The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

April 27, 2013

Obituaries — Saturday, April 27, 2013

Okey Paul Blake

Okey Paul Blake went to be with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Friday, April 26, 2013.

He was born on September 29, 1920, at Beards Fork, the eldest son of the late Calvin C. “Bill” and Willie Harshbarger Blake.

Dorothy Blake Breeze, sister, and Carl Blake, brother, preceded him in death.

He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Tella Morris Blake, and his daughter, Debra Blake Wilson and husband, Philip L. Wilson; stepgrandchildren, Philip Lee and Tammie Wilson, Chad and Stacey Wilson Jackson, and Jamie and Katie Wilson, and step great-grandchildren, Tanner Cox, Tyler Sedlock, Hannah Jackson, Hunter, Dylan and Savanna Wilson.

Okey was drafted into the U.S. Army in July 1942 and was Honorably Discharged in October 1945 after serving in Italy, Switzerland and Africa during World War II. He loved telling others about his experiences while serving his country. He always wanted to make sure children had enough to eat because of the children he saw in those foreign countries who were hungry.

After his discharge from the Army he went to work for Page Mining Company Store. It was there that he met the love of his life, Tella, or as he affectionately called her “Mabel.” They were married on April 5, 1947.

Okey surrendered his life to Jesus in February 1952 at Highlawn Baptist Church in St. Albans. Okey and his wife both committed their lives to Jesus that day.

Mr. Blake worked for Milburn By Products Company Store in Milburn until 1955. In 1955 he began his career as Store Manager for Island Creek Stores Company in Holden. He lived and worked in Holden until October 1982 when he retired and moved to Beckley.

Okey then began to mow grass, wash and wax cars, and do small home repairs for widows in his church, Beckley Regular Baptist. He had a strong work ethic and in his last days he was still talking about working because in his words, “I love to work ... I don’t need the money ... I just love to work.”

He was a member of the Beckley Regular Baptist Church where he attended faithfully. He enjoyed the Senior Citizen group meetings on Tuesdays. The fellowship, food and Bible study were highlights of his week.

Spending the last year of his life at The Summit at Hidden Valley, he loved playing bingo and talking with the residents and staff. He was passionate about making friends with everyone and making sure they had a smile after talking with him.

Okey’s last days on earth were spent at the Bowers Hospice House in Beckley. He was still making friends and making them smile.

He will be missed by his family but they are comforted by the knowledge that “Those who live in the Lord never see each other for the last time.”

The family wishes to thank the staff at The Summit, 2 North at Raleigh General Hospital, and Bowers Hospice House for the care and compassion shown to Okey and his family.

Funeral Services will be on Sunday, April 28, 2013, at 2 p.m. at Tyree Funeral Home in Oak Hill, with Pastor Philip Wilson (son-in-law) and Pastor Steve Beverly officiating. Burial will be at High Lawn Memorial Park, Oak Hill, with military graveside rites by Oak Hill VFW Post #3110.

Visitation will be held at Tyree Funeral Home, Oak Hill, on Saturday, April 27, 2013, from 6 to 8 p.m.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Beckley Regular Baptist Church, Beckley, WV, Sand Fork Baptist Church, Sand Fork, WV, or Bowers Hospice House, 454 Cranberry Drive, Beckley, WV 25801.

Online condolences may be sent at

Arrangements by Tyree Funeral Home, Oak Hill.

Earl Brock

EASTON, Md. — Earl Brock, 93, of Easton, Md., formerly of Beckley, died Thursday, April 25, 2013.

Condolences may be sent to the family’s guestbook at

Arrangements by Melton Mortuary and Cremation Center, Beckley.

Yolanda Marie Gentile

RAINELLE — Yolanda Marie Gentile, 90, passed away Tuesday, April 23, 2013, in Heartland of Rainelle, following a long illness.

Born April 14, 1923, in Caulonia, Italy, she was the daughter of the late Teresa and Vincenzo Maiolo.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Larry J. Gentile; her two daughters, Lillian M. Franklin and Mary Ann Gentile; two sisters, Carmella Maiolo and Rosina Napolitano; and a brother, Francesco Maiolo.

Mrs. Gentile had lived in Rainelle since 1947. She was a homemaker and a member of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church of Rainelle.

Survivors include her son-in-law, Roger Franklin of Rainelle; two grandsons, Michael “Chad” Franklin and wife, Amanda, of Rainelle, and Jeffrey “Todd” Franklin and wife, Diane, of Mullens, and four great-grandchildren, Chase and Trey Franklin and Justin and Candace Miller.

A Funeral Mass will be conducted at 2 p.m. Monday, April 29, 2013, at the Wallace & Wallace Funeral Chapel, Rainelle, with the Rev. Rey Landicho officiating. Burial will follow in the At the End of the Trail Cemetery, Clintonville.

Visitation will be prior to the Funeral Mass on Monday from 12 noon until 1:30 p.m. at the funeral chapel with the Holy Rosary to be recited at 1:30 p.m.

Arrangements by Wallace & Wallace Funeral Home, Rainelle.

Allen Ray Hughes

RICHWOOD — Allen Ray Hughes, 59, of Richwood, died Wednesday, April 24, 2013.

Funeral services will be at 2 p.m. Sunday, April 28, in the White Funeral Home at Summersville. Friends may call one hour prior to the services at the funeral home.  

Condolences may be sent to the family at

Orville Eugene ‘Gene’ Lilly Sr.

WHARNCLIFFE — Orville Eugene “Gene” Lilly Sr., 73, of Wharncliffe, died Wednesday, April 24, 2013.

Service will be 1 p.m. Monday, April 29, at the Freedom Full Gospel Assembly House of Prayer, Hampden,  with the Rev. Carl “Cab” Wolford and the Rev. Barry Cline officiating. Burial will follow in the Hatfield Cemetery, Meador. Friends may call 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday at the church.

Online at

Arrangements by Mounts Funeral Home, Gilbert.

Ruby Ferrell Johnson Shepherd

RICH CREEK, Va. — Ruby Ferrell Johnson Shepherd passed away April 25, 2013.

Please join us, either in person or in spirit, as we celebrate her life at 2 p.m. Sunday, April 28, at Rich Creek First United Methodist Church with Pastor Doug Hyndrich and the Rev. Aubrey Whitlow officiating. Burial will follow in the Sunrise Memorial Gardens, Rich Creek, Va. Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, April 27, at the Broyles-Shrewsbury Funeral Home in Peterstown.

Online at

Ethel Faye Sisk

GERMANTON, N.C. — Ethel Faye Sisk, 69, of Germanton, N.C., formerly of Mullens, passed away Friday, April 26, 2013.

Arrangements by Calfee Funeral Home, Beckley.