Watauga, Avery Obituaries – October 30, 2018

Published Tuesday, October 30, 2018 at 4:07 pm

The following are recent obituary notices from Austin & Barnes and Hampton funeral homes in Boone and Reins-Sturdivant in Newland


Mr. Charlie G. Hicks 
(December 29, 1934 – October 29, 2018) 

    Mr. Charlie Gilbert Hicks, age 83, of Banner Elk, passed away Monday, October 29, 2018 at Watauga Medical Center. Born December 29, 1934 in Watauga County, he was a son of the late Gold Gilbert and Sarah Ann Hicks. He is survived by three sons, Richard Paul Hicks and wife Beverly and David Hicks and wife Susan all of Banner Elk, and Wendell Hicks and wife Dora of Boone, two daughters, Brenda Oaks and husband Charles and Joann Moretz and husband Andrew all of Banner Elk, one daughter in law, Wilma Hicks of Banner Elk, 11 grandchildren and 21 great grandchildren. 
    In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by his wife, Minnie Alice Hicks, two sons, Bobby Charles Hicks and George Gilbert Hicks, one granddaughter, Peggy Sue Hicks and one great grandson, Beau Bryson Hicks.
    Charlie loved his family and never knew a stranger. He enjoyed mountain life, music, playing his guitar and driving his grandchildren around in his golf cart. He was the founder of Hicks Tree Service in the early 1960s in Watauga County. Charlie taught is family the value of hard work and upon his retirement, passed the business on to his family which successfully branched through his sons Paul of Hicks Tree Service and Wendell of Wendell Hicks Tree Service. 
    Charlie also enjoyed softball and during the 1970s he formed a softball team from the Matney Community and encouraged other communities from Watauga County to do the same. This brought the communities of Watauga County together for fun weekend games which went on for several years.
    A private graveside service for Charlie Hicks will be held at Matney-Liberty Cemetery. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to the Matney-Liberty Cemetery, in care of Mitch Campbell, 280 Wallace Lane, Banner Elk, NC 28605.
    Online condolences may be shared with the Hicks family at www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com.
    Austin & Barnes Funeral Home & Crematory is serving the Hicks family.


Edwin S. Smith 
(December 29, 1934 – October 30, 2018) 

    Mr. Edwin Ed Sion Smith, age 83, of Clarks Creek Road, Banner Elk, passed away Tuesday morning at his home surrounded by his loving family. He was a native of Sullivan County, Tennessee and the son of the late John and Lillie Byrd Smith. He was a member of Clarks Creek Baptist Church and could always be heard saying, I love my youngins.
    He is survived by his loving wife of 61 years, Barbara Tester Smith, two sons, Randall Smith and fiancé Monica Rose of Bairds Creek, and Brad Smith and wife Terry of Triplett. Three daughters, Billie Jean Taylor and husband Charlie of Clarks Creek, Marsha Smith Lusk and husband Don of Valle Crucis, and Donna Smith Tate and husband Bill of Linville. She is survived by two brothers, Winford Smith and wife Mamie Lois of Knoxville, TN., and Johnnie Smith and wife Della of Boone, three sisters, Mildred Tester of Valle Crucis, Janeeta of Lenoir, and Wanda Hughes and husband Robert of Boone.
    15 grandchildren, 26 great-grandchildren and 1 great great grandchild also survive.
    Funeral services for Ed Smith will be conducted Thursday, November 1, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. in the Clarks Creek Baptist Church. Burial will follow, with military honors provided by American Legion Post # 130 and the DAV Chaper 90.
    The body will lie in state at the church from 10:00 a.m. until the service time at 11:00 a.m. 
    In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to Medi-Home Hospice.
    Online condolences may be shared with the Smith family at the website www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com.
    Austin & Barnes Funeral Home and Crematory is serving the Smith family.


Mrs. Irma M. Pennell 
(March 02, 1939 – October 30, 2018) 

    Mrs. Irma Lee Moretz Pennell, age 79, of Howards Creek Road, Boone, passed away Tuesday morning at Glenbridge Health & Rehabilitation. Born March 2, 1939 in Watauga County, she was a daughter of the late Robert Glenn Moretz and Nell McNeil Moretz. Irma was an active member of Rich Mountain Baptist Church. She was retired from Shadowline where she worked as an inspector. Irma enjoyed working in her vegetable and flower gardens and spending time with her family.
    She is survived by her husband of 51 years, Johnny Pennell, one son, Robert Pennell and wife Elaine, and one granddaughter, Ella Pennell all of Boone, one niece, Debra Provost and husband Roger of Kannapolis. In addition to her parents she was preceded in death by two sisters, Clara Dancy and Alma Moretz.
    Funeral services for Mrs. Irma Pennell will be conducted Saturday, November 3, 2018 at 3 PM at the Rich Mountain Baptist Church. Officiating will be Rev. Sonny Hagaman and Rev. Joe London. Burial will follow in the Pennell family cemetery.
    The family will receive friends prior to the service from 1 PM until 3 PM at Rich Mountain Baptist Church. 
    In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to Medi Home Hospice, 400 Shadowline Drive, Suite 102, Boone, NC 28607.
    Online condolences may be shared with the Pennell family at www.austinandbarnesfuneralhome.com
    Austin & Barnes Funeral Home & Crematory is serving the Pennell family.


David Allen Drach

August 18, 1956 – October 23, 2018

David Drach, age 62, of Lake Placid, Florida, passed away Tuesday, October 23, 2018.

David was born August 18, 1956 in St. Joseph, Michigan, son of Jack and Ginger Drach. He was a pilot for American Airlines.

In addition to his parents, he is survived by his wife, Nancy Heller Drach of the home; one sister, Linda Lohrke and husband Steven of St. Augustine, Florida; two nieces, Elizabeth Broggio and husband Marco of Grand Rapids, Michigan, and Ashley Marschke of St. Augustine; one great-niece, Gianna Broggio, and one great-nephew, Hugo Broggio, both of Grand Rapids. He is also survived by his two beloved cats, Rice and Roni.

Memorial services for David Drach will be conducted at a later date.

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

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


Betty Raye Greene Koontz

February 05, 1933 – October 24, 2018

Betty Raye Greene Koontz, age 85, of Boone, passed away peacefully, Wednesday, October 24, 2018.

Betty was born February 5, 1933 in Watauga County, a daughter of the late Clyde Ray Greene and Gertie Pyler Greene. She was a devoted Christian woman.  While she loved being a mother to her three daughters, one of her greatest joys was being a grandmother and great grandmother.  She was one of their biggest supporters from childhood through adulthood.  The title of ‘Granny’ not only applied to her relatives but anyone part of her ‘family’.  As an owner of Watauga Building Supply, she worked well into her 80s.  Retirement was never an option as she would have missed the opportunity to meet someone new or tell stories of her childhood to someone who just might know of Welcome, NC.  While she loved her family, she also loved her Lord serving as a Sunday School teacher at Grace Lutheran Church and being a member of the Mary-Martha Circle.  Throughout her life, she enjoyed sports, crafting, antiques, and politics.  Her legacy will continue in the lives she touched.
Betty is survived by two daughters, Susan Herman and husband Martin of Vilas, and Jane Howell and husband Kenny of Fleetwood; one son-in-law, Paul Gragg and wife Angela of Boone; two granddaughters, Melissa Herman Greene and husband Wayne of Zionville, and Jodi Gragg Stines and husband Justin of Boone; seven grandsons, David Gragg, Chris Gragg and wife Deanna, and Pastor Michael Gragg and wife Casey, all of Boone, Jon Howell and wife Robyn of Crumpler, Ken Howell and wife Kim of Fleetwood, Timothy Howell and Danielle of Northport, Florida, and Jason Herman and wife Heather of Zionville, and one brother, Cecil Greene of Boone. She is also survived by nineteen great-grandchildren, and a number of nieces and nephews.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by a daughter, Sharon Gragg; one brother, Perry Greene, and two sisters, Cleo Rhyne and Mary Sue Miller.

Funeral services for Betty Raye Greene Koontz will be conducted Sunday afternoon, October 28, 2018, at 2:00 o’clock, at Grace Lutheran Church. The body will lie in state, at the church, from 1:00 until 2:00. Officiating will be Pastor John Bollinger and Pastor Michael Gragg. Burial will follow in Meat Camp Baptist Church Cemetery.

The family will receive friends Saturday afternoon, from 5:00 until 8:00 o’clock, at Hampton Funeral Service. At other times, the family will be at the home of Paul and Angie Gragg, 259 Knollwood Drive, Boone.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Santa’s Toy Box, in care of Deerfield United Methodist Church, PO Box 1337, Boone, North Carolina, 28607. Checks should be made to Santa’s Toy Box.

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

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


Patricia Ann Payne

October 09, 1945 – October 27, 2018

Patricia Ann Payne, age 73, of Still Lake Drive, Boone, passed away Saturday, October 27, 2018, at Life Care Center of Banner Elk.

Patricia was born October 9, 1945 in Watauga County, a daughter of the late Luther Ransom Payne and Kathleen Watson Payne. She was a retired elementary school teacher and a member of Three Forks Baptist Church.

Patricia is survived by one sister, Jenelle Payne McEwin and husband Ken of Boone; two nieces, Regenia Nicole Payne of Blowing Rock and Amy Delaine Lyons of Boone; two great-nieces, Sarah Kathleen Lyons of Charlotte and Holly Lyons of Boone; one great-nephew, Logan Kerley of Boone, and one sister-in-law, Betsy Payne of Boone.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by one brother, David Payne.

Memorial services for Patricia Ann Payne will be conducted Friday afternoon, November 2, 2018, at 1:00 o’clock, at the Lump Mountain Overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway (Mile Marker 264.4). 

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to American Cancer Society, in care of Brian Barker, 441 Daniel Drive, Boone, North Carolina, 28607, or to American Heart Association, 128 South Tryon Street, Suite 1588, Charlotte, North Carolina, 28202, or St. Judes Children’s Reasearch Hospital, PO Box 1000, Department 142, Memphis, Tennessee, 38101.

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

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


Robert C. Wiseman

August 13, 1947 – October 25, 2018

Robert Clay Wiseman, 71, of Newland passed into the eternal light and love of his Heavenly Father on October 25th 2018. Robert passed peacefully at his home surrounded by those he loved most. 
He dealt with this most challenging illness in his true form of courage and firm faith in God. 
To mourn his passing, he leaves his son Bill, future daughter-in-law, Bonnie Wilkinson, sister, Doris Boulton, niece, Caroline Fernandez, plus a host of friends and cousins. 
Robert was preceded in death by his first wife, Lilly, mother of his children, daughter, Bonnie, second wife, Donna, brother-in-law, Jerry Boulton, and his parents Helen and Clay Wiseman. Robert was baptized and grew under the auspices of Plumtree Presbyterian Church and the tutelage of Pastor T.W. Clapp. 
He remained a member until his death. Robert attended Avery Schools, Lees- McRae College, and East Tennessee State University where his studies were interrupted by a call to serve his country in Viet Nam. Robert served his country in Viet Nam as Ranger with the 173rd Airborne Division in some of the fiercest fighting in the jungles around Ben Hoa as leader of a seven-man Reconnaissance Team. He was the sole survivor. Far from being resentful, Robert remained active with the local Veterans of Foreign War with Post 4286. 
Returning to East Tennessee State after service to his country, he received his degree in Business Management. 
In 1973 he was hired by Avery County as Budget Director. This title was later changed to County Manager. After working with Avery County the first time, Mr. Wiseman went to Seven Devils as Town Manager. In 1980, he went to work as Director of Business Management at Black Mountain Center for Mental Disabilities and Substance Abuse. He was later promoted to director at the Junior Evaluation Center in Swannanoa. In 1999, he went to Spruce Pine as Town Manager for five years, then as Mitchell County Manager for five years. In all, Mr. Wiseman had over twenty-five years of experience in state, county and municipal government and public service. In 2002, he returned home to Avery County as County Manager. 
His heart was always with the people and government of his home county. He truly loved each he served. Throughout his years of service Robert gained and continued to possess an intimate knowledge of the socio-economic demographics of Avery County, as well as the educational and geographical make-up. Robert has proven himself a true hero not only to his country, but to his community and family alike. 
Robert’s family would like to thank the Staff of Medi Home Hospice, with special thanks to Lareeca, Cindy, Jessica, Brinkley, Diane, Mary and Hannah. 
Funeral services for Robert C. Wiseman will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, November 4, 2018 at the Crossnore First Baptist Church with the Rev. Wallace Wise and Rev. Mathew Jacobs officiating. 
The family will receive friends on Saturday, November 3, 2018 from 4:30 – 8:30 pm at Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home 296 Ash Street Newland, NC 28657.
The family respectfully requests that in lieu of flowers, memorials be made to the VFW Children’s Christmas Fund, c/o Pat Ray Post 4286 PO Box 516 Newland, NC 28657 or to Medi Home Hospice PO Box 1357, Newland, NC 28657.
Condolences and memories may be shared with the family at www.rsfh.net
The care of Robert and his family has been entrusted to Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home of Newland.


Denise Dugas Parker
October 9, 1943 – October 25, 2018

Denise Dugas Parker, 75, of Beech Mountain, NC passed away peacefully on October 25, 2018 with her loving husband Don and family by her side. 
A special Thank-you to Dr. Anna Sobel and all the healthcare professionals at Seby Jones Cancer Center and to Carol Smith and the staff at Medi Home Hospice for the loving care and support.
For those that wish, memorials in Denise’s memory may be made to Medi Home Hospice PO Box 1357 Newland, NC 28657
Condolences and memories may be shared with the family at www.rsfh.net
The care of Denise and her family was entrusted to Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home of Newland


Timothy Warren Harmon
August 2, 1954 – October 25, 2018

Timothy Warren Harmon, age 64, of Linville, North Carolina passed away on Thursday, October 25, 2018 at Caldwell Hospice & Palliative Care in Hudson, NC.

He was born on August 2, 1954.

He was preceded in death by his Sister, Rosie.

Timothy enjoyed Baseball and Football. He was an avid Atlanta Braves, Carolina Panthers, and Duke Blue Devils fan. He also enjoyed to listen to Classic Rock.

Timothy leaves behind to cherish his memory his: Son, Tyler (Casey) Harmon of Fuquay Varina, NC, Sister, Susan (Kevin) Tesnear of Belmont, NC, Brother, Keith Felts of Charlotte, NC, Brother, Danny Felts of Belmont, NC, Grandchildren: Evan and Riley Harmon of Fuquay Varina, NC, Cousin, Bill (Beverly) Edmonds of Belmont, NC, and several nieces and nephews.

The family will receive friends from 1:00 pm until 3:00 pm on Saturday November 3, 2018 at Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home.

The Family would like to offer a Special Thank You to the staff of Caldwell Hospice and to the Nurses in the Watauga Hospital ICU.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: Caldwell Hospice, 902 Kirkwood Street NW Lenoir, NC 28645

Words of Comfort and Memories may be shared with the Harmon family by visiting our websitewww.rsfh.net

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


Dr. Fred “FC” Ellenburg
September 25, 1931 – October 25, 2018

Fred C. “F.C.” Ellenburg, age 87, of Pineola, North Carolina passed away on Thursday, October 25, 2018 in Knoxville, TN.
He was born on September 25, 1931 in Greenville County, South Carolina, a son of the late Fred Ellenburg and the late Mary Neal Ellenburg.
Fred C. Ellenburg was born and raised in Greenville, South Carolina. Fred graduated from Welcome High School in 1949. Fred and Ellie joined hands in marriage on August 5, 1955, in Greenville, SC. They had just celebrated their 63rd wedding anniversary. Fred attended college at Mar’s Hill NC and Furman University in Greenville, SC, and Appalachian State University in Boone, NC, and the University of TN in Knoxville. He graduated in 1967 with his doctorate. Fred and Ellie moved to Statesboro, GA, in 1967, and Fred started his teaching job as a professor of education for teachers with Georgia Southern University. Fred and Ellie both retired in 1991 and moved to the North Carolina Mountains in Avery County. Fred and his wife have 5 children, 6 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren. 
Fred leaves behind to cherish his memory his: Wife of 63 years, Ellie Ellenburg of Pineola, NC; Daughter, Susan Christmas of Columbia, SC, Daughter, Ginny (Greg) Edwards of Knoxville, TN, Son, Ben (Christina) Ellenburg of Jacksonville, FL, Son, Mike Ellenburg of Newland, NC, Son, David Ellenburg of Jessup, GA.
Services for Fred C. “F.C.” Ellenburg will be held at 2:00 p.m.on Sunday, October 28, 2018 at the Newland Presbyterian Church with the Rev. Michael McKee officiating. Interment will follow in the Fork Mountain Cemetery. The family will receive friends on Saturday, October 27, 2018 from 5:00 pm until 7:00 pm at the funeral home.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: Habitat for Humanity.
Words of Comfort and Memories may be shared with the Ellenburg family by visiting our websitewww.rsfh.net
The care of FC and his family has been entrusted to Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home of Newland.



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