Obituaries for September 1

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Dr. William Creighton Peden III

Dr. William Creighton Peden III
Dr. William Creighton Peden III

Dr. William Creighton Peden  III was born in Concord, N.C., on July 25, 1935. He passed away at his home in Highlands on Aug. 25, 2016. Creighton was the Fuller E. Callaway Professor emeritus of Philosophy at Augusta University as well as co-founder and 21-year president of the Highlands Institute for American Religious and Philosophical Thought. A passionate educator and scholar, he chaired 15 international conferences, lectured at over 40 universities in 12 countries, founded two prominent academic journals, wrote well over 100 articles and chapters and authored or edited over 30 books. He was preceded in death by his wife, Harriet “Frissy” McKnight Peden.

He is survived by two daughters, Lisa Peden Patzer of Alpharetta, Ga., and Elaine Peden Foster of Atlanta, Ga.; a stepson: Paul Taylor York of Augusta, Ga.; and six grandchildren: Jason Hollis Foster, Beau Peden Foster, Tyler Mark Patzer, Laci Rose Patzer, Kylie Shea York and Keaton Taylor York.

A memorial service will be held Saturday, Sept. 3, at 11 a.m. at The Mountain Retreat and Learning Center, 3872 Dillard Road, Highlands, in the Great Hall. If traveling from Highlands, it is recommended to use the second entrance.

In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to National MS Society, P.O. Box 4527, New York, NY 10163

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

Rev. Norman Henry Webb

Rev. Norman Henry Webb, 79, of Otto, N.C., passed away Friday, Aug. 26, 2016. He was born in Oconee County, S.C., the son of the late Norman Clyde Webb and Ruby Pauline Bottoms Webb.  He was a house painter and a member of Calvary Baptist Church.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his former wife, Helen Webb, two sisters and seven brothers.  He is survived by one brother, Clarence Webb of Clarkesville, Ga.

A graveside service was held Wednesday, Aug. 31, at Highlands Memorial Park. with Rev. Carson Gibson officiating.

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

Tammy Lynn Tillery

Tammy Tillery
Tammy Tillery

Tammy Lynn Tillery, 53, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2016.  She was born July 24, 1963, at Scott Air Force Base in Illinois, the daughter of Thomas Russell Stinnett and the late Suzanne Prue Stinnett. She was a loving mother. grandmother, daughter and sister. She liked crafting, cooking and loved shopping and facebook.

In addition to her father, she is survived by  a daughter, Cyra Ashemore of South Gate, Mich.; two sons, Seth Ashemore of Franklin, and Christopher Stinnett  (Liz) of Asheville, N.C.; grandchildren, Ever-Lynn Harlan and Michael Harlan; grandmother, Elsie Prue; step-sisters, Debbie York and Kimberly York of Illinois; brothers, Timothy Tillery of Ft. Hood, Texas, Tommy Stinnett of Dallas, Texas,  John Prue of Virginia and step-brother, Mark York of Houston, Texas.

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

John ‘Michael’ Gruber

John “Michael” Gruber, 60, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Tuesday, Aug. 16, 2016.

Born in Jersey City, N.J., he was the son of the late John Max Gruber and Rosemary Loveland Gruber. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by one sister, Maureen Genshiemer.

He is survived by two brothers, Christopher Gruber of Ocean Grove, N.J., and Wayne Gruber of Orlando, Fla., and two sisters, Margaret Gruber and Barbara Gruber both of Orlando.

A memorial mass will be held at 5 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 8, at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church.

Macon Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Online condolences can be made at maconfuneralhome.com.

Shirley Sanders Callahan

Shirley Sanders Callahan
Shirley Sanders Callahan

Shirley Sanders Callahan, 70, of Darrington, Wash., formerly of Franklin, N.C., passed away Thursday, Aug. 18, 2016.

Born in Macon County, she was the daughter of the late Jess Hardy Sanders and Ollie Mae Hastings Sanders. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by eight brothers and two sisters. She attended Mountain View Baptist Church, Darrington, Wash., and loved being around people. She enjoyed quilting, flower gardening, crafts, oil painting.

She is survived by her companion of 30 years, Jessie Galvan; two daughters, Rita Callahan and Rhonda Parrish both of Franklin; two grandchildren, Jeremy Callahan and Bradley Parrish, both of Franklin; five great grandchildren and a number of nieces and nephews.

Funeral service was held Saturday, Aug. 27, in the Chapel of Macon Funeral Home.  Rev. Bryon Lamb officiated. Burial was in the Pleasant Hill Baptist Church Cemetery.

Pallbearers were Skip Sanders, John Wayne Sanders, Cody Keener, Ron Buttermore, Jeremy Callahan and Bradley Parrish.

Honorary pallbearers were Bruce Sanders, Johnny Sanders and Charlie Dowdle.

Macon Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.

Online condolences can be made at maconfuneralhome.com.

Carrie Vinson Speed

Carrie Vinson Speed
Carrie Vinson Speed

Carrie Vinson Speed, 78, of Highlands, N.C., passed away on Wednesday, Aug. 24, 2016, following a long battle with dementia and heart disease. Born in Macon County, North Carolina, she was the daughter of the late Dan and Mary Clide Vinson. She was married to Felix Speed who preceded her in death.

She worked as a receptionist for the U.S. Forest Service Job Corps and was a member of Highlands United Methodist Church. She was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, and great great grandmother.

She is survived by two daughters, Mary Helen Tester (James) of Demorest, Ga., and Lora Speed-Beegle of Highlands; three sisters, Virginia Bryson and Lorraine Talley (Jim) both of Highlands, and Marlene Vinson of Ela, N.C.; one brother, Olan Vinson (Lucy) of Highlands; step-grandchild, Darrell Tester of Cornelia, Ga.; step-great grandchildren, Tabitha Tester of Mt. Airy, Ga., Samantha Mundo of Stockbridge, Ga., and Sarena Tester of Demorest, G.; great great grandchildren, Tatum Tester, Maleah Harbin, Dawson Jackson and Eric Angel Mundo Jr., along with many nieces, nephews and beloved pets.

A memorial service was held Monday, Aug. 29, at Highlands United Methodist Church with Jennifer Forrester and Rev. Randy Lucas officiating.

In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to Highlands United Methodist Church Building Fund, PO Box 1959, Highlands, NC 28741; or humane society or animal rescue of your choice.

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

William Bruce Gregory

William Bruce Gregory, 78, passed away Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2016.  He was born in Polk County, N.C., the son of the late William Riley Gregory and Dealie Irene Hedden Gregory.  He retired from the United States Air Force, where he distinguished himself by meritorious service as a Fuel Systems Repairman, 460th Field Maintenance Squadron, Tan Son Nhut Air Field, Republic of Vietnam, from Oct. 26 1968 to Oct. 22 1969. During this period Sergeant Gregory’s outstanding leadership, resource management, and technical skill contributed to assuring a maximum number of aircraft were combat ready to accomplish mission requirements.  He was a member of Franklin VFW Post #7339.

He worked as a carpenter building houses and enjoyed making wine, fishing and was an excellent cook who enjoyed cooking for family and friends. He knew the value of hard work and he was adept at canning, processing meat and preserving apples and hominy.

He is survived by his wife Evelyn Gregory whom he met at Liberty Baptist Church; two daughters, Sabrina (Sally) Gregory (Chris Godwin) and Angie Cook (Scott) both of Franklin, one son, Hoyt Gregory (Linda) of Sparta, Ga.; nine grandchildren, 10 great grandchildren, and two sisters, Joyce Terry and Glenda Slagle. He was preceded in death by a brother, Nolan Gregory.

A funeral service was held on Friday, Aug. 26, at Snow Hill United Methodist Church with Pastor Steve Miller officiating.  Burial followed in Snow Hill Cemetery.  Pallbearers were Kevin Stevenson, Robbie Stevenson, Mathew Holbrook, James Davis, Mark Reynolds, Derek Mason and Fred Sorrells. American Legion Post #108 performed graveside rites.

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

William Earle Laing Jr.

William Earle Laing Jr.
William Earle Laing Jr.

William Earle Laing Jr., 92, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Saturday, Aug. 27, 2016.

Born in Staten Island, N.Y., he was the son of the late William Earle Laing and Mary Theuer Laing. He was a U.S. Air Force veteran and served during WWII. He was twice elected Mayor of Titusville, Fla., member of the Rotary Club, past president of the Watauga Vista Association, member of Ridgecrest Baptist Church, was a volunteer fireman and volunteer high school football doctor. He loved to golf and play tennis.

He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Marilyn Vosbargh Laing; three sons, Matt Laing and wife, Lynn of Madison, Ala., Michael Laing and wife, Sue of Cincinnati, Ohio, and Mark Laing and wife, Jeanette of Charlotte, N.C.; seven grandchildren and three great grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held Thursday, Sept. 1, at 2 p.m., at Ridgecrest Baptist Church. Rev. Tommy Fouts and Rev. Guy Duvall will officiate. Military honors will be conducted by VFW Post 7339 and American Legion Post 108.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to Ridgecrest Baptist Church.

Macon Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Online condolences can be made at maconfuneralhome.com.

Donald Ray Richeson

Donald Ray Richeson
Donald Ray Richeson

Donald Ray Richeson, 75, of Otto, N.C., passed away Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2016.

Born in Somerville, Ind., he was the son of the late Willard Nathanael Richeson and Ivel Elder Richeson. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife Ruth Helen Richeson. He was a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and enjoyed working outdoors.

He is survived by one son, Harold “Rich” Richeson of Tampa, FL; one daughter, Tamie Mooney and husband Alan of Otto, and six grandchildren.

No services are planned at this time.

Macon Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Online condolences can be made at maconfuneralhome.com.

Lois Juanita Houston

Lois Juanita Houston
Lois Juanita Houston

Lois Juanita Houston, 82, of Highlands, N.C., passed away Thursday, Aug. 25, 2016. She was born in Macon County, the daughter of the late Claude and Fannie Stiwinter Tilson. She was married to Frank William Houston, who died Dec. 17, 1977.  She was a  homemaker, a loving wife, mother and grandmother. She loved to travel and loved going to church.

She is survived by a daughter, Sandy McCormick (David) of Waco, Ga.; sons, Bill Houston, Tommy Houston and Larry Houston (Faith) all of Highlands; a sister, Ola Holland of Carrollton, Ga.; brothers, Ronnie Tilson (Nancy) of Highlands, Thomas Tilson (Becky) of Brevard, N.C., and Randall Tilson (Peggy) of Franklin, N.C.; a brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Mike and Kay Houston of Highlands; eight grandchildren and ten great grandchildren.  In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by a son, James “Jim” Houston, a daughter-in-law, Sarah Houston, and brothers, Vernie Tilson and Howard Tilson.

Funeral services were held Sunday, Aug. 28, at Buck Creek Baptist Church, with Rev. Jamie Passmore officiating.  Burial was in the church cemetery.  Pallbearers were Chris Houston, Charlie Houston, John McCormick, Daniel Houston, Adam Benedict and Bob Staffelbach.

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

William Brewster Pugsley

William Brewster Pugsley, 81, of Highlands, N.C., went to be with the Lord Thursday, Aug. 18, 2016.  He was born in Fairfield County, Conn., and was the loving son of the late William Crosby and Florence Llenell Pugsley.  He was a member of Community Bible Church. He enjoyed a career in real estate but passionately pursued many interests. He was a real people person and was referred to as Mr. Bill by his friends and family. He loved restoring exotic cars and hand crafting knives.  He was a member of the Road Hogs motor coach and motorcycle group and loved touring the country, visiting most of the 50 states in his travels. He was perhaps most at home riding his Harley Davidson as he rode until the age of 80. He was an avid animal lover and never met an animal that he could not befriend.

He is survived by his loving wife, Susan, who referred to him as Billy.  She accompanied him on all of his adventures for the past 28 years.  He is also survived by five nephews, Trey Bentley, Michael Bentley, Mich Bentley, Ben Bentley, and Nick Bentley, whom he loved dearly.

A celebration of life service was held Sunday, Aug. 21, at Community Bible Church in Highlands, with Gary Hewins officiating.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Community Bible Church Children and Youth Ministries, P.O. Box 2916, Highlands, NC 28741 or Four Seasons Hospice, 171 Hospital Drive Suite 600, Highlands, NC 28741.

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

Thomas Lee Wiggins Jr.

Thomas Lee Wiggins Jr., passed away in Franklin, N.C., on Aug. 16, 2016.  A veteran of World War II, he was proud to serve in the IIth Airborne Division. A true patriot, his service to his country and heritage were a legacy often shared through verse and stories; developing pride and respect for the “Greatest Generation” among his family and friends.
Thomas “Pa” was born on Oct. 31, 1926, in Fitzgerald, Ga., to Thomas “Tom” and Evelyn Wiggins. Precious memories were made while growing up in Waycross, Ga., where friendships were formed and cherished throughout his life. He attended Waycross High and The Bolles School, Jacksonville, Fla., where he won the state singles tennis tournament in the summer of 1944. After graduating, he followed his buddies into the military, joining the army and serving in the Pacific and Occupation Forces in Japan.
After the war, he returned to his beloved hometown and attended Georgia Southwestern. He married “the prettiest girl in Waycross” Mary Ruth Hinnant, and moved across the Mason-Dixon Line to Philadelphia, Pa., graduating from the Franklin School of Science and Arts. A man of words and a vibrant spirit, the couple returned to the south and made their way back to where their story began, living in Alabama, Florida and Georgia.

He established the laboratory in the medical office of Dr. McKee Hargrett, serving the community of Screven, Ga.  Retiring to his beloved Waycross, he divided his time between Fernandina Beach, Fla., and Fitzgerald, Ga.

An avid sportsman, his hobbies and passions included golfing, tennis, long-distance walking, hiking, boating and metal detecting. A lifelong student, he devoured the works of the “great masters,” enjoyed volunteer work as a Civil War historian and genealogist. In the spirit of his love for heritage, he became a member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans. During his later years, he enjoyed the “good-ole-days” and was grateful for the opportunity for returning to “the best of times” courtesy of Turner Classic Movies.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Ruth Hinnant Wiggins; his sister, Francis Head (Ewald), parents Tom and Evelyn Wiggins; and nephew, Ronnie Head. Thomas is survived by daughter, Mary W Jones (Mack); son, Thomas Lee Wiggins III (Bonnie); four grandchildren, Marnie Wingard (Chris), Kelli Audet (Matt), April Wiggins, Jason Wiggins (Brittany); six great grandchildren, Hannah Ruth and Camden Wingard, Braden and Addisyn Aiken, Madelyn and Mason Wiggins; nephew, G. Thomas Head (Karen); cousin and dear friend, Clyde Bailey;  great-nephews, Tom, Jeffrey and Bernard Head; brother-in-law, JL Hinnant.

Celebration of life was held in his home on Cowee Mountain in Franklin. A graveside service will be held on Sept. 3, 2 p.m., Bosque Bella Cemetery, Fernandina Beach, Fla. Rev. Chris Wingard will officiate with military honors also conducted.

Funeral arrangements provided by Macon Funeral Home and Oxley Heard Funeral Home.

Online condolences may be made at maconfuneralhome.com.

Theresa Hope Oschmann

Theresa Hope Oschmann
Theresa Hope Oschmann

Theresa Hope Oschmann, 49, of Franklin, N.C., passed away Sunday, August 28, 2016.

Born in Houma, La., she was the daughter of Girline Marie Galliano Oschmann and the late William Charles Oschmann Sr. She was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

In addition to her mother, she is survived by one sister, Veronica Murphy and husband Randy of Franklin; two brothers, William Charles Oschmann, Jr. and wife Karen of Phoenix, Ariz. and William Kerry Oschmann of Zwolle, La.; five nieces; three nephews and six great nieces and great nephews.

A memorial service will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made to Veronica Murphy for Down Syndrome support, 70 Harper Lane, #3102, Franklin, NC 28734.

Online condolences can be made at maconfuneralhome.com.

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