Watauga, Avery Obituaries – Jan. 17, 2017

Published Tuesday, January 17, 2017 at 1:12 pm

Compiled by Jesse Wood

The following are recent obituary notices from Austin and Barnes and Hampton funeral homes in Boone and Reins-Sturdivant in Newland. Send obituary notices to jesse@highcountrypress.com.


Willis Hicks (July 20, 1943 – Jan. 16, 2017)

Willis Hicks, 73, of Meat Camp Road, Todd, passed away Monday afternoon, Jan. 16, 2017, at Watauga Medical Center.

Funeral arrangements for Willis Hicks are incomplete at this time.

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

Hampton Funeral and Cremation Service is in charge of the arrangements.


Patsy Ann Clark Trice (Oct. 16, 1944 – Jan. 15, 2017)

Patsy-Trice-1484565597Patsy Ann Clark Trice, 72, of Newland passed away on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2017 at the Glenbridge Health & Rehab Center in Boone.

A native of Avery County, NC, she was born Oct. 16, 1944 a daughter of the late Henry Carl and Opal Kincaid Clark.

She retired from US Textiles after 20 years of service and was a member of the Aaron Baptist Church. Patsy was an exceptional flower gardener, and was an avid collector of Day Lilies.

Along with her parents, Patsy was preceded in death by an infant brother, Ricky Carl Clark. 

Patsy has left to cherish her memory her husband, Robert “Bud” Trice; daughters, Robbin Trice, and her fiancé’ Dan Caussin, Patricia Trice; son, Robert Trice; grandson, Chase Rivers; sisters, Linda McMinn, Donna Daniels, and her husband, David; one nephew; two nieces; and one great niece.

A Celebration of Life for Patsy Ann Clark Trice will be conducted on Wednesday, January 18, 2017 at 8:00 pm at the Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home with Rev. Tommy Hayes officiating. The family will receive friends from 6:00 until the service hour Wednesday evening at the funeral home.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: The American Cancer Society.

Words of comfort and memories may be shared with the family and viewed at www.rsfh.net.


Dell Vernon “Opp” Bolick (June 8, 1943 – Jan. 15, 2017)

BolickDell Vernon Bolick, know to many as “Opp,” 73, of Bolick Road, Lenoir, the Bailey’s Camp Community, passed away Sunday afternoon, January 15, 2017, at Watauga Medical Center in Boone.

Dell was born June 8, 1943 in Watauga County, a son of the late Vernon and Macie Bolick. He was a member of Bailey’s Camp Baptist Church.

Dell was a plain and simple man. Not many hobbies or adventures to excite the average person. His life revolved around his children, grandchildren, and the woman he was married for 54 years, working as a crane operator. And last but not least, he was a avid bear hunter. He will be missed by a lot of family members, and the men he bear hunted with.

Dell is survived by his wife, Ina Owens Bolick of the home; one daughter, Leah Cole and husband Kenny of Vilas; Brian Bolick and wife Tammy of Lenoir, and Brent Bolick and wife Tracey of Black Mountain; his grandchildren, Chad Cole and wife Maria, LeAnn Ellis and husband Andrew, Ethan Bolick, Nathan Bolick, Callie Bolick, Caleb Bolick Madeline Bolick, Claire Bolick, and Hannah Bolick; his great-grandchildren, Abby Cole, Paisley Cole, Cole Ellis, and Cody Ellis; three brothers, Boyd Bolick, Glenn Bolick and wife Lula, and DanBolick and wife Wanda, all of Lenoir, and two sisters, Alice Hicks and husband Roger, and Elizabeth Pope and husband Jim, all of Lenoir. He is also survived by a number of nieces and nephews.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by; three sisters, Treva Austin, Reba Ford, and Lena Tignor, and one brother, Lester Bolick.

Funeral services for Dell Vernon “Opp” Bolick will be conducted Thursday afternoon, January 19, 2017, at 5:00 o’clock, at Hampton Funeral Home Chapel. The body will lie in state, at the chapel, from 3:00 until 5:00 o’clock. Officiating will be Pastor Chad Cole, Reverend David Lunceford, and Reverend Marvin Ford. Burial in Bailey’s Camp Baptist Church Cemetery, will be private.

The family will receive friends Thursday afternoon from 3:00 until 5:00 o’clock, at the funeral home, prior to the service.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Cody Ellis Medical Expense Fund, in care of LeAnn Ellis, 204 Ralph Wilson Road, Vilas, North Carolina, 28692.

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


Dennis C. Miller (July 19, 1955 – Jan. 15, 2017)

Dennis C. Miller, 61, of Miller Drive, Boone, passed away Sunday morning, Jan. 15, 2017, at Watauga Medical Center in Boone.

Dennis was born July 19, 1955 in Watauga County, a son of the late Charles Henry Miller and Verlee Mary Miller. He was a former welder for Charleston Forge Manufacturing.

Dennis is survived by one daughter, Shannon Miller of Boone; one brother, Billy Miller of Boone; four sisters, Jewell Norris and husband Fred of Boone, Janet Miller and husband John of Todd, Wanda Main and husband Larry, and Freda Hicks and husband Leslie, all of Boone; his former wife, Judy Miller of Boone, and two special friends, Margaret Weaver of Boone, and Miss Betty of St. Simons, Georgia.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded by one brother, Boyd Miller, and a nephew, Dustin Miller.

Funeral services for Dennis C. Miller will be conducted Thursday morning, January 19, 2017, at 11:00 o’clock, at Hampton Funeral Home Chapel. The body will lie in state, at the chapel, from 10:00 until 11:00 o’clock. Officiating will be Pastor Bruce Miller and Reverend Kenny Phibbs. Burial will follow in Pleasant Valley Cemetery.

The family will receive friends Thursday morning, from 10:00 until 11:00 o’clock, at the funeral home, prior to the service.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Hampton Funeral Service, to assist the family with funeral expenses.

Online condolences may be sent to the Miller family at wwww.hamptonfuneralnc.com


Elizabeth Barr Ashley (June 18, 1932 – Jan. 14, 2017)

Elizabeth Barr Ashley, 84, of Beaver Drive, West Jefferson, passed away Saturday morning, Jan. 14, 2017, at Glenbridge Health and Rehabilitation in Boone.

Elizabeth was born June 18, 1932 in Ashe County, daughter of the late Roger Felix Barr and Stella Jones Barr.

Elizabeth is survived by one son, Mark Ashley of Boone, and one brother, George M. Barr of Austin, Texas.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Quincey Ted Ashley, and one son, Eric Mitchell Ashley.

Graveside services and burial for Elizabeth Barr Ashley will be conducted Tuesday afternoon, January 17, 2017, at 2:00 o’clock, at Ashelawn Memorial Gardens in Jefferson.

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


Pauline Hicks (Nov. 21, 1938 – Jan. 14, 2017)

HicksPauline Hicks, 78, of Westside Drive, Boone, passed away Saturday evening, Jan. 14, 2017, at her home.

Pauline was born November 21, 1938 in Avery County, a daughter of the late Howard and Hazel Oaks Hicks. She was a homemaker and a member of Beech Valley Baptist Church.

Pauline is survived by one daughter, Toni Hicks of Atlanta, Georgia; three sons, Alex Hicks of Fleetwood, Bobby Hicks and wife Peggy of Butler, Tennessee, and Gary Hicks and wife Jeanie of Vilas; four granddaughters, Jessica Hicks, Heather Harris, Amberly Hicks, and Camaline Hicks; two grandsons, Will Hicks and Donovan Hicks; three sisters, Rose Edna Allison and husband Tom of Newton, Carolyn Sue Hicks of Johnson City, Tennessee, and Glenda Sue Norwood and husband Arnold of Banner Elk, and two brothers, Steve Hicks of Johnson City and Harold Ernest Hicks, Jr. of Vilas.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Mager Hardy Hicks; one son, Tommy Ray Hicks; one brother, Charles Hicks, and one sister, El Wanda Smith.

Funeral services for Pauline Hicks will be conducted Tuesday morning, January 17, 2017, at 11:00 o’clock, at Hampton Funeral Home Chapel. The body will lie in state, at the chapel, from 10:00 until 11:00 o’clock. Officiating will be Pastor Gordon Noble. Burial will follow in Mount Lawn Memorial Park and Gardens.

The family will receive friends Tuesday morning, from 10:00 until 11:00 o’clock, at the funeral home; prior to the service.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Seby Jones Regional Cancer Center, in care of Rob Hudspeth, Appalachian Regional Healthcare Foundation, 336 Deerfield Road, Boone, North Carolina, 28607.

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


Otto August Voigt, Jr. (Nov. 22, 1936 – Jan. 14, 2017)

Otto August Voigt, Jr., 80, of Ransom Street, Blowing Rock, passed away Saturday, Jan. 14, 2017, at his home.

Otto is survived by two daughters, Lisa Christine Hatch of Athens, Georgia, and Linda Liesegang and husband Glen of Blowing Rock; one grandson, Evan Hatch of Athens; two granddaughters, Holly Liesegang-Cass and husband Eric, and Emma Liesegang, all of Blowing Rock, and one sister, Hannelore Goebel of Germany.

Otto was born November 22, 1936 in Germany, son of the late Otto Voigt, Sr. and Kristina Saul Voigt. He was the retired owner and operator of Valley View Motel, and a member of St. Mark’s Lutheran Church.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Ursula Minna Voigt.

Memorial services for Otto August Voigt, Jr. will be conducted Sunday afternoon, January 22, 2017, at 3:00 o’clock, at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church. Officiating will be Pastors Harvey and Jan Huntley.

The family will receive friends following the memorial service.

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


Lana Turner King (June 1, 1943 – Jan. 13, 2017) 

BigKing, Lana Turner - 2Lana Jean Turner King, 73, of Linville Creek Road, Vilas, passed away Friday morning, Jan. 13, 2017. Born June 1, 1943 in Watauga County, she was a daughter of Tracy and Mary Miller Turner. Lana retired with 32 years service at Wachovia Bank. She was of the Baptist faith. 

Mrs. King is survived by her special daughter, Kim Greer and husband, Rev. Wynn Greer of Vilas; special grandson, Noah Greer of Boone; two special granddaughters, Abigail Carroll and husband, Jackson, of Gainesville, FL, and Chloe Greer of Vilas; sisters, Jimma Lou Hodges of Sugar Grove and Nina Cooper and husband, Arnold, of Gaston, SC; brother-in-law, Clarence Greene of Nashville, TN; sister-in-law, Lois Turner of Boone; daughter-in-law, Denise Brown of Boone; and best friend, Sharon Greene of Deep Gap. A number of nieces and nephews also survive. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her son, Tony Winebarger; granddaughter, Hannah Mae Greer; sister, Armolee Greene; brother, Robbie Turner; brother-in-law, Jim Hodges; nephew, Jamie Tucker; and former husband, Eugene Winebarger. 

Funeral services for Lana King will be conducted Monday afternoon, January 16, at 2 oclock at the Austin & Barnes Funeral Chapel, officiated by Rev. Wynn Greer and Dana Miller. The family will receive friends Monday afternoon from 12:30 until 2 oclock, prior to services, at Austin & Barnes. Burial will follow in Mt. Lawn Memorial Park and Gardens. 

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the American Diabetes Association, Memorial & Honor Program, 222 South Church Street, Suite 336M, Charlotte, NC 28202. 

Friends may call at the home of Kim Greer, 201 Circle Drive in Vilas.

Online condolences may be shared with the family at the website www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com. 

Austin & Barnes Funeral Home and Crematory is serving the King family.


J.C. Isaacs (Aug. 23, 1944 – Jan. 12, 2017)

J.C. Isaacs, 72, of Smith Isaacs Road, Zionville, passed away Thursday afternoon, January 12, 2017, at Select Specialty Hospital in Bristol, Tennessee.

IsaacsJ.C. was born Aug. 23, 1944 in the Zionville Community, a son of the late Raymond and Lola Beach Isaacs. He was a farmer on his own farm.

J.C. is survived by his wife, Frieda Walker Isaacs of the home; one daughter, Donna Isaacs and Jason Martel of Zionville; one granddaughter, London of Zionville; one brother, Dean Isaacs and wife Mary of Zionville, and one sister-in-law, Margie Isaacs of Zionville. He is also survived by a number of nieces and nephews.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by one son, Randall Isaacs; one sister, Irene Pennell, and four brothers, Lawrence, Fred, Estel, and Junior Isaacs.

Funeral services for J.C. Isaacs will be conducted Monday afternoon, January 16, 2017, at 2:00 o’clock, at Hampton Funeral Home Chapel. The body will lie in state, at the chapel, from 1:00 until 2:00 o’clock. Officiating will be Reverend Andy Watson and Reverend Derick Wilson. Burial will follow in Pleasant Grove Baptist Church Cemetery.

The family will receive friends Sunday evening, from 6:00 until 8:00 o’clock, at Hampton Funeral Service.

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

Hampton Funeral and Cremation Service is in charge of the arrangements.


James C. Watson (May 7, 1927 – Jan. 12, 2017)

James C. Watson, 89, of Brownwood Road, Deep Gap, passed away Thursday morning, Jan. 12, 2017, at The Foley Center at Chestnut Ridge in Blowing Rock.

WatsonJames was born May 7, 1927 in Watauga County, son of the late Claude and Ola Moretz Watson. He was the retired owner and operator of Watson’s Garage Auto Dealership. James was also co-owner of Toyota of Boone and Boone Kubota. He was very instrumental in organizing the Deep Gap Fire Department and was the first fire chief of the department.

James is survived by one sister-in-law, Reba G. Hamby of Asheville, and two brothers-in-law, J.B. Greene and wife Frances, and George Greene and wife Marie, all of Boone. He is also survived by a number of nieces, nephews, grand-nieces and grand-nephews.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Lois Greene Watson; two brothers-in-law, M.W. Greene, Jr. and wife Anna M. Greene, and Earl Hamby, and one sister-in-law, Ruby G. Clawson and husband J.B. Clawson.

Funeral services for James C. Watson will be conducted Sunday afternoon, January 15, 2017, at 2:00 o’clock, at Hampton Funeral Home Chapel. The body will lie in state, at the chapel, from 1:00 until 2:00 o’clock. Officiating will be Reverend Travis Suits. Private burial will follow in Mount Lawn Memorial Park and Gardens.

The family will receive friends Saturday evening, from 6:00 until 8:00 o’clock, at Hampton Funeral Service.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the James C. and Lois G. Watson Scholarship Fund, in care of Appalachian State University Foundation, PO Box 32014, Boone, North Carolina, 28608-2014, or to The Foley Center at Chestnut Ridge, PO Box 148, Blowing Rock, North Carolina, 28605.

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

Hampton Funeral and Cremation Service is in charge of the arrangements.


Margaret T. Bingham (Dec. 24, 1925 – Jan. 12, 2017) 

Margaret Lucille Bingham, 91, of Sugar Grove, NC, passed away Thursday, Jan. 12th, 2017 at the Foley Center in Blowing Rock, NC. 

Born in Watauga County on Dec. 24th, 1925, Margaret was the daughter of the late William Harrison Taylor and Rosa Reece Taylor. She was a member of Hensons Chapel Methodist Church.

Surviving Margaret are a sister, Thelma Taylor of Blowing Rock; six sons: Curtis Joel Cooke of Colorado Springs, CO., Jimmy Wayne Cooke of Mt. City, TN., Charles Leon Cooke of Zionville, NC., Barry Eugene Cooke of Trade, TN., David Michael Bingham of Marion, NC., and Thomas McKinnly Bingham of Zionville, NC. There are also two surviving daughters: Katherine Brown Cooke of Newland, NC, and Deborah Ruth Bingham of Avery Court, NC. A special recognition goes out to grandchild Courtney Gianna Bingham and great grandchildren Joseph and Gianna Bingham.

Margaret was preceded in death by husband Charles David Bingham Sr. and son Charles David Bingham Jr. 

Graveside services for Margaret Taylor Bingham will be held on Sunday, Jan. 15th, at 4:00 PM at Mount Lawn Cemetery. 

Online condolences may be shared with the family at www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com; Austin & Barnes Funeral Home & Crematory is serving the Bingham family.


Keith Leonard (Sept. 28, 1944 – Jan. 11, 2017)

LeonardKeith Leonard, 72, of Meadowhill Drive, Boone, passed away Wednesday morning, January 11, 2017, at his home.

Keith was born Sept. 28, 1944 in Davidson County, son of the late Jackson Dermont Leonard and Zelma Burkhart Leonard. He was a retired carpenter and former employee of Farmer’s Hardware in Boone.

Keith is survived by three daughters, Whitney Leonard of Deep Gap, Tiffany Leonard of Boone, and Kristy Thompson of Georgia; one son, Chris Leonard of Boone; two granddaughters, Ciara Leonard of Boone and Harley Isaacs of Deep Gap, and three grandsons, Austin Leonard of Bend, Oregon, Wyatt Earp of Deep Gap, and Mason Earp of Deep Gap.

Memorial services for Keith Leonard will be announced at a later date.

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

Hampton Funeral and Cremation Service is in charge of the arrangement.


Claude Allen McKinney (June 23, 1947 – Jan. 11, 2017)

Claude-Mckinney-1484233177Claude Allen McKinney, 69, of Newland passed away on January 11, 2017 at Charles George VA Medical Center in Asheville.

A native of Avery County he was born June 23, 1947 a son of Cornelious and Bertha Abernathy McKinney of Newland.

He was a member of the US Army and served during Vietnam.

Claude worked as a welder, but was known as a jack of all trades. He could work on anything from autos to houses and enjoyed woodworking.

He was a member of Frank Presbyterian Church.

Claude was preceded in death by his sister, Cookie Garland.

Along with his parents, Claude has left to cherish his memory his: wife, Anita Young McKinney of the home; sister, Brenda Reeves of Holden Beach, NC.; brother, Clyde McKinney and wife Alice of Newland, NC.

Funeral services for Claude Allen McKinney will be conducted on Saturday, January 14, 2017 at 1:00 pm at the Grandfather Chapel of Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home with Rev. Hal McNeely officiating. Interment will follow in the Whitaker Branch Cemetery. The family will receive friends on Friday, January 13, 2017 from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. at the funeral home.

Words of comfort and memories may be shared with the family and viewed at www.rsfh.net.


Betty Harmon Yates (March 21, 1938 – Jan. 11, 2017)

Betty Harmon Yates, 78, of Newland, passed away on Wednesday, January 11, 2017 at the Johnson City Medical Center.

A native of Avery County, she was a daughter of the late Howard and Lillie Watson Harmon. She owned and operated the Beech Haven Restaurant in Banner Elk for many years.

A service to celebrate her life will be held at a later date.

Condolences and memories may be shared by visiting our website www.rsfh.net. The care of Betty and her family has been entrusted to Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home of Newland.


Mr. John D. Cook (June 07, 1931 – Jan. 10, 2017) 

BigCook WebsiteMr. John Daniel Cook, 85, of Boone, passed away Tuesday evening, January 10, 2017 at Foley Center at Chestnut Ridge.

Born June 7, 1931 in the Stony Fork Community, he was a son of the late B. F. (Benjamin Fredrick) and Bessie Wellborn Cook. John grew up in Ashe County and graduated from West Jefferson High School and attended Appalachian State Teachers College before joining the Army in 1951, where he held the rank of Supply Sargent. 

The Cooks were active members of the First Baptist Church of West Jefferson prior to moving to Boone in 1969, when he and Wayne Johnson opened Johnson-Cook Ford. While in Ashe County he was active with the local volunteer fire department, served as a founding member of the volunteer rescue squad, and took an active role in the West Jefferson Lions Club, having served as President. 

After relocating to Boone, he was active in the Optimist, being selected as a lifetime member in 1996. John was also active in the local VFW and American Legion and was an active supporter of Appalachian State where he served on the Chancellors committee. He was a longtime member of Greenway Baptist Church and was active in the church choir, served as a deacon, an active member of the Couples 4 Sunday School class and the ‘Upper-class Club’. At Greenway, John demonstrated his love of the Lord and people by serving as the construction foreman of the Family Life Center. He was also very active in the Singing Saints Choir ministry and loved singing. From the 1969 until 2004 John and Rose were in the automobile business, having owned and operated Johnson-Cook Ford and John Cook Subaru. During his time in the auto industry he served as a director of the NC Automobile Dealers Association (NCADA).

He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Rose Burgess Cook, one son, Dan Cook and wife Fairley, two daughters, Allison Cook Hodges, and husband John of Vilas, and Jan Cook Deckert and husband Jeff of Raleigh, six grandchildren; Ben and J. C. (John Caleb) Cook, Katie Hodges, Daniel Hodges and wife Stacee, and Taylor and Ryan Deckert; two sisters, Wynona Hodges of Baltimore, MD, and Juanita Houck of West Jefferson, one sister in law, Davia Cook of Warrensville. He is also survived by many wonderful nieces and nephews and a host of wonderful, longtime friends.

In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by one sister, Mary Frances Nelson and two brothers, James and Bryce Cook. 

Funeral services will be conducted Saturday, January 14, 2017 at 1 o’clock at Greenway Baptist Church. Officiating will be Rev. Harold Bennett and Dr. David Luster. The body will lie in state at the church from noon until 1 o’clock. The family will receive friends with a covered dish fellowship celebration immediately following the service in the Family Life Center at Greenway Baptist Church until 4 PM. 

Graveside services and burial with military honors provided by American Legion Post 130 will be conducted Sunday, January 15, at 2 oclock at Ashelawn Memorial Park in Ashe County.

The family respectfully requests no flowers and suggests donations to Greenway Baptist Church Building Fund, 880 Greenway Road, Boone, NC 28607 or to Caldwell Hospice and Palliative Care, 902 Kirkwood Street, NW, Lenoir, NC 28645.

Online condolences may be shared with the Cook family at www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com

Austin & Barnes Funeral Home & Crematory is serving the Cook family.


Billy G. Sheets (March 10, 1948 – Jan. 9, 2017) 

Mr. Billy Gene Sheets, age 68 of West Jefferson, passed away Monday, January 9, 2017.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Freeman and Maggie Sheets, 2 sisters, Flossie Sawyer and Betty Smith, and 2 brothers, Lawson Sheets and Kenneth Sheets.

He is survived by his wife, Brenda Sheets, 2 daughters, Sandra Sheets, and Teresa Sheets Greene and husband Terry. Also surviving are 1 sister, Judy Frazier, 2 brothers, Wayne Sheets and Lenny Sheets. Granddaughters Talara Clark and Kesha Lyalls, Grandsons, Brandon Phillips and Trey Sheets, Great-granddaughters, Tresston Stapleton, Abby Sheets and Christina Arnold, Great-grandsons, Hunter Lyalls, Trent Sheets and Trace Sheets. Several nieces and nephews also survive.

Memorial services for Billy Gene Sheets will be conducted Saturday, January 21st at 2 p.m. in Bethel Baptist Church on Nettle Knob Road.

Online condolences may be shared with the Sheets family at the website www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com.

Austin & Barnes Funeral Home and Crematory, Boone, is serving the Sheets family.

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