Obituaries Dec. 29, 2009

Tom McKnight
PONTOTOC – Tom Brown McKnight, 76, died Sunday, Dec. 27, 2009, at his home. He coached and taught school for 33 years, including 23 years at Pontotoc High School. He was a member of West Heights Baptist Church. An avid gardener and a good man, he loved his family and doing outside work.
Services will be at 11 a.m. today at Tutor Memorial Funeral Home Chapel in Pontotoc with Bro. Lane Finley officiating. Burial will be in Gershom Cemetery.
Survivors include his wife of 49 years, Dorothy McKnight; one son, Rickey McKnight and wife, Alice, of Pontotoc; his grandchildren, Rickey Thomas McKnight and wife, Sandra, of Sydney, Australia, Jason Darrell McKnight of Tupelo and Lauren Brooke Franks of Pontotoc; one aunt and several cousins.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Cecil and Winnie McKnight, and a brother, Keith McKnight.
Pallbearers will be Mickey McKnight, Danny McKnight, Tommy McKnight, Barry Edwards, Jason McKnight and Randy Hunter.
Visitation will continue from 10 to 11 a.m. today.
Jessie Beard
OXFORD – Jessie Lee Beard, 75, died Sunday, Dec. 27, 2009, at his home in Oxford. Born in Lafayette County, he was the owner of Beard’s Auto Parts. He was a former volunteer with the Yocona Community Fire Department and a former Reserve Police Officer with the Oxford Police Department. He was a deacon at Temple Heights Baptist Church and he was involved with the Lafayette County Civil Defense.
Services will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday at Waller Funeral Home Chapel with the Rev. Joey Shorter and the Rev. Ken White officiating. Burial will follow in Kingdom Cemetery.
Survivors include his wife, Frances Beard of Oxford; two daughters, Karen Beard Allen of Tupelo and Kathy Beard Thomas of Oxford; three sons, Garry Lee Beard, Ronald Loy Beard and Charles Eugene Beard, all of Oxford; one sister, Sarah Shorter of Oxford; 13 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.
Visitation will be from 4 until 7 p.m. today at the funeral home.
Memorial donations may be made to New Prospect Baptist Church, 823 Hwy. 334, Oxford, MS 38655.
Visit the website, www.wallerfuneralhome.com, for online condolences and guest registry.
Gerri Sloan
NEW ALBANY – Ruby Gerlene “Gerri” Moore Sloan, 76, died Sunday, Dec. 27, 2009, at North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo. She was born May 12, 1933, in Calhoun County to James E. and Agnes O. Ramsey Moore. She lived most of her life in Union County. She graduated with honors from New Albany High School in 1952. She was employed by Stratford Mfg. from 1956 to 1979, then went to work at Barclay Furniture as head of accounting until her retirement in 1991. She was a member of Wallerville Baptist Church and was a past Matron of the Order of the Eastern Star. She loved cooking and camping. Her life revolved around her family.
Services will be 3 p.m. today at United Funeral Service Chapel in New Albany with Rev. Horace Thomas and Rev. Marty Merritt officiating. Burial will be in Wilkins Cemetery.
Survivors include her husband, Charles Edward Sloan Sr. of New Albany; one daughter, Lynda Ann Pilcher (Neal), and two sons, Charles Edward “Bim” Sloan Jr. (Virginia) and James Thomas “Tommy” Sloan (Teresa), all of New Albany; five grandchildren, Shandra McBrayer (Kevin), Shelly Merritt (Rev. Marty), Ginger Stiles (Sam), Allen Pilcher (Jessica) and T.J. Sloan (Corinthian); and eight great-grandchildren, Cody Pilcher, Anna Stiles, Jonah Merritt, Lilly Merritt, Preston Sloan, Adrianna Emison, Braxton Emison and Hillary McBrayer.
Pallbearers will be Mike Reeder, Jack Reeder, Gary Weathers, Robert Crane, Scott Sloan and Luther Bedford. Honorary pallbearers will be Ralph McDonald, Huey Collin and David Coleman.
For online guest registry and condolences, visit www.unitedfuneralservi.com.
Jane Bryant
CORDOVA, Tenn. – Jane Reed Massey Bryant of Cordova died peacefully at her home on Saturday, Dec. 26, 2009. She was the daughter of the late Wade and Erlene Massey of Bruce, where she grew up. Jane was married to the late Jimmy Bryant and together they moved to Memphis in 1958, and reared three children, Kerrie Bryant Burton, Sandra Bryant Connell and Phil Bryant. In 1968, working alongside her husband Jimmy, she began work in the family restaurant which later became known as Bryant’s Breakfast. For almost 15 years. Jane also worked at Methodist University Hospital in the Critical Care waiting room. Jane was a source of strength and compassion to hundreds of families during her years at Methodist, evidenced by a “Miracle in Motion” award she received from the hospital. Jane continued to work part time at Bryant’s Breakfast, establishing many loving and favorite relationships along the way. Jane was a constant presence at all her grandchildren’s school and athletic events. “Nana Jane” never missed an opportunity to see one of her beloved grandchildren at a sporting or school event.
Jane leaves six grandchildren: Reed Burton, Olivia Burton, Cormac Connell, Aidan Connell, Sergei Bryant and Mike Bryant. In addition, she leaves many cousins whom she loved deeply. She experienced much joy and pleasure during family reunions, dinners and traveling with her cousins. Jane’s cousins were dear to her heart and were important people in her life. She was a member of Cordova Baptist Church.
Visitation will be today, Dec. 29, from 5 to 7 p.m. with a service on Wednesday, Dec. 30, at 10 a.m., both at Memphis Funeral Home Germantown Chapel. Pallbearers will be her six grandchildren along with Chris Connell and Larry Burton. Burial will be in Bruce Cemetery, Bruce, Mississippi, where she will be laid to rest alongside her mother and father. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Wings Cancer Foundation 100 N. Humphrey Blvd., Memphis, TN.
Iva Downey
NEW ALBANY – Iva Deener Downey, 87, formerly of Somerville, Tenn., died Monday, Dec. 28, 2009, at the Graceland Retirement Center in New Albany. Arrangements are incomplete and will be announced later by Peebles Fayette County Funeral Home of Somerville, Tenn.
Callie Walling
TUPELO – Callie “Crickett” Walling died Friday, Dec. 25, 2009, at her residence after a sudden illness. She was born and raised in Aberdeen, the daughter of John Henry and Callie Vines Byford. She was a graduate of Aberdeen High School. She retired after 37 years of service from South Central Bell in Tupelo. She was a member of First Christian Church. An avid Ole Miss football fan, she enjoyed reading, shopping with her many friends and caring for her Shih-Tzu, Samantha.
Graveside services will be at 2 p.m. Wednesday at Odd Fellows Cemetery in Aberdeen with Rev. Joel Sweet officiating. W.E. Pegues Funeral Directors of Tupelo is in charge of the arrangements.
Survivors include her son, Charles A. Walling III of Cordova, Tenn.; numerous nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents; two brothers, John Audie Byford and James Claudie Byford; five sisters, Edna Brown, Jewel Lower, Fleta amp”Peteamp” Byford, Marie Freeman and Myrtie August.
Pallbearers will be Bill Shields, Charles Shields, James S. Brown and Buddy Coggins. Honorary pallbearers will be her former friends from her many years at South Central Bell.
Expressions of sympathy may be left at www.peguesfuneralhome.com.
L.T. Shannon
SHANNON – L.T. Shannon died Thursday, Dec. 24, 2009, at the North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo. He was born April 9, 1940, to John “Bud” and Nancy Shannon. He was a lifelong member of Pine Grove M.B. Church. He married Juanita McGaughy on July 6, 1961. He was a member of the Wilson Chapel Lodge 350.
Services will be at noon Wednesday at Pine Grove M.B. Church of Shannon with the Rev. George Kendrick officiating. Burial will be in McGaughy Cemetery in Shannon. N.L. Jones amp& Son Funeral Directors of Tupelo is in charge of the arrangements.
Survivors include his wife of 48 years, Juanita Shannon; five children, Terri (Reggie) Howard, David (Shawana ) Shannon, Jewel (Vernon) Wren, Anita (Shelton) Nabors and Tosha Shannon; 12 grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; three sisters, Nellie Williams of Racine, Wis., Jessie Bell Caldwell of Shannon and Cora Blanchard of Gary, Ind.; one brother: Roosevelt Sykes of Racine, Wis.; a host of brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his parents; four brothers, Oliver Shannon Jr., Hal Sykes, Richard Shannon and James Shannon; and three sisters, Mamie Freeman, Willie May Nabors and Georgie Jefferson.
Visitation will be from 2 to 6 p.m. today at the Eck amp& Georgia Shumpert Memorial Chapel at the N.L. Jones Funeral Home in Tupelo. The body will lie in state one hour prior to service time.
Sign the guestbook at www.nljonesandson.com.
Robert Bobo
FULTON – Robert Joe Bobo, 62, died Sunday, Dec. 27, 2009, at the North Mississippi Medical Center. Arrangements are incomplete and will be announced later by N.L. Jones amp& Son Funeral Directors of Tupelo.
Ruthie Marshall
BALDWYN – Ruthie Mae Barnett Marshall, 48, died Thursday, Dec. 24, 2009, at the North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo. She was born January 26, 1961 in Lee County to Mildred Barnett Marshall and Willie Joe Marshall. She was a member of Mt. Nebo CME Church in Baldwyn.
Service will be at noon Wednesday at Mt. Nebo CME Church with the Rev. Carl Z. Jones officiating. Burial will be in the Mt. Nebo Cemetery. Agnew and Sons Funeral Home of Baldwyn is in charge of arrangement.
Survivors include one grandson, Jamaury Marshall of Baldwyn; her mother, Mildred Marshall of Baldwyn; one sister, Floria McGee (Rev. Robert} of Tupelo; two brothers, Joe Earl Marshall and Michael W. Marshall, both of Baldwyn.
She was preceded in death by one son, Joseph O. Marshall, and her father, Willie Joe Marshall.
Visitation will be from 1 to 6 p.m. today at the funeral home. The body will be placed in the church one hour prior to service.
Family and friends may sign the guest registry at www.agnewandsons.com.
Glenda Beck
BOONEVILLE – Glenda Rogers Beck, 61, died Monday, Dec. 28, 2009, at the North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo. Arrangements are incomplete and will be announced later by Booneville Funeral Home.
Allie Goodloe
IUKA – Allie Alfred Goodloe, 86, formerly of Cherokee, Ala., died Saturday, Dec. 26, 2009.
Services will be at noon Wednesday at Jones Chapel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church in Iuka. Burial will be in Shady Grove Cemetery in Iuka. Thompson and Son Funeral Home of Tuscumbia, Ala., is in charge of the arrangements.
Visitation will be from 11 a.m. to noon Wednesday at the church.
Frances Moore
JUMPERTOWN – Frances Green Moore, 89, died Monday, Dec. 28, 2009, at the Magnolia Regional Health Center in Corinth. Arrangements are incomplete and will be announced later by McMillan Funeral Home. Visitation will be from 3 to 8 p.m. today at the funeral home.
Robert Duncan
SMITHVILLE – Robert Jacob Duncan, 67, formerly of Hamilton, Ala., died Thursday, Dec. 24, 2009. He was born July 28, 1942, in Marion County, Ala., to Milas Duncan and Elsie Robison Duncan.
A graveside service will be at 1 p.m. today at the Hamilton Memory Gardens in Hamilton, Ala. Danny Duncan will officiate. Hamilton Funeral Home of Hamilton, Ala., is in charge of the arrangements.
Survivors include his wife, Reba Stovall Duncan; one son, Allen Duncan (Leigh); daughters, Debra Stevens (David), Vickie Duncan and Amy Swan (Brent); eight grandchildren, Michael Stevens (Sara), T.J. Stevens, Dakin Duncan, Jessie Summford (Tyler), Emily Duncan, Katie Duncan, Matt Duncan and Addie Swan; one great-grandchild, Carson Summford; one brother, Boyd Duncan (Judy); three sisters, Mary Ann Irvin (James), Irene Phillips (Wayne) and Becky Fought (George); and a host of cousins.
Lovell Marshall
PONTOTOC – Lovell Marshall, 67, died Saturday, Dec. 26, 2009, at the North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo. She was born Sept. 15, 1942, in Pontotoc to Wardell Lipsey and Lovie Townsend Lipsey. She was a certified nursing assistant.
Services will be at 1 p.m. Wednesday at Springville Chapel M.B. Church in Pontotoc. The Rev. Jimmy Stewart will officiate. Burial will be in East County Line Cemetery. Serenity Funeral Home of Pontotoc is in charge of the arrangements.
Survivors include her husband, Mose Marshall; two children, Jerry (Marilyn) Marshall and Faye (Richard) Marshall; one stepdaughter, Teresa (Bobby) Marshall, all of Pontotoc; her mother, Lovie Lipsey; two sisters, Bertha (Tom) Key and Maxine Lipsey; two brothers, A.B. (Margaret) Lipsey and Walter Gene (Linda) Lipsey; four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her father, Wardell Lipsey, and a sister, Annie Mae Lipsey Hilliard.
Visitation will be from noon to 5 p.m. today, with the family hour from 5 to 7 p.m. today, at the funeral home.
Correction:
The service information in Glenda Hannah’s obituary in Monday’s Daily Journal was incorrect. The service will be at 1 p.m. today at Free Will Gospel Temple in Amory. Burial will be in United Memorial Cemetery.
Ernest Hatcher
BELZONI – Ernest Ted Hatcher, 61, died Sunday, Dec. 27, 2009, at the Baptist Memorial Hospital-Desoto in Southaven.
Services will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday at Wise Funeral Home Chapel in Eupora. Burial will be in Sapa Cemetery.
Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. today at the funeral home.
Melvine Owens
COLUMBUS – Melvine “Ninny” Owens, 92, died Saturday, Dec. 26, 2009.
Services will be at noon Wednesday at New Prairie Grove M.B. Church in Starkville. Burial will be in the church cemetery. Century Hairston Funeral Home of Columbus is in charge of the arrangements.
Visitation will be from 1 to 4 p.m. today at the church.
Jim Higgins
ALGOMA – Jim Higgins, 66, went to be with his Lord on Saturday, Dec. 26, 2009, at the North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo. He was a faithful member and a Deacon at Algoma Baptist Church, the owner and founder of Seafood Junction Inc., a farmer and a graduate of the 1961 class at Algoma High School. He attended Itawamba Community College and was a licensed insurance agent. Jim was a loving husband, father, grandfather and friend. He enjoyed hunting, camping, fishing and fellowshipping with family and friends. He proudly served his country in the U.S. Army while stationed in Germany.
Services will be at 2 p.m. today at Algoma Baptist Church with Bro. Don Smith and Bro. Chad Higgins officiating. Burial will follow in the Campground Cemetery with no graveside service. Browning Funeral Home in Pontotoc is in charge of arrangements.
Survivors include his wife of 45 years, Carolyn Johnson Higgins of Algoma; his three sons, Gary Higgins (Angie) of Algoma, T.J. Higgins (Kimberly) of Tupelo and Chad Higgins (Danette) of Kansas City, Mo.; four sisters, Sadie Bass (Paul) of Tupelo, Mildred Westmoreland Grisham (Jim) of Pontotoc, Charline Hill of Verona and Blanche Baker (Waymon) of Algoma; two Brothers, J.C. Higgins and Howard Higgins, both of Pontotoc; and eight grandchildren, Stephen, Lauren, Lacey, Sanders, Thomas, Taylor, Samuel and Benjamin Higgins.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Charlie and Beulah Higgins; a brother, Cecil Higgins; two sisters, Elizabeth Stegall and Hazel Wilson; and a granddaughter, Sarah Higgins.
Pallbearers will be Stephen Higgins, Mike Westmoreland, Wiley Wilson, Daniel Stegall, Floyd Lamb, Eddie Baker, Paul Bass Jr., David Higgins, Thomas Higgins, Samuel Higgins and Benjamin Higgins.
Honorary Pallbearers will be the members of the men’s Sunday School Class at Algoma Baptist Church.
Visitation will continue from 1 to 2 p.m. today at Algoma Baptist Church.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to: The American Heart Association, 7272 Greenville Avenue, Dallas, TX 75231 or to Algoma Baptist Church, P.O. Box 107, Algoma, MS 38820.
Tony Rivera
PONTOTOC – Anastacio Tony Rivera, 83, died Friday, Dec. 25, 2009, at his home. He was retired from Pontotoc City Schools, where he worked many years as a custodian.
Services will be at 2 p.m. Wednesday at Tutor Memorial Funeral Home Chapel in Pontotoc with Bro. Pete Gregory officiating. Burial will be in Turnpike Cemetery.
Survivors include his wife, Lorene Rivera; two sons, Jose Rivera and Miguel Rivera; three daughters, Luz Esther “Lucy” Serrano, Lori Gargus (Chris) and Amy Jo McGillivray; three stepchildren, Judy Kuykendall (Joe) of Pontotoc, Randy Bramlett (Shirley) of Tennessee and Dennis Bramlett (Becky) of Ecru; grandchildren, Quinton and Calista Gargus, Breana Kelly, Daniel Martinez and Errin McGillivray, all of Pontotoc.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Tomas and Francisco Rivera; a brother, Hipolito Rivera; and a sister, Luz Esther Morales.
Pallbearers will be Stevie Kuykendall, Adam Kuykendall, Calvin Ray Kuykendall, Willie Mounce, Eddie Mounce and Denny Bramlett.
Visitation will be from 5 to 9 p.m. today and from 1 p.m. to service time Wednesday.
Joe Willis Smelley
AMORY – Joe Willis “Doodie” Smelley died Friday, Dec. 18, 2009, in Grand Rapids, Mich. A native of Amory, he was born April 25, 1947, to Clifford C. Spearman and John Smelley. He attended West Amory High School. He was a former employee of Steel Case of Grand Rapids and Aircap of Tupelo until he became disabled.
A memorial service will be at 1 p.m. Wednesday at the Rose of Sharon Church of God in Christ with Superintendent Jessie L. Hutton officiating. Burial will be in the Masonic Cemetery. Darden and Sons Funeral Home of Amory is in charge of the arrangements.
Survivors include eight children, Tony, Douglas and Randy Smelley, and Antonio Jones and Rogers Jones Smelley, all of Amory, and Braun Christopher Smelley, Zandra D. Smelley and Danyell Booker, all of Grand Rapids; four sisters, Evelyn French, Frankie Davis and Clara “St. Paul” Marshall, all of Amory, and Helen Pack of New York; one brother, Devon Hamilton of Dallas, Texas; three aunts, Diana Standfor, Darnell Childs and Brenda Spearman, all of Amory; one uncle, John Edward Childs; 10 grandchildren; and a host of nieces, nephews and cousins.
Montye Faye Irvin
AMORY – Montye Faye Suggs Irvin, 65, died Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2009, at the Gilmore Memorial Regional Medical Center in Amory. She was born June 11, 1944, to Nathaniel “Soap” and Alice Jean Suggs. She was a member of St. James United Methodist Church. She graduated from West Amory High School and received a B.S. degree from Mississippi Valley State University in Itta Bena. She was a former employee of Sheaver High School of Aberdeen and LIFT Inc. of Tupelo. She later moved to St. Louis, where she was employed by St. Matthew Arch Diocese School. St. Louis Public Schools, St. Louis Job Center, Home Development Corp. and Memorial Baptist Church of St. Louis, where she served as supervisor of the Health Unit.
Services will be at 1 p.m. Wednesday at St. James United Methodist Church with the Rev. Johniel Henry officiating. Burial will be in the Masonic Cemetery in Amory. Darden and Sons Funeral Home of Amory is in charge of the arrangements.
Survivors include her husband, Lawrence C. Irvin of Amory; one son, Dwyan (Sheryl) Suggs; one daughter, Monique Deon Bass of Memphis; three brothers, Henry (Doris) Suggs of Amory, Forrest (Deborah) Suggs and Phil (Iola) Suggs, both of Louisville, Ky.; one sister, Annie Jean (Jasper) Clark of St. Louis; one uncle, Carl Edward Thompson (Mary) of St. Louis; two aunts, Henrene Holimon and Lola Mae Smith, both of Amory; four grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
She was preceded in death by her parents and one brother Ralph Suggs.
Visitation will be from 2 to 6 p.m. today with the family hour from 6 to 7 p.m. today at the funeral home. The body will be placed in the church one hour prior to service time Wednesday.
Ernest Simmons
TUPELO – Ernest Simmons, 82, in his own words, “kicked the bucket and went home to be with the Lord” on Monday, Dec. 28, 2009, at The Meadows in Fulton, where he had resided the last five years. Ernest was born in Lee County on Dec. 15, 1927, to the late Jessie Lee and Alice Victoria Presley Simmons. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II in the Japanese Theatre. Ernest was a retired self-employed house mover, carrying own his father’s business, and he was a car dealer in the Tupelo area. A member of Center Hill Baptist Church, he was a championship domino player and a longtime fixture at Fire Station No. 3. He enjoyed rook, watching Unity Broadcasting and was an avid conversationalist and jokester. He was beloved by his family and many friends who knew him as “PaPaw.”
Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2009, at the Tupelo Chapel of Holland Funeral Directors with Bro. Fred Hartley officiating. Private burial will follow in Center Hill Cemetery near Plantersville. Visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. today.
Survivors include his daughter, Pam Williams (Pete) of Nettleton; his son, Ernie Simmons (Sandy) of Tupelo; four grandchildren, Christy Simmons Beard (Kevin) of Mooreville, Yolanda Simmons Kerr (Steve) of Ripley, Brad Williams and Scott Williams (Riley) of Nettleton; five great-grandchildren, Jacob Beard, Sadie, Bradon and Emry Williams, and Paxton Kerr.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife of 57 years, Mary Sue Moore Simmons, who died Jan. 15, 2008; a sister, Margaret Weaver; and three brothers, Lawrence Simmons, Richard Simmons and Boyd Simmons.
Pallbearers will be Brad and Scott Williams, Steve Kerr, Kevin and Jacob Beard, and Bradon Williams.
Memorials may be made to Unity Broadcasting, P.O. Box 65, Fulton, MS 38843.
Darrell Brumley
MEMPHIS – Darrell Brumley, 77, died Sunday, Dec. 27, 2009, at his home in Memphis. Arrangements are incomplete and will be announced later by McMillan Funeral Home of Booneville. Visitation will be from 4 to 9 p.m. today at the funeral home.
Morgan Russell Partlow
PLANTERSVILLE – Morgan Russell Partlow, 94, died Friday, Dec. 25, 2009, at Vicker’s Personal Care Home in Mathiston after a brief illness. He was born Sept. 7, 1915, to Albert Raymond and Fannie Morgan Partlow. He was a member of Plantersville Methodist Church and a lifelong farmer. He was a U.S. Army veteran of World War II.
Services will be at 2 p.m. today at Lee Memorial Funeral Home Chapel with Bro. Bobby Robbins officiating. Burial will be in Lee Memorial Park.
Survivors include one niece, Shirley (Charles) Collier of Starkville; two nephews, Carroll (Jane) Coggin of Plantersville and Harold Coggin of Nettleton.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his wife, Mary Louise Partlow; and one sister, Erin Coggin.
Pallbearers will be Bruce Coggin, Jeff Coggin, Marcus Collier, John Estes, Danny Cox and Mike Boggan.
For online condolences and guest registry, visit www.leememorialonline.com.

NEMS Daily Journal