MARION -- Christopher Lee Autrey, 29, of Marion, went home to be with the Lord Thursday, June 30, 2016, unexpectedly. 

He was a son of Curtis Autrey and Lisa Pendley Ayers. 

He was preceded in death by his maternal grandfather, Fred Lee “Ted” Pendley; paternal grandparents Lloyd and Ruth Autrey; and an uncle, Ray Autrey.  He was a member of North Cove Baptist Church who loved to fish, do electronics and play Xbox with his niece and nephew.

BAKERSVILLE -- Lee Smith Gouge, 88, of the Fork Mountain Community, Bakersville, passed away Thursday, July 7, 2016, at his home. He was the son of the late Warfield and Nettie Greene Gouge and was also preceded in death by three sisters, Lois Ellis, Lockie Grey and Ruby Johns; and two brothers, L.H. Gouge and Woodrow Gouge. He was a U.S. Army veteran and was presented the Korean War Medal by Congressman Mark Meadows at the Bakersville Historic Courthouse. He was a charter member of the Fork Mountain Fire Department, Bakersville Lodge No.

SPRUCE PINE -- Frank Samuel Boone, 59, of Brushy Creek Road in the Estatoe Community in Spruce Pine, died Saturday, June 25, 2016, at his home.

There are no services planned at this time.

Words of comfort may be e-mailed to the family by going to, selecting Frank Boone’s name and then signing his guestbook. Webb Funeral Home in Spruce Pine is assisting the Boone family. Mr. Boone’s obituary has also been posted on Facebook.

SPRUCE PINE -- Ricky Calloway, 63, of Hefner Road, Spruce Pine, died Sunday, June 19, 2016, at the John F. Keever Solace Center in Asheville.

Born April 7, 1953, in Mitchell County, he was the son of the late Roy and Ruby Hefner Calloway.  

Ricky was a devout University of North Carolina Tar Heel fan. He enjoyed photography, walking in the woods and taking pictures of wild flowers. He was employed by Brad Ragan Inc. and later by Buckstove of Spruce Pine.

SPRUCE PINE -- Louise Lee Cox Coleman (Loui), 79, of Spruce Pine, died June 16, 2016, peacefully in her sleep surrounded by her family. She was predeceased by her parents, Jonathan Elwood and Annie Louise Lee Cox; her husband, William Coleman Jr.; and her brother, Steven T. Cox.

She was a model throughout her young life before developing an extensive business administration career leading to managing the Hearst Castle in San Simeon, California, and later the IMAX Theater at the Grand Canyon before retiring in Spruce Pine.

SPRUCE PINE -- Shirley Robbins, 77, of Feldspar Street, Spruce Pine, died Friday, June 17, 2016, at the Memorial Campus of Mission Hospitals in Asheville.

Born Feb. 9, 1939, in Indianapolis, Indiana, she was the daughter of the late Edward and Beaulah Holland Rice. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her sister, Judy Rohn; and brother, Archie Rice.

Shirley enjoyed playing cards with her family. She loved watching T.V. and the beach.  She loved spending time with her grandchildren and loved her dog, “Charlotte” and cat, “Addie.”

BURNSVILLE -- Jon S. Turpin, age 81, of Pollard Mine Road in Burnsville, died Monday, June 13, 2016 at his home.

A memorial service will be held at a later date and will be announced later.

Words of comfort may be emailed to the family by going to our website;, selecting Jon Turpin’s name and then you may sign his guestbook. Webb Funeral Home in Spruce Pine, NC is honored to be assisting the Turpin family.  Mr. Turpin’s obituary has been posted on Facebook for viewing.

SPRUCE PINE -- Bob Robinson, 76, of Harris Street, Spruce Pine died Monday, June 20, 2016, at his home.

Born May 8, 1940 in Allisonia, Tennessee, he was the son of the late Elmus and Mildred Chick Robinson. 

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife of 54 years, Dot Robinson, who passed away March 6, 2016.

SPRUCE PINE -- Kathy Staton Stamey, 62, of Spruce Pine, went to be with the Lord Sunday, June 19, 2016. 

A funeral service was at Gouges Creek Baptist Church in Spruce Pine. Interment followed at Gouges Creek Baptist Church Cemetery. 

Chad L. Beam Funeral Licensee is assisting the family. For further information or sign the online guestbook, visit

SPRUCE PINE -- Jack Dobson, 85, of Rogers Street, Spruce Pine, died Sunday, June 19, 2016, at Smokey Ridge Health and Rehab in Burnsville.

Born July 4, 1930, in McDowell County, he was the son of the late Joseph and Virginia Lonon Dobson. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother, Jay Dobson; and his sisters, Louise Dobson and Sandra Browning.

BOONE -- Jennings Bryan Robinson, of Boone, passed away June 13, 2016, at the age of 94. He was born in rural Mitchell County on May 11, 1922, the fifth of eight children born to Grace Hughes Robinson and William Jennings Bryan Robinson.  

In 1938, after graduating from high school in Bakersville, he entered Berea College at the age of 16, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in agriculture in 1942. 

Three months after graduation, he entered into active duty in the Army, serving in General Simpsons 9th Army, 44th Cavalry Group. 

GREEN MOUNTAIN -- Edith Miller Bennett, 96, of Flat Branch Road, Green Mountain, passed away, June 18, 2016. She was a native of Mitchell County and a daughter of the late Ed and Sarah Miller. 

She was retired as a machine operator with Detroit Plastic Molding.  

JONAS RIDGE -- Bill Ollis, 89, of Highway 183 in Jonas Ridge, died Wednesday, June 15, 2016, at his home.

A funeral service was Monday, June 20, 2016, in the chapel of Webb Funeral Home in Spruce Pine with Linda Taylor officiating. Interment followed in the Green Valley Baptist Church Cemetery.

Words of comfort may be e-mailed to the family by going to the funeral home’s website,, selecting Bill Ollis and then signing his guestbook. 

BAKERSVILLE -- Ola Mae McKinney departed this life Sunday, June 12, 2016, at the age of 102. 

She was predeceased by her husband, Frank L. McKinney; her son, Morris A. McKinney; and her granddaughter, Gina M. Bailey. She was also predeceased by four sisters and two brothers.

BAKERSVILLE -- Virgie Estelle Burleson, 89, of Bakersville, passed away Wednesday, June 8, 2016, at Johnson City Medical Center. She was a native of Salem, Virginia, and a daughter of the late Milton and Alta Pearl Cochran Thomas. She attended Fork Mountain Baptist Church and was a retired bookkeeper for Burleson Shell Station in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.

Survivors include a grandson, Paul Burleson, of Wilson; a granddaughter, Tammy D’Ambrosio, of Peoria, Arizona; one sister, Mona Turman, of Salem, Virginia; and six great-grandchildren.


The MItchell News

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