Obituaries for November 30, 2017

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Robert Bruce Grant, Jr.

Robert Bruce Grant, Jr.

Robert Bruce Grant Jr., 64, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Monday, Sept. 25, 2017. He was born in Jackson, Miss., to the late Robert Bruce Grant Sr. and the late Bobbie Brown Grant.

He served his country for more than 20 years in the U. S. Army. He loved animals and building things. He was of the Christian faith.

Survivors include his wife, Suzan Ann Grant of Franklin; daughters, Christine Elizabeth Calloway (Kevin) of Franklin, Roblyn Theresa Monroe of Randolph, N.Y, and Lisa Marie Grant of St. Petersburg, Fla.; his son, Joseph Silva of Cornelia, Ga.; grandchildren, Madison Littke, Ella Monroe, Katelyn Monroe, Olivia Monroe and Jaycee Silva; and a brother, Steve Grant of Boulder, Colo.

A memorial service was held Friday, Nov. 24, in the chapel of Bryant-Grant Funeral Home. The family will receive friends following the service.

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

Donald Victor MacMillan

Donald Victor MacMillan

Donald Victor MacMillan, 85, of Franklin, N.C., passed away on Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017.

He was born on June 19, 1932, in Columbus, Ga., to Donald and Gene MacMillan. He graduated from Georgia Southwestern State University and joined the U.S. Navy in 1952 where he actively served for four years followed by two years of service in the reserves. He loved sports, especially football, which he played along with basketball and baseball while in high school and during his service in the Navy. He was also an avid boxer and won the Georgia State Golden Glove championship at just 17 years old. In 1959, he attended the University of Florida where he received a business degree. After graduation, he went to work for Swift and Company (now JBS USA) followed by Monsanto where he was known as an outstanding salesman winning many awards over the years. He retired from International Minerals and Chemicals in 1994.

He was preceded in death by his parents Donald and Gene MacMillan, a sister Gene “Peggy” MacMillan and a son, David “Dusty” J. MacMillan.

He is survived by his wife, Diane Cobler MacMillan who he married in 1972; her four children, Janine L. Morgan, Debra A. DeCiero, John “Skip” C. MacMillan, and Katheryne E. Hestla; his three children from a previous marriage, Leslie A. Pemble, Susan E. Shaffer, and Donald V. “Rusty” MacMillan; 16 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

His children and grandchildren were his pride and joy. He was a devout Christian who enjoyed singing in the choir and served as a deacon at Grace Presbyterian for several years.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Grace Presbyterian Church, 360 1st St, Franklin, NC 28734 or First Presbyterian Church of Weaverville, NC, 30 Alabama Avenue, Weaverville, NC 28787.

A Celebration of Life was held Saturday, Nov. 25, at Grace Presbyterian Church. Rev. Skip Gilligan officiated.

Macon Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.

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

Col. Robert Carver ‘Bob’ Sears

Col. Robert Carver ‘Bob’ Sears

Col. Robert Carver “Bob” Sears, USAF (Ret.), died peacefully Nov. 18, 2017, at the age of 101.

The son of Col. Robert and Marguerite Hume Sears, he was born Jan. 23, 1916, in Honolulu, Hawaii, where his father was stationed. During his adolescence, the family lived at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., and Bob spent much of his time exploring the Chesapeake Bay, developing a love of nature and animals that would become a legacy for all his children.

He followed his father’s path, graduating from West Point Military Academy in 1939. A gifted athlete, he was a three-time gymnastics National Champion and helped lead Army to runner-up honors at NCAA championships in 1939. He was inducted into Army West Point Athletics Hall of Fame in its inaugural class of 2004.

After graduation, he entered the U.S. Army Air Corps, later the U.S. Air Force. While training at Randolph Field, Texas, he met Mary Hoch, of Atlanta, Ga., whom he married in 1941. His first assignment was instructing other pilots, but he was quickly promoted to commandant of Hicks Field, Texas, and at age 24 was the Air Corps’ youngest commanding officer. He asked for active duty overseas and was assigned to the 8th USAAF, the “Mighty Bombers,” 389th Bombardment Group, flying B-24 Liberators. Their headquarters were at Old Buckenham Airfield, England. He was a squadron commander and then Deputy Group Commander.

On April 29, 1944, he was shot down by a German Messerschmitt while returning from a successful mission to Berlin. He was lead pilot in a raid that involved 1,200 planes; 64 were lost that day. He and eight members of the crew bailed out. His harrowing escape proved that a highly motivated pilot wearing a parachute could exit the inspection hatch above his seat. He was taken prisoner by German home guard and sent as a POW to Stalag Luft 3. He remained there until he escaped during a forced march near the end of the war.

Following the war, he obtained a masters in engineering from the University of Illinois – Champaign-Urbana. His career included a year as a base commander in Korea after the conflict there; a tour of duty with the Armed Forces Security Agency (now NSA); and service as Deputy Commander of Air and Airways Communications Service in Wiesbaden, Germany. He retired on Sept. 29, 1962, with the rank of Colonel.

After his retirement, he and family settled in Atlanta, where he worked for Lockheed Martin until a second retirement. In the mid-1970s, he and Mary built a home in the Jones Creek community, Franklin, N.C., and spent the last decades of their retirement there. Their home was a center of hospitality for friends and family. He filled his time playing squash and golf into his 80s; caring for his property and his beloved dogs, exploring the mountains, making furniture, studying languages, and traveling to visit children and grandchildren. In his 90s, he bought a new tractor and delighted in using it to maintain his land. He celebrated his 100th birthday by taking the tractor for a spin.

He was a no-nonsense man, blunt but kind-hearted and generous. He faced life with courage, never shrinking from adversity and always maintaining his unique sense of humor. He had a great store of memorized poetry. One week before his death, he gave a stirring rendition of Henley’s “Invictus,” but said Robert Louis Stephenson’s “Requiem” was his favorite. A line from that poem sums up his philosophy: “Gladly I lived and gladly die, and I lay me down with a will.”

He was predeceased by his parents; his two brothers, Roderick H. Sears and David H. Sears; and his beloved wife Mary, who died in 2012.

He is survived by his four children: Barbara Sears McRae, of Franklin; Robert Carver Sears Jr., of Crane, Texas; Margaret Elayne Sears, of Crown Point, N.Y.; and James Walter Sears (and wife Debra), of Missoula, Mon. He also leaves many grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces, and nephews, who will remember him with affection and gratitude for the example of his extraordinary life.

The family thanks the staff of Grandview Manor and Care Partners Hospice for the loving care they gave Bob during his final illness. Family and friends will gather later this spring for a memorial.

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

Tammy Raby Blaylock

Tammy Raby Blaylock

Tammy Raby Blaylock, 55, of Franklin, N.C., passed away on Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2017.

Born in Brevard, she was the daughter of the late Buddy and Shirley Raby. She was a long-time employee of the Macon County School Board; she worked as a teacher, principal and member of the board.  She was a member of Mt. Sinai Assembly of God.

She is survived by her husband, Donovan Blaylock; two brothers, Joey Raby and Jamie Raby, both of Franklin; step-son, Donovan Blaylock Jr. of Austin, Texas; two grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.

Funeral services were held Saturday, Nov. 25, at Mount Sinai Assembly of God.  Rev. John Raby and Rev. Mike Raby officiated. Burial was in Roper Cemetery.

Macon Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.

Online condolences can be made at maconfuneralhome.com.

Carol Ann Streiff

Carol Ann Streiff

Carol Ann Streiff, 69, of Franklin, N.C., passed away on Sunday, Nov. 26, 2017.

Born in Tiffin County, Ohio, she was the daughter of the late Antonio Brancati and Irene Baar.

Lovingly known as “Nana” and “Cha Cha,” she took pride in nothing more than providing and feeding people, regardless of who they were. She was a huge Harry Potter fan, loved to travel and enjoyed eating pasta almost as much as she loved to make it. She will be remembered by loved ones and friends as a fun, loving and cool lady.

She is survived by her husband, Allan Streiff; twin sons, Anthony and Michael; daughters, Renee and Rachelle and three grandchildren, Brittany, Michael-Shane and Payton.

She was a selfless woman and chose to not have a service to mourn her but to have a celebration of life and gift women that are still suffering from breast cancer by donating gifts in her name to the Susan G. Komen Foundation: https://shar.es/1M70lw

Macon Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Online condolences can be made at maconfuneralhome.com.

William Jackson ‘Bill’ Kimsey

William Jackson “Bill” Kimsey, 87, of Franklin, N.C., passed away on Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2017.

Born in Macon County, he was the son of the late Arthur Felix Kimsey and Mary Leona Hopper Kimsey. He honorably served 21 years and retired from the Air Force as a Master Sergeant. He loved spending time with family and enjoyed quilting, gardening and cattle farming.

He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Rosemary Keener Kimsey; five children, Wanda Kimsey Cummings of Beaver Lake, Neb., Shirley Kimsey of Mountain City, Ga., Karen Anderson and husband Johnny of Robbinsville, N.C., Kathey Watts of Franklin and William “Bill” Lyle Kimsey and wife Donna of Franklin; many grandchildren, great grandchildren and great-great grandchildren as well as several nieces and nephews.

A memorial service was held Friday, Nov. 24, in the Chapel of Macon Funeral Home. Rev. Bobby Cloer  officiated with full military rites conducted by VFW Post 7339, American Legion Post 108 and the Shaw Air Force Base Honor Guard.

Macon Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.

Online condolences can be made at maconfuneralhome.com.

Dianne Ada Barton

Dianne Ada Barton

Dianne Ada Barton, 82, of Franklin, N.C., passed away on Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2017.

Born in Chicago Heights, Ill., she was the daughter of the late Leo Joseph Reynolds and Eva Lillian Nelson Reynolds. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Roy Ralph Barton Sr.; two daughters, Terri Lyn Fortier and Laura Owens; one son, Leo Mason Owens; two grandchildren, Monica Dianne Owens and Richard Lee Owens and sister, Marilyn Low. She was a member of Cornerstone Presbyterian Church where she helped with the Women’s Ministry. She enjoyed volunteering at Angel Medical Center and CareNet.

She is survived by two children, Debi Varner and Lawrence Owens, both of Franklin; four step children, Roy R. Barton Jr., Roxanne Barton Weatherly, Denise Barton Prior and Monica Barton Fehlberg; nine grandchildren, Steven Varner, Matthew Varner, Shane Wilson, Janet Saunders, Eva Mondragon Wright, Faye Mancini, Brittany Marilee Owens, Christopher Owens and Jeremy Owens; nine great-grandchildren, Ariel Varner, Emily Varner, Shawn McCrary, Krista Varner, Matthew Varner, Francesca Varner, Janelle Lewis, Jasmine Lewis and Austin Ortiz; and one great-great grandchild, Kala Hazel Laws.

A Celebration of Life will be held Thursday, Nov. 30, at 2 p.m., at Cornerstone Presbyterian Church. Rev. Tommy Jordan will officiate.

Flowers are appreciated or donations may be made to the American Cancer Society, 120 Executive Park, Building 1, Asheville, NC  28801.

Macon Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

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

Mary Lou Liner Combs

Mary Lou Liner Combs

Mary Lou Liner Combs, 89, passed away on Nov. 22, 2017. She was born on Sept. 16, 1928, in Franklin, N.C., the only child of the late Tressie Russell Liner and Lawrence B. Liner. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Cass, on Sept. 13, 2017; son-in-law, David Smith, sister-in-law, Patricia Fluharty; brothers-in-law, Frank Okura, Donald Combs, and Pete Neyman.

She graduated from Fort Sanders School of Nursing in Knoxville, Tenn., and enjoyed working as a Registered Nurse in Tennessee, Washington DC, and North Carolina. She especially enjoyed her years of nursing in her beloved hometown, serving as night supervisor the last several years of her career at the former Angel Community Hospital.

There was always an extra place at the table and Mary Lou made each person feel at home with her warmth, beautiful smile, quick wit and soul-warming food. Her sourdough bread was always a hit and she was known as the “cookie lady,” providing thousands of cookies to many in the community over the years. Her heart and passion was the love she had for her family, especially Cass, her children, cherished grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and a host of cousins, nephews, nieces, and friends.

She is survived by her sons, Lawrence (Randi) Combs and Lucian (Judy) Combs; daughters, Candace Smith and Melanie Combs; grandsons, Jeff (Rhonda) Combs, Jason (Shauna) Combs and Ryan (Dominique) Combs; granddaughters, Erin (Nathan) Jewell, Michelle Jennings and April (Scott) Ray; great grandchildren, Stella and Leo Combs, Kayla and Amara Combs, Marlin Combs, Anastasia (Tyler) Scheufele, Madison, Ben and Carter Scheufele, Keegan and Kinsey Leary, and Scotty Ray; sisters-in-law, Joan Okura, Betty Combs and Paula Neyman; brother-in-law, Doug (Donna) Neyman; and treasured cousins.

Funeral service was held at Iotla Baptist Church Saturday, Nov. 25. Officiating was Pastor Brandon Breedlove and Rev. Steve Reeves. Interment followed at the church cemetery. Pallbearers were children, Lucian Combs and Melanie Combs, and grandchildren, Jeff Combs, Jason Combs, Ryan Combs and Erin Jewell.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to The American Diabetes Association, PO Box 15829, Arlington, VA 22215, Samaritan’s Purse Disaster Relief, PO Box 3000, Boone, NC 28607 or a charity of one’s choice.

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

Betty Sue Thomas Talley

Betty Sue Thomas Talley

Betty Sue Thomas Talley, 75, of Mountain City, Ga., passed away Sunday, Nov. 26, 2017. Born in Macon County, North Carolina, she was the daughter of the late Charles Porter and Ethel Moffitt Thomas. She was married to Dennis Atlee Talley who preceded her in death on Sept. 25, 2007.

She loved to play bingo and fish. She was a member of Mountain City Church of God.

Survivors include two sons, Marty Talley (JoAnn) of Clayton, Ga., Keith Talley (Theresa) of Dillard, Ga.; a daughter, Marsha Ramey (Troy) of Clayton, Ga.; eight grandchildren, Jared Talley, Courtney Talley, Skye Talley, Seth Pitts, Nicole Ramey, Ali Ramey, Kelly Braswell and Becky Neff; six great grandchildren, Ansley Clark, Trevin Talley, Kason Talley, Jax Stone, Conner Pitts and Katie Pitts; three sisters, Shirley Myers, Katie Roland and Thelma Carpenter and four brothers, Larry Thomas, Lonnie Thomas, Earl Thomas and Ray Thomas.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by a son, Dale Talley.

A memorial service will be held Thursday, Nov. 30, at 7 p.m., in the chapel of Bryant-Grant Funeral Home and Crematory with Rev. Tim Hayes officiating. The family will receive friends Thursday evening from 6 to 7 p.m., prior to the service at the funeral home.

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

Dorothy Raulerson Ming

Dorothy Raulerson Ming, 95, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Monday, Nov. 27, 2017. Born in Okeechobee, Fla., she was the daughter of the late Keatley Burt and Martha Scott Raulerson. She was married to Robert Ming who preceded her in death in 1991.

She was a bookkeeper and a member of Faith Primitive Baptist Church in Toccoa, Ga.

Survivors include her daughter, Dorothy Delores Vito (Edwin) of Shelby, N.C.; her son, Larry Steve Ming (Fran) of Jamestown, Tenn.; two sisters, Shirley Bennett and Louise Chandler; 12 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren.

In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by a daughter, Sharon Lee Lane; a sister, Lucille Lyon, and a brother, Forest B. Raulerson.

A funeral service was held Wednesday, Nov. 29, in the chapel of Bryant-Grant Funeral Home and Crematory. Burial followed in Woodlawn Cemetery.

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

Edward Arthur Godman Jr.

Edward Arthur Godman Jr.

Edward Arthur Godman Jr., 69, of Topton, N.C., passed away on Sunday, Nov. 19, 2017.

Born in Baltimore, Md., he was the son of the late Edward and Edna Volkman Godman. Edward was a U.S. Army veteran and served during the Vietnam War. He was a member of the American Legion Post 108, an avid HO Train collector and enjoyed riding his motorcycle.

Family was the most important thing in Edward’s life. He was a member of St. Andrew Lutheran Church in Andrews, N.C.

He is survived by his wife of 43 years, Sandra Godman; two sons, Donald E. Godman and wife Denise of Baltimore, and David L. Godman and wife Kara of Baltimore; one daughter, Jane Bostic and husband Wilford of Martinsburg, W.Va.; one sister, Ellen L. Hoffman and husband Robert of Millsboro, Del.; five grandchildren, Juliana, Daniel, Maxwell, Charlie and Copeland and several nieces and nephews.

A Celebration of Life will be held at 1 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 2, in the Chapel of Macon Funeral Home. Rev. Volley Hanson will officiate with full military rites conducted by VFW Post 7339 and American Legion Post 108.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to the Macon County Veteran’s Memorial Park, PO Box 474, Franklin, NC 28744.

Macon Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Online condolences can be made at maconfuneralhome.com.

 

James Daniel Gibson

James Daniel Gibson

James Daniel Gibson, 82, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Monday, Nov. 27, 2017. Born in Macon County, he was the son of the late James Daniel Gibson and Kate Green Gibson.

He retired from APAC-Harrison Construction and loved baseball and shooting pool. He was a veteran of the United States Army and he was a member of Memorial United Methodist Church.

Survivors include his wife of 60 years, Edna Earl Stoudemire Gibson; two sons, Kent Gibson (Gail) and Jay Gibson (Kim) all of Franklin; five grandchildren, Devan Gibson, Austin Gibson, Wyatt Gibson (Kayla), Deena Gibson Carpenter (Michael) and Shannon Gibson and six great grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by two sisters, Mavis Bates and Audrey Ledbetter and three brothers, L. T. Gibson, Robbie Gibson and Carroll Gibson.

Funeral service was held Wednesday, Nov. 29, in the chapel of Bryant-Grant Funeral Home and Crematory with Rev. Tim Hayes officiating. Burial followed in Carson Cemetery.

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

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