Obituaries for April 8, 2021

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photo by Vickie Carpenter

Larry David Bishop

Larry David Bishop

Larry David Bishop, 71, of Franklin, N.C., went home to be with Jesus on Sunday, April 4, 2021, after a period of declining health.

Born in Jackson County, North Carolina, he was the son of the late Quenton and Ruby Wilson Bishop. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Frances McIntyre Bishop; and a sister, Clydias Guffey. 

He was a member of Watauga Baptist Church and the Macon County Coon Hunters Club. He was a brick and block mason and in his spare time, he loved tending to his livestock.

He is survived by his sister, Nancy Young (Jason ) of Oak Island, N.C.; one nephew, Sam; and five nieces, Julia, Meg,  Marcie, Gina and Selena; sisters-in-law, Wanda Baker (Norman) and Katie Shope (Bobby) of Franklin; and numerous cousins and friends.

Graveside services were held Wednesday, April 7, at Watauga Baptist Church Cemetery. Rev. Mark Bishop, Rev. Wesley Price and Rev. Roy Lowe  officiated.  

Pallbearers were Dick Franklin, Brad Bishop, Damen Johnson, Kirk Johnson, Tim Cochran, and Bobby Cabe. Honorary Pallbearers were Alvin Johnson, Dennis Johnson, Roger Bishop, Mitchell Bishop, L.C. Browning, Buddy Cochran, and Ed Cope.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Watauga Baptist Church Cemetery Fund, C/O Norris Clouse, 2864 Watauga Rd, Franklin, NC 28734.

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

Macon Funeral Home is handling the arrangements.

Leo Alphonse Lolli

Leo Alphonse Lolli

Leo Alphonse Lolli, 82, of Franklin, N.C., passed away March 21, 2021.

He was born to the late Leo and Louise Signore Lolli. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his first wife, Dorothy Schedneck Lolli; and a sister, Loretta Black. 

He was a member of St. Francis Catholic Church of Franklin. He enjoyed spending time outdoors tending to his yard, maintaining his cars, riding his Polaris, and cooking. He loved spreading joy and making everyone laugh. 

He is survived by wife, Vickie Lolli; children, Sandra Lynn Lolli (John Hagdorn) of Franklin, Dawn Ocasio (Mic) of Ormond Beach, Fla., Bruce Young (Cathleen) of Lake Worth, Fla., Michael Young (Karla) of Royal Palm Beach, Fla.; five grandchildren, Nicholas Ocasio, Dominic Ocasio, Skylar Young, Brooke Young, Isabella Young; and numerous nieces and nephews. 

A memorial service will be held Wednesday, April 14,  at 7 p.m., at Macon Funeral home Chapel. Deacon Ramsey will officiate. The family will receive friends one hour prior to the services.

In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Four Seasons Hospice – Four Seasons Development Office 571 South Allen Road, Flat Rock, NC 28731.

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

Macon Funeral home will be handling the arrangements.

Rev. Joel Arthur Walker

Rev. Joel Arthur Walker

On April 1, 2021, Rev. Joel Arthur Walker stepped into the presence of his Lord and Savior. He was born Jan. 5, 1959, in Châteauroux, France, and was the oldest son of Herbert and Christine (Tweedle) Walker. He loved his wife, family, country, and trusted in and was faithful to God.

He grew up as an Air Force son, shepherding his siblings along with an assortment of cats and dogs while his father was away serving his country in the USAF.    He attended Freedom High School in Morganton, N.C. and met his future wife, Lisa Schmidt, when he drove the school bus for her route.  Together they had many adventures in his orange 1959 Willys Jeep on the back roads of Burke County. After graduating high school, he joined the Army and fulfilled his childhood dream of becoming a Green Beret, serving with the 5th Special Forces group as a radio operator. He received his Associates Degree from Wake Tech and worked at Underwriters Laboratories in RTP.  He was called to the ministry while attending Emmaus Baptist Church in Pittsboro, N.C., where he was licensed and ordained into the ministry.  He and his wife quit their jobs, sold all and moved by faith to Zebulon, N.C., so he could attend Southeastern Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, N.C., where he received his Master of Divinity. He then studied Christian Ethics at Oxford University in Oxford England as a Ph.D. candidate while attending Southern Seminary in Louisville, Ky.  His greatest honor was being bestowed the position of deacon, meaning, servant. He had a servant’s heart and wanted to be thought of as an encourager to all those around him, stranger or not.  He loved making people laugh, and always wanted to be thought of as a nice person. After retiring from the ministry, he worked for the State of North Carolina and retired as the Acting Budget Manager with the NC Department of Health and Human Services in Raleigh, N.C.  

He loved the outdoors, and he and Lisa had many adventures camping, hiking, wildlife viewing, Geohashing and Geocaching. He loved riding the back-country roads of eastern N.C. on his Harley. He was a member of the Iron Butt Association, and completed the Saddlesore 1000, riding 1,000 miles in less than 24 hrs. and the Bun Burner 1500 –  1,500 miles in less than 36 hrs. He would take vacation time to ride his Harley with the Patriot Guard for Fallen Soldiers, and Officer Down missions.   On weekends you could find Joel and Lisa at Medoc Mountain State Park where they often volunteered.  He loved traveling to northern New Mexico in the autumn to hike, camp and view the wildlife. He loved a challenge, and planning adventures was always part of the fun.   

 He and his wife volunteered on many disaster relief and mass feeding efforts lead by the NC Baptist Men from the coast of N.C. after hurricanes, to flooding in western N.C. and in West Virginia, to Gulfport after Hurricane Katrina. He was a member of the Medoc Mountain State Park PAC committee.  One of his many hobbies included being an amateur radio operator, call sign K4ND. 

 He is survived by Lisa, his loving wife of 36 and a half years; siblings, Nelson and Amy Walker; brothers-in-law, Kurt Schmidt (Teresa Bentley) and Mark Schmidt; and sister-in-law, Kristine Bumgarner (David).  He loved doting on and encouraging his nieces and nephew, and his great nieces and nephews. 

 His final days in the hospital and at home were spent thanking and encouraging the workers at the hospital, the firemen and EMS who transported him and the ladies from Hospice who helped care for him. His wife, brother and sister, nephew, nieces and great nieces and nephews will miss him greatly. The love, laughter, encouragement, and compassion that he showed will live in our hearts and minds forever. 

Lisa would like to thank Joel’s coworkers at DHHS across the state for the kindness and friendship they showed Joel during his career and the compassion they showed during his final days.  In lieu of flowers, Joel requested that if you can’t rescue a cat, support Appalachian Animal Rescue Center or your local animal rescue or volunteer at your local State Park.  A private memorial service will be held at a future date.

Bryant-Grant Funeral Home and Crematory is serving the Walker family. Online condolences can be made at www.bryantgrantfuneralhome.com.

Dieter Karl Rueckerl

Dieter Karl Rueckerl

Dieter Karl Rueckerl, 54, of Otto, N.C., passed away on Tuesday, March 30, 2021.

Born in Amberg, Germany, he was the son of the late Anton and Constanze Rueckerl. He was a transit driver for Macon County Transit. He enjoyed building projects around the house and spending time with his wife and family.

He is survived by his wife, Trinica Christensen Rueckerl of Otto; children, Jasmin Rueckerl, Thomas Rueckerl and Anja Roth, all of Germany; stepchildren, Michael Fox Jr., of Florida and Matthew Jacob Dayton of South Carolina; and his siblings, Eva Pfab, Anton Rueckerl, Angelika Baumer, and Doris Meier, all of Germany; a grandson, Lennox Roth; and several nieces and nephews.

Memorial service will be held Saturday, April 10, at 11 a.m. in the chapel of Macon Funeral Home. Rev. Richard Salmonson will officiate.

The family will receive friends from 10 to 11 a.m.  one hour prior to the service at the funeral home.

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

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

Macon Funeral Home is handling the arrangements.

Phillip Dean Partington

Phillip Dean Partington

It was with great sadness that the family of Phillip Dean Partington told him goodbye on March 28, 2021. While there is grieving here, a joyous reunion took place in Glory at that same time as Phil was reunited with his wife, Pamela Jo Pickens Partington, who was the love of his life.

He was born on Feb. 5, 1947, to Bobby Arthur and Geneva Alice Gunter Partington. He joined the United States Navy fresh out of high school. Upon discharge, he worked as a lineman for Florida Power for about 10 years before moving to Franklin and working for Dalton Construction for 20 years.

He loved to have a great time. His expertise at making prank phone calls caught even those who were aware of the possibility of receiving one off guard. He liked keeping his family and friends on their toes. While one of the best things about him was how he loved to joke and laugh, he will also be remembered as having some of his biggest laughs at himself.

He enjoyed “tinkering” and had the ability to repurpose many items that were otherwise doomed to be discarded. He liked attending gun shows and was always up for a card game.

He was a wonderful family man who truly enjoyed being a dad. He stayed interested and very involved in the lives of his children and his grandchildren. They didn’t hesitate to call on him because they knew he was always available to do anything he could to help them.

He was predeceased by his parents and his wife.

He is survived by his sons, Nick Partington (Laura Lee), Greg Partington (Erin); grandchildren, Wren Partington and Harper Partington; siblings, Toni Porter, Virgie Dowdle, Sheryl Butler, Richard Partington, and Robert Partington; and his best friend, Tom Freck, along with a number of nieces and nephews.

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

Moffitt Family Funeral Care is honored to serve the family.

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

Carl John Kosischke

Carl John Kosischke

Carl John Kosischke of Franklin, N.C., 78, left this earth to meet his maker and to live eternal life March 23, 2021.

He was born in Meriden, Conn., on Sept. 18, 1942, to the late Carl D. Kosischke and Helene (Beier) Kosischke. In addition to his parents, he was preceded by his two sisters, Caroline Kosischke and Cynthia (Kosischke) Charbonneau, both of Meriden, Conn. 

He left Meriden more than 30 years ago and lived a life he loved on Lake Pocotopaug in East Hampton, Conn., amongst great friends. He graduated Wilcox Technical High School as a carpenter. He joined the Navy and graduated a very proud E-3, Seaman.

He was an avid fisherman. He had a passion for gardening many vegetables and herbs and was known to grow the juiciest tomatoes year after year. He had a great sense of humor and prided himself on the many friendships he had made along the way. He was generous and was always lending a hand to anyone in need. He loved the lake life and felt comfort living a slower paced life. Of all his accomplishments, his pride was placed most on being a father to his three daughters.

He is survived by his three daughters, Heather (Kosischke) Wells of Meriden, Tara (Kosischke) Gifford of Meriden and Shannon Kosischke of Meriden; four grandchildren, Paige Cassina of Meriden, Chandler Cassina of Tolland and Cassidy and Cameron Wells of Meriden. Although divorced years ago, he still carried a long-lasting love for his wife Diane (Formica) Rivers.

He leaves behind many friends. A special thank you to one in particular, Michael Bartolotta, who was by his side until the end, helping him when he was unable to help himself. We appreciate the love you showed our Dad.

Rest Dad, you are imbedded in our souls and we will carry you with us forever. Until we meet again.

Moffitt Family Funeral Care is honored to serve Carl’s family.

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

Gregory Paul Ray

Gregory Paul Ray

Gregory Paul Ray, 67, of Franklin, N.C., passed away on Monday, March 28, 2021.

Born in Rabun County, Georgia, he was the son of the late Robert Paul and Edith Dalton Ray. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a niece, Marianna Ray. He was a truck driver and enjoyed working on restoring his 1956 Chevrolet Pickup.

He is survived by his daughter, Ashley Ray of Santa Monica, Calif.; and three brothers, Danny Ray of Gainesville, Ga., Bruce Ray of Blue Ridge, Ga., and Ronnie Ray of Snellville, Ga.; one niece, Merideth Ray; two nephews, Josh Ray and Aaron Ray; and numerous cousins.

A Celebration of Life was held Monday, April 5, in the Chapel of Macon Funeral Home.  Rev. Steve Reeves officiated.

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

Macon Funeral Home is handling the arrangements.

Elizabeth ‘Ann’ Pearce Bennett

Elizabeth ‘Ann’ Pearce Bennett

Elizabeth “Ann” Pearce Bennett, 84, of Franklin, N.C., passed peacefully into the arms of Jesus on March 25, 2021. 

She was born Feb. 6, 1937, in Lakeland, Fla., to the late Walter and Nellie Pearce. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her siblings, Ralph Pearce, Willard Pearce, Marion Henderson, and Florence Brown; her son, Bruce Bennett; and great-grandson Andrew Bennett.

She spent her life helping and caring for others. She was a faithful member of Cowee Baptist Church and served there as Sunday School teacher, VBS teacher, kitchen helper, nursery worker and history gatherer. She worked at Cowee School lunchroom many years and then began working with Angel Home Health. She loved her family. She and Robert raised their three sons and loved all their extended family members. She kept in touch with the extended family and made scrapbooks with cards and letters from each family.  

Ann is survived by her loving husband of 65 precious years, Robert Bennett; her sons, Robert “Bob” and Shirley of Westminster, S.C., David and Bonnie of Franklin, daughter-in-law Julie Bennett; six grandchildren, Megan Bennett, Eddie Bennett (Crystal), Monica Turner, Chris Turner (Sherri), Charles Bennett (Blesi) and Patrick Bennett (Stephani); a sister, Alice Blanton of Marble, N.C.; and 10 great grandchildren.

Graveside service was held Saturday, March 27, at Cowee Baptist Church Cemetery with Rev. Ronnie Branson officiating.

Pallbearers were Eddie Bennett, Charles Bennett, Patrick Bennett, Chris Turner, Carson Turner and Tom Baliles.

In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Cowee Baptist Church.

Online condolences at www.maconfuneralhome.com.

Macon Funeral Home is handling the arrangements.

Alvin Nicky ‘Nick’ Dills

Alvin Nicky ‘Nick’ Dills

Alvin Nicky “Nick” Dills, son of Jerry F. and Nina N. Dills, passed away on March 26, 2021, at his home in Crestview, Fla. A native of Macon County, North Carolina, he was 55 years old.

He was known as a master craftsman and artist. He had the ability to build a house from the ground up mostly by himself, build all the furniture, and then draw a few pictures to hang on the walls. He was an amazingly talented man who was always happy and willing to lend a hand to anyone who needed help.

He loved working on his farm and was content in leading a quiet, simple life. He loved telling stories about the projects he was working on, finding humor in everything and giving his listeners a big laugh. He was kind, gentle, funny, and always looking for the bright side.

He loved his family deeply and was simply adored by them and by his friends. He was a wonderful husband, father, brother, and son who will be remembered as a bright light in the lives of his family.

He was predeceased by his father, Jerry F. Dills, and his father-in-law, Thomas N. Andrews. 

Left with many wonderful memories of a life well lived are his wife, Jennifer; his sons, Torie and John; his daughters, Jessica and Brookelin; his mother, Nina Dills; his sister and her husband, Mitzi and David Warman; his nephews, Hunter Warman, Tyler and wife, Kendall Warman; great-nephew, Jace Warman; niece, Annarose Warman; and many extended family and friends.

A memorial service will be held on April 10 at 11 a.m. at Bethel United Methodist Church with Rev. Bobby Crawford officiating.

Moffitt Family Funeral Care is honored to serve the family.

Online condolences at www.moffittfamilyfuneralcare.com.

Hilda Tieneka Kemp

Hilda Tieneka Kemp, 90, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Sunday, April 4, 2021.  She was born Jan. 23, 1931, in Hoogezand, Holland, to the late Jan Gerardus Benes and Thalina Jantge Yorkel Benes.  She was an administrator in real estate and was a member of Coconut Grove Sailing Club and the Stitching Guild.  She loved embroidering and sailing.  In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Warren Candler Kemp and a sister, Tieneke Hilda.

She is survived by her daughter, Lienche Massey of Lake Worth, Fla.; grandchildren, Thalina Perogo of Pompano Beach, Fla., and Warren Massey of Lake Worth, Fla.; great grandchildren,  Ronin Perago of Pompano Beach, and Taylor Massey of Lake Worth.

A memorial service will be held Thursday, April 8, at 11 a.m., in the Chapel of Bryant-Grant Funeral Home.

Bryant‑Grant Funeral Home and Crematory is serving the Kemp family. Online condolences may be made at www.bryantgrantfuneralhome.com.

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