Watauga, Avery Obituaries – Sept. 28, 2017

Published Thursday, September 28, 2017 at 3:19 pm

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.


Anna Mae Johnson Miller (Dec. 15, 1929 – Sept. 26, 2017)

Anna Mae Johnson Miller, age 87, of Meat Camp Road, Boone, passed away Tuesday morning, September 26, 2017, at the Foley Center in Blowing Rock.

Mrs. Miller was born December 15, 1929 in Watauga County, a daughter of the late Oney Johnson and Ella Bryan Johnson. She was a homemaker and a member of Liberty Baptist Church.

Mrs. Miller is survived by one sister, Jeannie Bumgarner and husband Billy of Boone, one brother, Howard Johnson of Boone, one sister-in-law, Faye Johnson of Boone and two Special cousins, Kathy Day husband Glenn and Stephen Day of Boone and Lydia Mclelland and husband Ed of Statesville. She is also survived by several nieces.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Thomas C. Miller, two sisters, Belle Day and Judy Johnson, one brother Don Johnson and one infant brother.

A graveside service for Mrs. Anna Mae Miller will be conducted Thursday, September 28, 2017 at 1:00 o’clock at Meat Camp Baptist Church Cemetery. Reverend Sonny Hagaman Reverend T.J. Jackson and Reverend Vance Triplett will officiate.

Flowers are appreciated or memorials may be made to Caldwell Hospice and Palliative Care, 902 Kirkwood Avenue, NW, Lenoir, North Carolina 28645.

The family requestfully no food.

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

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


Donald A. Macdonald (Dec. 9, 1931 – Sept. 24, 2017)

Mr. Donald Alan Macdonald, age 85, of Coral Springs, Florida, and Sugar Grove, passed away Sunday, September 24, 2017.

Funeral services for Donald Alan Macdonald will be conducted Friday morning, 11:00 a.m. in St. Bernadette Roman Catholic Church, Linville.

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


Mary M. Waters (Jan. 8, 1932 – Sept. 24, 2017)

Col. Mary Magdalene Waters, age 85, of Blowing Rock, passed away Sunday, September 24, 2017.

She is survived by her husband, Col. Jack T. Waters. Funeral services for Col. Mary Magdalene Waters will be conducted Saturday, September 30, 2017 at 2:00 p.m. at the Salvation Army, 750 3rd Avenue Place SE, Hickory, N.C. The family will receive friends Saturday from 12:30 p.m. to 1:45 p.m. prior to the services.

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


Ann Eller (Oct. 4, 1945 – Sept. 24, 2017)     

Elizabeth Ann Eller, 71, of Elk Park, North Carolina passed away on Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017 at her home in Elk Park, NC.

She was born on Oct. 4, 1945 in Washington County, Tennessee, a daughter of Roy King Nunley and Katie Bell Nunley.

Ann was a very loving and kind soul. She could always be counted on to make everyone feel good. She truly loved being with her friends and family at Heaton Christian Church.
In addition to her parents she was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Hayden Eller; a granddaughter, Tabetha Grindstaff; sisters, Dolois Williams, Gale Nunley; brothers, Tommy Nunley, Moses Nunley and Kenneth Nunley.

Ann leaves behind to cherish her memory and carry on her loving legacy: a son, Donald Lynn Grindstaff of the home; daughter in law, Joe-Anna Frontz of the home; grandson, Adam Grindstaff of Hampton, TN; great grandchildren, Charlie and Heather Grindstaff of Hampton, TN; step daughter, Tabitha Eller; step great grandson, Hayden Eller; sister, Barbara Simpson; brother, Johnny Nunley;

Services for Elizabeth Ann Eller will be held on Thursday, September 28, 2017 beginning at 2:00 pm from the Heaton Christian Church with Pastor Paul Cole officiating. Interment will be in the Heaton Cemetery.

The family will receive friends beginning at 12:00 pm on Thursday at Heaton Christian Church.

The family would like to extend their thanks to the nurses and staff of Medi Home Hospice.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: Medi Home Hospice PO Box 1357 Newland, NC 28657.

Words of Comfort and Memories may be shared with the Eller family by visiting our website www.rsfh.net.


Mrs. Wanda Harmon Vines (March 27, 1941 – Sept. 23, 2017)

Mrs. Wanda Harmon Vines, age 76, of Sugar Grove, passed away Saturday evening, September 23, 2017 at Watauga Medical Center. Born March 27, 1941 in Avery County, she was a daughter of the late Ray Dewey and Marie Edmisten Harmon. Wanda was an active member of Zion Hill Baptist Church. She retired from Cove Creek School as the cafeteria manager. 

She is survived by her husband of 54 years, Bob Vines, two daughters, Amy Lunceford and husband Tracy, and Deana Harmon and husband Larry, and one son, Joe Vines and wife Wendy all of Sugar Grove, seven grandchildren; Dianna Garetto and husband Anthony of Germany, Bobby Lunceford, Brandy Harmon and Jeremy Champion, Matthew Harmon and wife Jessica, Cody Harmon, Caitlin Vines and Ben Vines all of Sugar Grove, five great grandchildren, Lucca and Mia Garetto, Ava, Cooper and Hadley Kay Harmon, and one sister, Shelia Blalock and husband Barry of Newland.

In addition to her parents she was preceded in death by an infant sister, Carla Harmon.

Funeral service for Mrs. Wanda Vines will be conducted Wednesday afternoon, September 27th at 2 o’clock at the Zion Hill Baptist Church. Officiating will be Rev. David Icenhour and Rev. Herbert McCoy. Burial will follow in the Harmon cemetery. Flowers are appreciated or memorials may be made to the Shriners Hospitals for Children, in care of Randy Vines, 1005 George Wilson Road, Boone, NC 28607. 

The family will receive friends Tuesday evening from 6 o’clock until 8 o’clock at Austin & Barnes Funeral Home. At other times friends may call at the residence of Amy & Tracy Lunceford in Sugar Grove. Online condolences may be shared with the Vines family at www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com.

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


Douglas Cooper (July 12, 1954 – Sept. 23, 2017)

Douglas Cooper, age 63, of Hickory, passed away Saturday, September 23, 2017 at Catawba Memorial Hospital. Born July 12, 1954 in Elkton, Maryland, he was a son of Hassel and Holliveen Ellison Cooper. Mr. Cooper loved the Lord and worshiped at The Taylorsville Church of Christ. He worked as a carpenter. Doug was a man who loved his family. A true outdoorsman, Doug loved camping with his kids, fishing, and spending time in his mountains. 

Mr. Cooper is survived by his wife, Vickie Ham Cooper; his children, Kristen Pruitt of Lansing, Janine Sophia Cooper of Florida, Chad Ham and wife, Deanna, of Hudson, Christina Pack and husband, Danny of Virginia and Bridgette Fonseca and husband, David, of Philadelphia; brother, Curtis Cooper of Sarasota, Florida and sister, Deborah Sue Reed of Newton. Ten grandchildren and a number of aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews also survive. 

Graveside services for Douglas Cooper will be conducted Friday afternoon, September 29th, at 1 PM at the Potter-Main Cemetery, officiated by Minister Tim Cannup and Rev. Danny Pack. 

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials to the Potter-Main Cemetery Fund.

Online condolences may be shared at www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com.

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


Stephen G. Ruppard (March 14, 1958 – Sept. 23, 2017)

Stephen G. “Steve” Ruppard, age 59, of Bubba Drive, Zionville, passed away Saturday evening, September 23, 2017, at Watauga Medical Center.

Steve was born March 14, 1958 in Watauga County, a son of the late Mary Ernestine Ruppard Hollars. He was a retired truck driver.

Stephen is survived by one son Josh Ruppard and his fiancee Savannah Rooney of Boone; one daughter, Kayla Ruppard and her fiance Joey Atwell of Statesville; one brother, Jackie Tester of Boone; two sisters, Laura Coffey and husband Harley of Boone, and Diana Tester and her companion Mauricio Martinez of Deep Gap, and three grandchildren, Aurora Ruppard of Boone, Natannjah Ruppard of Statesville, and Amsley Grace Hamby of Boone. 

In addition to his mother, he was preceded in death by one granddaughter, Octavia.

Funeral services for Stephen G. Ruppard will be conducted Saturday morning, September 30, 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 Reverend Kenny Newberry. Burial will follow in White Rock Cemetery in Banner Elk.

The family will receive friends Saturday 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 the Ruppard family, in care of Josh Ruppard, 1657 Howard’s Creek Road, Boone, North Carolina, 28607.

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

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


Kelba Stines (Sept. 10, 1945 – Sept. 23, 2017)

Kelba J.D. Stines, age 72, of Newland, North Carolina passed away on Saturday, September 23, 2017 at the Cannon Memorial Hospital in Linville, NC.

He was born Sept. 10, 1945 in Avery County, NC, a son of the late Coy and Faye Harmon Stines. Kelba graduated from Cranberry HIgh School and worked as a Stonemason most of his life. He served as Pastor of the Beech Creek Baptist Church for many years. He was known for his love of trading and going to yard sales.

Along with his parents, Kelba was preceded in death by his wife, Betty Franklin Stines; a grandson, Trenton Cody Stines.

Kelba has left to cherish his memory his: children, Regina and Gathie Clawson of Elk Park, Kelvin and Teresa Stines of Newland, Ernie and Dianne Stines of Newland, Kris and Traci Stines of Plumtree; grandchildren, Kelsey, Tyler and his wife Sarah, Jerry, Scott, Natasha, Alexis, Dustin and his wife Brittany, and Rebecca; Kelba also was anxiously awaiting the birth of his first great-grandchild.

Also surviving are his brothers, Billy, Carl and his wife Tammy, Danny and his wife Debbie, and Ronnie; his sisters, Gladys, Wanda and her husband Dennis, and Glenda; Kelba also has a host of other family and friends.

Funeral services for Kelba Stines will be conducted on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 at 2:00 pm at the Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home with Rev. Timothy Ruppard and Brother Ray Ward officiating.. Interment will follow in the Heaton Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 12:00 noon until the service hour Tuesday at the funeral home.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: American Lung Association. Words of comfort and memories may be shared with the family and viewed at www.rsfh.net           


Elton Klara Knight Caicedo (March 28, 1933 – Sept. 22, 2017)

Elton Klara Knight Caicedo, age 84, of Huckleberry Lane, Blowing Rock, passed away Friday, September 22, 2017, at Watauga Medical Center.

Funeral arrangements for Elton Klara Knight Caicedo are incomplete at this time.

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

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


Fred West Lowe (April 13, 1924 – Sept. 22, 2017)

Fred West Lowe, 93, earned his heavenly wings when he died peacefully, surrounded by his loving family, at his Banner Elk home on Sept. 22, 2017. He was born to the late Leo L. Lowe and Flora West Lowe on April 13, 1924, and lived most of his life in the Banner Elk area.

The family will greet friends on Tuesday, Sept. 26, 6-8 pm, at Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home in Newland. Funeral services, led by the Rev. Paul Cole, will be held Wednesday, Sept. 27, at 1 pm at the Heaton Christian Church, where the Lowes are long-time members. Pallbearers are John Lowe, Sam Storey, Jake Storey, Eddie Storey, Josh Gregg, and Tony Kropira; honorary pallbearers are Jeremy Alexander and Phillip Banner. A military burial will follow in the family cemetery on the Lowe Farm provided by the Pat Ray Post of the VFW. 

Left to cherish Fred’s memory are his beloved wife Anna Mae (Keener), whom he married at the Banner Elk Presbyterian Church manse on September 10, 1949; sons Frederick G. Lowe (Lisa), Saltville, Va.; Steven D. Lowe (Rhoda), Lincoln, Mt.; David A. Lowe (Donna), Heaton, NC; and daughter Nanette Storey (Eddie), Elk Park, NC, as well as two sisters Kathleen Proffitt of Baltimore, Md., and Carol Timblin of Charlotte, NC, and sister-in-law Bobbie Lowe of Panama City, Fl. Survivors also include nine grandchildren: Teresa (Chris), Johnny (Jennifer), Sam (Carla), Jake (Nellie), Jason (Paulette), Rebecca (Jeremy), Eric, Jennifer (Daniel) and Jessica; 13 great-grandchildren: Tony, Kristen (DeWayne), Josh, Cheyenne, Eddie, Brittany, Chloe, Jayden, Reagan, Piper, Brianna, Andrew, and Connor; three great-great grandchildren: Peyton, Skylar, Reggie, and another on the way; several nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Fred was preceded in death by his parents, sister June Palanis and her husband Bill, brother Jack Lowe and his wife Agnes, Leo Lowe Jr., Tom Lowe and his wife Shirley, brothers-in-law Harry L. Proffitt and George A. Timblin, nephew Billy Palanis, and beloved granddaughter Natasha Lowe. 

Mr. Lowe grew up with his brothers and sisters on the family farm in the shadows of Sugar Mountain, where he learned the basics of farming and enjoyed catching trout in Banner Creek. He attended elementary school in Banner Elk and graduated from Cranberry High School in 1942. The following year he enlisted in the Army Air Corps and served for three years as an airplane mechanic on the Island of Guam. It was there that Fred developed a passion for flying, and in later years he had the pleasure of flying his own airplane. Following his honorable discharge, Fred attended Lees-McRae College on the GI Bill.

Fred and Anna Mae purchased their Elk Valley farm in 1950 and over the next 67 years forged a successful partnership, which including growing and selling Christmas trees and making wreathes and garlands. Both were active in the North Carolina Christmas Tree Association. Fred was also a member of the North Carolina Soil and Water Commission and served for several years on the Banner Elk Cemetery Committee. The Lowes enjoyed hosting family gatherings and welcoming friends to their beautiful farm. In their spare time, the couple also spent time square dancing and attending farm auctions. 
The family wants to thank Dr. Alfred Earwood and his staff and the Medi Home Hospice Team for the excellent care they gave to Fred.

In addition to flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Medi Home Hospice PO Box 1357 Newland, NC 28657.


Louise Hagie Laws (Jan. 2, 1936 – Sept. 22, 2017)

Louise Hagie Laws, 81, of Elk Park, North Carolina passed away on Friday, September 22, 2017 at Bristol Regional Medical Center in Bristol, TN.

She was born on January 2, 1936 in Avery County, North Carolina a daughter of Herman Hagie and Lloyd Bare Hagie.

She was preceded in death by her Father, Herman Hagie, Jr.; Mother, Loyd Hagie; Step-Father; Stewart Hicks; Brothers; Leslie Hagie, Herman Hagie, Joe Hagie and Larry Dale Hicks; Sister; JoAnn Vance.

Louise leaves behind to cherish her memory her; Sons Doug (Leslie) Laws of Elk Park, NC; C.J. (Carolyn) Laws of Elk Park, NC; Mark (Lenay) Laws of Roan Mountain, TN, Sister, Yvonne Hicks of Elk Park, NC, Brother, Hal Hagie of Elk Park, NC.
Six Grandchildren and Eight Great-Grandchildren

Services for Louise Laws will be held on Monday, September 25, 2017 beginning at 2:00PM at Heaton Christian Church with Paul Cole officiating. 
The family will receive friends beginning at 12:00PM prior to the service. 
Interment will be in the Heaton Cemetery

Words of Comfort and Memories may be shared with the Laws family by visiting our website www.rsfh.net

The care of Louise and her family has been entrusted to Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home of Newland.


Mrs. Mary S. Norris (June 23, 1941 – Sept. 22, 2017)

Mrs. Mary Louise Swift Norris, age 76, of North Fork Road, Zionville, passed away Friday afternoon, September 22, 2017 at Watauga Medical Center.

Born June 23, 1941 in Johnson County, Tennessee, she was a daughter of the late Dewey and Auriola Harmon Swift. Mary was a dedicated Christian, and she loved her church family at Union Baptist Church where she sang in the church choir. Mary drove a school bus for a number of years and was a CNA working at Glenbridge Healthcare & Rehabilitation. 

She is survived by her husband of 60 years, Elmer Norris, three children; Sharon Keller and husband Jamie of Zionville, Shelia Hundley and husband Elvin of Boone, and Danny Norris and wife Dianne of Boone, seven grandchildren, Ashley Jones and husband Steven, Tylor and Zack Keller, Matthew Boulanger and wife Stephanie, Melanie Walker and husband Robbie, Brandon Norris and Kayla Norris, eleven great grandchildren, Gannon and Brannon Jones, Trey, Piper and Hadley Boulanger, Shaylyn Walker and Haydyn Walker, Austyn Norris, Bailey Norris, Mackennah Norris and Mackennzie Alderson, three brothers, Jim Swift and wife Jerri of Appling, GA, Ed Swift and wife Peggy of Albany, GA, and Norman Swift of Boone, two sisters in law, Joyce Miller of Boone and Erma Swift of New Castle Indiana, and a number of nieces and nephews.

In addition to her parents she was preceded in death by Roby, Bill, Henry and Charlie Swift, Frances Bunton and two infant brothers. 
services for Mrs. Mary Norris will be conducted Monday afternoon at 2 oclock at Union Baptist Church. Officiating will be Rev. Vernon Eller, Rev. Derick Wilson and Rev. Bradley Swift. Burial will follow in the Union Baptist Church Cemetery. The family will receive friends at the church prior to the service from noon until 2 oclock.
Flowers are accepted or memorials may be made to the family to help offset expenses.

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


Sandra Jean Puckett (Sept. 2, 1945 – Sept. 22, 2017)

Sandra Puckett, beloved wife and mother, was called home to be with her Lord Sept. 22, 2017.

Besides being a devoted wife of over 50 years, she was a loving mother of three. Sandra was known by all who knew her as a caring, nurturing God fearing woman of faith. Faith in her God.

She loved cooking for her family and all who were hungry. Her big beautiful blue eyes could light up a room at Midnight. Her smile was so warm and her touch was so soft. 
Sandra truly was an angel and a Godsend for all she met She will be missed!

Sandra was the daughter of Don McKee and Dorothy Waycaster McKee. 

She is survived by her husband, Charles J. Puckett of the home. 

She had three children. Jeff Puckett, Cindy Nelson, and Mary Ann McCloud. 
Six Grandchildren; Sierra Faulkner, Brent Nelson, Lane Smith, Charley Puckett, Jeffrey Puckett and Laiken McCloud.

She had three Great-Grandchildren; Gideon Faulkner, Paisley Faulkner, and Carter Nelson.

Sandra is also survived by three sisters and one brother. JoAnn Thompson, Linda Wise, Judy Norris and Robert McKee.

Special friends that deserve recognition are Julie Greene, Elaine Buchanan and Jean Stamey. All of them made her comfortable and happy beyond words. Thank you!
Thank you to the men & women of Avery County EMS for the many years of exceptional service that they provided. 

Services for Sandra Puckett will be held on Sunday, September 24, 2017 beginning at 2:30 PM from the Grandfather Chapel of Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home with Evangelist Gabriel Faulkner and Gideon Faulkner officiating. 

The family will also be at the home of Cindy and Steve Nelson, 311 Log Cabin Lane (just off High School Road)) from 12:00PM-9:00PM on Saturday.

The family will receive friends beginning at 12:30 PM, Sunday, September 24, 2017 prior to the service
Interment will be in the Puckett Family Cemetery

Words of Comfort and Memories may be shared with the Puckett family by visiting our website www.rsfh.net


Jo Ann Hicks Farthing (Feb. 8, 1944 – Sept. 21, 2017)

Jo Ann Hicks Farthing, 73, of Joe Farthing Road, Sugar Grove, passed away Thursday afternoon, September 21, 2017. Born February 8, 1944 in Johnson County, Tennessee, she was a daughter of Robert Dewey and Mandy Davenport Hicks. Mrs. Farthing was a member of Green Valley Baptist Church. Jo Ann loved her family and enjoyed spending precious time with her grandchildren. She had a special talent for growing and arranging flowers

Jo Ann was employed by Shadowline for many years before retiring from Environmental Services at Watauga Medical Center. 

Mrs. Farthing is survived by two daughters, Beverly Dawn Farthing of Boone and Karen Ward and husband, Wesley, of Butler, TN; son, Dwight ‘Bud’ Farthing of Sugar Grove; and six grandchildren and two great grandchildren. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Dwight Austin Farthing; daughter, Anita Farthing; son, Darren Farthing; and brother, Raymond Hicks. 

Funeral services for Jo Ann Farthing will be conducted Sunday evening, September 24th, at 6 o’clock at the Austin & Barnes Funeral Home Chapel, officiated by Brother Greg Thompson, Brother Eric Cornett and Brother David Ward. The family will receive friends Sunday from 4 until 6 o’clock, prior to services, at Austin & Barnes. 

Graveside services will be conducted Monday morning at 11 o’clock at the Green Valley Baptist Church Cemetery. 

Online condolences may be shared at www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com.

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


Matthew Lee “Matt” Dewhirst (Dec. 26, 1967 – Sept. 21, 2017)

Matthew Lee “Matt” Dewhirst, age 49, of Tanner Road, Boone, passed away Thursday, September 21, 2017.

Matt is survived by one son, Miles Lee Dewhirst and one daughter, Sophie Dell Dewhirst, both of Boone; the mother of his children, Katy Marsh of Boone; his father and mother, John Ward Dewhirst and Virginia Pound Dewhirst of Williamsburg, Virginia; two sisters, Kathy Dewhirst Wincheski and husband Buzz of Williamsburg, Virginia, and Suzanne Ward Dewhirst of Asheville; two brothers, John Ward “Skip” Dewhirst, Jr. and wife Lizabeth of Worcester, Vermont, and Jeffrey Christopher Dewhirst and wife Aimee of Asheville; two nieces, Clara and Violet, and one nephew, Louis.

A Celebration of Life for Matthew Lee “Matt” Dewhirst will be conducted Sunday afternoon, September 24, 2017, at 3:30 PM, at Hampton Funeral Home Chapel. Officiating will be The Reverend Samuel V. Tallman.

The family will receive friends following the service at Hampton Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to a future trust fund being established for his children, Miles and Sophie Dewhirst, in care of a grandfather, John W. Dewhirst, 2812 Stategy Court, Williamsburg, Virginia, 23185.

Online condolences may be sent to the Dewhirst family at www.hamptonfuneralnc.com
Hampton Funeral and Cremation Service is in charge of the arrangements.

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