Darrell D. Watkins II
BLYTHEVILLE — Darrell Dwayne Watkins II, 26, of Blytheville died Wednesday, Feb. 4, at Great River Medical Center.
He leaves his mother, Trisha Dawn Watkins of Blytheville; father, Darrell Dwayne Watkins (Barbara) of Manila; grandparents, Bill and Barbara Ward of Blytheville, and Clayton and Jeanette Watkins of Gosnell; brother, Chris “Chief” Watkins of Blytheville; sisters, Katie and Kelsen Watkins of Manila; and special friends Gaye and Steve McCarty of Marion.
Services will be at 1:30 p.m. Saturday in Cobb Funeral Home at Blytheville with burial following in Dogwood Cemetery.
Visitation will be from 6-8 this evening in the funeral home.
Albert Wayne Wolfe
JONESBORO — Albert Wayne Wolfe was born Nov. 28, 1939, at Rison and died Wednesday, Feb. 4, 2009, at Jonesboro.
He was the son of the late Albert “Frankie” and Beatrice Wolfe of Rison. He married Patricia Kay Williams of Monticello on Jan. 15, 1960. He graduated in 1957 from Pine Bluff High School. He later graduated from the University of Arkansas at Monticello in 1963. He was a member of Phi Lambda Chi fraternity while at UAM.
In 1963 he began his career at Sears Roebuck in Pine Bluff in the executive training program. He worked 30 years in retail. He retired from Sears after managing several stores in the southern territory.
He and Kay returned in 1993 to Jonesboro, where he began working at First National Bank of Arkansas. Later he worked at St. Bernards as the director of “The Foundation.” Afterward, he worked at MidSouth Bank for several years. In the past eight years he worked at Liberty Bank of Jonesboro as senior vice president of business development. His bank family and the friendships he developed there through the years were priceless to him.
He was involved in many civic organizations — Jonesboro Rotary Club, where he was a Paul Harris Fellow, United Way committees, volunteered on the “Peach Drive” for Jonesboro Church Health Center, served on the Jonesboro Regional Chamber of Commerce and other various clubs and organizations.
He was a member of First United Methodist Church of Jonesboro. He was a Christian and enjoyed worshipping with his church family.
One of the family hobbies was raising and showing registered quarter horses. He enjoyed spending time with family and friends during the “show season” and truly loved his time at “the barn.”
One of his personal hobbies was playing golf with friends and his favorite partner, Kay. He enjoyed many rounds of golf and developed many close friendships during the years.
He is survived in death by his wife of 49 years, Kay Wolfe of Jonesboro; two daughters, Lesa Kay Smith and her husband Stan Smith of West Plains, Mo., and Patricia “Lynn” Dent of Cordova, Tenn; three grandchildren, Kristi Drummond and husband Josh Drummond of West Plains, Brandon Keith Dent of Cordova and Sidney “Elise” Dent of Cordova; and one sister, Glenda Hooker of Pine Bluff.
He was preceded in death by one grandson, Benjamin Aaron Dent.
He loved his family very much. He was a devoted husband, father, grandfather and a true friend to all who knew him.
Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday in First United Methodist Church with the Rev. John Miles officiating.
Visitation will be from 5-7 this evening in First United Methodist Church. Burial will be private.
Active pallbearers will be Ed Way, Dick Darouse, Tom Clark, Louis Schaaf, Steve Smith, Ken Copeland, Wallace Fowler and Lloyd McCracken Jr.
Honorary pallbearers will be Sam Vittitow, Bob Fowler, Bob Newcomer, Allan G. Williams, Jack Bell, James Moseley, Darrell Argo, Frank Cook, Cecil Harris and Kelly Hodges.
For lasting memorials, the family asks that consideration be given to First United Methodist Children’s Ministry, 801 South Main St., Jonesboro 72401.
MARKED TREE — Hazel Alexander, 81, of Marked Tree died Thursday, Feb. 12, 2009, at NEA Baptist Memorial Hospital at Jonesboro.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Avon Alexander; three brothers; and two sisters.
Survivors include her nephews, Dale (Marie) Dunlap of Lepanto, Chet (Jennifer) Dunlap of Jonesboro and Jim G. (Teresa) Dunlap of Memphis; niece, Barbara (James) Westbrook of Wynne; and a host of other nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be today from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in Murphy Funeral Home at Marked Tree.
Graveside services will follow at 3 p.m. in Portageville Cemetery at Portageville, Mo., under the direction of Murphy Funeral Home.
Nora Minnie Blackford
CHANNAHON, Ill. — Nora Minnie Bierbaum Blackford, 93, a longtime resident of the Paragould-Jonesboro area, died on Wednesday, Feb. 11, in Joliet, Ill.
She and her beloved twin sister, Clara, were born June 5, 1915, at Lafe to Wilhelmina Engelkemeyer and August H. Bierbaum.
Nora was preceded in death by her parents; her five brothers, Oscar, Herman, George, Paul and Martin; Clara; and her beautiful great-granddaughter, Melissa Kellett. She was also preceded in death by her soulmate and loving husband of almost 67 years, Robert Ralph Blackford — or, as she fondly called him, “Daddy.”
Daddy courted her at a young age by throwing notes over the fence and won her heart. During the Depression, Daddy and Nora headed out west with a car packed with people and only a few personal items. There she worked in the defense effort, and Daddy worked at the shipyards before returning to Arkansas.
Nora was an excellent cook; her dressing, pea salads, caramel cakes and vegetable soup were in high demand by her family. She was also an avid quilter, having made many beautiful and colorful quilts with her friends from Clark’s Chapel Baptist Church where she was a lifelong member.
She loved to play the organ. It took little encouragement for her to sing and play the organ at holiday gatherings. Most of all, however, she was a loving mother and cherished grandmother, great-grandmother and great-great-grandmother.
Nora had spent the last several years with her son, Robert “Sonny,” and his wife, Joyce, in Illinois where she made many new friends. However, she always looked forward to “coming back home” and treating her entire family to a meal at her favorite restaurant, Ron’s Catfish.
She is survived by her daughter, Minnie Jones of Jonesboro; and her son and daughter-in-law, Robert and Joyce Blackford of Channahon. She is also survived by her grandchildren, Marjorie Lingenfelter (Sonny), Patricia Golden (Milburn), both of Jonesboro, Vicki Selby (Jack) of Corsicana, Texas, Barbara McGuire (Aaron) of Cocoa, Fla., Shirley Jones (Greg) of Little Rock, Debra Mosley (Steve) of North Little Rock, Tammy Sallee (Ken) of Morris, Ill., Tom Logan of Coal City, Ill., and Tonya Cowan (Alan) of Ludworth, England.
Also missing her greatly are her 10 great-grandchildren, Mitchael, Missty, Joshua, Randy, Lisa, Shaunna, Rachel, Tasha, Melanie and Alexander; and nine great-great-grandchildren. In addition, she is survived by many other loving family members and her friends from Clark’s Chapel and the shoe factory where she worked for many years.
Although her family is tearful and will miss her terribly, they were blessed with many wonderful years and take comfort in the fact that she is now with Daddy, Clara and her other beloved family members who preceded her in death.
Visitation will be at 11:30 a.m. today in Mitchell Funeral Home at Paragould with the funeral immediately following at 1:30 p.m. at the same location. Burial will follow at Clark’s Chapel Baptist Church, Arkansas 351, Paragould.
JONESBORO — Dr. William Warren Byrd, 77, of Jonesboro died Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009, at St. Bernards Medical Center.
He was born at Cleveland, Miss., and lived in Jonesboro most of his life. He was a member of Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church and a professor at Arkansas State University for 38 years.
Dr. Byrd began his teaching career at Arkansas State University in 1955 and taught biology, zoology and herpetology. He also served as chairman of the pre-medical advisory committee and the school’s athletic committee for a decade.
Dr. Byrd graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi with degrees in biology and zoology. He went on to achieve his master’s degree and continued to pursue his doctorate for two more years. He published at least 35 articles in various science journals over the years. He retired in 1992.
Arkansas State University, where he earned the honorary title of professor emeritus, named a biology complex in honor of Professor Byrd in November 2006.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Berry L. and Beatrice Johnston Byrd Kalif; and one brother, Berry L. Byrd Jr.
He is survived by his loving wife of 59 years, Frances Guerieri Byrd of the home, and one son, William Warren Byrd II and wife Sammye of Maumelle; three daughters, Michele Byrd Hegwood and husband Dr. C. Patrick of Baton Rouge, La., Gloria Byrd of Springdale and Kimberly Byrd Shepherd and husband Peter of Prairie Grove; 12 grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday in Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church with the Rev. Mark Wood officiating. Emerson Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. Burial will be at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Dr. William W. Byrd Science Laboratory Fund at Arkansas State University or Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church.
Dorthy Abbott Castro
LEPANTO — Dorthy Abbott Castro, 66, of Lepanto died Thursday, Feb. 12, 2009, at NEA Baptist Memorial Hospital at Jonesboro.
She was a retired nursing home administrator at Three Rivers Nursing Home, where she was instrumental in the building of the new facility. She was a member of Daughters of American Revolution, secretary of the Lepanto Museum, member of Friends of the Library and of the Humane Society. The Abbott family were pioneer residents of Lepanto. Dorthy was essential in the preservation of the Greenwood Cemetery.
She was preceded in death by her father, Lewis Henry Abbott; and niece, Cindy Tuggle Tyler.
She is survived by her husband, Trinidad Castro of the home; daughter, Terry Abbott of Lepanto; mother, Nancy Honeycutt of Lepanto; brother, Franklin Abbott of Lepanto; sisters, Frances Tuggle, Betty Knapp and Joyce White, all of Lepanto; and many nieces and nephews.
Graveside services are at 10 a.m. today in Potter Memorial Cemetery with Jim Duffel officiating. Burial will follow under the direction of Murphy Funeral Home.
Active pallbearers will be Trinidad Castro, Buster Robertson, Lynn Ryan, Garry Ryan, Ronny Knapp and Jay White.
Honorary pallbearer will be Neal McIntire.
Memorials may be made to the NEA Humane Society or the American Red Cross.
Aldine Georgia Davis
POCAHONTAS — Aldine Georgia Davis, 86, passed away Tuesday, Feb. 10, 2009, at St. Bernards Medical Center.
She was born May 9, 1922, at Stokes to the late George Harper and Mae Davis Harper.
She is survived by her daughter, Sheilah Brown, and granddaughter, Shaunna Brown, both of Pocahontas; and three great-grandchildren, Dylan Brown of Pocahontas, David Lopeze and Kaylee Lopeze, both of Las Vegas.
Graveside services will be held at 10 a.m. today in Palestine Cemetery with Harmon Seawel officiating under the direction of McNabb Funeral Home.