December 19, 2007 Edition

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Palmer ~ Sapp


Audie Girtman Bacon James Boatenhammer Paul W. Chappell
Betty Jean Harris Dennis Johnston Cecil Henry Lakey
Ruby Luther Larry John Mahaffey Wanda Marie Mayo
Bessie Lorene Pulliam Vina Wells Willard S. Willbanks Sr.


Palmer ~ Sapp
Ann Fry of Walnut Ridge and Eddie Palmer of Pocahontas announce the engagement and forthcoming marriage of their daughter, Cassandra "Cassie" Irene Palmer, to Robert "Robby" Isaac Sapp, son of Daniel and Betty Sapp of Tuckerman.

The bride-elect is the granddaughter of Betty Fry of Hoxie and the late Theo Carl Fry and the late John and Louise Palmer. She earned her GED in 2000 and plans to attend beauty school in Januaray. She is a Daisy Girl Scout leader for Troop 222.

The prospective groom is the grandson of May Marie Klais of Tuckerman and the late Charles Klais and the late Loyd and Eleanor Sapp. He is a 1997 graduate of Tuckerman High School and is employed by Alberto in Jonesboro, where he works in maintenance.

The couple will exchange vows on Saturday, Dec. 29, at 10 a.m. at the Hoxie Community Center. All family and friends are invited.

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Audie Girtman Bacon

Audie Girtman Bacon, 100, of Cave City, mother of Sue Norman of Strawberry, died Dec. 13, 2007, at White River Medical Center. Burial was Monday in Fairview Cemetery, east of Cave City, under the direction of Qualls Funeral Home.

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James Bryan Boatenhammer

James Bryan Boatenhammer, 87, of Lakeland, Fla., died Dec. 14, 2007, at Lakeland, Fla.

A native of Lynn, he was the son of Clay and Leora Harris Boatenhammer. He was a World War II Army veteran and was awarded five Bronze Stars. He had lived in Florida for several years before returning to Lynn and to Jonesboro before moving back to Lakeland. He was a member of the Church of Christ.

He received a bachelor's degree and a master's degree from Arkansas State College. A career education administrator, he was a former superintendent of Lynn Public Schools.

He was preceded in death by a son, Larry; and a sister, Coy Boatenhammer Bristow.

Survivors include his wife, Thelma Perrin Boatenhammer; a daughter, Linda Troupe, Lakeland; a son, Jim Boatenhammer, Lakeland; two sisters, Inez Penn, Walnut Ridge, and Wanda Baker, St. Louis; two grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

Funeral was Tuesday at 2 p.m. at the Lynn Church of Christ with Kenny Tinsley officaiting. Burial, with military honors, was in Dry Creek Cemetery under the direction of House-Gregg Funeral Home of Lynn.

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Paul W. Chappell

Paul W. Chappell, 81, of Hoxie, died Dec. 17, 2007, at CGH Medical Center in Sterling, Ill.

Born Aug. 5, 1926, in Hoxie, he was the son of William Virgil and Viola Eunice Hancock Chappell. He was employed in the galvanizer at Northwestern Steel and Wire Company in Sterling for over 30 years before retiring.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Myrtie Peppers Chappell, on Jan. 27, 1994, whom he married May 23, 1944; a daughter, Peggy Lee Chappell; and a son, Steve Chappell.

Survivors include his daughter, Patsy Skinner and husband Sam, Rock Falls, Ill., a son, Jack Chappell and wife Sharon, Rock Falls; a daughter-in-law, Sue Chappell, Rock Falls; 11 grandchildren; several great-grandchildren; and a special friend, Bonnie Sheets.

Funeral is Thursday at 10 a.m. in Bryan Chapel. Burial will be in Lawrence Memorial Park under the direction of Bryan Funeral Home.

Visitation is tonight from 5 to 8 at the funeral home.

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Betty Jean Harris

Betty Jean Harris, 72, of Walnut Ridge, died Dec. 14, 2007, at St. Bernards in Jonesboro.

Born Aug. 5, 1935, she was a resident at the Walnut Ridge Nursing and Rehab Center.

One of her favorite poems by Rudyard Kipling, "If" says:

"If you can dream--and not make dreams your master,

If you can think--and not make thoughts your aim;

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster

And treat those two impostors just the same;

Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it."

Survivors include a son, William Andrew Tobe Harris and his wife Kim; two daughters, Lauri Harris and Dottie Harris; and five grandchildren, Zack Harris, Storm Harris, Talon Harris, Torey Coody and Mallory Coody.

A memorial service will be held today at 2 p.m. at Walnut Ridge Nursing and Rehab. Emerson Funeral Home of Jonesboro has charge of arrangements.

An online guestbook is available at

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Dennis Johnston

Nelson Dennis "Bones" Johnston, 63, of Strawberry, died Dec. 11, 2007, at Walnut Ridge.

Born July 20, 1944, at Swifton, he served in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Vietnam era. He was a journeyman iron worker and a Mason.

He was preceded in death by his father, Nelson Oneal Johnston.

Survivors include a son, Nelson Dennis Johnston, Bay; three daughters, Marie Groves and Evonne Butler, both of Jonesboro, and Renee Hutchison, Strawberry; his mother, Gladys Henry Johnston, Jonesboro; two sisters, Linda Lamberth, Jonesboro, and Frances Wahlquist, West Plains, Mo.; and 12 grandchildren.

Funeral was Friday at 10 a.m. in the chapel of Jackson's Newport Funeral Home. Burial was in Gracelawn Cemetery.

Pallbearers were Kendall Kusey, Steven "Mouse" Smith, Donny Smith, Dexter Hardin, Kit Carson Jr., Charles Duncan and Fred Crouch. Honorary pallbearers were grandsons Nelson D. Johnston III, Frisco Lenox and Jacob K. Johnston.

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Cecil Henry Lakey

Cecil Henry Lakey, 69, of Saginaw, Texas, died Dec. 11, 2007.

He was a member of Metropolitan Baptist Church.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 48 years, Evelyn B. Lakey; his parents, Henry and Margie Lakey; and a brother, Ernest Lakey.

Survivors include his children, Mike Lakey and wife Sandy, Mosinee, Wis., Barbara Long and husband Ronald, Joshua, Texas, Alan Lakey and wife Donna, Farmerville, La., and Alison Hulsey, Newark, Texas; four sisters, Louetta Acher, Hot Springs, and Dixie Rice, Arlene Lawson and Sue Taylor, all of Walnut Ridge; eight grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Funeral was Friday at Greenwood Funeral Home in Fort Worth. Burial was in Greenwood Memorial Park.

An online guestbook is available at

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Ruby Luther

Ruby Luther, 82, of Jonesboro, formerly of Black Rock, died Dec. 13, 2007, at St. Bernards in Jonesboro.

Born Feb. 8, 1925, in Braggadocio, Mo., she was the daughter of Johnny and Edna Mae Wilkerson Crow. She was a homemaker and was a member of the New Hope Pentecostal Church at Black Rock.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Ray Lillard Luther, on July 10, 2003, whom she married in September 1942.

Survivors include a son, Danny Luther and wife Judy, Jonesboro; a daughter, Carol Minton and husband Raymond, Bono; two sisters, Lillie Snapp, Jonesboro, and Shirley Ann Crow, Arnold, Mo.; four grandchildren, Steven Luther, Greg Minton, Sandy Fletcher and Tonya Chattenton; and nine great-grandchildren.

Graveside service was Monday at 10 a.m. at Strangers Home Cemetery with Bro. Wayne Bryant officiating. Bryan Funeral Home had charge of arrangements.

Family and friends served as pallbearers.

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Larry John Mahaffey

Larry John Mahaffey, 54, of Hardy, died Dec. 16, 2007, at his home.

He was a member of Ravenden Methodist Church.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Louis and Bernece Rogers Mahaffey; four brothers and a sister.

Survivors include his wife, Charlotte Mathews Mahaffey; a son, Jimmy Mahaffey and wife Alexia, Ravenden; a daughter, Kimberly Gray and husband Mike, Black Rock; a brother, Roger Mahaffey and wife Linda, Ravenden; a sister, Linda Hall and husband Bill, Glencoe; three grandchildren, Kiana Mahaffey, Brandon Gray and Tyler Gray; and special friends, Norman and Ronnie Oakes and Russell Bassham.

A celebration of his life will be held at a later date. McNabb Funeral Home of Pocahontas has charge of arrangements.

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Wanda Marie Nibert Mayo

Wanda Marie Nibert Mayo, 82, of Sherwood, died Dec. 7, 2007.

Born May 29, 1925, in Pocahontas, she was the daughter of Tennie and Alma Raglin Nibert. A graduate of Pocahontas High School, she worked in banking and was a homemaker.

She was preceded in death by her husband, William High "Hi" Mayo, who formerly lived in Walnut Ridge.

Survivors include three sons, Mitch, Longwood, Fla., Mark, Cabot, and Roger, Little Rock; a brother, Bobby Nibert, St. Louis; five grandchildren; and a great-grandchild.

A private committal has been conducted and a celebration of her life will be held Saturday at noon in the gazebo in the memorial park at Griffin Leggett Rest Hills Funeral Home in North Little Rock.

Honorary pallbearers will be Bob Cover, Darrell Maxwell, Bob Norman, Ken Spencer and James Thompson.

Memorials may be made to Shriner's Hospitals for Children, 2001 S. Lindbergh Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63131-3597, (314) 432-3600 ext. 188 attn: Laura Allen.

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Bessie Lorene Pulliam

Bessie Lorene Pulliam, 86, of Walnut Ridge, died Dec. 17, 2007, at Lawrence Hall Nursing Center.

Born Feb. 16, 1921, in Old Walnut Ridge, she was the daughter of Willie Joseph and Martha Bell Holcomb Pulliam. She was a self-employed caregiver for many Lawrence County families and was a member of the First Assembly of God Church in Walnut Ridge.

Survivors include a sister, Elsie Hodge, Kennett, Mo.

Funeral is Friday at 2 p.m. in Higginbotham Chapel with Rev. Dale Hughart officiating. Burial will be in Lawrence Memorial Park under the direction of Higginbotham Funeral Service.

Visitation is Friday from noon until time of the service.

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Vina Wells

Vina Wells, 69, of Ravenden, died Dec. 13, 2007, at her home.

She was a dietary supervisor for the Williford School District.

She was preceded in death by a daughter, Pamela Rogers; her parents, Thomas and Stella Broadway; four brothers and two sisters.

Survivors include two daughters, Rhonda Bystry, Ash Flat, and Machelle Wells, Ravenden; two sisters, Dorthy Horman, Kentucky, and Connie Stockwell, Ash Flat; a granddaughter; and four great-granddaughters.

Graveside service was Tuesday at 10 a.m. at Dail Cemetery at Ravenden with Doug Wortham officiating. Heath Oak Hill Chapel of Highland had charge of arrangements.

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Willard S. Willbanks Sr.

Willard S. Willbanks Sr., 75, of Bono, formerly of Lawrence County, died Dec. 16, 2007, at Jonesboro.

Born Oct. 6, 1932, at Weiner, he was the owner of Willbanks Sand and Gravel until his retirement in 1995. After his retirement, he became a logger and a cattle farmer. He was of the Pentecostal faith.

He was preceded in death by a son, Willard S. Willbanks Jr.; his parents, George and Mary Wilhelm Willbanks; a brother, George Willbanks; and five sisters, Edith Scales, Gladys Bice, Bertha Jobe, Ruby Rhody and Sylvia Mounts.

Survivors include his wife of 54 years, Anita Herring Willbanks, whom he married on Oct. 2, 1953; two daughters, Barbara Owens and husband Bradley, Bono, and Helen Brand and husband Jack, Imboden; a brother, Charles "Mousy" Willbanks, Walnut Ridge; a sister, Carolyn Cummings and husband Robert, Allen Park, Mich.; five grandchildren, Andrea Qualls, Bridget Watts, Misty Nelms, Josh Brand and Whitney Owens; and six great-grandchildren.

Graveside service is today at 10 a.m. at Clark Cemetery at Uno under the direction of Jackson's Newport Funeral Home.

Pallbearers will be Jerry Bice, Fred Bice, Billy Cotton, Vaughn Russell, Robert "Pud" Cummings and Terry Woodard. Honorary pallbearers will be Jimmy Wright, Dale Herring and C.D. Peeler.

An online guestbook is available at

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