Obituaries

Jolene “Jody” Gunter, 76, of the Qualla Community went home to be with the Lord Monday June 27, 2016. A lifelong resident of the Qualla Community. She was the daughter of the late Homer and Louphelia Elders Gunter. Jody was a people person and enjoyed meeting and talking to people. She loved animals, especially her cat, and loved country music.

She is survived by her sister Doris Moore and husband Mike, one brother Carlos Gunter and wife Linda, and several nieces and nephews.

Elizabeth Dwain Moore, age 61, born January 22, 1955, departed this life to go be with God on Thursday, June 16, 2016 at her residence after a lengthy illness. 

She was born to the late Carl and Carrie Moore of Bryson City. 

She was a member of Morning Star Baptist Church, but also attended Corner Stone Wesleyan Church where she was a member of Joyful Noise. She retired from West Elementary School after 27 years. She also was employed by Swain County as a Court Security officer. 

Thomas Jackson Welch (Jack), 89, of Bryson City, passed away, Friday, June 17, 2016 at Mountain View Manor. A native of Swain County, he was the son of the late Thomas and Lavada Davis Welch, and husband of the late Moeina Welch.

He was a U.S. Navy Veteran having served in World War II. He was Bryson City Town Manager for 30 years.

In addition to his wife and parents, he was also preceded in death by four sisters, Blanche Cookston, Margaret Higdon, Dess Cogdill, and Louise Tabor, and one brother, Edward Welch.

Daniel Thomas Brown, Jr., 40, of Bryson City passed away Thursday, June 9, 2016. A native of Forsyth County, he was the son of Daniel Thomas Brown, Sr. of Mt. Airy, and the late Patricia Webb. He was a devoted father, husband and brother.

He was preceded in death by his daughter, Hannha Mae Brown.

Geneva Ann Libich Hughes, 57, of the Grassy Branch community went home to be with the Lord Wednesday, June 8, 2016. A native of Swain County, she was the daughter of Geraldine Orr Libich of Bryson City and the late Zigmont Libich and wife of the late Phillip Hughes.

Paul Earl Tapley of Whittier left his body on April 28, 2016.  He was 59 and is survived by his two sons, Forest and Skyler, wife Diana Kirk, brother Patrick, sister Paula Duhn, five nieces and nephews and sweet dog Kelsie.  

Memorial contributions should go to the Canary Coalition, a clean air non-profit in Sylva, of which he is a founding member.  

We give thanks to Paul for his dedicated service to others in community, also serving on the boards of Mountain Discovery Charter School and Swain County Youth Soccer Association. We love and miss you Paul.

Camellia Watson Autrey (Connie), 63, of Bryson City, N.C. passed Saturday, December 12, 2015. She was born June 8, 1952 to Edward Benjamin Watson, Jr. and Ann Evelyn Elliott Watson in Bryson City, N.C.

Danny Isaac Parris, 65 of Grimsley, TN, passed away on Wednesday, May 25, 2016 at Tennova Healthcare-Jamestown.

He was born and raised in Whittier, NC. He graduated from Swain County High School.

Funeral service was held Sunday, May 29, 2016 at the Clarkrange Baptist Church where he was an active member.  Burial was in the Clarkrange Baptist Church Cemetery.

Pauline Brooks (Polly) Hoyle, 80, of Whittier passed away Thursday, May 26, 2016. A native of Jackson County, she was the daughter of the late Jim Worley and Ruby Jones Brooks and husband of the late Glenn Hoyle. She was also preceded in death by her brothers, Jimmie and Frank Brooks.

She is survived by three sisters, Norma Rowe, Peggy Brooks, and Janie Helmstetler; and two brothers, Sam and Tommy Brooks.

A graveside service was held at 11:00 am Saturday at Barkers Creek Cemetery. Rev. Johnny Ray Davis officiated.

Edith “Edie” Doughtery Rowan passed peacefully Wednesday, April 27, at her home in Whittier. A native of Philadelphia, PA, she and her husband Patrick moved to WNC in 1981 to be closer to their daughter’s family.

James Alfred “Junior” Lackey, 89, of 240 Cloer Rd., Bryson City died May 17, 2016 after an extended illness. A native of Swain County, he was born March 5, 1927 to the late Talitha Grooms and Alfred Fernando “Dutch” Lackey. 

He served in the Navy from 1944-1946, and during World War II, worked aboard the USS “New York” battleship # BB-34 as a 3rd Class Gunnery in the 7M division. 

Ray Simonds of the Maple Springs community, Bryson City, NC made his earthly passing May 14, 2016. He was preceded in death by his mother and father, Nola and James Simonds; brothers, Harold, Edward and J.C. Simonds; baby sister, Mary Jane Simonds; daughter, Lynda Ellen Simonds; and his first granddaughter, Kendra Lorraine Bashaw.

Lavon Hyatt, 58, of the Big Cove Community in Cherokee, went to his Heavenly home on Sunday, May 15, 2016. 

Lavon was a native of the Laurel Branch Community in Bryson City. 

He was a devoted and loving husband, father, grandpa Von, uncle, brother, and friend who will be greatly missed. 

He was a former employee of the Western Steer Family Steakhouse in Cherokee for over twenty years and went into early retirement due to health reasons. 

Janet Long Beck, 81, of Cherokee, went home to be with the Lord, Friday, May 13, 2016. Born in Clay County and lifelong resident of the Qualla Boundary in Cherokee, NC, she was the daughter of the late J.C. and Ethel Long. In addition to her parents she was preceded in death by a son, Jim Beck; granddaughter, Stephanie Beck, and a brother, J.C. Long Jr.

She was a member of Cherokee Baptist Church. She had a passion working with children in the Cherokee Elementary School and Tribal Day Care.

Jean Henderson, 75, of Hendersonville, went home to be with the Lord, Wednesday, May 11, 2016. A native of Swain County, she was the daughter of the late Lon and Eva Bolin Queen, and wife of the late Jay Henderson. In addition to her parents and husband, she was preceded in death by one brother, Ronnie Queen; two half-sisters, Hazel Jenkins, and Reva Millsaps, and one half-brother, Bill Passmore.

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Smoky Mountain Times

Mailing Address:
PO Box 730
1 River Street
Bryson City, NC 28713 
Phone: 828-488-2189
Fax: 828-488-0315