The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

October 1, 2013

Obituaries — Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013

David L. Arritt

On the same day his Daddy died 37 years ago, David L. Arritt, 70, died at home in Fayetteville, on September 29, 2013.

He was the son of the late Fletcher M. and Sara B. Arritt. His brothers are Fletcher M. Arritt Jr., Fork Union, Va. and John B. Arritt, Fayetteville, W.Va.

David was a graduate of Fayetteville High School, Marshall University and the West Virginia College of Graduate Studies. He played football at Marshall (1962-65) and received All Mid-American Conference football honors and was a member of Pi Kappa Alpha. He served in the U.S. Army from 1966-68 as a Sergeant E-5 (Military Police, Korea).

David taught and coached at Wahama High School and taught at Ansted and Midland Trail High School. He worked in the coal mines and was an instructor for West Virginia University College of Mineral and Energy Resources. He served as the Assistant Director for Fayette Plateau Vocational Center and Principal at Rosedale and Fayetteville Elementary Schools. David served on the Fayette County School Board for over 21 years, making him the longest serving member in its long history. He was a member of Emmanuel Baptist Church in Fayetteville.

David is survived by his wife Maria Williamson Arritt; Commander David L. Arritt Jr., USCG, Martinsburg, W.Va.; Lieutenant Commander William, USCG, and Mindee Arritt, San Diego, Calif.; Robert and Rochelle Arritt and Elisabeth, Abigail, and Anna Leigh, Knoxville, Tenn.; Jeff and Sarah Stover and Isabelle, Lynchburg, Va. and Frank and Megan Arritt, Fork Union, Va.

Viewing will be at Dodd-Payne- Hess Funeral Home on October 1, 2013 from 6 to 8 p.m. A private funeral service will be held for family members.

In lieu of flowers, please send donations in memory of David L. Arritt to: Fork Union Military Academy Developmental Office, P.O. Box 278, Fork Union, VA 23055 or to the church or organization of your choice.

Psalm 23:6 “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”

For those wishing to express their condolences to the Arritt family, you may do so by visiting our website at

Dodd-Payne-Hess Funeral Home, 350 W. Maple Avenue, Fayetteville, will be assisting the family.

Robert ‘Bobby’ Lee Blaney

Mr. Robert “Bobby” Lee Blaney, “We can still hear you playing from the heavens,” of Beckley, died Wednesday, September 25, 2013.

Preceding him in death are his parents, Bernard and Annie Blaney; two sisters, Joyce and Betty and two brothers, Sonny and Eugene.

Left to cherish precious memories are his wife of 48 years, Cleola “Dee” Blaney; four daughters, Tina Blaney- Bennett (Thomas Bennett), Linda Blaney (Barry Hairston Jr.), Brenda Murphy (Keith Murphy) and Lori Blaney; 14 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren and numerous family members and friends.

Funeral service will be 1 p.m., Thursday, October 3, 2013, at Second Baptist Church, 700 F. Street, Beckley, with the Rev. Rudolph Poindexter officiating. Friends may call one hour prior to the service at the church.

Condolences may be emailed to

Arrangements entrusted to Ritchie & Johnson Funeral Parlor, Beckley.

Frances I. Bright

Frances Iowa Bright died peacefully at home on Saturday, September 28, 2013.

Born July 17, 1925, in Princeton, W.Va., she was the daughter of Noah W. and Zora Parker McGhee. Her family moved to Mullens when she was six months old.

She was a 1943 graduate of Mullens High School and a graduate of Perry Business School.

Besides her parents, Frances was preceded in death by her husband of 59 years, Lloyd F. Bright, and her brothers, William (Sarge) McGhee and Noah (Fibber) McGhee and a sister, Virginia Webb.

Frances was a member of Highland Avenue Baptist Church where she sang in the choir for 71 years. Following in her mother’s footsteps, she decorated the church for the seasons and arranged the flowers for Sunday services. She taught Sunday School and was a leader of the Youth Group for many years. It was Frances who initiated the purchase and installation of the beautiful stained glass windows in the church building.

She retired from the Mullens Area Chamber of Commerce as secretary after 19 years of service. She is noted for having organized the first Dogwood Festival. She organized the Little Miss Mullens Pageant and continued for several years to promote the event. She handled the responsibility of organizing the annual Christmas Parades year after year for the City of Mullens. She was the Female Citizen of the Year in 1988.

She was employed with Gaston Coal Company in Alpoca as secretary and was an area reporter for The Register-Herald for eight years. Other places of employment were Rose Floral and Gifts, The Smartwear Shop, and Profiles by Phyllis.

Frances was a member of the Preceptor Kappa Chapter of Beta Sigma Phi.

Those left to cherish many wonderful memories are her son, Toby Bright of Seattle, Wash., daughters, Barbara Warden and husband, Carter, of Beckley and Abby Bright and fiancée, Dave Flynn, of Columbus, Ga. Grandchildren, Scott Warden and wife, Missy, Jason Warden and wife, Shannon, of Knoxville, Tennessee, Jay Chapman, Hannah Chapman and husband, Dewain Leach, and Bailey Funke all of Columbus, Ga. Great-grandchildren, Ethan and Lauren Warden, Gabe and Ainsley Warden of Knoxville, and Ari Leach of Columbus, Ga., a brother, Dewey McGhee of Cornelius, N.C. and her wonderful caregivers, Barbara Brumfield, Bonnie Gillespie, Patty Walker, Meaghan Lane, Katie Gillespie, and Emily Cook and very special neighbors Billy and Ginger Michael.

Services will be Wednesday, October 2nd at 11 a.m. at Highland Avenue Baptist Church with Jason Warden, grandson, officiating. Other grandsons will serve as pallbearers.  Friends may gather Tuesday evening, October 1st from 6 until 8 p.m. also at the church and one hour before the service on Wednesday.

Donations may be made to the Highland Avenue Baptist Church in her memory in lieu of flowers.

Online condolences may be expressed to the family at

The family of Frances Bright is being cared for by Tankersley Funeral Home, Mullens.

William Pete ‘Billy’ Browskey

William Pete “Billy” Browskey, 71, of Skyline Drive, Beckley, died Sunday, Sept. 29, 2013, at the Universityof Virginia Hospital following a short illness.

Condolences may be sent to the family’s guestbook at

Arrangements by Melton Mortuary and Cremation Center, Beckley.

Betty Christian

Betty Christian, age 77, of Glen White, passed away Monday, September 30, 2013, at Beckley Appalachian Regional Hospital.

Arrangements are pending completion at Rose and Quesenberry Funeral Home, 1901 S. Kanawha Street, Beckley, WV 25801.

Ruby A. Jones Ellison

BALLARD — Ruby A. Jones Ellison, 77 of Ballard, passed away Friday, September 27, 2013.

Funeral Services will be 2 p.m., Wednesday, October 2, 2013, at the Broyles-Shrewsbury Funeral Home Chapel, Peterstown, with Pastor Tim Sanderson officiating. Burial will follow in the Orchard Cemetery, Ballard.

Visitation will be noon until time of the services, Wednesday.

Online guestbook can be signed or condolences may be sent to the Ellison family at

Arrangements by Broyles-Shrewsbury Funeral Home, Peterstown.

Mable I. Fox

MADISON — Mable I. Fox, 86, of Madison, formerly of Brooks, passed away Monday, September 30, 2013 following a long illness.

Born November 9, 1926, at Madams Creek, she was a daughter of the late William and Grace Ellison Wills.

Mable was a member of the Hinton Church of Christ, a homemaker and lived most of her life at Brooks. She was a devoted mother, wife, grandmother and great grandmother.

Mable was preceded in death by her husband James A. “Jimmy” Fox; one son, James William “Billy” Fox; three brothers and five sisters.

Those left to cherish her memory include two daughters, Rita Richmond and husband John of Glen Dale and Jane Epling and husband Mike of Uneeda; six grandchildren, Heather Zamibto, Joey Epling, Jaime Blake, Sara Howard, Brad Epling and Brian Fox; nine great grandchildren; one sister, Lavonna Pauley and husband Eugene of Charleston. Numerous nieces and nephews also survive.

Funeral services will be 10 a.m. Thursday, October 3, 2013, at Hinton Church of Christ. Burial will follow in the Fox Cemetery at Brooks.

Friends may call from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the funeral parlors.

Condolences may be sent to the family at 

Arrangements are by the Ronald Meadows Funeral Parlors of Hinton.

Patricia L. Hodge

MARTINSVILLE, Va. — Patricia L. Hodge, 70, of 521 Wilson Ave, Martinsville, passed away on Sunday, September 29, 2013, at Memorial Hospital of Martinsville/Henry County.

She was born on March 7, 1943, in Roncerverte, to the late Edith Madeline Morgan and Ellery Hedley Morgan. 

Mrs. Hodge was a loving wife and mother, she also had a special place in her heart for all her grandchildren who called her Maw Maw. One of her favorite pastimes was working in her garden where she was known to have a green thumb. All her family enjoyed getting together for her special home cooking which for her was always a favorite time.

She is survived by her husband of 22 years, Neil E. Hodge of the home; daughter, Stacie A. Ward and husband Glenn Ward of Forest, Va.; stepdaughters, Sandy Davis and husband Jeremiah Davis, Pam Ramsey and husband Billy Ramsey, Judy Wachsman and husband Otto Wachsman; son, Greg A. Marshall (and Sara) of Rangely, Va.; step son, Daniel Barrow and wife Tonya Barrow, Charles Hodge and wife Angie Hodge; sister, Dianna Dyke and husband Bob Dyke of Roncerverte; brother, Ken Morgan and wife Jo Morgan of Green Acres, Fla. as well as 12 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

The graveside service will be held at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, October 2, 2013, at Roselawn Burial Park in Martinsville, Va. with Pastor J. D. Harmon officiating. Visitation will be on Tuesday, October 1, 2013, from 6 to 8 p.m., at Norris Funeral Services Martinsville Chapel.

Family and friends are welcome to meet at Norris Funeral Services Martinsville Chapel at 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday, October 2, 2013, to go to the graveside service.

Online condolences may be made at

Norris Funeral Services, Inc. and Crematory, Martinsville Va. is serving the Hodge family.

Herbert Melvin James

PALACIOS, Texas — Herbert Melvin James, 85, of Palacios, passed away on Saturday, September 28, 2013.

He was born September 18, 1928, in Glen Daniels, W.Va., to the late Russell and Ventura Gardner James.

Mr. James was a manager of the United States Postal Service and was a Southern Baptist.

Survivors include his daughter, Pamela (Mark) Smith-Berry of Tyler, Texas; son, Jerry (Debbie) James of Victoria, Texas; step-son, Jack (Dorothy) David; three grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

Visitation was held on Monday, September 30, 2013, from 6 to 7 p.m. at Rosewood Funeral Chapel.

Services will be Tuesday, October 1, 2013, at 10 a.m. at Rosewood Funeral Chapel with Rev. James Collins officiating. Graveside services will be held at 3 p.m. at Forest Park Lawndale, 6900 Lawndale, Houston, Texas.

Words of comfort may be shared with the family at

Arrangements by Rosewood Funeral Chapels, 3304 Mockingbird Lane, Victoria, Texas.

Erica Lilly

Erica Lilly, 31, of Beaver, passed away Saturday, September 28, 2013.

Arrangements are pending completion at Rose and Quesenberry, 729 Flat Top Road, Shady Spring.

Sylvia May

WILKINSON — Sylvia May, 80, of Wilkinson, passed away Friday, September 27, 2013.

Funeral Services will be held on Wednesday, October 2, 2013, at 1 p.m. at Honaker Funeral Home in Logan, with Pastor Jimmy Stroud officiating. Burial will follow at Miller Cemetery at Sweetland, W.Va. Friends may call on the family from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Wednesday at the funeral home.

Arrangements by Honaker Funeral Home, Logan.

Margaret L. Mills

MULLENS — Margaret Louise Hollins Mills, 73, of Mullens, passed away Monday, September 30, 2013 in a Charleston hospital following a short illness.

Arrangements are incomplete at Tankersley Funeral Home, Mullens.

Rev. Calvin Moore Sr.

Rev. Calvin Moore Sr., 77, of Beckley, died Sunday, September 29, 2013.

Arrangements entrusted to Ritchie & Johnson Funeral Parlor, Beckley.

Pat Junior Murphy

OAK HILL — Pat Junior Murphy, 62, of Oak Hill, died on Sunday, September 29, 2013.

Funeral services will be 11 a.m. on Thursday, October 3, 2013, at the Oak Hill Church of the Nazarene with Rev. Mike Legg and Rev. Benny Bleigh officiating. Burial will be at Gethsemane Memorial Gardens, Oak Hill.

Visitation will be held at Tyree Funeral Home, Oak Hill on Wednesday, October 2, 2013 from 6 to 8 p.m.

Online condolences may be sent at

Arrangements by Tyree Funeral Home, Oak Hill.

Robert L. Riffe

LOCUST GROVE, Va. — Robert L. Riffe, 84 of Locust Grove, died peacefully at his home on Saturday, September 26th, of heart failure.

Bob is survived by his wife Jean of 62 years; his sons Robert (Pam), Richmond, Va., Brian (Pam), Fairfax Station, Va.; Timothy (Robin), Lake of the Woods, Va. and Steven, Jeannette, Pa.; 12 grandchildren: Rene’, Matthew, Karen, Daniel, Erin, Richard, Michelle, Christopher, Steven, Sean, Samuel, and Cole and three great grandchildren, Lennox, Gabriel  and Norah. He was preceded in death by his brothers Phillip and Noel “Babe” and is survived by his sister Betty Lou Daniel. Lester, W.Va.

Robert was the son of Haskell O. Riffe and Beatrice (Richmond) Riffe of Lester, W.Va., near Beckley.

Bob attended Beckley College on a basketball scholarship. After marriage in 1951, Bob served in the U.S. Army and was stationed in Germany. Upon return to the United States, Bob worked first as an Electronics Technician at Melpar and later at the Night Vision Laboratories, Department of the Army at Ft. Belvoir, Va., retiring in 1993.

A 44-year member of Occoquan Lodge No. 310, AF&AM, a member of Edward H. Cann Lodge No. 1752, AF&AM and served as Worshipful Master of both Lodges. Bob also belonged to the Order of the Eastern Star (OES). He was a member of Occoquan Chapter No. 59 Woodbridge, Va. for 43 years where he served six times as Worthy Patron. He also belonged to Fredericksburg Chapter No. 29. Bob served in various committee positions of the Grand Chapter (State of Virginia) of the OES. Bob was frequently sought after for initiations, funerals, and other Eastern Star and Masonic occasions.

Bob was active in St. Paul’s United Methodist in Woodbridge, after moving to Lake of the Woods, he joined The Lake of the Woods Church where he served as a Stephen’s Minister for several years.

Bob was a great father and role model for his four children. Known as “Poppy” to his 12 grandchildren. Daniel Riffe posted the following:. “Poppy you were an inspiration, a role model and amazing grandfather! Your kind heart and gentle nature will be remembered and passed along through your beautiful wife, children and grandchildren. You have made an amazing family and we will miss you deeply but your life, your laugh and your love will live on through each and every one of us! Heaven is lucky to have such an amazing angel, I know you’ll be watching over us!”

A visitation will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, October 3, 2013, at Lake of the Woods Church, Locust Grove, with a Masonic and Eastern Star Service to be held at 7:30 p.m. A funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, October 4 at the church. Reverend Mike Lemay will officiate. Interment to follow at Quantico National Cemetery, Triangle, Va.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to either Lake of the Woods Church or Lake of the Woods Rescue Squad.

An online guestbook is available at

Arrangements by Johnson Funeral Home, Locust Grove, Va.

Sandra Kay Acord Webb

CLOVER, S.C. — Sandra Kay Acord Webb, 46, formerly of the Sandlick Community, died Saturday, Sept. 28, 2013.

Condolences may be sent to the family’s guestbook at

Arrangements by Melton Mortuary and Cremation Center, Beckley.