Obituaries: Nov. 15, 2017


D.C. Bennett

D.C. Bennett, 88, of Buladean, went home to be with the Lord Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017, at his home. A native of Mitchell County, he was a son of the late Dove and Beuna Vista Street Bennett. He was also preceded in death by brothers, J.B. and Ralph Bennett.

D.C. was a U.S. Army Veteran from 1951 until 1953, where he was stationed in Germany. He worked for five years for with the city police department in Johnson City, Tennessee, then went on to work as a deputy for the Mitchell County Sheriff’s Department. He enjoyed fishing, farming and loved to read.

Left to cherish his memory is his loving wife of 64 years, Evelyn Stanley Bennett; daughters, Rita Grindstaff and Tammy McKinney, of Bakersville; granddaughter, Ramona Jarrett and husband, Tim, of Greensboro; grandsons, Derek McKinney, of Bakersville, and Jacob Grindstaff, also of Bakersville; special sisters-in-law, Jean Stanley and husband, Earl, of Pennsylvania, Lola Morrles, of South Carolina, and Shirley Pittman and husband, Neil, of Spruce Pine; and special brothers-in-law, Bill Stanley, of Spruce Pine, Herman Stanley, and wife, Georgia, and Gibbs Stanley and wife, Audrey, all of Pennsylvania.

Funeral services were 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 9, in the Chapel of Yancey Funeral Services. Pastor G.B. Garland and Pastor David Byrd will officiate. The family received friends from 2-3:30 p.m. prior to the services at the funeral home. Graveside services were 9 a.m. Friday in Mountain Home National Veterans Cemetery in Johnson City.

The family extends special “thank you” to Shirley and Neil Pitman for all their kindness and help. Also, a special “thank you” to the nurses at Hospice and Palliative Care of the Blue Ridge for the wonderful care given to D.C. The family requests in lieu of flowers, donations be made to Hospice and Palliative Care of the Blue Ridge, 236 Hospital Drive, Spruce Pine, NC 28777. Visit to send online condolences.



Billy Dean Buchanan

Billy Dean Buchanan, 73, of Bakersville, passed from this life into the arms of the sweet Savior Nov. 9, 2017, at his home with his family and friends present.

Born in Bakersville, he was the son of the late Brack and Madyth Stamey Buchanan. He was a self-employed truck driver for 53 years before his valiant four-year fight with cancer. He loved his family and spending as much time with them as possible, and he loved fishing and watching sports. He was a 32nd-degree mason and a member of the Bakersville Masonic Lodge No. 357 AF & AM. He attended Mine Creek Baptist Church and loved joking and telling stories to everyone. He was a wonderful, loving husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather. He never complained during his sickness and always had a smile.

He is survived by the absolute love of his life for 55 years, Saundra Floyd Buchanan, of the home; son, Billy Buchanan Jr., of Bakersville; daughter, Connie Buchanan Denney (Tommy), of Vilas; sister, Jean Whitson, of Marion; three grandchildren, Caitlin Presnell (Tommy), James Lichtenhahn (Hannah) and Monica Buchanan (Johnathan); step grandchildren, Christopher Layell (Nicole), Amber, Hailey and Cameron Denny, and Hannah Baker; great-grandchildren, Sophia and Matthew Presnell, and Mattie Higgins; special brother-in-law and sister-in-law, Jim and Carolyn Floyd; special helpers, Gary Gouge and Kenneth Woody; and Izzy, his faithful dog.

Funeral Services were 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 12, 2017, at Mine Creek Baptist Church with Chris Rathbone, Daniel Whetstine and Rick Ross officiating. Burial followed in the Cane Creek Cemetery with Masonic graveside rites conducted by Bakersville Masonic Lodge No. 357 AF & AM. The family received friends one hour prior to the service. Memorials may be made to Hospice and Palliative Care of the Blue Ridge, 236 Hospital Drive, Spruce Pine, NC 28777.

Henline-Hughes Funeral Home is assisting the Buchanan Family.



Amanda Leigh-Anne Hollifield

Nov. 20, 1989 – Nov. 7, 2017

Amanda Leigh-Anne Hollifield, 27, of Marion, passed away unexpectedly from complications from child birth on Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017, at her home.

Amanda was born Nov. 20, 1989, in Buncombe County, to Wayne and Renee Hollifield.

Amanda is preceded in death by her paternal grandfather, Norman Ray Hollifield, on Oct. 14, 2017; and her maternal grandparents, T.J. Dellinger on Jan. 7, 2017, and Carolyn Mae Mace Dellinger and on May 19, 2015.

In addition to her parents, left behind to cherish her memory are her boyfriend, Eddie Moody, of Lenoir; her daughter, Heather Leigh-Anne Hollifield-Moody; one sister, Jessica Harmon (Ben), of Spear Community; nephews, Zade and Adyn Bizer; paternal grandmother, Lucy Mae Bates; aunts and uncles, Donna Morgan, Allen Hollifield (Amy), Dawn Brown (Jimmy), Waylon Hollifield, Tony Dellinger (Darla), Randy Dellinger and Marsha Hoilman (Wayne). Surviving Amanda also are special cousins who thought of her as an aunt, Addison and Dakota Hoilman; and many other great-aunts, uncles, cousins and friends.

The family received friends from 5-8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 10, 2017, at Altapass Church of God in Spruce Pine. A Funeral Service was 2 p.m. Saturday at the church with Pastor Cameron Smith officiating. Burial followed the service at McKinney Gap Church Cemetery in Spruce Pine.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: Care Partners & Palliative Care-McDowell, 575 Airport Road, Marion, NC 28752.

Beam Funeral Service & Crematory is assisting the Hollifield family. Visit or call 828-559-8111 for further information and/or to sign the online guestbook.



Charles Hugh Riddle

Nov. 22, 1923 – Nov. 9, 2017

Mr. Charles Hugh Riddle, 93, died Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017, at Anson Health and Rehab in Wadesboro.

He was born Nov. 22, 1923, in the Roses Branch area of Mitchell County and grew up in Spruce Pine. He was a son of the late William Palmer Riddle and the late Ruth Thomas Riddle.

After graduating from high school in Spruce Pine, he received both his Bachelor of Science degree and master’s degree from Appalachian State University and his Advanced Graduate Degree in Education at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Mr. Riddle retired after 30 years as Principal of Central Elementary School in Wadesboro, with a total of 36 years in the public schools of North Carolina. He served on the Anson County Board of Education for more than five years and was named to the All-State Honorary School Board for the 1988-1989 school year. The Anson County School Staff Development center was named in his honor.

He has served as Chairman of the Board of Deacons at First Baptist Church-Wadesboro and taught the Charles Riddle Sunday School Class for 50 years. He has been a member of the Wadesboro Jaycees, and has served on the Wadesboro Planning board, the Anson County Red Cross Board of Directors, the Anson County unit of the Boy Scouts of America and was a Civitan member for more than 50 years. He also served in the United States Army in the South Pacific campaign and Japan from 1943 through 1946, during World War II and was a member of Mt. Croghan-Ruby American Legion Post 134.

Surviving are his son and daughter-in-law, Charles H. Riddle Jr. and Brenda, of Anchorage, Alaska; his granddaughter, Ryan Nichole Riddle, also of Anchorage; and his brother and sister, Leo Riddle, of Spruce Pine, and Jeanne R. Parker, of Raleigh.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Evelyn Hancock Riddle; an infant daughter, Emily Gail Riddle; and brothers and sisters, Frank Riddle, Joe Riddle, Fred Riddle, Zora Pegg, Zula Riddle and Zella Curtis.

Funeral services were 2 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017, at First Baptist Church, Wadesboro with Dr. Robert Hunter and the Rev. Tom Kakadelis officiating. Interment followed in Anson Memorial Park.

The family greeted friends from 5-7 p.m. Monday, Nov. 3, 2017, at Leavitt Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to First Baptist Church, P.O. Box 423, Wadesboro, NC 28170; Crossroads Baptist Church, 4963 Cross Roads Church Road, Ruby, SC 29741; or Mt. Croghan Baptist Church, 14 Church St, Mount Croghan, SC 29727. The arrangements are in care of Leavitt Funeral Home. Online condolences may be made at and the family invites you to share your memories with them on the website.



Robert ‘Bob’ Maxwell Runion

Robert “Bob” Maxwell Runion, 89, of Bakersville, passed from this life into the arms of Jesus Nov. 5, 2017, at his home.

Born in Unicoi County, Tennessee, he was the son of the late William Bert and Lilly Lora Abigail Farnor Runion. He attended schools in Unicoi and Mitchell County. He was proud of his service in the U.S. Army, where he served as an engineer. He served in the U.S. and helped build runways in Japan and England. At the time of his honorable discharge, he had earned the rank of E4.

Bob was a member and elder of Vians Valley Presbyterian Church and a member of the Bakersville Masonic Lodge No. 357 for more than 50 years. He served in leadership as the Worshipful Master and served as DDGP and Past Patron of the Bakersville Order of the Eastern Star. He was also a member of the Bakersville Lions Club and worked closely with the North Carolina Rhodendron Festival during its early years.

He married the love of his life, Helen Bowditch Runion, and they lived in Pennsylvania for two years before returning to Mitchell County to own and operate Bowditch Orchard near Bakersville. He was also the owner/operator of a waste management company for many years. Bob loved Mitchell County and served as a County Commissioner for two terms, 1988-96, and was elected vice chair and chairman of the board. He also served on the county social services board and senior citizens board of directors and assisted with the construction of the current building in Ledger.

Bob was a loving and devoted son, husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, uncle and friend.

He was proceeded in death by his wife, Helen; his parents; sisters, Clara R. Hensley and Rebecca R. McCrae; brothers, Luke, Bill and his wife, Lora, and J.B.; and many aunts, uncles and cousins.

Surviving are his five children, Sharon Runion Rowland (Steve), of Raleigh; Mary Pyatte (Gary), of Bakersville; Ruth Cline (Bill), of Denver, North Carolina, Maxine Runion, of Matthews; and Rose McDaniel (Tim), of Thomasville. He is also survived by his grandchildren, Kristy Blanton (Jason), Jennifer Cook (Josh) and Elizabeth Payne (Neil), all of Bakersville, Casey Cline, of Charlotte, Brather Cline, of Morehead City, Andrew Rowland and his fiancé, Katlyn Selbee, of Greenville, North Carolina, Ben Rowland, of 29 Palms, California, and Timothy McDaniel, of Thomasville; and great-grandchildren, Abby, Emma, Jace, Keller, Evan and Landon.

He is also survived by his sister, Betsy Runion Harris (Sanford), of Rocky Mount; his brother, Charles Runion, of Spruce Pine; and sister-in-law, Ruby Runion Kelley, of Lakeland, Florida; 17 nieces and nephews; many cousins; and friends.

The family received friends from 6-8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 9, at Henline-Hughes Funeral Home in Bakersville. At other times, the family will be at the Runion residence, 1085 NC Highway 80.

A celebration of Bob’s life was 1 p.m. Friday, Nov. 10, 2017, at the Vians Valley Presbyterian Church on Mine Creek Road with the Rev. Neil Payne, the Rev. Jacob Willis and the Rev. William Whiteside officiating. Burial services were at the Bakersville Memorial Cemetery with graveside rites performed by Bakersville Masonic Lodge No. 357 AF&AM and Military Funeral Honors were presented by Sgt. E.L. Randolph of Chapter 57 DAV.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations are made to Vians Valley Presbyterian Church, P.O. Box 202, Bakersville, NC 28705 or Hospice of Yancey County, 856 Georges Fork Road, Burnsville, NC 28714.

The family would like to thank Faye Freeman; the Hospice of Yancey County, including his nurse, Anita Willis; Brian Center and its nursing and rehabilitation staff; Carolina Home Health Nursing Staff, especially Mandy Street; and his many friends and neighbors.

Henline-Hughes Funeral Home is assisting the Runion family.

The MItchell News

Mailing Address: PO Box 339 
Spruce Pine, NC 28777 
Phone: 828-765-7169
Fax: 828-765-1616