Obituaries for August 29, 2018

Published 6:21 pm Tuesday, August 28, 2018



Ms. Melinda Kay Bell, 43, of Jerkins Road in the Range community, passed away Saturday evening August 18, 2018 at an Evergreen medical facility after a brief illness. Ms. Bell was a native of Monroeville, and long-time resident of the Range community. She was a homemaker and of the holiness faith.

Survivors include her parents, Edward Glen and Vicky Holder Bell of Range; Twin Sister; Belinda Bell of Range, Sisters; Candy (Raymond) Pellegrini of Range; Lisa Bell of Range; Tiffany (Johnnie) Rhoades of Range; Niece; Rachael Diane Rhoades of Range.

Preceded in death by her paternal grandparents, Alton and Luverne Bell; maternal grandparents, George & Hazel Holder; niece, Melanie Elaine Rhoades; cousin, Chris Bell.

Visitation was held on Thursday, Aug. 23, 2018 from 8:30 a.m. until 9:30 a.m. at Craver’s Funeral Home Inc.

Graveside funeral services for Ms. Melinda Kay Bell were scheduled for Aug. 23, 2018 at Caanan Free Will Baptist Cemetery with Bro. Frankie Bell with Craver’s Funeral Home directing.

Pallbearers include: Raymond Pellegrini, Johnnie Rhoades, James Bell, Tim Marion, Bo Ward.

Please share your memories and condolences with the family at




Mr. Thomas Edward “Eddie” Godwin, 57, passed away on Monday, Aug. 13, 2018 at his Castleberry residence.

Mr. Godwin was a life-long resident of the Brewton area and worked as a Machine Operator/Truck Driver for T.R. Miller Mill Co.  He was of the Christian faith.  Mr. Godwin was preceded in death by his father and mother, Lendle and Emma Clay Godwin; and a brother, Lennie Godwin.

He is survived by a daughter, Michelle (Randall Boone) Godwin of Mobile; three grandchildren, Emilee Godwin, Dalton Godwin and Raelyn Boone.

Funeral services were held on Sunday, Aug. 19, 2018 at 2 p.m. from the chapel of Craver’s Funeral Home with Bro. Mark Gray officiating.  Interment will follow in Buffington Cemetery.

Visitation were held on Sunday from 1 p.m. until service time at 2 p.m.

Pallbearers were Chris Godwin, Blake Godwin, Pete Brooks, Daniel Patterson, J. D. Kast, and Jeremy Sims.

Please share your memories and condolences with the family at


Slidell, La.

Mr. Christopher Lee “Chris” Mealer, 41, of Lopez Street in Slidell, La., passed away Friday, Aug. 10, 2018 at Ochsner Medical Center in Slidell after an extended illness. Mr. Mealer was a native of Dresden, Tenn. and a former resident of Brewton, Picayune, Miss. and Gleason, Tenn. He was a foreman in the construction industry and was of the Baptist faith.

Survived by his wife of 16 years, Tisha Hawsey Mealer of Slidell; father, Morris (Norma Jean) Mealer of Brewton; mother, Theresa (Pete) Birdwell of Gleason, Tenn.; three sons, Jonathan Mealer of Bump Pass, Va.,  Anthony Mealer of Slidell, La., and Gabe Mealer of Slidell, La.; 3 daughters, Destiney Mealer of Slidell, La., Brooklyn Mealer of Slidell, La., Shyanne Mealer of Slidell, La.; 2 brothers, Johnathan (Vanessa) Mealer of Brewton, Shawn Mealer of Brewton; sister, Crystal Mealer of Brewton; a number of nieces, nephews and other family members.

Graveside funeral services were held on Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2018 at 10 a.m. at Zion Hill Cemetery with Bro. James Aubrey Wilson officiating.

Please share your memories and condolences with the family at



Mr. William “Bill” Earl Ziglar, age 60, of Murphy Park Drive Brewton, passed away Monday Aug. 20, 2018. He was a native of Opp, a former resident of Gantt, before moving to Brewton in 1997. Mr. Ziglar was of the Baptist faith, A U.S. Coast Guard veteran, and a deck hand on fishing charters.

He is survived by his parents, Donahue and Dorothy Crowell Ziglar of Wewahitchka, Fla., wife, Angie Boswell Ziglar of Brewton; son, William Buddy Ziglar of Brewton; three daughters, Kristi Hagler of Panama City, Fla., Becky Ziglar and  Amanda Ziglar of Brewton; one brother, Dewonis Ziglar of Red Level; one sister, Donna Ziglar of Panama City, Fla., nine grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Memorial Services were held Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018 at 2 p.m. at the Zion Hill Baptist Church with Pastor Ruby Lawson officiating and with Williams Memorial Funeral Home directing.


Bellaire, Ohio

Virginia Mae Paul, 98 of Bellaire, Ohio died Sunday, Aug. 12, 2018 at the Valley Hospice South’s Liza’s Place in Wheeling, W. Va.

She was born in Bellaire, Ohio, on March 19, 1920, the daughter of the late Joseph W. and Emma C. Dvoracek Gill.

She was an employee of the former G C Murphy Company and attended the Bellaire Christian Church. She worked for the former Hazel Atlas Company during World War II and later for the Imperial Glass Corporation.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Daniel F. Paul on Nov. 11, 1980 whom she married on July 3, 1949, a daughter, Cynthia L. Paul and her son-in-law, Kenneth A. Meadows, Jr., sister, Betty Landers and brothers, Joseph and Charles Gill.

Surviving are her daughter, Kathleen Meadows of Flomaton; two grandsons, Kenneth D. (Tiffany) Meadows and Kevin M. Meadows; three great grandchildren, Christian, Aspen and Hudson; special niece, Miranda Landers and special next-door neighbor, Charlee Robinson and several nieces and nephews.

Family and friends will be received at the Bauknecht-Altmeyer Funeral Homes & Crematory 441 37th Street Bellaire, Ohio on Thursday from 4 to 8 p.m. and Friday from 10 a.m. until time of services at 11 a.m. with the Rev. David Demarest officiating. Interment followed in the Holly Memorial Gardens in Pleasant Grove, Ohio.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Valley Hospice by going to

Share your thoughts and memories with Virginia’s family at www.bauknechtaltmeyer. com.


Jacksonville, Fla.

Mr. Hamilton Carter Hodge, 93, of Jacksonville, Fla., went home to be with the Lord on Thursday, Aug. 23, 2018. He was born on Oct. 13, 1924 to the parents of Daniel and Jesse Hodge in Escambia County, Ala., previously living in Hazlehurst, Ga., and moved to Jacksonville, Fla., in 2013. On May 5, 1962, he married the love of his life, Montine Schell Hodge. In 1991, he retired from Montgomery Industries, serving 41 years. He enjoyed spending time with his family, and in his spare time, gardening was a hobby. Hamilton was preceded in death by his parents, his son Shelby Hamilton Hodge, two sisters, Edna Mae Powell and Evelyn Bates and two brothers, Daniel “Buddy” Hodge and Jimmy Hodge. Surviving family include his wife of 56 years, Montine Hodge; two children: Melanie (Ray) Barber and Mike (Debbie) Hodge; five grandchildren: Steven (Krista) Barber, Maeghan Barber, Michelle (William) Hall, Kimberly (Rodney) Frick and Leah Waters; 6 great grandchildren; one sister: Mattie Bell Lynch; two brothers: Lavon (Sue) Hodge and Lamar (Linda) Hodge and a host of nieces, nephews and extended family. A celebration of life service was held at 11 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 27, 2018 at North Jacksonville Church of God, with Rev. Jim Hull, Rev. Nathan Smith and Rev. Dale Dyar, officiating. Additional services and burial were held at 2:30 PM on Monday at Greenlawn Cemetery. Peeples Family Funeral Homes (14165 N. Main Street, Jacksonville, FL) is serving the Hodge Family.



Century, Fla.

Mr. Jeffery Troy Pernicka, 32, of Pine Street Century, Fla., passed away Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018. He was a native of Milton, Fla., and a longtime resident of Jay, Fla. Mr. Pernicka was of the Baptist Faith, a 2004 graduate of Jay High School, and was employed in the Construction Industry. He was an avid Auburn fan, he enjoyed hunting, fishing, camping, and wrestling around with his cousins, Kaleb, Bradley, and Breanna. His priority was spending quality time with his family, he loved giving his big Troy Boy hugs and flashing his sweet Troy Boy smile.

He is survived by his father, “Pops” Kevin L. Stead; mother, JoAnn H. Stead, Century, Fla., brother, Kaleb Stead of Milton, Fla., sisters, Heather Stead and Cera Stead of Milton, Fla.; grandparents, John Sr. and Annie Stead; aunts and uncles, Tammy (James) Perkins, Diane Anthony, John (JoAn) Stead, Ken (Manette) Stead, Tony (Michelle) Castille, Kenny Anthony and a number of cousins, nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by Huey and Jeanette Hawthorne.

Visitation will be held Friday, Aug. 31, 2018 from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m., at the Tabernacle Baptist Church Century, Fla.

Funeral Services are scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 1, 2018 at 11 a.m., at the Tabernacle Baptist Church with Rev. Glenn Johnson and Rev. Everett Elldy officiating. Interment will follow in Concord Cemetery Jay, Fla., and directed by Williams Memorial.

L.D. Hart


Great sadness has us sitting down to try to tell about a man who was larger than life, was loved by many, respected by more, and now already missed greater than our earthly words could ever quantify.

LD Hart would tell you he was born “ten-two-thirty-three”, the 7th of 11 in line to Oscar & Ida (Warr) Hart’s legacy, on Bald Hill in Castleberry, Alabama. Growing up a farmer’s son, LD worked hard to help his parents, brothers, and sisters have what his baby sister Frances remembers as “a good life”.

Part of that good life was LD’s natural athleticism culminating in baseball, track, and basketball record setting achievements. He was most often remembered for the 39 points he scored in one game against Red Level; a record that stood for over a decade. To be able to go to school to learn and to play sports, LD would complete his farm chores first, walk three miles to school, play hard, and then walk back home to do more chores. His self-imposed work ethic would be the basis for the next seven decades.

After graduating Conecuh County High School in 1952, LD joined the US Navy and served his country as a Boatswain experiencing military life in San Diego, Japan, Okinawa, and the Philippines, before returning to Bald Hill four years later. A short while after, he was walking by the Bus Station in Brewton, when he had to stop and do a double take of a beautiful young woman with long, black hair and porcelain skin sitting at the lunch counter. He said he knew the minute he saw her that he would marry her, but little did that British Beauty know she would soon fall in love and get married two years later.

LD & Jeanette (Wiggins) clung to each other and walked into the Escambia County Courthouse on September 3, 1960, while it was still under construction to promise each other Forever, no matter what, and boy did they hold true to that promise for 58 years.

LD & Jeanette’s three children Patricia Byars, Larry (Trace) Hart, and Craig (Leilani) Hart were the center of their world. Being raised to take life head-on, their children often deferred to and sought out their Daddy’s wisdom and guidance without which they would not be who they are today. Music and love filled the Hart home and car as they would often take road trips singing hymns and country songs. The melodies were voices carried on the wings of Angels.

A pioneer and leader by nature, LD was hired on the construction crew and then the startup crew of a new industry coming to Brewton. LD’s plan was to continue to provide for his family, Container Corporation’s plan was to tap into his tenacity for the next 40 years and two months. At Container, LD was officially the Number 2 Machine Wet End Operator and unofficially a man many others sought out for help, wisdom, and guidance. At Container he was offered promotions, however he chose to stay on Number 2 so his family time would not be affected.

And vast was his family. Making memories growing up were his ten brothers and sisters, Robert, Willie, Lee, David, Paul, Enoch, Marie (Tingen), Charles, Clarence, and Frances (Clark). His three children, 11 grandchildren, and 11 great-grandchildren have an amazing legacy to carry on, full of perseverance and no complaints.

LD made many lasting memories with numerous squirrel, deer, rabbit, turkey, dove, and ‘coon hunting trips. He often took his children and then grandchildren, finding more joy in them having a successful hunt than he did bagging his own game. The stories they tell are for the record books as is the community garden LD planted each year. The garden spanned 6 acres that he filled with the favorite vegetables of his family and neighbors at no cost to them.

Most importantly to LD was his love of Jesus. He was called to serve his Lord and Savior as a Deacon, Sunday school teacher, and as a man anointed to lay hands on, and speak and interpret Tongues. Some of the youth in the church would leave the pews to go and stand around him and listen with complete reverence when he would be given a message to share by the Holy Spirit.

LD took his first breath in Heaven on Sunday, August 26. His life was celebrated at his wake on Tuesday, August 28, from 6 to 9 p.m. at Appleton Assembly of God. His funeral will be Wednesday, August 29, at 2 p.m. also at Appleton Assembly of God Church with the Rev. Russ McDonald and Speaker Timothy McDonald officiating with burial immediately at Weaver’s Cemetery with Williams Memorial Chapel Funeral Home of Brewton, directing.



Mrs. Gwendolyn “Gwen” Naomi Jernigan Sims, 74, of Murder Creek Road Brewton, passed away Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. She was a native and lifelong resident of Brewton. Mrs. Sims was a member of the Zion Hill Baptist Church, She attended North Brewton School and W.S. Neal School High School, and was a homemaker that enjoyed sewing, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

Survivors include her husband of 59 and a half years, Gene Sims of Brewton; two sons, Darryl (Ellen) Sims of McDavid, Fla., Josh (Nicole) Sims of Navarre, Fla., grandchildren,  Chelsea Golson, Colton Sims, Emily Sims; step grandchildren Destiny Hollis, Nicholas Vermillion, Elizabeth Vermillion, two great grandchildren

She was preceded in death by her parents,  D.J. and Isabell Salter Sims and brother, Charles Richard Jernigan.

Visitation will be held Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018 from 11:30 a.m. until 1 p.m., at the Zion Hill Baptist Church Brewton.

Funeral Services are scheduled for Thursday, August 30, 2018 at 1 p.m. at the Zion Hill Baptist Church with Rev. Jim Blair and Rev. Bryan Garrett officiating. Interment will follow in Zion Hill Cemetery Brewton, Alabama with Williams Memorial Chapel directing.



Mr. James Earl “Jimmy” Agerton, age 81, passed away Saturday, August 25, 2018 in a Pensacola hospital.

Mr. Agerton was a life-long resident of Brewton.  He was a member of National Guard Reserve and was a shop foreman at T. R. Miller Mill Co. for 45 years.  He was of the Holiness faith.  Mr. Agerton was preceded in death by a son, Thomas Bryan Agerton.

He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Elouise Thompson Agerton of Brewton; one son, James “Ricky” Agerton of Eufaula, AL; one daughter, Pat (John) Fairall of Richmond, VA; three grandchildren, Colton Agerton, Lee Thompson, and Sydney Long; two great-grandchildren, Sophia Fairall, and Stella Fairall.

Funeral services will be held on Thursday, August 30, 2018 at 2 p.m., from the chapel of Craver’s Funeral Home with Bro. Doug Greer officiating.  Interment will follow at Fort Crawford Cemetery.

Visitation will be held at Craver’s Funeral Home on Thursday from 1 p.m. until service time at 2 p.m.

Pallbearers will be  Jerry Phillyaw, Tyson Gibson, Pete Ray, Tommy Thompson, Adam Sexton, and Eddie Thompson.

Please share your memories and condolences with the family at




Mrs. Evelyn Marie DeLoach Burnham, a resident of Brewton, born February 17, 1932 went to her heavenly home after an extended illness, at the age of 86 on August 26, 2018.

She was a long time member of Ridge Road Baptist Church, where she served as church secretary, women’s Mission Union , and was the first VBS director.  She was a loving wife, mother, grandmother and homemaker.  She loved her family and fishing.

She was preceded in death by her mother, Sophie Oxner and step-father, D.C. Oxner; a sister, Juanita Crutchfield; two brothers,  Don Oxner and Roy Oxner.

She is survived by her husband of 68 years, Oscar Louis Burnham; two sons, David (Kay) Burnham of Brewton, Keith (Darlene) Burnham of Baton Rouge, La.; and one daughter, Arden (Michael) Cooper.  She has eight grandchildren, Michelle Burnham (Greg) Singleton, Jim (Jennifer) Burnham, Dena Burnham (Brandon) Shaw, Elizabeth Parker, Derek (Jodie) Burnham, Bryan (Tiffany) Burnham, Nathan (Nicole) Burnham, and Kris (Sabrina) Parker; great-grandchildren, Alivia, Owen, Mikayla, Gunner, Bradley, Bella, Josie Pearl, Layla Evelyn, Mackson, and Lola; step-grandchildren, (Kay) Gary and Angie Lucas.  Step-great-grandchildren, (Dena) Tyler, (Derek) Kalie, Rhett, Blade and step-great-great-grandchildrern, (Kay) Aiden, Brody, Jace, (Derek) Scott and Noah.

Funeral services will be held today, Wednesday, August 29, 2018 at 10 a.m. at Ridge Road Baptist Church with Bro. Robert Knowles, Bro. Oscar Burnham, and Bro. Kyle Cinereski officiating.  Interment will follow in Ridge Road Baptist Church Cemetery.

Visitation was held at Craver’s Funeral Home on Tuesday from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m.

Pallbearers will be Jim Burnham, Derek Burnham, Bryan Burnham, Nathan Burnham, Kris Parker, and Greg Singleton.

The family would like to thank Southern Care Hospice and all of their caretakers for their tender loving care during her time of need.