. 4, 1930, in Roanoke, Va., and was a daughter of the late Lloyd Thompson Cosby and Sarah Irwin Amos Cosby.

Nancy graduated from Ronceverte High School and attended Farmville College for Women and later received a degree in Social Work from West Virginia University.

She was a member of the Old Stone Presbyterian Church, the Savannah Garden Club and Chapter O of the PEO Sisterhood. Nancy was a full-time substitute teacher from Greenbrier East High School from the late 1960s through the early 1980s and also worked at various gift shops in Lewisburg. She also enjoyed playing bridge, decorating, cooking, and spending time with her family and friends.

She was preceded in death by her parents; a brother, L.T. Cosby; and her dear aunts and uncle, Dua, Jenny and Josh.

She is survived by her husband of 59 years, William Coleman of Lewisburg, and a daughter, Jane Ashley Coleman of Cumming, Ga. She is also survived by a brother-in-law, Jimmy Coleman and wife, Nancy, of Lewisburg; a sister-in-law, Mary Coleman Scarborough and husband, Jim, of Lewisburg; brother-in-law, Jack Coleman and wife, Jean, of Knoxville, Tenn., and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.

The family would like to say a special thank you to all of Nancy’s caregivers for their care, compassion and companionship over the years.

A memorial service will be 3 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 18, 2014, at the Old Stone Presbyterian Church in Lewisburg, with the Rev. Dr. J. Dexter Taylor officiating.

There will be a fellowship following the service for friends and family in the Education Building at Old Stone Presbyterian Church.

In lieu of flowers, donations of sympathy may be made to Old Stone Presbyterian Church, 200 Church St., Lewisburg, WV 24901.

Please send online condolences by visiting

Arrangements by Wallace & Wallace Funeral Home, Lewisburg.

Arthur Lee Combs

Arthur Lee Combs, 79, passed away Jan. 14, 2014.

Service will be 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 18, at High Lawn Funeral Chapel, Oak Hill. Friends may call from 1 p.m. until the time of the service.

Arrangements by High Lawn Funeral Chapel, Oak Hill.

Ricky Gray

On Sunday, January 12th, 2014, our most cherished Ricky Lee Gray of Harper died tragically in an accident near his home. He was 49 years of age.

Born on May 1st, 1964, Ricky was the beloved son of Charles “Pete” and Dorothy Griffith Barker. He was preceded in death by grandparents, Payton Griffith and Ina and Joe Barker.

Ricky enjoyed fishing and working on cars. He will be sorely missed by his family and friends.

In addition to his parents, Ricky leaves to cherish his memory his wife, Brenda, and the mother of his children, Beth Parson of Charlotte, N.C., Holly Gray of Fairdale and Charles Gray of Eccles; his sister, Glenna Barker Allen and her husband, Jason, of Surveyor and nieces, Samantha and Savannah Vaughn. A large extended family survives as well.

Funeral Services will be Friday, January 17th, at 1 p.m. at the Melton Mortuary Chapel. Pastor Timmy Vaughn will be officiating. The family will receive friends from 11 a.m. until the service hour.

Condolences may be sent to the family’s guestbook at

Arrangements by Melton Mortuary and Cremation Center, Beckley.

Pastor Michael Lee Harvey

PIPESTEM — Pastor Michael Lee Harvey, 61, of Broadway Road, Pipestem, formerly of Rex, Ga., died suddenly Wednesday, January 15, 2014, at Roanoke Memorial Hospital.

Born November 11, 1952, in Orlando, Fla., he is the son of Margaret Virginia Jones Harvey of Rex, Ga., and the late F.C. Harvey.

Pastor Harvey had been a resident of Pipestem since 2011 where he was currently serving as Associate Pastor of Cook’s Chapel Baptist Church and Principal of Pipestem Christian Academy. He was heavily involved with all aspects of the church and school. He was a devoted Christian, husband, father, son, and brother.

“His Lord said unto him. Well done, thou good and faithful servant …. enter thou into the joy of the Lord.”

Survivors include his wife of 31 years, Lori Lynne Pitts Harvey of Pipestem; four children and their spouses, Caleb Courtland and Jamie Harvey of Columbus, Ga., Zachary Lee and Rachel Harvey of Mcdonough, Ga., Rachel Lynne and Chris Miller of Wytheville, Va., Rebekah Leigh and Josh Hoerner of Harrisburg, Pa.; five precious grandchildren, Cayden, Mason, Baileigh, Bentley and Lennon; two siblings, Rodney Harvey and Trish Elliott, both of Rex, Ga.

Services to celebrate the life of Pastor Harvey will be held 2 p.m. Saturday, January 18, 2014, at Cook’s Chapel Baptist Church in Pipestem with Pastor Dallas Peyton Jr. officiating.

Friends may visit from noon until the service hour at the church.

Online condolence may be shared with the family via

The Harvey family is being served by the Memorial Funeral Directory & Cremation Center on the Athens Road in Princeton.

Edith P. Hawley

Edith P. Hawley of Circleview Drive, Beckley, died Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014.

Condolences may be sent to the family’s guestbook at

Arrangements by Melton Mortuary and Cremation Center, Beckley.

Bill ‘Jeep’ Lilly

On Thursday, January 2nd, 2014, Bill “Jeep” Lilly of Beckley passed away at the Bowers Hospice House. He was in his 82nd year.

The fifth of six children, Billy Ross Lilly was born on January 14th, 1931, in Beckley. His parents were the late Jesse Ray and Gustava Davis Lilly. His brothers, Jim, Jesse, and Jack, have preceded him in death as well.

As he grew up, Billy became “Bill.” In elementary school he was “christened” “Jeep,” which would become a name he carried throughout his entire life. Jeep’s childhood was on Dixie Avenue. A graduate of the Woodrow Wilson Class of 1949, he furthered his studies at Beckley College, graduating from Glenville State College with a teaching degree. During the era of the Korean Conflict, Bill served in the U.S. Army.

After his stint in service, Bill pursued a Master’s Degree in Education from West Virginia University. His entire career in education would be at Mabscott Elementary, first as a teacher, then as principal. Single for many years, a pretty young teacher, Carol Frances Meadows, came to Mabscott Elementary to teach. Bill was smitten. Bill and Carol would eventually marry. They were devoted to each other and had many happy years together. Bill would retire from the school system in 1986, with 35 years of service. Sadly, Carol died on May 5, 2008. Bill Lilly was never quite the same. He was an interesting man, extremely intelligent, yet intensely private. Bill had a very dry wit. He loved gardening and was well versed in horticulture. An artist, he painted several paintings along the way.

Bill leaves to cherish his memory his surviving sister and brother, Ruth Benett and her husband, Al, of Beckley and Gene Lilly and his wife, Mandy, of Staunton, Va. Several nieces and nephews survive, as well as a sister-in-law, Ethel Lilly. Carol’s surviving family the Meadows, Patty and John Kerzic, Anita and Mike Tierney and Patty Meadows also survive, along with an extended family of nieces and nephews on the Meadows side.

In keeping with Bill’s wishes he has been cremated. A Memorial Service will be held Saturday morning, January 18th, at 11 a.m. in the Melton Mortuary Chapel. Pastors Okie Slate and Dennis Hughes. The family will receive friends from 10 a.m. until the service hour. The family suggests donations of sympathy to Bowers Hospice House, PO Box 1472, Beckley, WV 25802.  

Condolences may be sent to the family’s guestbook at

Arrangements by Melton Mortuary and Cremation Center, Beckley.

Charles F. ‘Sparky’ Parker

PINEVILLE — Charles F. “Sparky” Parker, 88, of Pineville, passed away on January 14th, 2014, at the VAMC, Beckley.

Sparky was born on November 21, 1925, at Smithdale, Pa., the eldest child of Charles K. and Alice M. Parker.

As a young man he moved with his family to Pineville where he married Mary Ann Cook in 1948. Sparky and Mary Ann spent over 50 years together before her death, December 15, 1999. Sparky and Mary Ann’s daughter, Mary Frances “Frankie” Steffey, passed away in November 2008.

He was also preceded in death by his parents and siblings James, Thomas and Patrick N. Parker and Alice J. Parker Cook. He is survived by his brothers Kim, Ron and Danny Parker and by sisters Edrogen Bendetto and Rhoda Copley.

Sparky lives on through his children Charles Pat Parker and his wife Dannette and Veronica Parker Lamb and her husband Jeff. His grandchildren Beth Steffey, Sara Steffey Greene, Katy Parker Loar, Clay Parker, Annie and Blaine Lamb and his great-grandchildren Olivia and Lucas Greene.

Sparky was a WWII Navy veteran where he served as a 3rd Class Aviation Machinist Mate. Sparky never lost his love for planes and spent many hours at Kee Field with friends.

After the war Sparky worked as a mechanic in Pineville and Welch but spent most of his life as a coal miner. Sparky began working in the mines at Tralee and retired from the Shannon Branch Mine at Caples where he worked as the outside shop foreman.

As a young couple Sparky and Mary Ann bought a home in Pineville where Sparky would spend the next 20 years volunteering for the Pineville Fire Department and raising their children in a great neighborhood with the Cooks, the Pancakes, the Reichners, the Bolts and most importantly the Jack and Evelyn Martin Family who have truly been the best next doors neighbors the Parkers could ever have had.

Sparky’s true calling was in wood working and he spent most of his early retirement days at Wyoming Lumber in the woodshop. Sparky spent hours turning pieces of wormy chestnut, oak and hickory into beautiful pieces of art. Anything he saw he could make from large pieces of furniture to small hand-carved animals. Each day he would come home with a different shaped wooden block for Katy to learn.

After an accident five years ago Sparky was unable to live independently but with the help of all his family and especially his grandson Clay, who has lived with and taken care of him, he has been able to stay in Pineville until the very end. And anyone who knew Sparky knew he didn’t like to be out of Pineville too long.

We are thankful for Janet Lester who has been a very kind and caring aid and a very special friend to Sparky.

We are very thankful for Dr. Boyd and staff at the VAMC for their excellent care. They gave it their best effort to make a tried old veteran as comfortable as possible these last couple of months.

Thank you to the Oceana and Beckley chapters of the DAV for making this Christmas season a little bit brighter for our family and others at the VAMC.

Mostly we are thankful for the time we had with Sparky Parker.

In lieu of flowers we ask that you consider a donation to your local Disabled American Veterans Chapter or the VAMC Hospice, Attn: Dr. Boyd, 200 Veterans Ave., Beckley, WV 25801, for the wonderful work they do in taking care of our Vets.

Sparky’s grandchildren will proudly serve as his pallbearers - Blaine Lamb, Clay Parker, Katy Parker Loar, Lindsay Loar, Mickey Green and Jon Brooks.

Graveside service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, January 18, 2014, in the Palm Memorial Gardens Mausoleum, Matheny. Military graveside rites will be conducted by the Wyoming County Honor Guard.

The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, January 17, 2014, in the Calfee Funeral Service Chapel, Pineville.

Online guest book may be signed at

Calfee Funeral and Cremation Service of Pineville is serving the Parker family.

Eulalia Peeks

CHARLESTON — Eulalia Peeks, 89, of Charleston, died Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014.

Arrangements entrusted to Ritchie & Johnson Funeral Parlor, Beckley.

Howard Elwood Pennington

MOSSY — Howard Elwood Pennington, 78, of East Kingston, passed away Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014.

Funeral services will be at 2 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 19, at Tyree Funeral Home in Oak Hill, with Pastor Lum Toney officiating. Burial will be at Pax Community Cemetery. Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 18, at the funeral home.

Online condolences may be sent at

Arrangements by Tyree Funeral Home, Oak Hill.

Roland L. Smith

Roland L. Smith, 90, of Beckley, died Thursday, January 16, 2014, at Greystone Care Facility after a long illness.

He was born September 9, 1923, in Winston-Salem, N.C. He was the son of the late Charles and Hester Smith.

Roland retired from the coal industry where he had a long career with Consolidation Coal Company, he was a WWII Veteran and was of the Methodist faith.

In addition to his parents, Roland is preceded in death by his wife Cerena Smith.

Those left to cherish his memory include his son, Roland Smith Jr. and wife Sharon of Morgantown, W.Va.; two grandchildren, Joetta Wade and husband Bill of Abingdon, Md., Patrick Smith and wife Kelly of Pasadena, Md.; great-grandchildren, Aubrey Smith, Ian Smith, Mason Wade and Sydney Wade; also Roland’s loving companion, Marie Workman of Beckley.

Entombment will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, January 18, 2014, at Blue Ridge Memorial Gardens, Beckley, with Rev. Glen Kune officiating. There will be no visitation.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at

Arrangements by Blue Ridge Funeral Home, 5251 Robert C. Byrd Drive, Beckley.

Calvin R. Trail

Calvin R. Trail, age 81, of Shady Spring, W.Va., passed away at his home on Sunday,  January 12, 2014.

Born on January 8, 1933, at Shady Spring, he was the son of the late George Trail and Willie Crews Trail.

Mr. Trail was a retired mechanic, and was a U.S. Air Force Veteran during the Korean War. He was a lifelong Shady Spring resident.

He enjoyed making homemade lamps, Bluegrass music, old cars and collecting Indian figurines.

Mr. Trail was preceded in death by his wife, Dorothy Trail, and was preceded by three brothers and a sister.

Surviving children, Carla June Thompson of Ghent, Robin Ballengee and husband Richard of Shady Spring, James Calvin Trail “J.T.” and his companion Jo Ann Tolbert of Crab Orchard, Katie Jo Brady and her husband Don of Dover, Ohio, and Linda White of White Oak; stepchildren Shirley Adwell and her husband Donnie of Caldwell, and Russell Gene Tolliver and his wife Ruth of Cool Ridge; 20 grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren also survive.

Funeral services will be conducted at the Rose and Quesenberry Funeral Home Shady Spring Chapel on Saturday, January 18, 2014, at 2 p.m. with Rev. Orville Setliff officiating. Burial will follow at the Mt. View Cemetery at Cool Ridge, W.Va. Friends may visit with the family from noon until service time on Saturday.

Family and friends will serve as pallbearers.

Private online condolences, floral tributes, and other expressions of sympathy may be directed to the family via our guestbook at

American Legion Post #32 Honor Guard will provide Military Graveside Rites.

Arrangements are by Rose and Quesenberry Funeral Home Shady Spring Chapel, 729 Flat Top Road, Shady Spring,

Danny Delano Vanoy

Danny Delano Vanoy, 71, of Dorothy, passed away Wednesday, January 15, 2014, at his home.

He was born March 10, 1942, at Colcord, W.Va., a son of the late James Edward and Beatrice Anges Jarrell Vanoy.  

He was a retired coal miner and member of the UMWA. He was a member of the Dorothy Assembly of God Church, Dorothy, W.Va. He was an avid hunter and fishing and loved the outdoors.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by an infant brother, James R. Vanoy.

Those left to cherish his memory include his loving wife, Bonnie Vanoy; sons, Dan Vanoy and children, Colby and Olivia of Pennsboro, WV, Shannon Vanoy and wife, Kim, and daughters, Alyssa and Aryn and Audrey Vanoy of Dunbar, W.Va., Amanda and Chris Bateman, Arianna and Adara of Poca, W.Va., Wendy and Todd Nichols, Connor and Hayden, Tanner all of Elkview; a brother, Jackie Vanoy and wife, Karen; several nieces, nephews, and host of friends.

Service will be 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 18, 2014, at the Assembly of God Church, Dorothy, with the Revs. Jerry Pauley and Gary Maynor officiating. Interment will follow in Pineview Cemetery, Orgas.

Friends may call 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, Jan. 17, 2014, at the church.

Arrangements by Armstrong Funeral Home, Whitesville.

David Ross Whaples

FAYETTEVILLE — David Ross Whaples, age 63, of Fayetteville passed away on Tuesday, January 14, 2014, at his residence.

Born June 28, 1950, at Harvey, W.Va., he was the son of Virginia Lorraine Williams Whaples of Oak Hill and the late William Ross Whaples.

David was a former coal miner and enjoyed lawn care, gardening, listening to music and flea marketing.

Survivors in addition to his mother Virginia include his wife, Shirley Jean Nester Whaples, his son, Charles Whaples of Fayetteville, his daughter, Stacy Dalton of Ashboro., N.C., his grandchildren, Dustin Whaples, Kayla Wright, Jasmine Whaples, Michael Wright and Ariel Whaples. Also surviving are his two brothers, Charley Whaples of Fayetteville and Gary Whaples of Oak Hill, a nephew, Adam Ashcraft of Charleston, a niece Christy Young of Robson and daughter-in-law, Tanya Whaples.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, January 18, 2014, at the Tyree Funeral Home, Oak Hill, with the Rev. Patricia Franklin officiating. Burial will follow in Huse Memorial Park at Fayetteville.

Friends may call at the funeral home one hour prior to services on Saturday, January 18, 2014.

Online condolences may be sent to

Arrangements by Tyree Funeral Home, Oak Hill.