Obituaries for April 30, 2020

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photo by Vickie Carpenter

Robert E. Wilson

Robert E. Wilson

Robert E. Wilson, 91, of Highlands, N.C., formerly of Franklin, N.C., passed away on Sunday, April 12, 2020.

In 2016, he was preceded in death by his wife of 64 years, Dawn Wilson. In addition to his wife, he was preceded in death by his two brothers.

He served in the 511th Army Paratrooper Division as well as a Draftsman in that division during WWII. He was awarded the WWII Victory Medal and the Army Occupational Medal Japan.  He was a parachute rigger who was also rated for sailplanes and hot air balloons. He had an avid love for all things that fly. He knew all planes from the inside out. He had been a check pilot and an Antique Airplane judge for 25 years, receiving many aviation ratings throughout his life. He raced airplanes and did aerobatics at airshows always for fun. He built many airplanes and flew them each. In his spare time, he was also involved with RC planes. He ended his professional aviation career, retiring as an Airline Captain at one of the largest airlines at the time, with the highest seniority level of all other pilots.

His flying career started with being a crop duster, ending as a Captain of the DC10. Flying was in his blood.

He also enjoyed motorcycle trips with friends and making beautiful artwork and carvings, one of which was displayed in the Cherokee Museum. He was kind and generous and will truly be missed.

He is survived by his daughter, Linda Barrett; two grandchildren, Jessica Shick and Michael Barrett and two great grandchildren, Kadence Shick and Bianka Barrett.

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

Macon Funeral Home is handling the arrangements.

Condolences may be made at www.maconfuneralhome.com.

Brenda Kay Burgess

Brenda Kay Burges

Brenda Kay Burgess, 69, died peacefully at home on April 17, 2020. 

Originally from Grafton, Ohio, she lived for the past 17 years in Bryson City, N.C. She was employed with the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad (GSMR) for the past 16 years. A valued and beloved member of GSMR, she had the distinct achievement of being the first and only female Brakeman on the train. 

She is preceded in death by her parents, Hollis and Fela Burgess, and her two older brothers, Wayne and Gary Burgess, all of Grafton, Ohio. 

She is survived by her children, Michael Goldsmith of Bryson City, and Holly Salisbury of Phoenix, Ariz. 

A celebration of life service will be held for friends and family at a later date. 

A lifelong animal lover, she requested memorial donations be made to PAWS Animal Shelter in Bryson City, North Carolina at pawsbrysoncity.org or PAWS P.O. Box 1814 Bryson City, NC 28713.

An online registry is available at: www.appalachianfuneralservices.com Appalachian Funeral Services of Sylva, NC is serving the family.

Barbara Jo Benninghoff Bryant Guy

Barbara Jo Benninghoff Bryant Guy

Barbara Jo Benninghoff Bryant Guy, 64, passed away on April 22, 2020, in Franklin, N.C. She was born on May 3, 1956, the daughter of James Vernon “Jabo” Duke and Mary Jane Skipper Duke. She was predeceased by her father, a well-known figure in Bainbridge because of his position as Chief Public Safety Director;  a special grandmother, Valeria Mill-Skipper, who helped rear her; and by her sister, Debra Skipper, who shared her home in St. Augustine for a while when she was a young lady.

In addition to her mother, she is survived by her husband, Earnest Lacy Guy; her daughter, Alexis Shapiro (Kenneth); and her brothers, Bret Benninghoff (Gail) and Eric Duke (Angela); two precious grandchildren whom she adored to the ends of the world.  In her eyes her grandchildren were the greatest gift of life and not unlike most grandmothers Barbara Jo just knew that her grandchildren, Emily-Anna B. Hill and C.C. Jake Hill were beyond perfect.

She was a free spirit who lived life to the fullest. She saw the beauty in her surroundings and used her ability as an artist to capture it. She was intelligent, well read, and interested in many subjects. As a child of the ’60s and ’70s, she enjoyed the music of that era, especially Barry Manilow, Queen, and the Eagles. Sewing was her hobby as well as owning many cats during her lifetime. She was, indeed, a beautiful, caring lady who was well loved.

A private burial will be held in Bainbridge, Ga., at a later date.

Moffitt Family Funeral Care is serving the family.

Online condolences can be made at www.moffittfamilyfuneralcare.com.

Porter Allen Lambert

Porter Allen Lambert

Porter Allen Lambert, 88, of Franklin, N.C., passed away on Monday, April 20, 2020.

Born in Wauchula, Fla., he was the son of the late Porter K. and Esther Odom Lambert. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his siblings, Ronald Lambert, Harold Lambert, Lillian Shackleford, June Prebor and Joyce Lynn.  He was a member of Cowee Baptist Church; Director of Field Operations for South Florida, Southwest Florida & St. Johns Water Management District; photographer for the Associated Press and UPI; former chairman of Burningtown Iotla Fire Department; a Master Gardener and a devoted farmer. He also proudly served his country in the U.S. Army, Airborne Division.

He is survived by his devoted wife of 40 years, Helen Massey Lambert; daughter, Montry Esther Thompson (Spencer) of Wauchula; step children, Gwendolyn Renee Hays (Jew Lee) of Wauchula, and Rodney Lee Breton of Franklin; five grandchildren, Trina Thompson, Trevor Thompson, Jason Lee Hayes, Justin Lee Hays and Joshua Lee Hays; and 11 great-grandchildren.

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

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to Appalachian Animal Rescue, P.O. Box 81, Franklin, NC 28744.

Macon Funeral Home is handling the arrangements.

Condolences can be made at www.maconfuneralhome.com.

William D. Ledford Sr.

William D. Ledford Sr.

William D. Ledford Sr. “Duggan,” 69, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Friday, April 24, 2020, at his residence. He was the son of the late Rev. Claude Ledford and Effie Byrd Ledford. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by three brothers, Talmadge, Gilmer and Wilbur Ledford and one sister, Deborah Dicero.

He was a friend of all and was known to give anyone the shirt off his back if needed. He was an avid outdoorsman who loved hiking, camping, fishing and ramp digging. He will be deeply missed by his family and friends.

He is survived by his two children, Gina M. Gribble and husband, Johnny of Otto, N.C., and William D. Ledford Jr. “Billy” and wife, Kristy of Franklin, N.C.; two beautiful granddaughters, Eden and Emily White, who were the pride and joy of his life; and the mother of his children, Mary Ruth Ledford; two step grandchildren, Brandy Carnes and Cody Gribble; a great-granddaughter, Ellie Carnes, who he enjoyed when she came to visit; sisters, Kay Guy, Faye McCall, Kathy Henson and Glenda Evans, all of Franklin, and Carol Aiello of Seattle, Wash.; and a number of nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Baptist Children’s Home of NC, Attn: Nancy, 111 Sneed Drive, Clyde, NC  28721.

Macon Funeral Home is handling the arrangements.

Online condolences may be made to the family at www.maconfuneralhome.com.

Betty Faye Hall Sherrill

Betty Faye Hall Sherrill

Betty Faye Hall Sherrill, 77, passed away Saturday, April 25, 2020, at her home. She was born in Macon County Dec. 23, 1942, to the late David Ansel Hall and Nina Bradley Hall. She was married to the late Charles Daniel “Danny” Sherrill who preceded her after 59 years of marriage on May 24, 2019. In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by a son, Charles Lewis “Charlie” Sherrill; and a sister, Nina Jean Cheek.

She was a homemaker, loving wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. She was also a member of Prentiss Church of God. 

Survivors include her children, Terrie Kendrick (Clyde) and Deidrea Dills (Richard) all of Franklin, N.C.; daughter-in-law, Lisa Dills Sherrill of Hiawassee, Ga; four grandsons; four granddaughters; and three great grandchildren; two sisters, Louanne Hart of Garden City Mich., and Linda Boggs of Grey Hawk, Ky.; four brothers, Jim Hall of Michigan, Chuck “Max” Hall of Sylva, N.C.; David Hall Jr. of Kissimmee, Fla., and Bobby Hall of Kissimmee.

A private funeral service will be held Friday, May 1, at 2 p.m., in the Chapel of Bryant-Grant Funeral Home with Rev. Tim Hayes and Rev. Lewis Crisp officiating. Burial will follow in the Woodlawn Cemetery. Mrs. Sherrill will lie in state Thursday, April 30, from 12 to 5 p.m. at Bryant-Grant Funeral Home & Crematory. 

Pallbearers will be Ricky Dills, Clyde Kendrick Jr., Seth Dills, Danny Camp, Logan Kemp, and Doug Cheek.

Memorials can be made to the Relay for Life P.O. Box 22478 Oklahoma, OK 73123.

Online condolences can be sent to www.bryantgrantfuneralhome.com

Bryant-Grant Funeral Home & Crematory is serving the Sherrill family. 

Hughey Edward Rowland

Hughey Edward Rowland

Hughey Edward Rowland, 89, of Franklin, N.C., died Saturday, April 25 ,2020.

A native of Macon County, he was the son of the late Dwight and Myrtle Smith Rowland. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by three brothers, Richard, Fred, and Benny Rowland; two sisters, Trixie Rowland and Ruth Chapman; and his brother-in-law, Charles Stanley.  

He served in the Navy during the Korean Conflict.  He retired from ITT Corp and was 32nd Degree Mason in the Mabel Lodge in Macon, Ga.  He was a member of Iotla Baptist Church, deacon, and former Sunday school teacher. He was an avid outdoorsman, who enjoyed fishing, hunting, gardening and reading.

He is survived by wife of 58 years, Joyce Brooks Rowland; sons, Edward Brooks Rowland (Kathy) of Smarr, Ga., and Richard Lindsey Rowland of Franklin; five grandchildren, Katie, Carson, Emily, Gavin, and Spencer; a sister-in-law, Wanda Stanley; and several nieces and nephews.

A private memorial service will be held at Iotla Baptist Church. Rev. Brandon Breedlove and Rev. Steve Reeves will officiate. Burial will be in the Fouts cemetery at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Fouts Cemetery Fund, C/O Nancy Krag, 3339 Burningtown Road, Franklin, NC 28734

Condolences can be made at www.maconfuneralhome.com.

Macon Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Margaret ‘Peggy’ Jean Kosela Packer

Margaret ‘Peggy’ Jean Kosela Packer

Margaret “Peggy” Jean Kosela Packer, 72, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Saturday, April 25, 2020.

She was the daughter of the late Frank and Stella Mose Kosela. After moving to Franklin, she began working at Classic Properties where she was employed for 20 years and was a smiling face to all who entered and a very valuable asset.

She is survived by her husband of 53 years, Richard I. Packer, Jr. and beloved dog, Ben.

No services are planned.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Appalachian Animal Rescue, P.O. Box 81, Franklin, NC  28744

Condolences can be made at www.maconfuneralhome.com

Macon Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

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