Obituaries for AUg. 2, 2017


Bonnie Lou Elferdink

Dec. 25, 1948 — July 15, 2017

Bonnie Lou Elferdink, 68, of the Grassy Creek Community, passed away Saturday, July 15, 2017.

She lived with her husband of 48 years, Terry Elferdink, many dogs and one bird. Born Dec. 25, 1948, in Clarksburg, West Virginia, she lived in Key West, Florida, for a brief time before moving to Orlando. She graduated from Oak Ridge High School in 1966 where she was a majorette and then went on to attend Orlando Junior College. Bonnie worked for the Orlando Sentinel Newspaper in the mid-1960s before becoming a secretary at the University of Florida English Department. She also worked at the Orange County Homestead Exemption Office and went on to become the secretary/bookkeeper for the family business.

She is preceded in death by her father, Lewis Casto, of Clarksburg. She is survived by her husband, Terry; son, Scott Elferdink, of Orlando; son, Brian Elferdink, his wife, Michelle, and their two daughters, Emma and Dylan, of Hernando Beach, Florida; brother, Rodney Casto, and his wife, Janet, of Hernando Beach; her mother, Betty Casto, of Spring Hill, Florida; and her brother-in-law, Larry Elferdink, of Orlando.

Bonnie was a basketmaker, an artist and enjoyed NASCAR and canning. Above all else, she was a homemaker and loved her family dearly.

Turner Funeral Home in Spring Hill, Florida, is handling the arrangements. Her remains will be entombed with the remains of her father and many of her dogs. There will be no service. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the local animal shelter or the Shriners Hospital.




Richard E. Greene

Feb. 9, 1935 — July 5, 2017

Richard E. Greene, 82, of Savannah, passed away Wednesday, July 5, 2017, after a short illness. He was born Feb. 9, 1935, in Bakersville, to Charlie and Pearl McKinney Greene. He left home at 18 to join the Air Force, where he spent the next 21 years of his life, some of it in Vietnam. When he retired, he moved back to his wife’s hometown of Savannah, Georgia.

Richard was an outdoors person who loved hunting and fishing in his spare time. While in Savannah, he worked as a superintendent with a construction company building many big, important churches and schools. After 31 years and on his 70th birthday, he hung up his hat.

Richard is survived by his wife, Kathryn Greene, of Savannah; four sons, Richard Jr. (Donna), of Commerce, Georgia, David Greene, of Savannah, Joseph Greene (Angela), of Pooler, Georgia, and Robert Greene (Linda), of Flowery Branch, Georgia; seven grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; brother, Charles Ray Greene (Mary Ann), of Wichita, Kansas; sister, Sue Woody, of Bakersville; one niece, Sherry Dixon; and four nephews.

Services were in Savannah.



Jim Golden Hughes

Jim Golden Hughes, 83, of Johnson Hollow Road in the Bandana Community, went home to be with the Lord July 23, 2017. He was a native of Mitchell County and a son of the late Claude and Velcie Fouch Hughes. Jim was a member, deacon, superintendent, Sunday school teacher and cemetery custodian at Silver Chapel Baptist Church. He was also a member of Gideons International. He was a veteran of The United States Army and was retired from IMC Unimin Corp., where he was a supervisor and worked for 52 years.

Survivors include his wife, Doris Livingston Hughes, of the home; a son, Gary Ray Hughes, of Bakersville; a brother, Fred Hughes, of Bakersville; and two adopted grandchildren, Melissa Sue Buchanan, of Weaverville, and Bruce Mitchell Buchanan, of DesLoge, Missouri.

Funeral services were 3 p.m. Wednesday, July 26, 2017, in Silver Chapel Baptist Church with Jonothan Thacker and Mark McKinney officiating. The family received friends one hour prior to the service. Interment followed the service in the church cemetery.

Henline-Hughes Funeral Home is assisting the Hughes Family.


LIMESTONE, Tennessee

Shirley Harrell Peterson

Dec. 2, 1935 — July 27, 2017

Mrs. Shirley Harrell Peterson, of Limestone, passed away Thursday, July 27, 2017, at the Johnson City Medical Center following a courageous battle with cancer.

Mrs. Peterson was born Dec. 2, 1935, in Buladean. She was the daughter of the late Fred and Edith Harrell. She was also preceded in death by a daughter, Tammy Estepp; sister, Luzene Mercer; and a brother, Gene Harrell.

She graduated from Tipton Hill High School. She retired from Mountain Home Veterans Administration in Acquisitions and Material Management Services after 30 years of service.

Survivors include her husband of 63 years, Uril Peterson; daughter, Sue Drain and husband, Jeff; sons, Duane and wife, Tammy, Randy and wife, Lois; son-in-law, Ricky Estepp; grandchildren, Travis Estepp and wife, Cheryl, Chad Estepp and wife, Whitney, Christina Williams and husband, Toby, Jennifer Cooper and husband, Jerry, Brandon Peterson, Tyler Peterson and girlfriend, Christy Barnett, Logan Peterson and wife, Lindsey, Hannah Peterson and boyfriend, Alex Rosas; great-grandchildren, Noah, Mallory and Seth Estepp, Cameron Tucker, Lyndsey, Dalton, Haley and Isaac Williams, and Callie Cooper; brothers, Boyd Harrell and wife, Kathy, Roger Harrell and wife, Linda, Freddie Harrell, and wife Marlene, all of Buladean, J.M. Harrell and wife, Judy, of Telford, Annie Griffith, of Relief, Eloise Woods and husband, John, of Lawtey, Florida, Leona Wiseman, of Johnson City, Doris Hopson and husband, Dean, of Marion, Arthelia Reed, of Bakersville; brother-in-law, Gene Mercer, of Mosinee, Wisconsin; several nieces and nephews; and special family friend, John Fisher.

Funeral services were conducted at 7 p.m. Sunday, July 30, 2017, at Dillow-Taylor Funeral Home with pastor Parker Street and pastor Tyler Dalton officiating. The family received friends from 5-7 pm Sunday prior to the service.

Interment services were 10 a.m. Monday, July 31, 2017, at Mountain Home National Cemetery.

Pallbearers were family and friends.

Condolences may be sent to the Peterson family online at

Dillow-Taylor Funeral Home & Cremation Services is assisting the family.



Dorothy H. Sparks

Dec. 14, 1920 — July 20, 2017

Mrs. Dorothy H. Sparks, 96, of Crawfordsville, Indiana, joined her family in Heaven Thursday evening July 20, 2017, while a resident of Bickford Cottage in Crawfordsville.

Dorothy was born Dec. 14, 1920, the daughter of John and Minnie Buchanan Howell in Bandana. She married Gaw J. Sparks Jan. 12, 1946, and they started their married life in the Pleasant Grove Community of Yancey County before moving to Johnson City, Tennessee, where they lived for 44 years. After her husband’s passing. Dorothy moved to Waynetown, Indiana, in 2004 and finally to Crawfordsville in 2016.

Dorothy is survived by her two sons and daughters-in-law, Allen and Diane Sparks, of Crawfordsville, and Gary and Melodye Sparks, of Johnson City. She has a brother-in-law, Elden Beaver, of Rock Hill, South Carolina; a sister-in-law, Thula Sparks, of Micaville; two sisters, Jean (Charles) Usery, of Lowell, and Jo (Max Dean) Garland, of Valdese; seven grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband in 2002; three infant brothers; and six sisters.

A memorial service was 6 p.m. Sunday, July 23, at Liberty Chapel Church in Crawfordsville officiated by pastor Allen Sparks and pastor Derrick Tamm. Locally memorial donations may be made to Liberty Chapel Church.

A graveside service was noon Tuesday, July 25, at the Pleasant Grove Baptist Cemetery in the Brush Creek community of Yancey County with her sons, Allen Sparks and Gary Sparks, officiating. Memorial donations there may be made to the Pleasant Grove Baptist Church. Shoemaker Funeral Home of Waynetown and Holcombe Brothers Funeral Home of Burnsville assisted the family with these arrangements.



Joe Ray Willis

May 8, 1938 — July 25, 2017

Joe Ray Willis, 79, of Bear Creek Road, Bakersville died Tuesday, July 25, 2017 at his home.

Born May 8, 1938, in Mitchell County, he was the son of the late Rev. Jeff and Lena Bartlett Willis. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his first wife, Shirley Willis. He was also preceded in death by his brothers, Lewis and Earl Willis.

Joe Ray was a member and deacon at the Bear Creek Baptist Church. He was a veteran of the U.S. Army and served in the honor guard. He loved the Lord, his church and church family. He also was a loving father, grandfather and great-grandfather who loved his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Left to cherish his memories are his wife, Nancy P. Willis, of the home; his sons, Jeff Willis and fiancée, Cheryl, of Spruce Pine, and Patrick Willis and wife, Shannon, of Greensboro; his daughter, Carol McKinney and husband, Ronald, of Bakersville; his grandchildren, Steven Ray Hughes, and wife, Leslie, Daniel Hughes, Chloe Willis and Benjamin Willis; his great-grandchildren, Grayson Hughes, Brailee Hughes and Payton Ray; his brother, James Willis and wife, Jean, of Bakersville; his sisters, Sena Mae Gouge and husband, Everett, of Bakersville, Kate Murdock, of Hendersonville, Margaret Wilson and husband, Roger, of Bakersville; and several nieces and nephews.

A funeral service honoring the life of Joe Ray Willis was 2:30 p.m. Saturday, July 29, 2017, at the Bear Creek Baptist Church with the Revs. Chris Rathbone, Brandon Pitman, Andy Willis and Bruce Cannon officiating. A time to support the family, share memories and receive friends was 1 p.m. until time of service Saturday, July 29, 2017, at the church. Interment was in the Bear Creek Baptist Church Cemetery.

The family would like to extend a special “thank you” to the staff of Hospice and Palliative Care of the Blue Ridge for its wonderful care of Joe Ray.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations be made to Hospice and Palliative Care of the Blue Ridge

Words of comfort may be emailed to the family by going to, selecting Joe Ray Willis’ name and signing his guestbook. Webb Funeral Home in Spruce Pine is assisting the Willis family. Mr. Willis’ obituary has also been posted on Facebook.



Marie Greene Wilson

Marie Greene Wilson, 94, of Elkins Road, in Bakersville, died Monday, July 24, 2017, at Smokey Ridge Health and Rehab in Burnsville.

Born March 16, 1923, in Mitchell County, she was the daughter of the late William and Bessie Norman Greene. In addition to her parents, she was also preceded in death by her husband, Oscar “Red” Wilson, who passed away in 2005. She was also preceded in death by her sister, Betty G. Wyatt; and her brothers, Frank, Lee and John Greene.

Marie was a member of the Bakersville Baptist Church. She was an avid reader and she enjoyed crocheting and working in her flowers. She also loved being with people.

Left to cherish her memories are her son, Roger Wilson and wife, Margaret, of Bakersville; her daughter, Anne Castro and husband, Philip, of Bakersville; two grandchildren, Joel Wilson, of Bakersville, and April C. Petrulis and husband, Aras, of Atlanta, Georgia; great-grandchild, Quinn Petrulis; and special daughter, Regina Jarrett Jones.

A funeral service honoring the life of Marie Wilson was 8 p.m. Thursday, July 27, 2017, in the Chapel of Webb Funeral Home with the Revs. William Ellis and Billy Stewart officiating. A time to support the family, share memories and receive friends 7 p.m. until time of service Thursday, July 27, 2017, in the funeral home chapel.

Interment was in the Mountain Home National Cemetery in Johnson City, Tennessee.

The family would like to extend a special “thank you” to the staff of Smokey Ridge Health and Rehab in Burnsville, the staff of Hospice and Palliative Care of the Blue Ridge and the staff of Hospice of Yancey County for their wonderful care of Marie.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial donations be made to either Hospice and Palliative Care of the Blue Ridge or Hospice of Yancey County.

Words of comfort may be emailed to the family by going to, selecting Marie Wilson’s name and signing her guestbook.

Webb Funeral Home of Spruce Pine is assisting the Wilson family. Mrs. Wilson’s obituary has also been posted on Facebook.



Homer Boyd Crader

Homer Boyd Crader, 53, of Bakersville, died Friday, July 28, 2017, in the VA Medical Center in Mountain Home, Tennessee. A memorial service will be at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2017, in the Cane Creek Freewill Baptist Church. The family will receive friends one hour prior to the service. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 262 Danny Thomas Place, Memphis, TN 38105.



Mr. Clarence B. Tichenor

Mr. Clarence B. Tichenor, 83, of Marion, died Friday, July 28, 2017. A celebration of Clarence’s life will be announced once the date and time have been confirmed. Beam Funeral Service & Crematory is assisting the Tichenor family. Visit or call 828-559-8111 for more information.

The MItchell News

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