Obits for September 28, 2017


Ruth Arminda Turner Semaschko O’Bryan

Ruth Arminda Turner Semaschko O’Bryan

Ruth Arminda Turner Semaschko O’Bryan, 93, passed away Sept. 24, 2017, at her home in Franklin, N.C.   Born in Waynesville, N.C., on May 17, 1924, to Philip David Turner and Martha (Mattie) Louise Queen Turner. She graduated from Waynesville Township High School as valedictorian and from The Woman’s College of the University of North Carolina (UNC-G).  She was married to Nicholas Semaschko Jr. for 43 years and they resided in Hendersonville, N.C.  Following Nick’s death in 1985, she married Allen D. O’Bryan in 1992 and resided in Beaufort and Pine Knoll Shores, N.C. until Allen’s death in 1994.

Nick served in the U.S. State Department, following WWII, as military governor where Ruth joined him in Germany.   They resided first in the county of Esslingen, and second in the county of Heilbronn.  Ruth was widely involved in religious, civic, and political organizations wherever she lived.   She was active in the First United Methodist Church of Hendersonville, DAR, PEO Sisterhood, and the Democratic Party.  She served on the five-member N.C. State Board of Elections for 13 years.  She taught business for eight years at Flat Rock High School.

To her grandchildren, she became Oma – a nod to those years in Germany. However, she quickly became Oma to all who knew and loved her. She was quick witted, fiercely independent, an avid reader, loved to travel, and maintained a life-long thirst for knowledge.  A true matriarch, she was a source of guidance, wisdom, and humor- and loved her family most of all.

She is survived by her daughter, Anne Semaschko Hyder of Otto, N.C.; two grandchildren, Stephanie Hyder Laseter (Ben), and Brad Hyder (Ashley) both of Franklin;  four great-grandchildren, Laurel Ruth Laseter, Benjamin Reid Laseter, Grayson Turner Hyder, and Gunnar Ryan Hyder; a sister, Frances Turner Satterfield of Waynesville, N.C.; and several nieces and nephews.  She was preceded in death by her parents; a brother, William David Turner; and a sister, Mary Anne Turner Loflin.

A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date.

Memorials can be made to the Semashko/Rotary Memorial Scholarship Endowment by giving to the Blue Ridge Community College Educational Foundation at 180 West Campus Drive, Flat Rock, NC 28731 or First United Methodist Church of Franklin NC.

Macon Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Condolences can be made at

John Henry Fullbright

John Henry Fullbright

John Henry Fullbright, 42, passed away Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Gaston County, N.C. He was born July 14, 1975, in Gaston County, to the late Larry Eugene Fullbright and Florence Ann Fullbright who survives. He worked many years in the construction business and he loved to hunt, fish, and work on automobiles and motorcycles.

In addition to his mother, he is survived by his children, Christian Anthony Fullbright of Franklin and Alexandria Michele Fullbright of Bryson City, N.C.; a brother, Wayne Sanders (Lorinda) of Gastonia, N.C.; a half-sister, Angela Gill of Gastonia; two uncles, Ricky Hedden of Charlotte, N.C., Randy Hedden of Tomassee, S.C.; one aunt, Kathy Pendell of Bessemer City, N.C.; and many nieces and nephews.

A celebration of life service will be held at a later date.

Online condolences can be left at

Bryant-Grant Funeral Home and Crematory is serving the Fullbright family.

Jimmy Crisp

Jimmy Crisp

Jimmy Crisp, 47, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017, after a courageous battle with cancer.

Born in Macon County, he was the son of Gene and Hope Smith Crisp.  He was preceded in death by a sister, Teresa Crisp. He worked as an engineer for Franklin Tubular; enjoyed the outdoors, hunting, fishing and ginseng hunting. He was a strong man of faith and a devoted husband and father.

In addition to his parents, Gene and Hope Crisp, he is survived by his wife of 17 years, Misty Moses Crisp; daughter, Shannon Shuler and husband Austin; son, Conner Crisp; sister, Joy Pendergrass and husband Jeff; nephew, Tyler Pendergrass and brother-in-law, Chad Moses.

Funeral service was held Wednesday, Sept. 27, in the Chapel of Macon Funeral Home. Rev. Jason Smith officiated. Burial was in the Windy Gap Baptist Church Cemetery.

Pallbearers were Kevin Gates, Joe Farmer, Ken Crunkleton, Tyler Pendergrass, Pat Hodgins and John Boucher.

Macon Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.

Condolences can be made at

W. Hal Winchell

W. Hal Winchell, 70, of Franklin, N.C., passed away on Monday, Sept. 18, 2017.

Born in Manchester, Conn., he was the son of the late Winslow Herbert Winchell and Ruth Emma Wennergren Winchell. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother Stephen Winchell.

He is survived by his nephew, Lon Christopher Winchell of Southwick, Mass.

A graveside service will be held in Granby, Conn.

Macon Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Condolences can be made at

Michael Glenn Massey

Michael Glenn Massey, 54, of Otto, N.C., passed away on Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017.

Born in Greenville, S.C., he was the son of Stanley Joe Massey and Barbara LaBuhn. He was preceded in death by a brother, Stanley Joe Massey Jr. He was a self-employed licensed electrician. He was an avid USC Gamecocks fan, was a Golden Glove Boxer and enjoyed helping others. He attended Mulberry United Methodist Church.

In addition to his parents, he is survived by long-time companion, Ann DeHay of Otto; two children, Michael Cain Massey and Krystal Leigh McCaslan both of Greenville, S.C.; brothers, Richey Allen Massey, Kenneth Clayton Waldrop and Jerry Wayne Waldrop; sister, Sherry Ann Fisher; three grandchildren, Brennen Massey, Urijah McCaslan and Ava McCaslan and several nieces and nephews.

Funeral services were held Saturday, Sept. 23, at Mulberry United Methodist Church. Rev. Sherron Geiger and Jack Craig officiated. Burial was in Mulberry UMC Cemetery.

Pallbearers were Paul Martin, Jack Craig, Tommy Hampton, Donnie Bridges, David Jones Chester Arnold. Honorary Pallbearers will be Buster Honeycutt, Donald Bradley, Andrew Bradley and Gunter Ledford.

Macon Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.

Condolences can be made at

Billy Ray Grimes

Billy Ray Grimes

Billy Ray Grimes passed away peacefully in Lubbock, Texas, Sept. 15, 2017.

He was born Sep. 14, 1930, in Colorado City to William Troy and Bessy Lee (Carroll) Grimes and lived the majority of his life in Big Spring. He married Iona Athalene Culp Sept. 15, 1962, in Colorado City. She preceded him in death March 18, 2006.

He served in the United States Air Force during the Korean War. He worked for the Texas Highway Department for 32 years, retiring in 1981. A lifelong Dallas Cowboy and Texas Ranger fan, he loved watching and attending games.

Survivors include one son, Troy R. Grimes and wife Yvette of Franklin, N.C.; one granddaughter, Miranda Grimes of Franklin; three grandsons, Jason Bates and wife Alysha of Plano, Brian Grimes and wife Sarah of Houston and Eric Grimes of Franklin; two great grandchildren, Corbin and Colby Bates; one brother, Bob Grimes and Judy Phillips of Lubbock; three sisters-in-law, Nell Pollan of Houston, Mary Pyland of Abilene, Micki Grimes of Merkel; and numerous nieces and nephews. In addition to his wife he is preceded in death by his parents, a son, Jerry Bates and a brother, Don Grimes.

Funeral services were held Thursday, Sept. 21, at the Nalley-Pickle & Welch Rosewood Chapel. Interment followed at the Colorado City Cemetery in Colorado City.

Nalley-Pickle & Welch Funeral Home and Crematory were in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be made at

Kenneth Victor Kaplan

Kenneth Victor Kaplan, 76, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017.  He was born in Lansing, Mich., April 20, 1941, the son of the late Joseph and Ester Barman Kaplan.

He worked at the University of Central Florida and also retired from there. He lived in Sky Valley, Ga., for 13 years before moving to Franklin.  He volunteered at Friends for Life Forever Farm, he loved animals, loved the North Carolina Mountains and loved life.  He was very out-going and a sweetheart.

He is survived by his wife of 45 years, Leslie Ann Kaplan and one brother.

A private service will be held at a later date.

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

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