Mary Louise Oakley Merrill (BMC 1949)

Mary Louise Oakley Merrill of Germantown, passed away peacefully, August 25, 2015 at the age of 86. She was born on November 12, 1928 in Hattiesburg, MS, the only child of Warrene Reid and Fred Oakley. Mary is survived by her husband of 65 years, John Francis Merrill; son, John Mark Merrill and his wife Ripple Holland Merrill; her grandchildren, Sarah Elizabeth Merrill, John Mark Merrill, Jr. and David Michael Merrill. She loved Jesus, was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother. She loved Blue Mountain College, both as a student and as a trustee. She also received her Master’s Degree from Memphis State. She will be greatly missed. The family will receive friends on Friday, August 28 from 11:30 am until service time at 1 pm all at Memorial Park Funeral Home, 5668 Poplar in Memphis. In lieu of flowers the family asks that donations be made in her memory to Blue Mountain College, P.O. Box 160, Blue Mountain, MS 38610.

Janelle ""Nell"" Buchanan Hood (Attended BMC 1954)

Janelle ""Nell"" Buchanan Hood, 80, passed away, Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2015, at her home in Houston, MS. She was born November 11, 1934, in Houlka to Thomas Andrew Buchanan and Emma Wages Buchanan. She managed her husband's law practice for 45 years. She was a member of First Baptist Church in Houston. Funeral services will be at 11 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015, at First Baptist Church of Houston with Dr. Daniel Heeringa and the Rev. Al Gaspard officiating. Burial will follow at Rose Hill Cemetery in Houlka. Houston Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements. Survivors include her husband of 58 years, James M. ""Jimmy"" Hood Jr. of Houston; daughter, Beth Hood Colbert of Brandon; sons, Jim Hood III and wife, Debbie, of Houston and Tom Hood and wife, Jennifer of Madison; grandchildren, Caroline Colbert Hunter and husband, Clark, Rebecca Hood, Matthew Hood IV, Annabelle Leigh Hood, Noah Hood and James Hood; great-granddaughter, Janelle Hunter. She was preceded in death by her parents; and three sisters, Pauline Buchanan Thomas, Blanche Buchanan Campbell and Venita Buchanan Alexander. Visitation will be at First Baptist Church Houston on Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015, from 9 to 11 a.m. with the service at 11 a.m. Memorials also may be made to Blue Mountain College, P.O. Box 160, Blue Mountain, MS 38610. Friends and family may leave a message at

Mary Elizabeth Smith Waggoner (BMC 1944)

Mary Elizabeth Smith Waggoner, 92, died peacefully on August 12, 2015, at University Medical Center in Jackson, MS. Mary Elizabeth was a source of unqualified love and care for others and an inspiration to those whose lives she touched. She displayed southern hospitality in its purest form with all guests experiencing her gracious warmth and entertaining conversation. She was the daughter of W.E. and Anna Smith of Carthage and was married for sixty-four years to Sam W. Waggoner. She was a graduate of Blue Mountain College, where she remained an active alumni her entire life. Mary Elizabeth was a wife, mother, beloved school teacher, Sunday school teacher and a textbook sales representative. She was active in Kappa Delta Pi International Honor Society of Educators, the American Legion Auxiliary and numerous school and church based activities throughout her life. Before moving to Flowood in 2002, she and Sam W. resided in Newton, MS, for over fifty years. Mary Elizabeth remained closely connected to her friends in Newton, especially through previous civic, social and First Baptist Church relations. For the past thirty-five years, her love and affection have been poured out on her five grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren, while still carrying on as the family beacon of elegance, character and humor. Mary Elizabeth was preceded in death by her husband; her parents; her infant brother, Wayne Emmette; and her sister, Ima Peoples. She is survived by her sisters, Dot Holaday (BMC 1947) and Emily Moore; children, Joe Waggoner (Allison) and Mary Jane McDaniel (Kirk); grandchildren, Anna Henson (Zeb), Elizabeth Pegg (Clark), Sara Tisdale (Brad), Alex Ayres Waggoner and Olivia Waggoner; and great-grandchildren, Sara Beth, Leigh and Sam Henson, Katie, Bryson and Anna Corinne Pegg, and Millie Ruth Tisdale. The family is genuinely appreciative of the staff at The Orchard, especially for caretakers, Bobbye Thomas and Atlene Smith. Funeral services will be at First Baptist Church in Carthage on Saturday, August 15, 2015, at 11:00 a.m., preceded by visitation from 9:30 to 11:00 a.m. Interment will be at Harris Cemetery in Carthage. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Blue Mountain College, P.O. Box 160, Blue Mountain, MS, 38610.

Laurella Joy Owens (BMC 1948)

Laurella Joy Owens of Birmingham was born November 2, 1928, in Louisville, Kentucky. She died August 1, 2015. The daughter of Southern Baptist foreign missionaries, she spent the first twelve years of her life in Jerusalem, Nazareth, and Haifa, Palestine. When World War II threatened the countries of the Near East in 1941, her family was forced to return to the United States. She attended Chilton County High School in Clanton, Alabama, where her father was pastor of First Baptist Church. After earning a BA degree from Blue Mountain College in Blue Mountain, Mississippi, and the Master of Religious Education degree from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, she was an editorial assistant at the Baptist Sunday School Board in Nashville, Tennessee. In 1957 she began almost twenty five years at the Baptist Woman's Missionary Union in Birmingham as an editor of publications, including "The Window" and "Royal Service." She was the author of the mission study book "Shalom," and with Virginia Pounds Brown co-authored "The World of the Southern Indians," "Southern Indian Myths and Legends," "Grand Old Days of Birmingham Golf 1898 to 1930," and "Toting the Lead Row: Ruby Pickens Tartt, Alabama Folklorist." She was a member of Pilgrim United Church of Christ in Birmingham. Though without children of her own, she became the "favorite aunt" who always expressed interest in the activities and lives of her nieces and nephews and their children. She was a faithful friend who delighted in reading, bird watching, and spoiling her dogs. Ms. Owens was preceded in death by her parents, Rev. and Mrs. Roswell E. Owens. She is survived by a sister, Rosalind O. McClanahan of Birmingham; a brother, Robert F. Owens (Alice) of Gulf Shores; and a sister, Doreen O. Hendrix (Tom) of Florence. Also surviving are nine nieces and nephews: David McClanahan (Leanne), Fort Smith AR; Rosalind Mouser (Kirby), Pine Bluff AR; Lizabeth Beazley (Roger), Lebanon TN; Stephen McClanahan, Decatur GA; Laura Thrasher, Anderson AL; Charles Owens (Amy), Robertsdale AL; Kelly Thrasher, Calera AL; William Owens (Pam), Cincinnati OH; Laura Wilborn (Daniel), Wellington FL; and thirteen great nieces and great nephews: Matthew McClanahan, Benjamin McClanahan, Lee Nutter, Alan McClanahan, David Nutter, Owen Mouser, Andrew Wilborn, Hannah Owens, Delaney Owens, Ashley Wilborn, Rebekah Owens, Graham Owens, Sarah Laurella Owens; and one first cousin, Myra Patricia Brandon of Alabaster. Lovie Williams was her steadfast friend and caregiver; Anita Holsombeck was her devoted nurse; Bridget Layfield, Danielle Denard, and Angie Gilmer were her caring sitters; and last, but not least, Laura Thrasher was her ministering angel. In accordance with her wishes, there will be a private family celebration of her life.

Helen Henri James Bell (BMC 1952)

Helen Henri James Bell, 84, passed away peacefully July 18, 2015 in Brandon, Mississippi. Born September 17, 1930 in Sumner, Mississippi she was the youngest child of Manning Herbert James and Mary Lee Bacon James. She graduated from Blue Mountain College and taught elementary school in Shaw, Mississippi. Through mutual friends she met James Daniel Bell of Crystal Springs and they married in June, 1954. They started their life together in Jackson and in 1968 opened Bell Floral Company where they ran a successful business together for 30 years until retirement. Helen was a member of First Baptist Church Jackson. She was a devoted member of the Radiant Sunday School Class and the Sanctuary Choir. After retirement she served on the offering team, the Carols by Candlelight ticket committee and drove the van for the Internationals Ministries. There were many things in life that brought her joy, but none more that her family. She always looked forward to summer vacation and Christmas when we could all be together. She also loved to travel. A top bucket list item was checked off when she and Dad visited all 50 states. A shopping trip was a huge success if she found that perfect pair of heels and a purse to match. She was an avid gardener, a bird watcher, an expert seamstress, and loved crafts of any kind. You would never find her sitting still - if she was sitting down there was always some project in her lap. She leaves to cherish her memory, her husband of 61 years, James Daniel Bell; her son, Heyward Bell and wife Carla of Clinton, Mississippi; daughter, Eleanor Bell Schoolar and husband Greg of Richmond, Texas; and son, Garland Bell of Agoura, California. She was "Granny" to grandchildren Nicholas Schoolar and wife Mandy, Corinne Bell Graham and husband Sam, Andy Schoolar, and Colin Bell. She was also blessed with 5 great granddaughters Taylor, Carly, and Ella Schoolar, and Emory and Ealey Graham. Visitation will be Monday, July 20th from 5-7pm at Lakewood Funeral Home, 6011 Clinton Boulevard, Jackson, Mississippi. Interment will be at Canton City Cemetery. - See more at:

Maurice Hill (Former BMC Trustee and vice chairman of the Board)

TUPELO – Maurice Hill, 91, went to be with his Lord and Savior, Thursday, July 16, 2015, at the North Mississippi Medical Center after an extended illness. A native of Commerce, Texas, he was born on September 24, 1923, to Leonard and Lorene Cummings Hill and was a resident of Tupelo since 1987. He was a graduate of Fulton High School and Mississippi State University, earning a Bachelor of Science degree and was a member of Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity. Maurice earned his graduate degree in the School of Health Sciences at the University of Alabama. He was a former assistant director of the University Hospital, served 24 years as administrator of Tippah County Hospital and Nursing Home in Ripley, and retired as administrator of Whitfield State Hospital in 1987.
He was a member of Rotary Clubs of Booneville, Ripley, Jackson and Tupelo for 38 years. Maurice was a former member and vice chairman of the Blue Mountain College Board of Trustees, former member of the Board of Governors Mississippi Hospital Association, former member of Newcomen Society of North America and former member of Board of Directors Mississippi Economic Council. He was also a former member of the Executive Board Yocona Area Boy Scouts of America, recipient of the Silver Beaver Award from Boy Scouts of America, former member the advisory committee of Mississippi Medicaid Commission, former member of the adjunct faculty at University of Mississippi School of Health Care Administration, and member Quarter Century Executive Forum, Mississippi Hospital Association. Maurice was listed in Who's Who in the South and Southwest. He was involved in many hospital organizations in the state and many Tippah County volunteer organizations. He was past president of Mended Hearts, Chapter 97 and was past chaplain of the Good Samaritan Camping Club. Maurice was a 32nd degree and York Rite Mason.
Maurice was a member of the Tupelo First Baptist Church where he served as Sunday school teacher and deacon. At First Baptist Church in Ripley he served as chairman of Deacons, Sunday School superintendent, Sunday school teacher and lay speaker.
Services celebrating Maurice's life will be 3 p.m. Sunday, July 19, 2015, in the Jefferson Street Chapel of W.E. Pegues with the Rev. Gayle Alexander and the Rev. Ricky Young officiating. Private family graveside services will follow in Saltillo Cemetery. W.E. Pegues Funeral Directors is in charge of arrangements.
Survivors include his wife of 68 years, Mary Lillian McCombs Hill of Tupelo; two sons, Maury Hill of Tupelo and Tom Hill (Sandra) of Germantown, Tennessee; two sisters, Kitty Brewer of Tupelo and Joyce Young of Tuscumbia, Alabama; one sister-in-law, Zoetta Hill of Poplar Bluff, Missouri; two brothers-in-law, Lewis Frazier Jr. of Saltillo and Neal Dorroh of Tupelo; and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; three sisters, Louise Hill, Carolyn Frazier, and Eileen Dorroh; and one brother, Frank Hill.
Pallbearers will be Judge John A. Gregory, E.J. Gregory, III, Jack McFerrin, Larry Roberts, Bob Hanson, Bill Ledbetter, Jimmy Byrd, Ross Loftin, Don Carter, Jimmy Floyd, Gerald Wages, Dr. John Bowlin and Billy Grady.
Honorary pallbearers will be Dr. Kenneth Harvey, Dr. James C. Johnson Jr., Evans Whittle, George Mason, Earl Brown, Bobby Martin, Mike Harrison, Jerry Green, Mike Guyton, Jack Gregory Jr., Larry Graves, Jim Donald, Jon Maynard, and members of Dr. John Bowlin's Sunday School Class of Tupelo First Baptist Church.
Visitation will be 5 until 7 p.m. today, July 18, 2015, at W.E. Pegues, Tupelo, and continued one hour prior to services Sunday.
Memorials may be made in his honor to Tupelo First Baptist Church, 300 N. Church St., Tupelo, MS 38804, or a church or charity of giver's choice.
Expressions of sympathy may be left at - See more at:

Harriett Franklin Outlaw (attended BMC 1962)

Harriett Franklin Outlaw, 73, died Tuesday, July 14, 2015, at her residence in Baldwyn, MS. (Born 1941 – died 2015)

Services will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, July 18, at First United Methodist Church in Baldwyn. Waters Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday at the church.

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Harriett attended Blue Mountain College in 1962 and was a member of the Eunomian society. She was married to Lanny Outlaw.

Elma Verley "Vee" Smith Covington (BMC 1949)

Elma Verley "Vee" Smith Covington, 89, passed away July 10, 2015 at Crestview Retirement Center, Bryan, TX. She was born on April 23, 1926 in Riverview, AL. to Roy Gasdon and Maephord Ione Gibson Smith.

Vee grew up in Riverview, AL and Richmond, VA. She graduated from Valley High School in Riverview, AL in 1944. After high school she attended college at Blue Mountain College, Blue Mountain, MS where she received a B. S. degree in Chemistry in 1949. She went on to attend nursing school at Gilfoy School of Nursing at Baptist Hospital in Jackson, MS and became a Registered Nurse. She began her nursing career at Baptist Hospital in Jackson, MS, where she met her husband, Duncan C. Covington. They were married November 9, 1957 in Richmond, VA. They were happily married for nearly 58 years.

She also served as School Nurse at Asmara Dependent School, Asmara, Ethiopia. She volunteered in the medical missionary field with the Hugh Downey Orphanage in Cheren, Eritrea. She briefly worked for Science Applications, Inc. before retiring from the Department of Oceanography at Texas A&M University in 1992. She was an active member of First Baptist Church in College Station, TX until her health did not permit her to attend. She was active in many programs there, including the Esther Sunday School Class and the Discovery Program.

Vee was preceded in death by her parents, Roy G. and Mae Smith and her brothers Roy L. Smith and Charles R. Smith.

She is survived by her devoted husband, Duncan C. Covington of College Station, TX; her daughter, Rebecca C. Miller and son-in-law, Leroy V. Miller of Katy, TX; grandchildren, Anna Miller and Lee Miller of Katy, TX; sister, Rebecca E. McAlister of Richmond, VA; sister-in-law, Betty Lee Smith of Richmond, VA; sister-in-law Ruth Smith of Cantonment, FL; numerous nieces and nephews.

A visitation will be held at Memorial Funeral Chapel, 2901 Texas Avenue South, College Station, TX on Thursday, July 16, 2015 from 4-6pm. Burial will be at Seneasha Cemetery, Attala County, MS.

In lieu of flowers the family requests memorial donations be made to Shrock Methodist Church, PO Box 137, Goodman, MS 39079.

Lelia Jackson (BMC 1949)

Ms. Lelia Jackson, 88, passed away at the Bee Hive Assisted Living Home in Philadelphia, Mississippi, on July 7. Funeral services will be held at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 11, 2015, in the Nowell Massey Funeral Home Chapel in Louisville, Mississippi, with Rev. Phil Fancher and Rev. Prentiss Gordon officiating. Visitation will be the day of the service from 12:30 p.m. until service time at Nowell Massey Funeral Home. Interment will follow in Pleasant Hill Cemetery in Sturgis, Mississippi. She was born July 16, 1926, to Chapman and Susie Loyd Jackson. Ms. Jackson was a graduate of Blue Mountain College and Golden Gate Theological Seminary. She worked with the Baptist Home Mission Board teaching kindergarten in the Spanish mission churches in Texas and Arizona. She retired in the late 1970's and returned to Mississippi to serve as caregiver for her mother. During this time, she worked part-time at the Winston County Library and was in charge of the children's Story Hour. She was a member of Antioch Baptist Church and was active in their WMU. She is survived by one sister, Mercede "Jackie" Tabor Doty and husband, Don, of Starkville; three sisters-in-law, Frances Jackson and Rachel Jackson of Sturgis; and Helen Jackson of Clinton; and a number of nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; four brothers, A. L. "Boose" Jackson, Gines Jackson, and Alfred Jackson all of Sturgis; and Ruben Jackson of Clinton; and four sisters, Virginia Jackson and Betty Jackson of Sturgis; Rebecca Jackson of Memphis, Tennessee and Polly Sprayberry of Byram, Mississippi. Serving as pallbearers will be Howard Butler, Jeff Essary, Steve Gladney, David Jackson, Paul Jackson, and Chip Tabor. Memorials may be given to Pleasant Hill Cemetery Fund, 579 Pleasant Hill Road, Sturgis, MS 39769. Services are under the direction of Nowell-Massey Funeral Home, 724 North Columbus Avenue, Louisville, MS –

Marion Brimm Rewey (BMC 1941)

VERONA - Marion Brimm Rewey, age 95, passed away at home surrounded by her family on June 4, 2015. Marion was born on March 3, 1920 in Memphis, Tenn., to her parents, Wilbur and Emma (Kruger) Brimm. Marion grew up in Memphis and after graduating with a degree in English from Blue Mountain College in Mississippi, went on to teach school in Holcombe, Miss., and Green Cove Springs, Fla.

While in Florida, she took a position in Jacksonville at the YWCA where she met Bill Rewey at a dance she had organized. Bill was a Naval aviator stationed in Jacksonville at the time. They were married Aug. 13, 1949, in a garden wedding at her parents’ home in Memphis.

Marion and Bill lived in Norfolk, Va., Columbus, Ohio, and eventually moved to Madison where they built a home in Orchard Ridge. In 1964, they moved to a hilltop home in the country where Marion cultivated her beautiful flower gardens and reconnected with her love of writing poetry.

Marion’s career as a poet began when she was in 7th grade in Memphis. Her poem for a classroom assignment was so well written that the teacher insisted she must have copied it. The experience was so mortifying to a shy young girl that Marion didn’t write again for the next 30 years, until she decided to try a creative writing course at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and wrote an article titled “Guess What I Have in My Rec Room” (her husband’s airplane). Marion became a published author when a magazine bought that article, and her writing career began in earnest. From her early days of round-robins with the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets, Marion‘s poetry went on to win many state and national honors including three Bard’s Chair awards from the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets, three Grand Prix awards from the National Federation of State Poetry Societies and the Grand Prize from Writer’s Digest magazine. Two of her poems were read on National Public Radio and yet another was read into the Congressional record. Marion continued to write and be published until just a few years ago, and her flower gardens still make passers-by pause and linger.

Marion quietly served her community in many ways. She volunteered at the Dane County Hospital in Verona, where she worked with patients discharged from the state hospital system. For a number of years Marion was the volunteer librarian at the Mendota Mental Health Hospital, and often invited patients to share Thanksgiving dinner with her family. During many summers, she welcomed into her home and family youngsters from the Chicago inner city. Marion endowed a writer’s scholarship at Tuskegee University and was a hostess at the Governor’s mansion during John Reynolds’ administration.

Between these activities and raising three sons, Marion managed to fly as co-pilot with Bill in their Cessna Skyhawk to Memphis several times, to California, Washington D.C., Alaska (twice) and the Bahamas.

Marion and Bill were charter members of Orchard Ridge United Church of Christ where Marion taught Sunday school. The family spent many happy times at a cottage on Pine Lake in Oneida County.

Marion is survived by her husband of 65 years, William Rewey; by three sons; Tim (Kathleen Gerke) of Desoto, Wis., neighbors, Chris (Kathleen Bobholz-Rewey) and neighbors Mike (Linda Rewey); as well as two grandchildren, Mackenzie Meitner of Philadelphia, Pa., and Nickolas Meitner (Eva Meitner) of Tucson, Ariz.

Marion will be missed by all who knew and loved her.

The family would like to thank the staff at Meriter Hospital, Agrace HospiceCare and BrightStar Home Help for their compassionate care. Memorials may be made to the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets at or the Orchard Ridge United Church of Christ.

INSTRUCTIONS (SOME POETIC) IN THE EVENT OF DEATH, an unpublished poem by Marion Brimm Rewey

“Bank the reusable me – eyes, nerves or heart,
but burn the rest.

And now comes the poetic part.

Scatter my ashes on a hill.
I would like to come back
as a tree, a rose or as seeds
for the song of a bird.

Gone is a long, long time
so please,
no boxes of concrete or steel.

Set me free on a hill
as the soil for a fern.
When the wind blows, on my lyred soul,
I may return
as the song
of a whippoorwill. So long.

P.S. And scatter my rhymes.
I wrote for the lonely (I’ve tasted their fears).
I may, with grace,
return as tears.”

A memorial service will be held on June 22, 2015 at 11 a.m. at the ORCHARD RIDGE UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST, 1501 Gilbert Road, Madison, with a visitation beginning at 10 a.m.

All Faiths Funeral & Cremation Services
Madison (608)442-0477

Richard “Rick” Lane Crick (attended BMC 1978)

Richard “Rick” Lane Crick, 57 of Senatobia, MS passed away on May 31, 2015 at Baptist Memorial Hospital – North MS in Oxford, MS. He was born on August 19, 1957 in Indianola, MS to Lloyd Binford Crick and Helen Ruth Self Crick.
He graduated from Greenville Christian School and received his B.S. degree from Blue Mountain College. He shared his lifelong love of music with others as a music teacher having served at Greenville Christian School, St. Joseph Catholic School in Greenville, Senatobia High School, and Magnolia Heights School in Senatobia. He was also involved with the music department at Baddour Memorial Center in Senatobia. He was a member of Highland Baptist Church and had previously served as youth director at several churches including Emanuel Baptist Church in Greenville, MS.
Mr. Crick is survived by three sisters, Gwen Austin, Renee Smith (Mark), and Stephanie Baxter (Bo); and one brother, Trent Crick (Dana). He was preceded in death by his wife, Betty Crick and his parents.
A memorial services will be held at 2 p.m., Tuesday, June 2, 2015 at Highland Baptist Church in Senatobia, MS. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be sent to Highland Baptist Church. Ray-Nowell Funeral Home – Senatobia Chapel has charge of arrangements.

Mary Martha McClain Brown (BMC 1953)

Mary Martha Brown, 84, of Ocala, Florida, passed away Saturday, May 30, 2015. She was born May 23, 1931 in Quincy, Florida to the late Samuel Steele and Ferne (Carter) McClain. Mary moved to Ocala in 1990 from Fernandina Beach, and was a retired College Professor at the University of Florida. She is survived by her son, Millard S. Brown of Harrisburg, PA; daughter Millain B. Tuya of Key West, FL; four grandchildren, and one great grandchild. Mary’s urn was taken to Andersonville National Cemetery in Georgia to be laid to rest next to her husband HMCS (ret.) Millard S. Brown Sr.

Paul C. "Ted" Burcham (BMC 2002)

Pontotoc - Paul C. "Ted" Burcham, 57, passed away Sunday, June 7, 2015 at his home. He was born in Baldwyn, MS on May 30, 1958 to the late Paul Jack Burcham and Frankie Jane McCain. He was a carpenter for 30 plus years. He was Pastor at The Anchor Baptist Church. He was the owner of Burcham Enterprises.
Services were held Wednesday, June 10, 2015 at 11am at The Anchor Baptist Church. Bro. Don McCutchen and Bro. Mike Smith officiated. Burial followed in The Anchor Baptist Church cemetery.
Survivors: wife-Patti A. Burcham; daughter-Amanda Self (Sam); son-Drew Burcham (girlfriend-Lillie); 2 grandsons-Isaac and Reid Self; brother-Marty Burcham; niece-Bridget Marlar (Josh); nephew-Paul Martin Burcham; mother and stepfather-Frankie Jane and James McCain; several aunts and uncles.
Preceded in death by: father-Paul Jack Burcham; stepmom-Margie Burcham; grandparents-James and Vera Burcham.
Pallbearers: Marlin Inmon, Charles Barton, Tommy Tatum, Rex Staten, Irvin Frankhouser, Jerry Whitten, Phillip Brown and Ricky Sledge.
Honorary pallbearers: his first cousins.
Visitation was Tuesday June 9, 2015, 5pm and Wednesday June 10, 2015, 10am until service time, all at The Anchor Baptist Church.

Eleanor Langston Farabee (BMC 1946)

Farabee, Eleanor 91, of Orlando passed away peacefully June 20, 2015, in Auburndale. She was born June 1, 1924, in Starkville, MS, to Jim and Lena Langston. She married Lloyd Farabee in Starkville, MS on May 27, 1950. She was a graduate of Blue Mountain College and Rollins College. She was a member of First Baptist Church of Orlando, and previously of Delaney Street Baptist Church. She was active in church choir, in the Florida Trail Association, and Central Florida Genealogy Society. She was a reading instructor specializing in English as a Second Language. She enjoyed traveling and camping. She is preceded in death by her husband; a son, David Farabee; her parents, a sister, and a brother. She is survived by her daughters Patricia Denham, Janet (Michael) Sordan, daughter-in-law Corry Farabee, seven grandchildren, one great-grandson, two great-granddaughters and her twin brother James Langston. Visitation Thursday, June 25, 2015, at 10:00, service following at 11:00, Newcomer Funeral Home, 895 S. Goldenrod Road, Orlando Burial will be at Greenwood Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Good Shepherd Hospice or Florida Baptist Children's Home

Jean Black Abel (BMC 1952)

BLUE MOUNTAIN – Jean Black Abel, 85, died Thursday, June 25, 2015, at her home.
Services will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 27, at McBride Funeral Home Chapel in Ripley. Burial will be in the Blue Mountain Cemetery. McBride Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
Visitation will be at the funeral home from 5 to 8 p.m. today and from 7 a.m. to service time Saturday.

Mrs. Jean Abel graduated from Blue Mountain College in 1952 with a BA in Home Economics. She was a member of the Modenian Society while at BMC. Many who attended the College will remember her as a beloved member of the BMC staff for several years. Both of her daughters, Donna Abel and Pam Abel Akins attended Blue Mountain as well. Jennifer Akins White, Jean’s granddaughter, also attended BMC. Mrs. Abel leaves behind several other members of the family and dear friends. Jean Abel will be missed by her precious family and in our community.

Gracie Cheatwood Smithey (BMC 1973)

Myrtle, MS - Gracie Ann Cheatwood Smithey, 64, died Thursday, April 30, 2015 at Methodist University Hospital in Memphis. She was born June 18, 1950 in Fort Hood, TX to the late John Thomas and Virginia Hunsucker Cheatwood. She graduated from Blue Mountain College with a BS in science and a minor in psychology.  She was a member of the Eunomian Society. She was a retired school teacher and a member of Marianna Baptist Church in Byhalia.

She is survived by two daughters, Ginny Roberts (Trent) of Guntown and Susie Gross (Mikkel) of Byhalia; one son, Stuart Smithey of Myrtle; her aunt, Ruth Ranks (Jim) of Collierville, TN; seven grandchildren: John Isaac Roberts, Ben Roberts, Noah Roberts, Dewey Smithey, Anna Bell Smithey, Natalie Gross and Conor Gross.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Rev. Danny Lee Smithey, and a brother, John Michael Cheatwood.
Pallbearers will be Paul Cheatwood, Brent Cheatwoood, Bryan Cheatwoood, Bo Cheatwood, Buddy Smithey and James Smithey. Honorary pallbearers will be her grandsons.

Evelyne T. Ughetto (BMC 1942)

Evelyne T. Ughetto, 93, of Reedsville, died on July 17, 2014 at Geisinger-Lewistown Hospital.

Born on September 8, 1920, in Geneva, Alabama, she was the daughter of the late Casper and Myrtle (Stegal) Thomas. She married her husband Louis T. Ughetto on September 7, 1957. Her husband preceded her in death on August 19, 2013.

She is survived by: one son, Michael and wife Debra of Reedsville; three grandchildren; Joshua and wife Tracy of Newport, Melinda and partner, Randy of Altoona and Bryant of Reedsville and three great-grandchildren, Tristen and Dominick of Newport and Lucas of Altoona.

Evelyn was a graduate of Blue Mountain College in Blue Mountain, Mississippi with a degree in teaching. Her most recent teaching position was with Sacred Heart School.

She enjoyed playing the organ and piano and provided organ and piano lessons to many students over the years. She also played the organ for various churches and directed several choirs. Most recently she played the piano at Ohesson Manor for the weekly worship services.

She was a member of the American Legion Auxiliary in Milroy, the Golden Flame Society at Blue Mountain College and was a past member of Sacred Heart School Board.

A Mass of Christian burial was held at 11:00 a.m., Monday, July 21, 2014, at Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church, in Lewistown, with the Rev. William Weary officiating. Interment was in Juniata Memorial Park.

Her family received friends, 6-8 p.m. Sunday, July 20, 2014, at Barr Funeral Home, Inc., 120 Logan St., Lewistown.
For those who desire, memorial contributions may be made to Sacred Heart School, 110 N. Dorcas Street, Lewistown, PA 17044


MABEL CORRINE FERGUSON TUTOR, 99, of Memphis, passed away on Sunday, March 15, 2015. She was born in Pontotoc County, MS to Bailey Floyd Ferguson and Ida August Tutor on August 2, 1915. Mrs. Tutor in choosing a profession chose a famous aim, "To help make the world a better place." A graduate of Blue Mountain College (Mississippi) and MSU (Memphis), Mrs. Tutor has engaged in many projects to further this aim. On March 24, 1964, she was in "The Spotlight" of The Whitehaven News for inaugurating a Summer Kindergarten Program to help underprivileged children. In 1974 the Principal of Levi Elementary School, nominated Mrs. Tutor as an Outstanding Elementary Teacher of America, and she was awarded a certificate as an Outstanding Elementary Teacher of America in recognition of her contributions to the advancement of elementary education and service to the community. On April 12, 1980, Mrs. Mabel Ferguson Tutor was elected President of the Blue Mountain College Alumnae Association. In celebration of The International Year of the Child, she wrote and produced "Hello World, Here I come." Mrs. Tutor was listed in Marcus' Who's Who of American Women in 1974-1975 and received a Certificate of Merit from Memphis Rotary Club in recognition of her selection as Winchester Elementary School Teacher of the Month for January, 1980, and one from Whitehaven Baptist Church in recognition of her devoted service. She served as Local President, County President and State President for the Shelby County Baptist Business Women's Federation and a member of the "Women on Missions", the Hallelujah Chorus and the Baptist Hospital Auxiliary. After 34 years of teaching in the Memphis City School System and seven years in Mississippi schools, Mrs. Tutor was still teaching, by way of, the Adult Ladies Sunday School class at the Germantown Baptist Church, Germantown, TN. "Years and years and years ago, I said I was going to follow Jesus" shared Germantown Baptist Church member, Mabel Tutor. "I wanted the Holy Spirit to illuminate me so that everybody would see Christ in me." That desire describes the legacy of Mrs. Tutor. From humble beginnings in north Mississippi, she impacted countless lives by teaching school ''' from kindergarten to high school ''' for 43 years and by teaching the Word of God. She volunteered at the Church Health Center once a month, made regular nursing home visits, and served with the Women's Auxiliary for Baptist Hospital. "Mrs. Tutor was such an inspiration to everyone who knew her," notes GBC member and friend, Linda Johnson. "She was such a fine Christian lady with lots of energy and enthusiasm. Every Sunday morning people of all ages lined up to speak to her. Her warm hugs and cheerful smile surpassed all others. It was the outward manifestation of her Christian spirit." Shortly after the Great depression, Mrs. Tutor enrolled in Blue Mountain College in Blue Mountain, Mississippi. Established in 1873 as a Baptist college for women, Blue Mountain College became co-educational. Because times were hard and money was tight, Mrs. Tutor was only able to attend the college for a short period and earn her teaching degree. More than 30 years later, however, her determination drew her back to Blue Mountain, and in 1973 she earned her college degree. She was honored by the Blue Mountain National Alumnae Association and was named 2006 Alumna of the Year. A graduate of Blue Mountain College, past president of the Alumnae Association, and current member of the Board of Trustees, Linda Johnson nominated Mrs. Tutor of this honor and presented the award to her. "Mrs. Tutor had the best spirit and such a positive outlook on life," Linda shared. "She told me that she tried to stay away from negative thoughts, and that's the philosophy she truly lived by." Mrs. Tutor said that another secret to her active and long life was, "to keep busy and depend on God.” There are many, many achievements which recognize Mrs. Tutor as a special teacher, but perhaps the most graphic evidence can be found in the note from a former student that reads "Dear Mrs. Tutor, I will try to be the girl that you taught me to be in the Second Grade. I Love you, Anita Reilly." There are many former students of Mrs. Tutor's that still remember her from the second grade and greet her with love and affection. The patience, kindness and Christian Love that Mrs. Mabel Ferguson Tutor showed her former students is the same patience, kindness and Christian Love she shows today to everyone she knows and meets. She was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Cleo Morris Tutor and is survived by a daughter, Sue (Ken) Taylor of Collierville; a son, Michael (Margaret) Tutor of Olive Branch, MS; a sister, Merle Tutor of Pontotoc; six grandchildren, David Taylor, Laura Taylor, Suzanne Stevenson, Joey Tutor, Rene Saavedra and Jennifer Byrd; 12 great-grandchildren, and six great-great-grandchildren. A Celebration of her Life will be at 2 p.m. this afternoon, Tuesday, March 17 at Germantown Baptist Church, with the family receiving friends beginning at Noon. The family will host a reception following the service at the church. In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial gifts be made to the Bailey and Ida Ferguson Scholarship Fund at Blue Mountain College that was established by Mrs. Tutor. Online condolences may be made by visiting

Evelyn Eddleman Gordinier (BMC 1962)

Evelyn Eddleman Gordinier, age 73, of Louisville, passed away at home on Sunday, March 15, 2015, peacefully surrounded by family and loved ones following a lengthy illness. Evelyn was born in New Orleans, LA on February 10, 1942 to the late Rev. Dr. Henry Leo and Sarah Fox Eddleman. She was a 1958 graduate of Garth High School in Georgetown, KY, received her undergraduate degree from Blue Mountain College, Blue Mountain, MS, and her master's degree in English from Tulane University, New Orleans. Except for taking time out from her profession as an educator to raise three children with her husband John K. Gordinier, she was a member of the English faculty, Director of Admissions, and Director of Financial Aid at the Louisville Collegiate School from 1962 until her retirement in 2005. Evelyn's love of education, particularly her passion for improving diversity within the sphere of independent schools, was also reflected in her work with the National Association of Independent Schools throughout the country during her tenure at Collegiate. Evelyn was known for her gracious hospitality, setting a table at which everyone was welcome. She was a member of Christ Church United Methodist. Evelyn is survived by longtime friend and companion Kathleen Keegan; her sister, Dr. Sarah E. Duvall (Donald); her three children, Dr. Mary Evelyn Gordinier (Theodore), John Dunn Gordinier, II (Deanna) and Henry L. E. Gordinier (Kelli); and five grandchildren, Nadzia Gordinier, Stephen Henry Gordinier, Maxwell Thomas Gordinier, Emma Lucille Gordinier, and Anna Katherine Gordinier. The visitation was from 1-3pm Saturday, March 21, 2015 at Pearson's Funeral Home, 149 Breckenridge Lane, followed by a memorial service at 3 pm.

Ellen McKinstry Hill Surber (BMC 1940)

Ellen McKinstry Hill Surber, 94, of Gadsden, died March 8, 2015. She was born on December 26, 1920, in Warren, Tennessee, to the Rev. John Logan and Margaret Rothrock McKinstry. She was awarded a B.A. in English and Business Education from Blue Mountain College, an M.A. from the University of Mississippi and an Ed.S from the University of Alabama in Business Education. Ellen married Charles Delmer Hill, and they resided in Blue Mountain, Mississippi, until his death. She later married Edward Wesley Surber and relocated to Gadsden in 1956.
Ellen taught English and Latin at several public schools and was Business Division Department Head at Tishomingo Junior College in northern Mississippi. After moving to Gadsden, she taught at Emma Samson High School and Litchfield Middle School. She was one of the first employees at Gadsden State Community College, where she taught Business Education for 31 years, retiring in 1994. Ellen was passionate about making a difference in the lives of her students.
She was a teacher of the Beulah Whorton Sunday School class and active member of First Presbyterian Church, Gadsden, and an active member of Rainbow Presbyterian Church, Rainbow City. She was also a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Daughters of the Confederacy, the Redbud Garden Club and the RODEO Girls. Ellen loved to travel, and she journeyed throughout the world, visiting over 25 countries on four continents. She also published various short stories and articles, as well as two books.
Ellen was predeceased by her parents, and her husbands Charles Delmer Hill and Edward Wesley Surber. She is survived by her children, Molly Zimmer (Dr. Michael) of Evansville, Indiana; Dr. Charles Hill (Dale) of Gadsden; Anna Marie Taylor (Dan) of Birmingham; Bill Surber of Gadsden. She also is survived by her grandchildren, Dr. David Zimmer (Melissa), Katherine Zimmer, Dr. Mark Hill (Dr. Cynthia), Dr. Melinda Hallock (Dr. Justin), Daniel Taylor, Charley Taylor, Herron Taylor and Shawn Surber; and her great-grandchildren, Ryan Zimmer, Anna Zimmer, Mark Hill Jr., Ellen Hill, Craig Hill and Libby Hallock. She is also survived by sister, Nancy Ellis.
Funeral was held on Saturday, March 14, at noon at Rainbow Presbyterian Church, Rainbow City, Ala., with the Revs. Langston Haygood and Robbie Hendricks officiating. Visitation was held at the church one hour prior to the funeral service. Graveside burial was held at Oak Hill Cemetery, Attalla, AL.
Heartfelt gratitude is extended to the staff and residents of Cherry Creek Village, Gentiva Hospice and devoted caretakers Monica Smith, Julie Gibbs and Deborah Dale.
Rainbow Presbyterian Church has chosen to honor Ellen by naming the new children's play area for her.
In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that donations be made to Rainbow Presbyterian Church Children's Ministry. Published in The Gadsden Times on Mar. 12, 2015.

Charlene Clements Ware (BMC 1990)

TUPELO – Mrs. Charlene Clements Ware, 68, passed from this life on Monday, April 27, 2015, at her residence following an extended illness. She was born November 7, 1946, in Tupelo to Russell Clements and Lora Bishop Clements. She was a 1964 graduate of Algoma High School and continued her education at Mississippi State University, where she earned a degree in Elementary Education and a Special Education degree from Blue Mountain College. She taught at Algoma and Lakeview Christian Schools. She married Ray Ware on Dec. 24, 1967, and served alongside Bro. Ray as a pastor's wife doing the Lord's work. She was a devoted and loving wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. She enjoyed crocheting, cake decorating, playing the piano and singing in her younger years, and shared her talents with the residents at Samaritan Gardens Extended Living for many years. She was a member of Westside Baptist Church in Tupelo. A celebration of life service will be at 2 p.m. Thursday, April 30, 2015, in the Tupelo Chapel of Holland Funeral Directors with Bro. Ray Ware, Bro. Kevin Wallace and Bro. Tillman Calvert officiating. Graveside service will follow at Pontotoc City Cemetery. Visitation will be today from 5 to 8 p.m. and Thursday from noon to service time. Survivors include her husband, Bro. Ray Ware of Tupelo; one son, Russell Ware (Lynn) of Madison, Ala.; two daughters, Marie (Dan) Fortenberry of Tupelo and Melodi (Ricky) Moak of Saltillo; one brother, Jerry Clements (Cheryl) of Tupelo; four grandchildren, Christopher Fortenberry, Jerry Fortenberry, Timothy Fortenberry and Nathaniel Moak; one great-grandchild, Aubrey Fortenberry; a host of nieces, nephews and cousins. She was preceded in death by her parents. Pallbearers will be Christopher Fortenberry, Jerry Fortenberry, Timothy Fortenberry, Scotty Stegall, Jud Jernigan, John Allen Ware, Ricky Ware, Bubba Jernigan and Nathaniel Moak. Memorials may be made to The Gideons International, Tupelo North Camp, P.O. Box 1073, Tupelo, MS 38803.

Joann Hawkins Wilson (attended BMC 1953)

OXFORD – Joann Hawkins Wilson, 81, died Monday, April 13, 2015, at Baptist Memorial Hospital – North Mississippi in Oxford. The funeral service will be held on Thursday, April 16, 2015, at 11 a.m. in the Chapel of Waller Funeral Home with the Rev. David Taylor officiating. Burial will follow in St. Peter's Cemetery in Oxford. The visitation will be held today, April 15, 2015, from 4 until 7 p.m. at Waller Funeral Home in Oxford. Born in to the late Samuel Dewey Sr. and Maude Easley Hawkins, Mrs. Wilson was a retired mathematics teacher and real estate broker. She attended Blue Mountain College and received a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts from the University of Mississippi. She was an engineering assistant for Aircraft Nuclear Corporation at the General Electric Company in Cincinnati, Ohio; a senior scientific programmer for Lockheed Aircraft Corporation in the Georgia Division in Atlanta, Ga.; and a mathematician for the USAF Air Proving Ground Center at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. She is listed in Who's Who of American Women, Who's Who of the South and Southeast, The Dictionary of International Biography and The Two Thousand Women of Achievement. She was a member of First Baptist Church. Along with her parents, Mrs. Wilson was preceded in death by her sister, Maryelsie Hawkins Harrell; two brothers, Buddy Hawkins and Dewey Hawkins; and a granddaughter, Annie-Leslie Elon Cain. She is survived by her husband of 50 years, Robert Keith Wilson; a daughter, Maudann Wilson Phillips; and a granddaughter, Addison Wilson Phillips, all of Oxford; a brother, Harry E. Hawkins of McCalla, Ala.; eight nieces, Leslie, de Moya of San Diego, Calif., Larin Culp of Memphis, Tenn., Lana Imbagliazzo of Los Angeles, Calif., Leah Hawkins of Memphis, Tenn., Sharon Long of Tupelo, Ann Holifield of Madison, Amy Lyles Wilson of Nashville, Tenn., and Virginia Mounger of Jackson; two nephews, Terry Hawkins of Oxford and Bryan Hawkins of Tupelo. Memorial contributions in Mrs. Wilson's memory may be made to Wilson Research Foundation Mississippi Methodist Rehabilitation Center, 1350 East Woodrow Wilson Drive, Jackson, MS 39216.

Katerina Miliopulos Ruby (BMC 1962)

KATERINA MILIOPULOS RUBY, 78, of Memphis, passed away Saturday, April 18, 2015 after a short illness. Katerina (known as Nina to her family and friends) led a life full of family, faith, and determination that can be summed up in a phrase she often used: “We’ll find a way.”

Born May 15, 1936 in her parents’ home in the Beyoglu section of Istanbul, Turkey, she was the oldest daughter of Vasili and Androniki Miliopulos, who have preceded her in death. The family owned a grocery in “is tin Poli” (the City) and focused on faith and education for all their five children. Being Greek Orthodox in the prominently Muslim Istanbul, the Miliopulos family found a way for all their children to attend schools where they would be able to celebrate their Greek heritage.

Nina attended the American College for Girls, in the Arnavutkoy section of Istanbul, from seventh grade until graduating in 1958. Excelling in math, history and languages, she dreamed of furthering her education in the United States. At the time, Turkey was a closed country, and it was very difficult to obtain permission to leave the country for any reason. However, she was determined to find a way and with her parents’ and teachers’ help, researched and applied to several U.S. colleges.

A special women’s college answered her letters, and Nina found advocates and a home at Blue Mountain College in Blue Mountain, Mississippi. President of the college Dr. Lawrence T. Lowrey and his wife Tina were instrumental in helping Nina obtain a visa and gain admission to the U.S. In September 1958, with $38.25 in her pocket and boundless excitement, Nina boarded a plane to attend school in America. She studied chemistry and history, was a member of the Eunomian Society, and graduated in June 1962.

On a blind date in 1959, she met Memphis State University student James S. “Pete” Ruby, Jr. After graduation from Blue Mountain, Nina and Pete were married at Springdale Methodist Church in Memphis on June 8, 1962. Pete, who survives her in life, was her devoted husband for almost 53 years. They settled in the Frayser section of Memphis and began raising a family. Daughters Sylvia Lynne (married to Tim Imm, of Atlanta, GA) and Julia Michele (married to James Eason, of Memphis) were born in the coming years. She was passionate about the opportunities for education and freedom she found here and became a naturalized American citizen in 1967. Later the family lived in the Raleigh area and finally in East Memphis.

Nina was determined to help her family immigrate to America and experience the religious and personal freedom she had found. Naturally frugal and resourceful, she worked and saved to help her mother, brother, sister, and nephew to gain education and employment opportunities in the U.S.

Nina was a lifelong learner. Throughout her life she focused on education for herself and others as not only a means to provide for her family, but also as a path to self-improvement and enjoyment. She was an accomplished seamstress, making clothes for herself, her daughters, and grandchildren; knitted, crocheted, and did needlepoint; explored ceramics, all kinds of crafts, and pottery; took ice-skating and taekwondo lessons; studied phlebotomy and took computer classes. She spoke four languages, loved reading, writing and teaching others. She also enjoyed collecting, and her home is full of finds from her travels. Even up to the time of her death, she was busy compiling a book of her memoirs as an American Greek from Istanbul.

She was also a tireless and energetic worker, whatever the task. She worked at the Memphis and Shelby County Health Department in the South Memphis clinic during the 1970s, and provided home health care for elderly patients during the 1980s. During the 1990s and 2000s, she spent time enjoying her grandchildren and helping with their care: Jake Burton of Memphis, Taylor Burton of Brooklyn, New York, and Chip Eason of Memphis.

While the earlier years of her life she immersed herself in the culture of her new country and raised her family, during the later years, Nina focused on returning to her international roots and contributing to the community. Trips to Greece, New York, and Paris brought her closer to her family. She became active in a group of international women in Memphis who met regularly to share experiences and coffee. Also Nina took time to attend alumni events at Blue Mountain College, and served at the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Memphis, including treasurer of Pholoptochos and recording secretary of Daughters of Penelope.

In addition to her husband, daughters, sons-in-law, and grandchildren, she is survived by sister Maria Miliopulos Neshiewat of Queens, New York; sister Helene Miliopulos Bigare and husband Patrice, of Le Mans, France; brother-in-law and sister-in-law Ken and Susan Ruby, of Memphis; cousin Rallou Miliopulos of Korinthos, Korinthia, Greece; sisters-in-law Stella Miliopulos of Lindenhurst, New York, and Froso Miliopulos, of Athens, Greece; and nieces and nephews Jacqueline Neshiewat Barlis and husband Jimmy, of Jackson Heights, New York; John Neshiewat and wife Ruba, of Poughkeepsie, New York; Vasilis (Billy) Neshiewat and fiancée Miladys, of Norwalk, Connecticut; Paris Miliopulos and wife Catherine, of Lindenhurst, New York; Elena Miliopulos of Lindenhurst, New York; David Bigare of Paris, France; Andreas Miliopulos and wife Athena, of Koropi, Attiki, Greece; and Nikos and Alexi Miliopulos of Athens, Greece. She was preceded in death by her parents, and brothers Yannis Miliopulos of Athens, Greece; and Demetrios (Takis) Miliopulos of Lindenhurst, New York.

Visitation will be 5-7 p.m., Tuesday, April 21 at Memorial Park Funeral Home and Cemetery. Funeral services will be held at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church, 573 N. Highland Street in Memphis, on Wednesday, April 22 at 11a.m. Burial will follow in Memorial Park Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Katerina Miliopulos Ruby Memorial Scholarship Fund, Blue Mountain College, P.O. Box 160, 201 West Main Street, Blue Mountain, Mississippi, 38610. This annual scholarship will assist deserving international students in their pursuit of learning at Blue Mountain College.
Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to Memorial Park Funeral Home and Cemetery, 5668 Poplar Ave. Memphis, TN 38119, "Behind the Stone Wall."!/Obituary

Lilly Frances Hood Reed (BMC 1947)

NEW ALBANY – Lilly Hood McGill Reed, 89, passed away peacefully after a long illness on Monday, April 6, 2015, at Dogwood Assisted Living. She was the daughter of Dr. James M. Hood and his wife, Lilly Patterson Hood. She graduated from Houlka High School and from Blue Mountain College, where she was a member of the Euzelian Society. She was a longtime member of First Methodist Church in New Albany. She enjoyed life! Among her favorite interests were tutoring young students, reading and travel.
She was the widow of W.G. ""Billy"" McGill, Junior, of New Albany and Ben Reed of Dallas, Texas.
She is survived by her children, W.G. McGill III (Cindy) of New Albany, James Hood McGill of New Albany, Margaret McGill Lane (Fleet) of Fairhope, Ala., and Jamie McGill Kornmeier (Tom) of Harbor Springs, Mich.; her brother, James M. Hood, Junior, (Nell) of Houston; six grandchildren, Alison McGill Sigler, Katherine McGill, Jimmy McGill, Tracey McGill, Ben Kornmeier and Jamie Lane; and six great-grandchildren; several beloved nieces and nephews; and her special friend and caregiver, Caren Hall. She was also blessed to have a fun circle of good friends in New Albany, Jacksonville, Florida, and Dallas, Texas.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. today, April 9, at First United Methodist Church in New Albany. Visitation will be held prior to the service in Wesley Hall from 9:30 a.m. until the start of the service. The Rev. Barry Male will officiate. United Funeral Service is in charge of arrangements.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be sent to First United Methodist Church, (207 East Bankhead, New Albany), Union County Heritage Museum (114 Cleveland Street, New Albany), or Blue Mountain College (P.O. Box 160, Blue Mountain, MS 38610). The family wishes to thank the kind employees at Dogwood Plantation for their caring service.

Margaret Ann Webb Clingan (attended BMC 1955)

Margaret Ann Webb Clingan, 78, passed away Tuesday, May 12, 2015 at Hospice Ministries in Ridgeland following a brief illness. Visitation will be Friday, May 15, 2015 from 10 a.m. until the 11 a.m. memorial service at Christ United Methodist Church in Jackson. Breeland Funeral Home in Canton is in charge of arrangements. A lifelong resident of Jackson, Margaret was born September 30, 1936 to Robert W Webb and Geraldine Davidson Webb. She attended Barr Elementary School, Enochs Junior High, and Central High School, graduating in 1954.In 1957 Margaret met her husband, Alton in Jackson. They were married on September 6, 1958 in Jackson. A little over a year later they welcomed their first son, Walter Carl, in 1959. Second son, Robert Keith arrived in 1961, and daughter, Margaret Kaye in 1963.After high school graduation Margaret attended Blue Mountain College in Holly Springs, Mississippi, before joining the Gilfoy School of Nursing at Mississippi Baptist Hospital. She also worked for the Alabama Department of Agriculture's Soils Test Lab at Auburn University while Alton was studying architecture. Upon her return to Mississippi she worked as a nurse at MBH until 1966. From that point on until 1999 she ran Clingan Printing Company in Ridgeland. She was a member of Calvary Baptist Church as a youth, and a member of Christ United Methodist Church of Jackson since 1965, where she sang in the both the sanctuary choir and Joy Choir. She was also a member of the Koon-Long Bible Class, and secretary of the Central High School Class of 1954.She was preceded by her parents; brother, Robert Webb Jr., and son, Walter Carl in 1990. She is survived by her husband of 57 years, Alton B. Clingan Jr.; sister, Carolyn Webb of Oxford; children, Robert Keith of Jackson and Margaret Kaye of Ridgeland; daughter-in-law, Lisa Clingan-Smith (Smitty) of Madison; two grandsons, Kyle Clingan (Beth) of Madison and Drew Smith of Hattiesburg; and great-grandson, Walt. In lieu of flowers, memorials are requested to be directed to Hope House of Hospitality or the music ministry at Christ United Methodist Church.

Martha Edge Durham (BMC 1953)

Martha Edge Durham, age 83 of Montgomery, passed away on Tuesday, March 24, 2015. She was preceded in death by her parents, Rev. Robert C. Edge and Lucille Hasty Edge, and her brother Rev. Robert C. Edge, Jr. She is survived by her husband of sixty years, Dr. Henry S. Durham, her children, David Durham (Susan), and Carol Sprouse (Gordon); grandchildren, Philip Durham and Laurelyn Durham.

The family received friends on Friday, March 27, 2015 from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm at Leak Memory Chapel. A memorial service for Mrs. Durham was held at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 28, 2015, at Capitol Heights Baptist Church. There was a private graveside service for the family.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Capitol Heights Baptist Church.

Mary Ruth Johnson Beattie (BMC 1948)

Mary Ruth Johnson Beattie, 89, passed away on March 23, 2015. Born in Knoxville TN, she moved to Starkville in 1948 as secretary with the First Baptist Church that at the time had only 3 employees. She was a graduate of Blue Mountain College and during WWII was an employee of the War Department working secretly on the 'Manhattan Project' at Oak Ridge. She worked at Mississippi State University for 15 years in the office of International Affairs assisting students from abroad with admission. She was preceded in death by her husband, Henry A Beattie Jr. She is survived by her 4 children, Henry A Beattie III (Martha) of Scottsdale AZ, Mary Katherine Beattie Swedenburg (Scott) of Birmingham AL, Carol J Beattie Shead (Russell) of Ft Worth TX, and James V Beattie of Starkville and 4 grandchildren. Visitation for Mrs. Beattie is scheduled for Saturday, March 28th from 10:00 to 11:00 with a service immediately following in the Welch Funeral Home Chapel. Burial will be in Oddfellows Cemetery.

Sara Dees Peeler McLarty (BMC ’42)

Mrs. Sara Dees Peeler McLarty, 94, died Sunday, December 21, 2014, at Highland Homes Nursing & Rehab in Ridgeland. The funeral service will be held on Tuesday, December 23, 2014, at 2 p.m. at Waller Funeral Home in Oxford with Dr. David Ard officiating. Burial will follow in Lafayette Springs Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery in Oxford. Visitation will be held prior to the service from 1 to 2 p.m.
Born to the late John Daniel and Velma Lee Dees Peeler, Mrs. McLarty was a member of First Baptist Church in Ripley. She was a retired teacher, and 30 years of her teaching profession were spent in the Lafayette and Pontotoc County school systems. One of her favorite pastimes was Square Dancing.
She is survived by her daughter, Judy McLarty of Madison; a sister, Mary Dill of Pontotoc; niece, Margaret Montgomery of Pontotoc; and numerous nieces and nephews. Memorial contributions in Mrs. McLarty's memory may be made to Lafayette Springs Cemetery Fund, 183 County Road 429, Oxford, MS 38655.

Peggy Wiggins Day (BMC 1958)

Peggy Day, 78, of Germantown, TN, passed away Wednesday, March 25, 2015 in the loving arms of her husband of 56 years, Jimmie Day. She is now resting peacefully with her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. She leaves behind Jimmie, two children, Debbie and Mark and their spouses, Donald and Patty, as well as three loving grandchildren, Kendall, Kerrie, and Natalie, and many dear friends. After having grown up in Meridian, MS and upon graduation from Blue Mountain College, Peggy married Jimmie and became a Memphis City school teacher where she taught, cared for, and nurtured children for 32 years. All the younger students wanted Mrs. Day when they got to the 5th grade. Peggy was an active member of her church throughout the years, and enjoyed socializing with her friends, camping, playing bridge, enjoying theatre, tutoring immigrants, or just having fun with the “Knit Wits,” knitting hats for the homeless. She loved to travel, and boy, did she enjoy a well-prepared meal. You may not know what tourist sites she had visited, but according to her journal, you definitely knew what she had eaten and where she had dined. She was a real trooper up to the very end, fighting Rheumatoid arthritis and never complaining about the crippling disease which it had become. Mom, we will miss you, we love you, and may God wrap you in his arms. Visitation will be held Saturday, March 28, 2015 from 12 p.m. until the funeral service begins at 1 p.m., all at Covenant Baptist Church, 3170 Houston Levee Rd. Collierville, TN 38017. Memorial contributions may be made to Covenant Baptist Church building fund or the charity of your choice.

Ray M. Sartor (Former member of the BMC Board of Trustees)

RIPLEY – Ray M. Sartor, 89, passed peacefully Monday, April 6, 2015. He was born on February 20, 1926, to John Douglas and Mary Elma Smith Sartor in Hamilton. He was County Agent with the Mississippi Cooperative Extension Service for Union and Tippah Counties for many years. After his retirement, he founded Ray Sartor Realty and worked as a real estate broker until his health failed. After serving his country in the Army, the National Guard, and the Army Reserves, he earned the rank of Brigadier General. Mr. Sartor was also active in his community, serving as chairman of the Board of Trustees for Blue Mountain College and a member of the Ripley Rotary Club. He was also a faithful active member of First Baptist Church. Services will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, April 9, 2015, in McBride Funeral Home Chapel with Dr. Jack Bennett officiating. There will be a graveside service at 4 p.m. Thursday, April 9, 2015, at Center Hill Baptist Church Cemetery in Hamilton. Visitation will be today, April 8, 2015, from 5 until 8 p.m. and Thursday, April 9, 2015, from 7 a.m. until service time at the funeral home. He is survived by his wife, Janice Springer Sartor of Ripley; three daughters, Sandra Sartor Ford (Jackie) of New Albany, Cherie Sartor Humphrey (Stacy) of Seminary, Martha Ray Sartor of Little Rock, Ark.; one sister, Irene Sartor Kennon of Atlanta, Ga.; six grandchildren, Mark Ford of Magee, Daniel Ford of Memphis, Tenn., John Peter Ford of Starkville; Adam Ray Humphrey (Kendra), Kate Cates (Brett), Alan Humphrey (Kimberly), all of Seminary; five great-grandchildren, Annalyn, Stacey, Caleb, Addison and Bryce. Mr. Sartor was preceded in death by his parents; three brothers, Clyde Aubrey Sartor, Johnnie Sartor and William Smith Sartor. Pallbearers will be his grandsons and grandson-in-law. Memorials may be made to College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Mississippi State University, MSU Foundation, ATTN: Dees Britt, P.O. Box 9760, Mississippi State, MS 39762 –

Sara Keith Pryor Mauldin (BMC 1970)

Sara Keith Pryor Mauldin, 75, died Saturday, April 25, 2015 at Baptist Memorial Hospital-North Mississippi in Oxford, MS. A private family memorial service will be held at a later date. Waller Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Born in Oxford, MS to the late James T. and Lois Smith Pryor, Mrs. Mauldin was retired from Exxon Mobile where she was a chemical lab technician. She was a graduate of Blue Mountain College with a Bachelor’s in Vocal Music and she loved playing the piano. Along with her parents she was preceded in death by her husband Gerald “Jerry” Mauldin and a daughter, Heather Anne Simmons. She also leaves behind her beloved dog, Lulu.

Mrs. Mauldin is survived by her daughters, Sara Mauldin Alford of Houston, TX, Holly Mauldin Wilkinson of Colorado Springs, CO and Monica Simmons Smith of Oxford, MS; a sister, Penny Pynkala of Oxford, MS; two brothers, Jim Pryor of Oxford, MS and John Pryor of Ocoee, FL; eight grandchildren and five great grandchildren.

Memorial contributions in Mrs. Mauldin’s memory may be made to the Blue Mountain College Department of Music, Office of Institutional Advancement, P.O. Box 160, Blue Mountain, MS 38610.

Terry H. Garvin (BMC 1974)

Terry H. Garvin, 63, died Sunday, April 19, 2015 in Little Rock, Arkansas. He was born March 10, 1952 in Booneville, Mississippi to Velma and Billie Garvin, who preceded him in death.
His father’s career in the U.S. Navy led the family around the country during Terry’s childhood, from Groten, Connecticut, to Key West, Florida, to the Pacific Island of Guam. Before his father’s retirement, Terry returned to Mississippi to begin his high school education. He graduated from Booneville High School in 1970, where he was senior class president. He continued his education at Northeast Mississippi Community College and graduated in 1974 with a bachelor of arts from Blue Mountain College. Upon graduation, he began his graduate work at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. On Jan. 11, 1975, he married Rebecca Todd of Memphis, Tennessee, and they were blessed with three sons, Nathan, Nicholas and Michael.
Over the next three decades, Terry’s passion for teaching and theology led him to staff positions with churches in Mississippi, Montana, Tennessee and Kentucky. While in Murray, he returned to school and received a master of science in organizational communication. This degree would lead him into the next chapter of his life in which he fulfilled his dream of teaching at the college level with positions at Murray State University, Itawamba Community College, University of Pittsburg at Johnstown and Arkansas Tech University, where his wife is on the English faculty.
Terry is survived by his wife of 40 years, Dr. Rebecca T. Garvin; his children, Nathan Todd Garvin (Lynsi) of Arlington, Virginia, Jon Nicholas Garvin (Denise) of Nashville, Tennessee, and William Michael Garvin (Heather) of Chicago, Illinois; his grandchildren, Jackson Todd and Caroline Grace; siblings, Michael W. Garvin (Diane) of Booneville, Patti Timbes (Ronnie) of Booneville and Debbie Tubb (Greg) of Jackson, Mississippi; and several nieces and nephews.
Visitation with the family will be Saturday, April 25, 2015 at 10 a.m. at First Baptist Church, Corinth, Mississippi. A memorial service will follow at 11 a.m.
Memorial contributions may be sent in Terry’s name to Blue Mountain College, Office of Institutional Advancement, P.O. Box 160, Blue Mountain, MS 38610.

Dr. Delia Leone Wells Black (BMC ’58)

Dr. Delia Leone Wells Black, born 18 February, 1936 in Jackson, Mississippi, passed away in Huntsville Hospital on the 23rd of May, 2015, following an extended illness. Dr. Black was preceded in death by her parents, James Madison Wells, Sr., and Sadie Lee Clark Wells, by her husband, William Verbon Black, and by her brother, James Madison Wells, Jr. She leaves behind her nephew, James Madison Wells III and his family - wife Amy, daughter Sadie Ann, and mother, Linda Wells - and cousins in the Wells family, her brother in law, John Black and his family, her sisters in law, Glenda Sue Black Ponder and Linda Lou Black Glenn and their families, and nieces, nephews, and grand-nieces and nephews in the Black family. She will be missed by many friends and current and former colleagues. Although Delia's father, an attorney, passed away when Delia was a child, Mrs. Wells saw to it that her children received a broad education including an appreciation for the arts, travel and cultures of other lands. A world traveler and an artist, Mrs. Wells taught at Blue Mountain College, where Delia received her BA degree. Delia received a Masters' Degree from the University of Mississippi and went on to study in Paris and in Mexico City. In Mexico City she met her lifelong friend, Joy Hopkins Fargason, who introduced Delia to her future husband, William Verbon Black. The Blacks were married on the 26th of June, 1965, in the garden of her mother's home in Blue Mountain, Mississippi. Delia continued her education by completing both a Masters' Degree and a Doctorate in Public Administration from Nova Southeastern University, Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The Blacks moved first to Arab, Alabama, and then to Huntsville to pursue federal careers with the U.S. Army Missile Command (MICOM) at Redstone Arsenal. At her retirement, Dr. Black was the chief of MICOM's civilian training and career management program. Her organization provided training, education and career development services to MICOM's more than ten thousand Army civilian employees, the largest program in the U.S. Army. Because she believed that training and education were key to employee productivity and motivation, she worked to assure that all employees had training opportunities for their current positions, as well as information to guide them in career paths for advancement to higher levels. She embraced automation and was the first in Army to automate civilian training records and to field an automated career referral system. Under her leadership, both the Florida Institute of Technology and the Defense Acquisition University grew local programs at Redstone to provide acquisition and logistics management education to local Army professionals, while a computer-based learning center provided low-cost, on-site training to the entire workforce. Dr. Black was selected in 1979 to the Redstone Federal Credit Union's Credit Advisory Committee. She was appointed to the Board of Directors in 1980 and served as First Vice Chair of the Board of Directors for 22 years. She retired from the Board in 2015 and served as a Director Emeritus until her death. She served as a member of the Management Committee of Redstone Title Services as well as the Redstone Community Foundation Board. When she began her RFCU service in 1979, it had approximately 70,000 members and assets totaling $140 million. Her leadership helped propel its growth to more than 370,000 members and over 3.7 billion in assets in 2014. She realized that there were people in her own community whose needs were not being met by traditional financial institutions, and championed the concept of a CUSO, Right Choice Money Services, to address the needs of the financially under-served and give them an ethical alternative to predatory payday lenders. In 2014 Dr. Black was inducted into the Defense Credit Union Council's Hall of Honor, recognized at the Annual Hall of Honor Awards Dinner in Dallas, Texas, in August of that year, and in September at a reception at RFCU. Also in 2014, Dr. Black was honored by the Rosetta James Foundation for her "stellar contributions to humankind" and lifetime of service to others and commitment to educational excellence. It is one of the most prestigious honors a person can receive in the Tennessee Valley. A lifetime of travel instilled a sensitivity to other cultures and a regard for people regardless of gender, race, or ethnicity at all economic levels. In both her federal and her RFCU careers, Dr. Black demonstrated a commitment to equality and diversity in the workplace and in society. Dr. Black was a champion of the arts, supporting the Huntsville Museum of Art, the Huntsville Public Library, WLRH Public Radio, the Historic Huntsville Foundation, the Alabama Public Television Network, the Huntsville Literary Association, the Huntsville Symphony, the Chamber Music Guild, the Master Chorale, the Madison County Botanical Garden, the Broadway Theater League, and many other charitable and progressive philanthropic causes as well, serving at times on the boards of several of these organizations. Dr. Black funded two scholarships at Blue Mountain College, and another with the Alabama Law Foundation in memory of her husband, William Verbon Black. A celebration of life will be held at a date to be announced. In lieu of flowers, contributions in her memory are requested to the above organizations, to any philanthropic organization of your choice.


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Pam Bowman, Administrative Assistant
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Nancy McDonald, Director
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