Obituaries July 21, 2013

Lucille Burleson
VERONA – On July 19, 2013, the Lord called Lucille Burleson home. Preceding her in that joyous journey was the Love of her Life and Husband of 35 years, Charles Burleson, who has been in Heaven awaiting her arrival since December 1993.

Together, Charles and Lucille have seven surviving children, Libby Jones (Keith) of Tupelo, Wanda Cooper of Tennessee, James “Jim” Stokes (Jo) of Muscle Shoals, Ala., Jack Hillensbeck (Sherry) of Biloxi, Douglas Hillensbeck of Prairieville, La., Sharon Miller (Allan) of Tupelo, Donna Bosken of Cincinnati, Ohio, and Vallerie Whitten of Verona.

Lucille Burleson was born June 19, 1931, in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Her parents, James Allan and Sarah Myrtle Drake, and her sisters, Jamie Gillentine and Marie Curran, are also celebrating her recent arrival to Heaven. She is survived by one brother, James “Boy” Drake (Ann) and one sister, Ruth Frances Young, both of Verona. Lucille had just celebrated her 82nd birthday last month as a resident at The Meadows in Fulton and has lived a long, blessed, wonderful life right up to the very end. She was always the first in line to help someone in need however she could, volunteering herself in any way needed, even delivering for the Meals on Wheels program through the church in which she belonged, Verona United Methodist. She enjoyed traveling, camping, gardening, cooking, reading, painting, puzzles of any kind and Solitaire and was especially fond of Oreos, Mentos and Peppermints, but absolutely NOTHING brought her any more joy than that of spending time with any of her 15 surviving grandchildren; Heather Payne, Antoinette Hiltgen, Adam Bosken, Deborah Johnson, Kirk Hillensbeck, Allana Miller, Tommy Miller, Brian Hillensbeck, Greg Hillensbeck, Kecia Mowers, Ben Mowers,

Chris Jones, Jason Jones, Shelley Mahaffey and Melissa Holder. Lucille is also survived by twenty-one GREAT Grandchildren, (with at least two MORE presently on their way)! Her face would ALWAYS light up when recounting their latest endeavors, or simply by trying to count how many there were in total, until she finally ran out of fingers and toes! And last but not least, Lucille also has six other “Furry 4-Legged” grandchildren, her “Grand Dogs” that always made her smile and that she considered to be part of the family as well. Lucille was the Matriarch to quite a large family, a mother and grandmother to many beautiful and talented children of all shapes, sizes and ages, but one thing is sure, they all agree she was the very Best Mother in the World and will be dearly missed.

Visitation will be today from 2 to 5 p.m. at W.E. Pegues Funeral Home on Jefferson St. in Tupelo. Funeral services will be at 10 a.m. Monday morning at W.E. Pegues, with Rev. Keith Cochran officiating followed by graveside services at Lee Memorial Park in Verona. The grandsons of Lucille will serve as her pallbearers.

Even though Lucille loved flowers, you also may choose to make a memorial donation in her honor to the Mississippi Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association based in Ridgeland. Her online memorial webpage may be found simply by entering her name at, or by going to

At this time, the family also wishes to extend their gratitude to the staff at The Meadows in Fulton and the NMMC.

Expressions of sympathy may be left at

Medera Gist
IUKA – Reva Medera “Dear” Estes Gist, 87, passed away Friday morning, July 19, 2013, at the home of her daughter, with whom she had been living for the past several months. Born July 28, 1925, in Lawrenceburg, Tenn., to Alice Mildred

Hannah and George Gibson Estes, she was the fourth of their 10 children. Medera was a member of New Prospect Baptist Church. She was a Christian and loved the Lord our God. She also loved flowers, quilting, crocheting and family gatherings. Her favorite season was the fall of the year because of all the beautiful colors.

She is survived by her four children, Reva Gene Bradford (Bobby) of Iuka, Charlotte Ann Granlund (Don) of Zion, Ill., Larry Dale Gist of Iuka and Barbara Lynn Green, also of Iuka; seven grandchildren, Debbie, Becky, Chelly, Mike, Jeremy,

Anthony and Myra; 11 great-grandchildren, two great-great-grandchildren; one sister, Geneva Blackard of Iuka; and two brothers, Gatha and Kenneth Ray Estes, both of Waukegan, Ill.

She was preceded in death by her husband of 67 years, Kenneth E. Gist (2011); her parents; and six siblings, Virginia Dare Hendrix, Junior Austine Estes, John Grady Estes, Damie Jewel Estes, Helen Ruth Estes and Josie Freda Estes; one grandson, Timothy Granlunc; and one son-in-law, Myron Green.

Funeral services are scheduled for 2 p.m. today, July 21, at Ludlam Funeral Home, officiated by Bro. Stanley Magill and nephew, Bro. Gene Gist. Interment will follow in New Prospect Baptist Church Cemetery.

Pallbearers will be Anthony Green, Channing Green, Paul Estes, Jerry Estes, Derek Higginbottom and Dylan Higginbottom. Honorary pallbearers will be Bobby Bradford, Eugene Shackelford, Larry Collins and Austin Green.

The family wishes to thank NMMC Hospice for the love and care they shared with our Mom – Tracey, Thomas, Laura, Leigh Ann, Shirley and Jerry.

Julia Garner
FULTON – Julia Budd “Dooley” Garner, 81, died Saturday, July 20, 2013, at The Meadows in Fulton. She was born Aug. 20, 1931, in Lee County to William and Clara Rutherford. She was a member of Pleasant Valley United Methodist Church in Guntown. She loved to cook and sew. For the past 20 years, she and her husband, Charlie, lived at the Midway Marina in Fulton. There she flourished surrounded by many good friends.

Memorial services will be held at the Pleasant Valley United Methodist Church at a later date. W.E. Pegues Funeral Directors is in charge of arrangements.

Survivors include her husband of 37 years, Charlie Garner of the Midway Marina Community; one brother, Jim Rutherford; her aunt, Mary Kate O’Shields; and many nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her daughter, Pam Arnold; her parents; two brothers, Bill and Bob Rutherford; three sisters, Beverly Davis, Martha Swann and Carolyn Bowman.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to BridgePoint Oncology Center, 961 S. Gloster St., Tupelo, MS 38801.

Expressions of sympathy may be left at

Ailene Powers
VESTAVIA, Ala. – Loris Ailene Stanphill Powers, 91, died Friday, July 19, 2013.

Graveside services will be at 1 p.m. Monday, July 22, at Ridge Cemetery in Golden. Deaton Funeral Home of Red Bay, Ala., will be in charge of arrangements.

Jimmah Dunn
GUNTOWN – Jimmah Michelle “Missy” Dunn, 41, died Thursday, July 18, 2013, at North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo. Arrangements are incomplete and will be announced later by Waters Funeral Home of Baldwyn.

Ollie Bean
TUPELO – Ollie Hawkins Bean, 42, passed away Friday, July 19, 2013, at North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo. She was born March 28, 1971, to Ralph Hawkins and Alma Coburn Hawkins. She enjoyed spending time with her grandchildren, having family cookouts and shopping with her sisters.

Services will be at 5 p.m. today July 21, at Senter Funeral Home in Fulton. Bro. Shane Ray and Bro. Thomas Warren will officiate. Burial will be in Boguefala Cemetery.

Survivors include her mother, Alma Hawkins of Mooreville; her husband, Robbie Bean of Tupelo; one son, Austin Carroll of Mooreville; two daughters, Kristen (Rob) Carroll of Alabama and Morgan Carroll of Mooreville; one stepdaughter,

Tiffany Bean of Booneville; granddaughters, Noel Goodson, Nevaeh Hardin and Alayna Carroll, all of Alabama, and Jalyn Bean of Booneville; sisters, Julia Contreras of Booneville, Alma (Buddy) Foote of Tupelo, Maye Hand of Tupelo, Patty

(Bill) Lawley of Bee Branch, Ark.; brothers, Ralph (Doris) Hawkins of Mooreville, John (Tesha) Hawkins of Louisiana; and nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her father, Ralph Hawkins; two brothers, Tommy Campbell and Mike Campbell; one sister, Faye Whaley; and a brother-in-law, Manuel Contreras.

Pallbearers will be Adam Foote, Brad Foote, Slick Coburn, Zeik Rojas, Ketih Whaley, Chris Baldwin and Robert Hardin.

Visitation will be from 11 a.m. to service time today at the funeral home.

Online condolences can be expressed at

Sherron Henley
BELMONT – Sherron Ruth Wanner Henley, 64, died Friday, July 19, 2013, at Red Bay Hospital. She was a registered nurse. She loved her dog, Missy, and her cat, Mrs. Kitty.

Services will be at 3 p.m. Monday, July 22, at Deaton Funeral Home Chapel in Belmont with Mike Deaton officiating. Burial will be in Forrest Grove Cemetery. Deaton Funeral Home of Belmont will be in charge of arrangements.

Survivors include two children, Christina Henley of Lighthouse Point, Fla., and John Henley of Belmont; grandson, John Mason Henley; her mother, Marjorie Wanner of Belmont; two sisters, Patricia Poff of Belmont and Brenda Lubinski of East Pointe, Mich.; several nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, great-great-nieces and great-great-nephews.

She was preceded in death by her father, Odis Melton Wanner; her sister, Nancy Lubinski; and two brothers-in-law, Charles Poff and Eugene Lubinski.

Pallbearers will be Stacy Stepp, Horace Stepp, Alan Rouse, Andy Williams, Jason Coker and Victor Cabanas.

Visitation will be Monday at Deaton Funeral Home in Belmont.

Elzey Autry
ASHLAND – William Elzey Autry, 89, died Friday, July 19, 2013, at North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo. He was born Jan. 24, 1924, to Augustus Ayers and Hattie Hudspeth Autry in Hickory Flat. He was a faithful Christian and a longtime member of Ashland Baptist Church, serving as a deacon for 50 years and Sunday School teacher in various classes. He received his bachelor of music education degree from Mississippi College in 1951. He served as minister of music at Ashland Baptist Church from 1954-1986. He also served as minister of music at West Point First Baptist Church, Grenada First Baptist Church, Falkner First Baptist Church, Oakland Baptist Church and Ripley First Baptist Church. He worked as a Region II Mental Health coordinator prior to serving as Ashland city manager. He was an instructor at Northwest Mississippi Junior College Vocational Center in Ashland, retiring in 1988. He served in the Pacific Theater with the U.S. Navy Armed Guard during World War II from 1943-1946.

Services will be at 11 a.m. Monday, July 22, at Ashland Baptist Church with Dr. Gerald Hodges officiating. Burial will be in Tippah Memorial Garden at Ripley. McBride Funeral Home of Ripley is in charge of arrangements.

He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Ruth Miskelley Autry; three children, Terry Autry (Mary Ann) of Ashland, Vicki Brown (David) of Red Bay, Ala., and Mark Autry of Ashland; six grandchildren, Nicole Freeman (Caleb), Brooke Matthews (Chris), Robby Autry, Michael Autry (Shaina), Kelley Autry and Maura Autry; four great-grandchildren, Katie Freeman, John David Freeman, Madelyn Matthews and Avajo Dowdy.

He was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Niles and Arthur Autry; and a sister, Elizabeth Davis.

Pallbearers will be Robby Autry, Michael Autry, Kelley Autry, Caleb Freeman, Chris Matthews, Michael Renfro, Travis Craft and Scott Autry. Honorary pallbearers are Ashland Baptist Church deacons.

Visitation will be from 2 to 4 pm. today at Ashland Baptist Church.

Memorials may be made to Ashland Baptist Church, P.O. Box 35, Ashland, MS 38603.

To view and sign the online guestbook, visit

Martha Howell
TUPELO – Martha Louise Prather Howell, 63, died Saturday, July 20, 2013, at her residence. She was born Sept. 18, 1949, in Union County to Arthur and Elsie Porterfield Prather. She was a co-owner of Howell Plumbing for 25 years and a nurse for North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo. She was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. She enjoyed reading, traveling and taking care of her grandkids.

Services will be at 2 p.m. Wednesday, July 24, at United Funeral Service. Burial will be in Glenfield Memorial Park. United Funeral Service of New Albany is in charge of the arrangements.

She is survived by her husband, James Dugger Howell; one daughter, Julie Denise McCullough (Brian) of Florida; four sons, Robert Wayne Howell (Fennie) of Los Angeles, Paul Edgar Howell (Christi) of Tupelo, Michael James Howell (Patricia) of Tupelo and Adam Joshua Howell (Shelly) of New Albany; two sisters, Rosie Prather and Betty Prather, both of New Albany; three brothers, Bobby Prather of New Albany, Melvin Prather of New Albany and Ray Prather of Oklahoma; and nine grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents; one sister, Geneva Hale; and three brothers, Amos, Gene and Jamie Prather.

Pallbearers will be Robert Howell, Paul Howell, Michael Howell, Adam Howell, Mitch Howell, Jeff Fulgham and Brian McCullough.

Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Tuesday at the funeral home.

For online condolences and guest registry, visit

Arthur Lewis
BLUE MOUNTAIN – Arthur Allen Lewis, 85, died Saturday, July 20, 2013, at his residence in Blue Mountain. He was born Dec. 10, 1927, to James and Birdie Reed Lewis. He was a Baptist and a supervisor in manufacturing. He was an Army veteran of World War II.

Services will be at 11 a.m. Monday, July 22, at Ripley Funeral Home Chapel with Bro. Clay Pritchett officiating. Burial will be in Tippah Memorial Garden.

He is survived by one daughter, Gerri Crawford of North Aurora, Ill.; one son, Rick Lewis of Blue Mountain; special friend, Linda Thomas of Blue Mountain; one sister, Lillie Belle Smith of Blue Mountain; one brother, Robert Lewis; and six grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents; and his wife, Winnie Lee Hall Lewis.

Visitation will be from 10 until 11 a.m. Monday at Ripley Funeral Home Chapel.

To view obituaries online and sign the guestbook, visit

Keith Yates
JUMPERTOWN – Joseph Keith Yates, 76, died Friday, July 19, 2013, at the Baldwyn Nursing Facility in Baldwyn. He was born March 20, 1937, to Cullen and Lucille Michael Yates. He was a member of New Life Mission. He was a mechanic.

Over the years, he worked for Herschel Eaton, Jumpertown Service Station, Charles Garrett’s Garage and Gene Davis’ Shop.

Services will be at 3:30 p.m. today, July 21, at the McMillan Funeral Home Chapel with Bro. Clyde and Sis. Kathy Davis officiating. Burial will be in Jumpertown Cemetery.

He is survived by two daughters, Teresa (Bobby) Cole and Jennifer (Andy) Copeland, both of Jumpertown; three sons, Ronald (Pam) Yates, Bengy (Kathy) Yates, both of Jumpertown, and Johnny Yates of Ridgeland; three sisters, Beth English of Jumpertown, Sandra (Buster) Green of Wheeler and Francile (Rickie) Davis of Jumpertown; 13 grandchildren, Christy (Brad) Burns, Heather (Greg) Tittle, Lanna Yates, Justin Cole, Jordan Cole, Katlin Yates, Jared Yates, Niki Stacy, T.J. Copeland, Josh Copeland, Carson Coats, Julie Hyde and Bryson Hyde; four great-grandchildren, Coye Burns, Kameron Stacy, Carsen Yates and Lane Hyde; the mother of his children and his caregiver, Jettie Yates; and a host of nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents; and two brothers, Gene Yates and Millard Yates.

Pallbearers are his grandsons. Honorary pallbearers are his great-grandsons, his nephews and Gene Davis.

Visitation will continue until service time today at the funeral home.

Condolences may be left at

Mattie Wallace
TUPELO – Mattie Wallace died Saturday, July 20, 2013, at her home. Arrangements are incomplete and will be announced later by Grayson-Porter’s Mortuary.

Claude Bell
WREN – Claude Vernon Bell, 86, died Thursday, July 18, 2013, in Pennsylvania. Arrangements are incomplete and will be announced later by Tisdale-Lann Memorial Funeral Home in Aberdeen.

Rhonda Graham
OZARK – Rhonda Griggs Graham, 42, died Saturday, July 20, 2013, at her home after a long illness. Arrangements are incomplete and will be announced later by Kesler Funeral Home of Baldwyn.

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