July 15, 2009 Edition

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Ava Elizabeth Belin Eli Grayson Huddleston Marlee Jane Lady


Garner ~ Weitkamp Glenn ~ Hunter


Jewell Marie Allen Melissa Mae Crider Mary L. Doyle
Mary Louise Foster Billy John Howard Eller Huddleston
Maxine L. Huskey Rex Jones Hazel Madden
William G. Russell Jake Simpson Jennifer Renee Ward
Sena Rudy Winters


Ava Elizabeth Belin

John and Jackie Belin of Gatlinburg, Tenn., announce the birth of a daughter, Ava Elizabeth Belin, on June 6, 2009, at Park-West Hospital in Knoxville, Tenn. She has a sister, Anna Claire Belin.

Grandparents are Jerry and Joyce Hensley of Pocahontas and George and Phyliss Belin of Branson. She is the great-granddaughter of the late Raymond and Vurnece Jones and the late Jess and Raydene Hensley, all of whom lived in Walnut Ridge.

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Eli Grayson Huddleston

Clay and Megan Huddleston of Pocahontas have announced the birth of a son on June 30, 2009, at St. Bernards in Jonesboro. The baby weighed eight pounds, 10 ounces, and has been named Eli Grayson Huddleston.

He has two brothers, Blaine Huddleston, nine, and Dylan Huddleston, five.

Grandparents are John and Betty Ward of Walnut Ridge, Terry and Lynn Cox of Floral and Clay Huddleston Jr. and Gayla Mitchell, both of Imboden.

He is the great-grandson of J.D. and Lou Ward of Hoxie, Joyce Ward of Walnut Ridge, James and Mary Watson of Cave City, Alene Cox of Floral and Clay Huddleston Sr. of West Virginia. Great-great-grandfather is Andrew Perry of Walnut Ridge.

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Marlee Jane Lady

Hank and Janet Lady of Walnut Ridge announce the birth of a daughter, July 4, 2009. The baby weighed seven pounds, 11 ounces and has been named Marlee Jane Lady.

Grandparents are Hal and Susan Lady and John and Mary Jo Franks, all of Walnut Ridge.

Great-grandparents are Jewel and Diane Woodson, of Hoxie, Archie and Ailene Harden of Walnut Ridge and Katherine Lady of Hot Springs.

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Garner ~ Weitkamp

On May 16, 2009, in an outdoor setting in the Alice French Memorial Garden at the Historic Clover Bend School in Clover Bend, Lauren DeShae Weitkamp and Brent Edward Garner were united in marriage.

The bride is the daughter of Renee Tucker of Hoxie and Kevin and Nicole Weitkamp of Pocahontas, and the groom is the son of Chuck and Chris Garner of Walnut Ridge.

Lauren is the granddaughter of Junior and Roydell Tucker of Hoxie and Bill and Sharon Weitkamp of O'Kean. Brent is the grandson of Frank Townsley of Walnut Ridge and the late Margaret Townsley and Betty Garner of Jonesboro and the late Frank Garner.

Darrell Douglas of the Hoxie Church of Christ officiated the double-ring semi-formal ceremony. Nuptial music was provided by Sound Extreme.

The bride was given in marriage by her father, Kevin Weitkamp, and maternal grandfather, Junior Tucker.

The bride wore a white matte satin princess-style gown featuring an empire waist and deep V neckline, accented with glass beading and flowing into a sweeping train.

She carried a hand-tied clutch bouquet of antique green hydrangeas, lime green cymbidium orchids, hot pink dahlias and miniature pink calla lilies. The stems were wrapped in white satin and included in the wrapping were handkerchiefs belonging to the bride's late maternal great-grandmothers, Rebecca Wade and Larkin Tucker and a Bible given to the bride as an infant.

Tiffany Bullard of Hoxie was the maid of honor. Bridesmaids were Kristen Harper and Jessica Woods, both of Hoxie, Maegan Boyd of Walnut Ridge and Beverly Newcom of Jonesboro.

Alison Garner of Walnut Ridge, sister of the groom, served as junior bridesmaid, and Emilie Price of Hoxie was flower girl.

Houston Hancock of Hoxie served as best man. Groomsmen were Matthew Travis and Chris Coats, both of Walnut Ridge, Bo Stocker of Hoxie and Blaine Smith of Bono.

Junior groomsman was Chandler Weitkamp of Vilonia, brother of the bride, and Kannon and Karson Weitkamp of Pocahontas, brothers of the bride, were ring bearers.

Serving as ushers were Jason Price and Cody Wallis, both of Hoxie.

A reception followed in the Clover Bend School Auditorium. Servers were Stephanie Murray, Robynn Rapert and Melissa Weitkamp, aunts of the bride.

Suzanne Polston presided at the bride's book, and Theresa Price served as wedding coordinator.

Following a wedding trip to Eureka Springs, the couple are at home in Hoxie. Lauren is a student in the radiologic technology program at ASU, and Brent is employed by Windmill Rice in Jonesboro.


The Lawrence County Meeting Room was the setting for a March 22 miscellaneous shower hosted by Brittany Schmidt, Rebecca Bullard, Crysti Ludwig, Suzanne Polston, Pam Mullen and Veronica Manning. The hostesses presented Lauren with a vacuum cleaner.

A family shower was held on April 4 at the home of Sharon Weitkamp of O'Kean. Additional hostesses were Robynn Rapert, Melissa Weitkamp and Stephanie Murray. The bride received a gift card from the hostesses.

The home of Roydell Tucker in Hoxie was the site for a family shower on April 18. Hostesses included Kathy Bilbrey, Theresa Price, Fran Tucker and Virginia Tucker.

The ladies of Hoxie Church of Christ hosted a shower on April 26 at the church's fellowship building.

A lingerie shower was held on May 9 at the home of Maegan Boyd. Hostesses were Maegan Boyd and Tiffany Bullard.

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Glenn ~ Hunter

Randy and Belinda Glenn of Lynn announce the engagement and forthcoming marriage of their daughter, Cassandra Lou Glenn, to Rickey James Hunter, son of Corky and Geniave Hunter of Lynn.

The bride-elect is the granddaughter of Jack and Betty Rainwater and Sherry Glenn, all of Lynn, and the late Larry Glenn. She is a 2006 graduate of Black Rock High School and a 2009 graduate of Arkansas State University with a bachelor of science degree in biology. She will attend medical school at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock this fall.

The prospective groom is the grandson of Junior and Eula Mae Huskey of Saffell and Martha Hunter of Lynn and the late Gene Hunter. He is a 2002 graduate of Lynn High School and a 2007 graduate of Arkansas State University with a bachelor of science degree in history education.

The couple will exchange vows on July 25 at 2 p.m. at Pleasant Hill Missionary Baptist Church in Lynn. All family and friends are invited.

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Jewell Marie Allen

Jewell Marie Allen, 96, of Little Rock, formerly of Alicia, died July 8, 2009, at Doctor's Hospital in Little Rock.

She was a homemaker and a member of the Church of Christ.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Glenn D. Allen; two daughters, Judy Redditt and an infant daughter, Ramona Gene; her parents, James A. and Myrtle Ashby Coker; two sisters, Opal Shaver and Wanda Moad; and a grandson, Gregory Allen Harvey.

Survivors include a son, Glen D. Allen, North Little Rock; a daughter, Linda Allen Harvey, Little Rock; a sister, Ruth Logan, Walnut Ridge; seven grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren.

Funeral was Saturday at 11 a.m. at House-Gregg Funeral Home with Don House officiating. Burial was in Strangers Home Cemetery near Alicia.

Pallbearers were Neil Gibbs, Jim Shaver, Scott Logan, Sam Allen, Joe Justus, David Justus, Mark Justus, Steven Allen, Nat Redditt and Steven Logan.

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Melissa Mae Crider

Melissa Mae Crider, 90, of Walnut Ridge, died July 6, 2009, in Walnut Ridge.

Born Dec. 14, 1918, in Smithville, she was the daughter of William Henry and Arrie Norris Willett. She was a homemaker and was a member of First Baptist Church in Holbrook, Ariz.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Gus Charles Crider, whom she married Dec. 30, 1939, in Smithville; and a son, Louis H. Crider.

Survivors include a daughter, Paula Wilson, Alamogordo, N.M.; a son, Wayne Crider, Oak Harbor, Wash.; a brother, Curtis Willett, St. George, Utah; two grandchildren, Melissa Wilson and Charles Crider Jr.; and a great-granddaughter.

Funeral was Friday at 11 a.m. at Higginbotham Funeral Home with Johnny White officiating. Burial was in Smithville Cemetery.

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Mary L. Doyle

Mary L. Shields Doyle, 80, of St. Charles, Mo., died July 9, 2009, at St. Joseph Hospital in St. Charles.

Born Jan. 14, 1929, at Egypt, she was the daughter of John "Beadie" and Esther Beulah McMullen Shields. She was a former resident of Hoxie and Walnut Ridge and was a 1946 graduate of Walnut Ridge High School. She worked as a teller at First National Bank in Walnut Ridge for several years.

She was a member of the Centenary United Methodist Church in Bonne Terre, Mo., the Ethel Lindquist Circle and was a past worthy matron of the Lakeville, Ind., Eastern Star chapter.

She was preceded in death by her husband, John P. Doyle; and a brother, Gerald Shields.

Survivors include two sons, Terry L. Hutton and wife Karen, St. Charles, Mo., and Robert Doyle and wife Cindy, Bonne Terre, Mo.; a daughter, Angela David and husband Chris, O'Fallon, Mo.; two brothers, Johnny Shields and wife Norma and Bill Shields, all of Jonesboro; a sister, Merle Price, Granite City, Ill.; four grandchildren, Stacy Cato, Brooke Huffman, Jackson David and Christian David; and four great-grandchildren.

Funeral was Monday at 11 a.m. at Centenary United Methodist Church with Rev. Michael Kelpe officiating. Burial was in St. Francois Memorial Park Mausoleum. Shearin Funeral Home of Bonne Terre, Mo., had charge of arrangements.

Memorials may be made to Centenary United Methodist Church.

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Mary Louise Foster

Mary Louise Foster, 70, of Imboden, died July 8, 2009, at St. Bernards in Jonesboro.

She lived most of her life in Lawrence County and was a homemaker and a member of the Church of Christ.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Luther and Opal Woods Carver; and two brothers, Edward Lee Carver and Ron Rathbone.

Survivors include her husband, Lorton "L.B." Foster; a daughter, Sherry Chamblee, Imboden; a son, Edward Lee Foster, Mountain Home; and three brothers,

Ned Carver, Florida, and Butch Cook and Wayne Rathbone, both of North Carolina; two sisters, Pearl Green, North Carolina, and Gypsy French, Missouri; six grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren.

Funeral was Friday at 10 a.m. at House-Gregg Funeral Home with Lloyd Clark officiating. Burial was in Lawrence Memorial Park.

Pallbearers were Steve Wade, Kory Dillport, Seth Chamblee, Shawn Foster, Billy Roper and Kyle Wade.

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Billy John Howard

Billy John Howard, 82, of Bethany, Okla., died July 12, 2009, following a lengthy illness.

Born June 2, 1927, in Cave City, he was the son of Taylor and Mary Sullivan Howard. He lived in Jonesboro for many years, where he was a member of the Forest Home Church of the Nazarene. He founded and pastored a Nazarene church in Walnut Ridge before moving to Oklahoma.

He was preceded in death by a brother, Joe Sullivan Howard; and two sisters, Mary Wanda Howard and Bonnie Jane Gentry.

Survivors include his wife of 54 years, Velcine Howard; a son, Jerry Howard, of the home; two daughters, Sharon Gering and husband Kent, Yukon, Okla., and Marsha Norman and husband Mike, Piedmont, Okla.; a brother, Charles Howard and wife Ann, Trussville, Ala.; a sister, Glenna Beth Howard, Dallas; a sister-in-law, Minnie Howard, Walnut Ridge; and four grandchildren, Matthew Gering, Andrew Gering, William Tucker and Mica Norman.

Funeral is Thursday at 11 a.m. at Mercer-Adams Funeral Service in Bethany, Okla. Burial will be in Bethany Cemetery.

Visitation is today, from 6-8 p.m. at the funeral home.

An online guestbook is available at www.mercer-adams.com.

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Eller Huddleston

Eller Huddleston, 74, of Pocahontas, died July 10, 2009, at her home.

Born Jan. 29, 1935, in Walnut Ridge, she was the daughter of William and Mazie Wright.

Survivors include a son, Clay Huddleston; two daughters, Cindy Stover and Dorothy Ann Huddleston; two brothers; four sisters; 11 grandchildren; and 11 great-grandchildren.

Funeral was Tuesday at 2 p.m. at Cox Funeral Home in Pocahontas with Jon Fears officiating. Burial was in Palestine Cemetery.

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Maxine L. Huskey

Maxine L. Hooten Huskey, 83, of Tuckerman, died July 8, 2009.

Born Dec. 16, 1925, at Strawberry, she was the daughter of John Shelby and Clara Mae Hugg Hooten. She was a 1947 graduate of Egypt High School and was a longtime member of the Tuckerman Church of Christ. She was a homemaker and a domestic caregiver.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Eugene Earl "Gene" Huskey; two sisters, Verna Petrek and Rose Marie Hooten.

Survivors include a son, Larry Wayne Hooten and wife LaWanda, Paragould; a daughter, Patricia Ann Davis, Tuckerman; a foster son, Luther O'Neal Sutter Jr. and wife Pam, Little Rock; five brothers, Charles Ellis Hooten, Walnut Ridge, William Paul Hooten, Jonesboro, Dale Hooten and Thomas Hooten, both of Philmore, Calif., and Joe K. Hooten, Victoria, Texas; three sisters, Barbara Alsup and Brenda Smith, both of Philmore, Calif., and Linda Wilson, Hoxie; four grandchildren, Bryan Hooten, Brandi Hooten, Chassity Hooten and Erin Lewis; three foster grandchildren, Jacob Sutter, Sarah Sutter and Anna Marie Sutter; and four great-grandchildren.

Funeral was Monday at 10 a.m. at the Tuckerman Church of Christ. Burial was in Penn Cemetery at Strawberry under the direction of Jackson's Newport Funeral Home.

An online guestbook is available at www.jacksonsfh.com.

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Rex Jones

Rex Jones, 67, of Walnut Ridge, died July 10, 2009, at his home.

Born Sept. 20, 1941, in Walnut Ridge, he attended Walnut Ridge High School, where he was a member of the Bobcat Marching Band. He was the owner and operator of Jones Office Machines in Walnut Ridge and was a member of Fellowship Baptist Church.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Orval and Agness Collins Jones; and a son-in-law, Kevin Rice.

Survivors include two daughters, Sheila Tidwell, Huntsville, Ala., and Sherry Rice, Walnut Ridge; four brothers, Harry Jones, Walnut Ridge, and Larry Jones, John Jones and Billy Mac Jones, all of Smithville; three sisters, Brenda Cullum, Walnut Ridge, Patricia "Sue" Jones and Regina "Jean" White, both of Delaplaine; three grandchildren, Taylor Rice, Nathan South and August Nelson; and three great-grandchildren.

Graveside service was Monday at 3:30 p.m. at Lawrence Memorial Park with Bro. Joe McMasters officiating. Bryan Funeral Home had charge of arrangements.

Pallbearers were Jeremy Rothe, George Jones, Clifford Jones, Rex Alan Jones, L.A. Jones, Tommy Dulaney and Dustin Nelson.

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Hazel Madden

Hazel Madden, 85, of Trumann, mother of Barbara Lairson of Ravenden, died July 6, 2009, at her daughter's home in Festus, Mo. Burial was Thursday in Marked Tree Cemetery under the direction of Thompson Funeral Home of Trumann.

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William G. Russell

William G. Russell, 73, of Joliet, Ill., died July 2, 2009, at his son's home.

Born Jan. 18, 1936, in Smithville, he had lived Joliet since 1973. A U.S Army veteran, he was a retired diesel mechanic and a member of Mechanic's Union #701.

He was preceded in death by two infant daughters; his parents, William and Grace Russell; and three sisters, Marcia Thomas, Mary Slusser and Norma Jean Russell.

Survivors include two sons, Gerald Russell and wife Peggy, Elwood, Ill., and Michael Russell and wife Debbie, Mississippi; four brothers, Thomas Russell and wife Twila, Wesley Russell and wife Barb, Harold Russell and wife Vi, and John Russell; two granddaughters, Sarah Russell and Anna Russell; and several step-grandchildren.

Funeral was July 8 at Blackburn-Giegerich-Sonntag Funeral Home in Joliet, Ill. Burial was in Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery.

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Jake Simpson

J.W. "Jake" Simpson, 72, of Egypt, died July 11, 2009, at Veterans' Hospital in Memphis.

Born June 4, 1937, in Bay, he had lived in Egypt for 25 years. He was a U.S. Army veteran of the Korean War, a bulldozer operator for King Contractor and was a member of the Egypt Assembly of God Church.

He was preceded in death by his father, Ulas Simpson; three sisters, Frances Marie Whitaker, Katherine Simpson and Sharon Simpson; and two brothers, Herman Ray and Dave Simpson.

Survivors include his wife, Kathleen Simpson; a daughter, Annette Upton and husband James, Cash; two sons, Alvin F. Simpson and Jerry W. Simpson, both of Mississippi; a stepson, Rickey Jones and wife Pam, Trumann; his mother, Dorothy Marie Simpson, Jonesboro; four brothers, Raymond Simpson, Robert H. Simpson and John C. Simpson, all of Jonesboro, and Michael K. Simpson, South Carolina; three sisters, Linda K. Brown, Strawberry, Susan A. Bounds, Jonesboro, and Sandra J. Simpson, Memphis; three grandchildren, Jonathan Wilson Upton, Jennifer Jones and Cathy Wiseman; and a great-granddaughter.

Funeral will be Thursday at 10 a.m. at Emerson Funeral Home in Jonesboro with Rev. Gilley Campbell officiating. Burial will be in Pine Log Cemetery.

Pallbearers will be Jonathan Wilson Upton, James Upton, Vowell Crawford, Larry King, Tommy Zemery and Rickey Jones. Honorary pallbearers will be Leon Zemery and Bob Crawford.

Visitation is tonight from 5 to 7 at the funeral home.

Memorials may be made to the Veterans of Foreign Wars 300 Airport Road, Jonesboro, AR 72401.

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Jennifer Renee Ward

Jennifer Renee Ward, 36, of Paragould, died July 11, 2009, at her home.

Born July 5, 1973, in Paragould, she was a homemaker and was a member of the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses.

She was preceded in death by her grandfather, Clois Wilson; her uncle, Michael Long; her aunt, Charlotte Dickson; and her cat, Tiger.

Survivors include her husband, Jeremy Ward; her mother, Judy Hill, Paragould; her biological father, Robert Long, Paragould; her adoptive father, David Hill, Paragould; two sisters, Carrie Pitcher, Paragould, and Chelsea Wyatt, Jonesboro; her grandparents, Martha D. Wilson, Betty and Bob Hays and Kenny Long; two uncles, Danny Wilson, Gary Long; three aunts, Sharon Stevens, Colleen Gibson and Susan Gramling; cousins, Nikki and Jeremy Long, Jaime Richey, Michael Robert Long, Trevor and Kayla Gramling, Ben Gramling, Camden Gramling, Todd Wilson, Michael Wilson, Brian Stevens, Justin Gibson and Michelle Wilson; two nieces, Alexis Smith and Abigail Pitcher; and her dog, Priszilla.

Graveside service is today at 11 a.m. at Woodland Heights Cemetery with Tim Blankenship officiating.

An online guestbook is available at www.heathfuneralhome.com.

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Sena Rudy Winters

Sena Rudy Winters, 82, of Jonesboro, died July 7, 2009, at St. Bernards in Jonesboro.

Born Jan. 1, 1927, in Smithville, she lived in Lynn for several years before moving to Jonesboro in 1971. She and her husband operated W.W. Winters General Merchandise in Lynn for 19 years. After moving to Jonesboro, she worked as an internal auditor for Sears.

She was a member of Central Baptist Church in Jonesboro, where she served on staff. Following retirement, she was a volunteer for the church.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Wayning Winters.

Survivors include a son, Dr. Gary Winters and wife Donna, Jonesboro; a daughter, Waynona Avery, Covington, Tenn.; a brother, Fred Gene Rudy, Jonesboro; five grandchildren, Kimberly Winters, Andy Adams, Wayne Winters, Nathan Winters and Paul Winters; and seven great-grandchildren.

Funeral was Monday at 10 a.m. at Emerson Funeral Home in Jonesboro with her four grandsons officiating and her son, Dr. Gary W. Winters Sr., administering the service. Graveside service was held at 3 p.m. at Smithville Cemetery.

Grandsons served as pallbearers.

Memorials may be made to the Smithville Cemetery Association or to a charity of the donor's choice.

An online guestbook is available at www.emersonfuneralhome.com.

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