The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

February 27, 2007

Obituaries — February 28, 2007


Ernest Ronald ‘Ronnie’ Akers



For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.

— Philippians 1:21



Ernest Ronald “Ronnie” Akers, 69, of Beckley passed away Sunday, Feb. 25, 2007, following a courageous battle with colon cancer.

Born Sept. 21, 1937, at Crab Orchard, he was the son of the late Claude F. Akers and Marie Cochran Akers.

In addition to his parents Ronnie was preceded in death by a brother, Billy Akers.

Ronnie was a member of Memorial Baptist Church, Beckley, where he taught the Bykota Sunday School Class. Ronnie was a 1950 graduate of Woodrow Wilson High School. Ronnie was the former car sales manager of Grady Whitlock Ford, and was currently employed at Earehart Enterprises for the past 24 years. He enjoyed going to car auctions with his closest friend Mike Prunesti. He also enjoyed spending time with his grandchildren and family telling them stories. Ronnie loved to study and teach the scriptures.

Ronnie served his country in the United States Army.

Those left to cherish his memory include his wife of 43 years, Freda Cox Akers ; three daughters, Christy Meadows and husband, Bob, of Crab Orchard, Sherry Scott and husband, Brad, of Beaver and Julie Bragg of Beckley; a brother, Jack Akers and wife, Esther, of Daniels; sister, Joyce Akers of Beckley; three grandchildren, Ashlee and Bradley Scott and Rachel Bragg; mother-in-law, Mildred Cox; Jerry and Alice Cox, Ronnie and Kathy Acord, Jeff and Anita Spicer, Joey and Nancy Cochran; and a host of family and friends.

Praise and worship service will be 2 p.m. today at Memorial Baptist Church, Beckley, with Paul Blizard officiating. Entombment will follow in Blue Ridge Memorial Gardens Chapel of Peace, Beckley.

Pallbearers will be Mike Prunesti, Wayne Byrge, Ted Milam, Herbie Atha, Pat Burdiss and Harry Hoskins. Honarary pallbearers will be Andy Earehart, Charlie Farmer and Keith Walker.

Friends may gather with the family 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the church.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Hospice of Southern West Virginia, P.O. Box 1472, Beckley, WV or Gideons International.

The Akers family would like to give special thanks to Hospice and Dr. Khanna and staff at Raleigh Regional Cancer Center.

The family would like to encourage everyone to get a colon screening test at the appropriate age.

Online condolences may be sent to the family by visiting www.blueridgefuneralhome.com.

Blue Ridge Funeral Home, Beckley is in charge of arrangements.



Alvin Castle





Alvin Castle, 82, died Monday, Feb. 26, 2007, at the Beckley Veterans Administration Medical Center after a long illness.

Born Jan. 16, 1925, in Pike County, Ky., he was the son of the late Dow and Della Castle.

Mr. Castle was a career Army man with more than 20 years of service to his country. He served in World War II and four tours of duty in the Vietnam War. He also served in Germany and Panama as well as in the United States. He received decorations including National Defense Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Good Conduct Medal, Medical Badge, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Bronze Star Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters, Purple Heart, Vietnam Service Medal with Two Bronze Stars and Two Silver Stars, Parachutist Badge, Aircraft Crewman Badge, Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross, Army Commendation Medal and Meritorious Service Medal. He retired with the rank of master sergeant.

Mr. Castle retired to Fayette County, then moved to New Smyrna Beach, Fla., for 25 years, returning to West Virginia when he became ill in 2002.

In addition to his parents, Mr. Castle was preceded in death by a grandson, Michael David Castle of Mullens; five sisters, Elza, Janie, Hester, Hazel and Belva; and two brothers, Allen and Adam. He was the last surviving member of his family.

Mr. Castle is survived by a son and daughter-in-law, Edwin Blake and Judith Toler Castle of Mullens; three grandchildren, Edwin Blake Castle II and wife, Linda, of Richmond, Va., Christopher Ray Castle and wife, Lisa, of Redmond, Wash., and Suzanne Michelle Castle of High Point, N.C.; and a great-grandson, Edwin Blake Castle III of Richmond.

By his request, Mr. Castle was cremated and there will be no service.

Memorial expressions may be sent to Memorial Fund, Highland Avenue Baptist Church, 317 Highland Ave., Mullens, W.Va. 25882.

Arrangements by Tankersley Funeral Home of Mullens.



Eva Jean Clay





PINEVILLE — Eva Jean Clay, of Pineville, passed away Thursday, Feb. 27, 2007, in Bowers Hospice House, Beckley, following a courageous battle with cancer.

Calfee Funeral Service, Pineville, is serving the Clay family.



Herman Dewey Coleman





LEWISBURG — Herman Dewey Coleman, 85, of Lewisburg, passed away Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2007.

Service will be 11 a.m. Friday at Arbovale United Methodist Church. Visitation will be 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday at the church.

Please send online condolences by visiting www.wallaceandwallacefh.com.

Arrangements by Wallace and Wallace Funeral Home, Arbovale.



Cecil Compton





HICO — Cecil Compton, 77, of Hico, passed away Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2007, at home following an extended illness.

Arrangements by Dodd-Payne-Hess Funeral Home, Fayetteville.



Raymond Joseph Cox Sr.





Raymond Joseph Cox Sr., 98, of MacArthur, went home to be with the Lord on Monday, Feb. 26, 2007, at his home where he resided with his son, James Cox.

Born Dec. 22, 1908, at Sprague, he was the son of the late Charles Andrew Sr. and Nellie Sydenstricker Cox.

Raymond retired as an electrician from Slab Fork Coal Co. in 1971. He was an avid camper and fisherman. He was the oldest member of the Church of God Family Worship Center. He was a member of the church for 47 years, serving the Lord a total of 71 years.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Ester Rhoda (Treadway) Cox, two sons, Charles and Phillip Cox; a daughter, Brenda Cox; three brothers, Carl, Howard and Titus Cox; and a sister, Glennis Green.

Those left to cherish his memory include five sons, James Cox and Raymond Cox, Jr. and his wife, Rita, all of MacArthur, John Cox and his wife, Peggy, Kenneth Cox and his wife, Alice, and Samuel Cox and his wife, Cerena, all of Slab Fork; xix daughters, Kathleen Vickers and Debbie Cox, both of MacArthur, Lessie Prince and her husband, Paul, and Virginia Cole and her husband, Ralph, all of Crab Orchard, Marie Bailey of Glen Daniel and Ester Blake and her husband, Dennis, of North Sandbranch; a daughter-in-law, Ruth Cox of MacArthur; 29 grandchildren; 41 great-grandchildren; 15 great-great-grandchildren; three sisters, Grace Wilson and Lucille Palmer and her husband, Frank, all of Beckley, and Eva Freeman of Tennessee; and two brothers, Charles Cox and his wife, Merlyn, of Wisconsin and John Ray Cox and his wife, Sarah, of Daniels.

Service will be 11 a.m. Friday, March 2, at the Church of God Family Worship Center, Pinewood Drive, Beckley, with the Rev. Mark Schrade and the Rev. Jesse Farley officiating. Burial will follow at Blue Ridge Memorial Gardens, Beckley.

Grandsons will serve as Pallbearers.

Friends may gather with the family 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday at the church.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.blueridgefuneralhome.com.

Arrangements by Blue Ridge Funeral Home, Beckley.



Samuel ‘Sam’ Fara





Samuel ‘Sam’ Fara, 82, passed away Monday, Feb. 26, 2007.

Born March 1, 1924, he was the son of Constantino Fara and Crocetta Lancianese Fara.

He was a graduate of Woodrow Wilson High School and owner of Fara Tile Co., Bradley. He was of the Catholic faith.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a son Wayne Tennant, three brothers, Sidney, Dandy and Johnny Fara; and two sisters, Minnie Pauletto and Lucille Allen.

Those left to cherish his memory include his wife, Eileen Shadrick Fara; a son, Jack Shadrick and his wife, Kellie, of Mebane, N.C.; a daughter, Jeannie Bowyer of Bradley; six grandchildren, Angelia Bragg, Misty Tennant, Phillip Bowyer, Miranda Bowyer, Harold Tennant and Kacie Shadrick; four great-children, Aaron Haley, Brandon Bott, Hunter Bowyer and Cierstin Goodson; a brother, George Fara and his wife, Betty, of Soddy Daisy, Tenn.; a sister, Edrie Crease of Indiana; a special nephew, Joe Pauletto and his wife, Kathy, of Lanark; a special niece, Dr. Ferrell Jo Pauletto of New Jersey; and several other nieces and nephews.

Service will be 2 p.m. Friday, March 2, at Blue Ridge Funeral Home, Beckley, with Pastor Robert Barley officiating. Burial will follow at Blue Ridge Memorial Gardens, Beckley.

Friends may gather with the family 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, March 1, at the funeral home.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.blueridgefuneralhome.com.

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



Thelma Jean Fitzwater





BEL AIR, Md. — Thelma Jean Fitzwater, 72, formerly of Lockbridge, died Friday night, Feb. 23, 2007, at Harford Memorial Hospital in Havre de Grace, Md., following a short illness.

Born Oct. 4, 1934, at Lockbridge, she was a daughter of the late Spurgeon Bliss and Margarette Burdette Gwinn.

It gave her pure pleasure to listen to good gospel bluegrass music and she dearly enjoyed spending time with her family.

Mrs. Fitzwater was a member of First Baptist Church on Creswell Road in Bel Air, and was a homemaker.

Other than her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, James Houston Fitzwater, in 1974; a sister, Marie Kessler; and three brothers, Jack, Charles and Arlie Gwinn.

Survivors include a son, James Ivan Fitzwater and wife, Michelle, of Bel Air; three sisters, Mary Phillips of Pipestem, Joyce Garretson of Lockbridge and June Carden of Alderson; a brother, Ted E. Gwinn of Beckley; and two grandchildren, Brooke M. Fitzwater and James Adrian Fitzwater, both of Bel Air.

Service will be 1 p.m. Thursday at Lockbridge United Methodist Church. Burial will follow in Patton Cemetery, Meadow Bridge.

Friends may call 6 to 8 p.m. today at Wallace and Wallace Chapel, Rainelle.

Wallace & Wallace Funeral Home, Rainelle, is serving the family.



Edith Mae Reed Foley Holbrook





Edith Mae Reed Foley Holbrook, 86, of Shady Spring, loving wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, left her earthly home to join her husband, James, and baby daughter in their heavenly home with their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2007.

Edith was a longtime member of Open Door Church of Shady Spring. She sang in the choir with much love for her Savior. She was a loving and caring mother for her family. Edith liked to crochet and in her earlier years tend to her flower gardens. Your family, dear mommy, will miss you all the days of our lives. We will invision you and daddy singing in God’s heavenly choir, and will join you there when our race is run.

Mrs. Holbrook was born April 25, 1920, at Meade.

She was preceded in death by her husband, James; her infant daughter; her parents, John Calvin Reed and Martha Elizabeth Reed; brothers, Arthur, Jason and Buddy; and sisters, Bertha Ward, Cora Bell Graham and Viola Bare.

Those who remain to cherish love and remember her are her children, Beverly Ann Foley Snyder and her husband, Layne. of Purgitsville, Bonnie Ruth Foley Hicks and her husband, Larry. of Shady Spring, James Kermit Foley Jr. and his wife, Judy. of Proctorville, Ohio, Martha Jane Foley Mullins and her husband, Randall, of Chaparral, N.M., and Mandell Doyle Foley and his wife, Loretta of Egeria; 15 grandchildren; 22 great-grandchildren; sisters, Ruby Pearl Mason of Portsmouth, Va., and Ruth Aileen Walker of Shady Spring; many nieces and nephews; and two special friends, Delma Miller and Melvin Rice.

Service will be 1 p.m. Friday at Rose and Quesenberry Funeral Home, Shady Spring Chapel, with the Rev. George Smith officiating. Burial will follow at Foley and Mills Cemetery, Egeria.

Friends may call 11 a.m. until time of service Friday.

Grandsons will serve as pallbearers.

Online condolences may be sent to our guest book at roseandquesenberry.net.

Arrangements by Rose and Quesenberry Funeral Home, Shady Spring.



Patricia Pennix Levant





WATERLOO, S.C. – Patricia Pennix Levant, 65, of Waterloo, formerly of Alpoca, passed away Friday, Feb. 23, 2007.

Service will be noon Thursday at Allen Funeral Home, 1508 Duke St., Beaufort, S.C.

Submitted by Ritchie and Johnson Funeral Parlor, Beckley.



Isabelle McAbier





Isabelle McAbier, 91, of Arnette, died Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2007, at Bowers Hospice House, Beckley, following a short illness.

Condolences may be e-mailed to the family at melton@wvdsl.net.

Arrangements by Melton Mortuary, Beckley.



Mary Ellen McQuade





Mary Ellen McQuade, 57, of 202 Nebraska Ave., Beckley, died Monday, Feb. 26, 2007, at Raleigh General Hospital, Beckley, following a long illness.

Born in Beckley on April 11, 1949, she was the daughter of the late Harold Thedford Hewitt and Beatrice Doud Hancock.

Mary was a homemaker and a lifelong Beckley resident.

Survivors include three sons, David C. Rexrode and wife, Barbara Ann, of Durbin, Thomas Shawn McQuade of Snowshoe and Spencer Kent McQuade of Beckley; a daughter, Erin Heather Bragg of Beckley; life partner and former husband, Kenneth Nierman of Beckley; and six grandchildren, Joshua, Seth, Tyler, Dennie, Dustin and Koryn.

There will be no service or visitation.

Online condolences may be sent to our guest book at roseandquesenberry.net.

Arrangements by Rose and Quesenberry Funeral Home, Beckley.



Ernie O’Dell





QUINWOOD — Ernie O’Dell, 73, of Quinwood, passed away Monday night, Feb. 26, 2007, at Greenbrier Valley Medical Center, Fairlea, following a long illness.

Born May 15, 1933, at Green Valley in Nicholas County, he was a son of the late Harvey Hubert and Lovie Jane Helems O’Dell.

Ernie was a retired coal miner and a member of the UMWA. He was also a member of First Baptist Church of Quinwood.

Other than his parents, he was preceded in death by three brothers, Dwight, Edward and Elwood O’Dell.

Survivors include his wife of 53 years, Monna Joyce Hamrick O’Dell; four sons, Ernie O’Dell Jr. and wife, Melynda, of Quinwood, Freddie O’Dell and wife, Evelyn, of Green Valley, Jeff O’Dell and wife, Kim, of Leivasy and Joey O’Dell and wife, Brenda, of Quinwood; a brother, Woodrow O’Dell and wife, Carolyn, of Fayetteville; four grandchildren; three step-grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Service will be 11 a.m. Friday at Wallace and Wallace Chapel, Rainelle, with Evangelist John Hamrick officiating, assisted by the Rev. Troy George. Burial will follow at Mount Urim Church Cemetery, Hominy Falls.

Friends may call 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday at the funeral home.

Arrangements by Wallace and Wallace Funeral Home, Rainelle.



Shirley Smith Owens





INDIANAPOLIS — Shirley Smith Owens, 65, of Indianapolis, formerly of Beckley, passed away Monday, Feb. 26, 2007.

Arrangements are incomplete.

Submitted by Ritchie and Johnson Funeral Parlor, Beckley.



Stephanie Ann Proctor





FENWICK MOUNTAIN — Stephanie Ann Proctor, 31, died Saturday, Feb. 24, 2007.

Service will be 11:30 a.m. Thursday at Simons-Coleman Funeral Home, Richwood. Friends may call 11 to 11:30 a.m. Thursday at the funeral home.

Arrangements by Simons-Coleman Funeral Home, Richwood.



Louise Sizemore





RONCEVERTE — Louise Sizemore, 79, of Ronceverte, passed away Sunday, Feb. 25, 2007.

Memorial service will be 3 p.m. Saturday at Kingdom Hall of Jehovah Witness, Lewisburg.

As requested by Louise, there will be no viewing. Visitors are welcome at the home of the family after the memorial service.

In lieu of flowers, please make memorial contributions to Greenbrier Valley Hospice.

Please send online condolences by visiting www.wallaceandwallacefh.com.

Arrangements by Wallace and Wallace Funeral Home, Ronceverte.





Carl Dwayne Smith





CLARKSBURG – Carl Dwayne Smith, 52, of 774 Locust Drive, Clarksburg, formerly of Fayetteville, passed away Feb. 19, 2007, at United Hospital Center, Clarksburg, following a short illness.

Born Dec. 10, 1954, at Fayetteville, he was the son of the late Joseph W. Smith, Sr. and Bertha Booker Smith.

Mr. Smith was a member of Faith Tabernacle Church.

Other than his parents, he was preceded in death by a niece, Danika Smith.

Survivors include his brother, Joseph Smith Jr. of Chillicothe, Ohio; a sister, Robin Smith of Beckley; a sister-in-law, Linda Smith of Columbus, Ohio; and a host of nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.

Memorial service will be 2 p.m. Friday at Faith Tabernacle Church, 135 S. Court St., Fayetteville, with Pastor Sancerria Carroll officiating.

Friends may call one hour before service at the church.

Services entrusted to Ritchie and Johnson Funeral Parlor, Beckley.



Arbutus Edna ‘Boots’ Toney





CLIFTON FORGE, Va. — Arbutus Edna “Boots” Toney, formerly of Sweeneysburg Road, Beckley, passed away on her 95th birthday, Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2007, at the home of her daughter, Emma Martin.

Condolences may be e-mailed to the family at melton@wvdsl.net.

Arrangements by Melton Mortuary, Beckley.



Dorothy E. Williamson





FAIRLEA — Dorothy E. Williamson, 80, of Fairlea, passed away Monday, Feb. 26, 2007, at The Brier Nursing and Rehab Center.

Born Sept. 20, 1926, in Beco, she was the daughter of the late Earnest and Cornelia Dixon Smith.

She was a member of Wild Meadow Baptist Church in White Sulphur Springs and was a good Christian woman.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Albert Williamson; and a brother, Aubrey Smith.

Survivors include her daughter, Phyllis Dodson of Maryland; a son, Darrell Williamson and wife, Sharon, of Lakeland, Fla.; two brothers, Eugene Smith and wife, Marty, of Georgia and Donald Smith and wife, Lee, of Nebraska; a grandson, Troy Mabe and wife, Sarah; a great-granddaughter, Mira Mabe of Pennsylvania; and a stepdaughter, Sue Bacus and husband, Robert, of Ohio.

Service will be 2 p.m. Thursday at Wild Meadow Baptist Church, White Sulphur Springs, with the Rev. Lowell O’Dell officiating. Burial will follow in Greenbrier Memorial Garden, Lewisburg.

Friends may call 6 to 9 p.m. today at Morgan Funeral Home, Lewisburg.

Arrangements by Morgan Funeral Home, Lewisburg.