Obits for October 12, 2017



Ralph Lindon Allen

Ralph Lindon Allen

Ralph Lindon Allen, our beloved Paw, 81, of Barker’s Creek, passed away Oct. 2, 2017, after a brief illness.

He was born July 8,1936 in the Cowee Valley of Macon County, North Carolina, to the late William Scott and Eva Buchanan Allen. He was raised in the Greens Creek community.

In 1956, he married Gail Brooks and together they raised two children, Sheila and Kent. He was a member and deacon of Rockdale Baptist Church.

He served in the U.S. Army and was honorably discharged in 1965. He served with both the Jackson County’s Sheriff’s Department and the Sylva Police Department and retired after more than 25 years in law enforcement.

In his youth, he was an avid hunter and fisherman. He was a shade-tree mechanic and enjoyed bird watching, gardening, and spending time with family and friends on the front porch. He remained an active member of the Barkers Creek community and enjoyed helping his neighbors in any way.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by brothers, Edward and Jimmy Allen, and sisters, Barbara Green and Pauline Allison.

He is survived and missed greatly by his wife of 61 years, Gail; two children, Sheila Jamison (Doug Mitchell) and Kent Allen (Barbie); five grandchildren, Michelle Payne, Jordan Allen (Amanda), Kaleigh Allen, Zeb Allman (Chelsea), and Shawna Allman; five great-grandchildren, Myles Turpin, Blaine Steely, Ransom Allen, Zayleigh and Charlotte Allman; sisters-in-law, Doris Brooks (Clark Clayton), Maudie Phillips (Jerry) and Nancy Blanton (Delos); and brother-in-law John Brooks (Linda); several nieces, nephews and dear friends – including his “sidekick” Bobby Gunter. The family would like to extend special thanks to Doug Mitchell and Bobby Gunter for providing great care during his illness.

Funeral services were held Thursday, Oct. 5, at Rockdale Baptist Church with Revs. Ray Fox and Delos Blanton officiating. Burial followed the service at Barkers Creek Cemetery.

Arrangements are under the care of Appalachian Funeral Home in Sylva.

William Lee Rogers Sr.

William Lee Rogers Sr.

William Lee Rogers Sr., 74, of Franklin, N.C., passed away on Monday, Oct. 9, 2017.

Born in Jackson County, he was the son of the late Virgle and Mary Buchanan Rogers. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by two brothers, Carl and Alex Rogers.

He was a U.S. Navy veteran. He was formerly active with the Glenville Cashiers Fire Department and loved woodworking, small engine repairs and working with his hands in general. He was a member of Pine Creek Baptist Church in Cullowhee.

He is survived by two children, Elena Rogers of Tamassee, S.C., and William Lee Rogers Jr. of Yellow Mtn; one sister, Ruth Clawson of Cullowhee; two grandchildren, Courtney Rogers and Austin McCall; special niece, Jennifer Adams and husband Ken of Franklin and numerous nieces and nephews.

Funeral services were held Wednesday, Oct. 11, at Pine Creek Baptist Church. Rev. Johnny Norris and Rev. Tommy Holden officiated with military rites conducted by VFW Post 7339 and American Legion Post 108. Burial was in Stewart Cemetery.

Nephews will serve as pallbearers.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Glenville Cashiers Fire Dept. or the ASPCA.

Online condolences can be made at

Kathryn West Hurst

Kathryn West Hurst

Kathryn West Hurst, 91, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2017. Born in Macon County, she was the daughter of the late Clingman West and Ella Mae Pickens West. She was married to Roger Hurst who preceded her in death in 1975.

She worked at the Sunset Restaurant for 20 years and loved the time she worked there and the friends she made. She enjoyed sewing, cooking, growing flowers, making a garden and canning the fruits and vegetables she grew. She loved family gatherings and sharing meals with those she loved including those from the community who during times of illness could depend on a good home-cooked meal from her kitchen. She loved animals and surrounded herself with beloved pets which were often times rescued from injury and nursed back to health by her.

She is survived by a number of nieces and nephews. In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by her sister, Dessie Tippett, infant sister, Inez West; and brothers, Marvin Pickens, Wade Pickens and D. L. West.

A funeral service was held Friday, Oct. 6, in the chapel of Bryant-Grant Funeral Home and Crematory with Rev. Tommy Fouts and Rev. Ronnie Branson officiating. Burial followed in Cowee Baptist Church Cemetery.

Bryant-Grant Funeral Home and Crematory is serving the Hurst family. Online condolences may be made at

Mary Lou Green

Mary Lou Green

Mary Lou Green, 81, of Franklin, N.C., passed away on Friday, Oct. 6, 2017.

Born in Jackson County, she was the daughter of the late William David Bishop and Docia Higdon Bishop. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Fred Green; two children, Dale Wayne Green and Jeanie Ann Snell and brothers and sisters, Gudger Bishop, Emily Treadway, Robert Bishop, Dan Bishop, Edgar Bishop and Beatrice Davis.

She enjoyed taking photos, flowers, creating silk arrangements and singing. She attended Ridgecrest Baptist Church.

She is survived by four children, Freddy Lou Trout of Husum, Wash., Tony Edward Green of Vancouver, Wash., Steven Lee Green of Reno, Nev. and Rose McMahan (Gary) of Franklin; two brothers, Woodrow Bishop of Winlock, Wash., and Kenneth Bishop of Franklin; and several nieces and nephews.

A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 12, at Ridgecrest Baptist Church. Rev. Tommy Fouts and Rev. Guy Duval will officiate. Graveside services will be held in Idle Wilde Cemetery in Hood River, Ore.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made towards a Down Syndrome support organization in memory of Mary Lou Green.

Macon Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Condolences can be made at

James V. McConnell

James V. McConnell

James V. McConnell, 79, of Otto, N.C., passed suddenly on Oct. 8, 2017, at Angel Hospital in Franklin, N.C. He was preceded in death by his loving wife, Judith K. McConnell; and daughters, Debbie Blackwell, and Dodie McConnell.

James “Jim” as he was known had been a resident of Macon County, North Carolina for three years and was originally from LaGrange, Ga. He was a veteran of the United States Air Force and an accomplished knife maker. He made knives for the original seven Mercury astronauts as well as King Faisal of Iraq during the ’60s.

He found friends wherever he went and will be greatly missed by all the lives he touched.

He is survived by son, Nathan Smathers; daughters, Donna McConnell, Amanda Wright and Lorie Smathers; grandchildren, Jesse Marske, Chani Hand, Madison Siegfried, Chase Siegfried, Tara Smathers, Rachel Smathers and Starla Smathers; and four great grandchildren.

Memorial donations may be made in Jim’s name to Parkinson’s Disease Foundation, 1359 Broadway, Suite 1509, New York, NY 10018 or at

Bryant-Grant Funeral Home and Crematory is serving the McConnell family. Online condolences are available at