Obituaries

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Lynn Garmroth
Date of passing: April 24, 2022
Lynn Garmroth, loving husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, uncle, friend, pastor, and fishing enthusiast left this world peacefully on 4-24-22 at his home in Lamar, AR. Harry Lynn Garmroth was born in Stanford, Arkansas to the late Harry Clifton Garmroth and Dora Hunt Garmroth on October 12, 1942. Preceding Lynn in death, his only son, Roger Lynn Garmroth, his parents Harry and Dora, father-in-law Laverne Rogers and mother-in-law Frances Evans Roger, brother MC Garmroth and wife Betty, brother Billy Joe Garmroth and wife Betty, brother George Wayne Garmrath and wife Geraldine, brother Bobby Max Garmroth and sister Alma Jean Arrant and husband Roy. Lynn is survived by his beautiful wife of 62 years, Verenda Lee Rogers Garmroth, daughter Carol Lynn Baird (John) of Las Vegas, NV, Daughter Lee Ann Lewis (Gilbert) of Damascus, AR, and daughter Christina (Kyle) Trimble of Maumelle, AR. Grandchildren Elizabeth Winkler (David), Jordan Baird, James Baird, Kennedy Baird, Adrienne Moore (Justin), Austin Lewis (Carrigan), Lucas Potts, Lindy Trimble, Clay Trimble (Bekah), Shelbi Reynolds (Chris). Great grandchildren Layton, Adalynn, Evan Jo, Maverick, Elliot, Blakelee, Lincoln, River and Rowan, sister-in-law Laura Jean Morris and many nieces, nephews, friends and loved ones. Lynn was born and raised in Stanford, Arkansas and graduated from Stanford High School in 1960. On February 13, 1960, Lynn and Verenda married and eventually relocated to Flint, Michigan for a few short years before moving back to Arkansas in 1968, making Fairfield Bay, Arkansas their new home. One of Lynn’s great passions was fishing, and he cherished beautiful Greers Ferry Lake where he spent countless days fishing with his many friends and relatives. Lynn worked several jobs in different industries throughout the next 24 years and it was at that time that he received his greatest calling, which was his call to ministry in 1992. Over the next 30 years Lynn served as associate pastor at First Baptist Church of Shirley which then led him to full time ministry where he served as head pastor at Rupert Baptist Church, First Baptist Church Hoxie, and Lexington Baptist Church until he reached his final pastoral position at Cabin Creek Baptist Church in Lamar in 2015. Lynn’s passions were his family and fishing, but his greatest passion of all was serving his Lord Jesus Christ and spreading the gospel of salvation and the Love and Peace that only He can give. Visitation will be held 6-8 PM Thursday, April 28, 2022, at Roller Cox Funeral Home. Funeral service will be held 10 AM, Friday April 29, 2022, at Cabin Creek Baptist Church with Bro. JR DeBusk, Bro. Free Clower, and Bro. Austin Lewis officiating. Pallbearers are Austin Lewis, James Baird, Lucas Potts, Kennedy Baird, Justin Moore, John Baird, Gilbert Lewis, Kyle Trimble, Clifton Garmrath, Steve Garmrath, David Winkler, and Jim Garmroth. Private family burial will be held at a later date. In Lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Cabin Creek Baptist Church Block Party Ministry, PO Box 315, Lamar, AR 72846. Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Roller-Cox Funeral Home in Clarksville, AR. Online guestbook at www.rollerfuneralhomes.com/clarksville.
Joan Uth
Date of passing: April 20, 2022
Joan Beard Uth, 92, of Little Rock, AR passed away peacefully on April 20, 2022-her husband’s birthday. She was born in Palestine, AR on September 19, 1929 to Lela and Melvin Beard. She served most of her career as an administrative assistant, including executive assistant to the President of Ouachita Baptist University. She was a devoted member of Geyer Springs First Baptist Church. Joan was a faithful pastor’s wife for over fifty years. She was also an amazing mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. Survivors include her children, Lynda Jack and husband Ron of Maumelle, AR, Tony Uth and wife Teresa of Tulsa, OK, David Uth and wife Rachel of Orlando, FL, and she was “Nonnie” to her seven grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren. Joan is also survived by other extended family and a host of friends. She is preceded in death by her loving husband of 60 years, Anton “Buddy” Conrad Uth, Sr., her parents and her brother Tom Beard. Visitation will be held at 3:00 pm Friday, April 22, 2022, followed by a celebration of her life at 4:00 pm at Smith Little Rock Funeral Home. To access the live stream of her service, click this link: http://cloud.ndigo.tv/koolplayer/gsfbctest.html In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the online ministry of First Baptist Orlando (www.firstorlando.com) or Geyer Springs First Baptist Church World Mission Offering (https://gsfbc.org/give).
Tommy Joe Nash
Date of passing: April 19, 2022
Tommy Joe Nash passed away on April 19, 2022 at the age of 68, in his home surrounded by his family. His illness with cancer over the past two years showed those around him not only his courage when facing life’s battles, but also his unshakeable faith in his Savior, Jesus Christ. Tommy met the love of his life, Trisha, during their sophomore year at Strong High School. They were inseparable and got married June 16, 1972. For the past 50 years they have been each other’s constant companion and best friend. After their marriage Tommy joined the United States Air Force. While serving, they welcomed their first son, Brian, and a few years later another son, Matthew. In 1977, after leaving the service they moved back to El Dorado where he began a 28-year career at Great Lakes Chemical Company. One of his greatest passions outside of work was motorcycles. This led him into ministry with the Christian Motorcyclist Association. He served as a local chapter president and area representative. While preaching at CMA events he was called into full time ministry at Knowles Baptist Church in Strong. He has faithfully served as pastor at Knowles for the past 16 years. People in his church family and those he came in contact with describe Tommy as a positive, welcoming, and accepting man of God. He was asked to participate in countless weddings, funerals, and other special events and mission projects by many of his friends and family. Family was very important to Tommy. He spent many weekends preparing for deer season with his son, Matthew and enjoyed taking his grandkids hunting. One of the grandkids favorite memories was going to a firework stand with Pappaw. He would let them pick out anything they wanted and let them shoot anytime they came for a visit. He also enjoyed sitting on the porch watching the grandkids play or drive circles around the yard on his golf cart. He was preceded in death by his parents, Travis and Sylvia Nash. Left to cherish his memories are his wife, Trisha Nash; sons, Brian (Monica) Nash and Matthew (Ashley) Nash; grandchildren, Drew Martin, Kailey Nash, Garrett Martin, Lex Nash, Mattie Nash, Brett Nash, and Presley Nash; sisters, Kathy (Doby) Dopson and Tammie Womack. He also leaves countless special extended family, friends, and children who called him Pappaw. God used Tommy to touch and change many lives, and lead numerous people to the Lord. Visitation will be held from 6:00-8:00 PM on Friday, April 22, 2022 at Knowles Baptist Church. Funeral Services will be held at 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 23, 2022 at Knowles Baptist Church followed by Interment at Center Point Cemetery under the direction of Perry’s Funeral Chapels. Memorial Donations may be made to Center Point Cemetery or Knowles Baptist Church at 467 Old Strong Hwy El Dorado, AR 71730. Online condolences at www.perrysfuneralchapels.com
Paul E. Jackson
Date of passing: April 17, 2022
Evangelist and pastor, Reverend Paul Edward Jackson, 67, of Little Rock, Arkansas, gloriously graduated to Heaven on Easter Sunday, April 17, 2022. He is survived by his wife Kathy Jackson; sons, Matthew Paul and Micah Daniel Jackson; their wives, Shannon Reep Jackson and Raelee Toye Jackson; grandchildren, Luciana and Max Jackson, and brothers Brent and Timothy Jackson and their families. He was preceded in death by his parents, Rev. Johnny Joe and Hilda Carlene Jackson; older brother, Johnny Joe Jackson Jr., and first-born grandchild, Gabriella Grace Jackson. Paul was born May 30, 1954, in Dallas, Texas. Over the next 67 years, his life was a powerful testimony of what God can do with a heart that’s surrendered to Him. He had the privilege to lead hundreds of thousands of people to faith in Jesus Christ during his more than four decades in full-time ministry. Also, a gifted singer, musician and songwriter, Paul recorded multiple albums and was honored through the years as dozens and dozens of his songs were recorded by other Christian artists. Paul was also deeply devoted to his family. He was a faithful husband of 49 years as well as a loving father and grandfather. Paul also enjoyed fishing, golfing, and supporting the Arkansas Razorbacks, New York Yankees, Dallas Cowboys and Boston Celtics. A memorial service will be held Saturday, May 7, at 2 p.m. at The Summit Church located at 6600 Crystal Hill Road in North Little Rock.
Beverly Jean Childs Jones
Date of passing: April 14, 2022
Beverly Jean Childs Jones was born October 21, 1927 in Cullman, Alabama to Myrtle and Charlie Childs. After graduating from Cullman High School in 1945, she entered Auburn University in the Fall and graduated in December 1948. She met Jamie Jones at Auburn and they married in December 1947. They moved to Fayetteville Arkansas in 1951 when Jamie was hired to be the Director of the Baptist Student Union. They joined First Baptist Church and remained there, serving with various committees, and active in Sunday School, Training Union, and Women’s Missionary Union. She taught school in Springdale from 1968-1971 and in Fayetteville from 1971-1989. She was preceded in death by her husband of 67 years, Jamie L. Jones Jr., her parents, one sister, Nell Johnson. She is survived by her children Jamie L Jones III and wife Ceal of Little Rock, Arkansas, Suzanne Schwartz of Conway, Arkansas, Charles Russell “Rusty” Jones and wife Charlotte of Fayetteville, Arkansas, Cynthia “Cindy” Rush and husband Mike of Conway, Arkansas, Nancy Beahm and husband Paul of Rogers, Arkansas; one brother, Wendell Childs of Rome, Georgia; 11 grandchildren, Hali Jones, Kakki Jones, Alison, husband Justin Perez, Aaron Schwartz, Adam Jones and London Biggerstaff, Nathan Jones, wife JaneAnn, Rachel, husband Jordan Wimpy, Hannah, husband Chris Burt, Rebekah, husband Josh Thacker, Jamie Ellen, husband Eric Carden, and Madeline Jones. 16 great grandchildren, Madison Jones, Sela Grace Perez, Adelle Perez, Elise Perez, Makaleigh Thacker, Jocelyn Thacker, Kiersten Thacker, Adalynn Jones, Grady Jones, Vivie Carden, Josephine Carden, Thrasher Ready, Jackson Jones, Wyatt Jones, Shea Jones, James Burt and many other relatives and friends. Memorial Service 11:00 am Saturday April 23, 2022 at First Baptist Church Fayetteville. There will be a private committal at the Fayetteville National Cemetery under the direction of Moore’s Chapel. Memorial contributions may be made to Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty at https://bjconline.org or First Baptist Church Fayetteville, 20 East Dickson Street, Fayetteville, Arkansas 72701 To place an online tribute, please visit www.bernafuneralhomes.com
Harold Mitchell
Date of passing: April 13, 2022
HAROLD MITCHELL, 85, was born October 24, 1936 in Pine Bluff, Ark., to F. Harold and Reba Lee Adams Mitchell. He departed this earth April 13, 2022. He was pre-deceased by his parents and a brother, William F. (Bill) Mitchell. He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Rene Boschetti Mitchell; three children, Reade Mitchell (Carla Koen), Little Rock, Molly Beasley (Jason) Richmond, Va. and Amy Sims (Robert), Maumelle; four grandchildren; Aidan Beasley, Taylor Rene Beasley, Kelsey Beasley and Emily Koone; A sister, Margaret Ann Mitchell Murchison (Rodger) of Augusta, Ga., nieces and nephews, as well as countless “spiritual” children from all over the world. Harold was born and raised in Pine Bluff, in the idyllic “Happy Days.” He was friendly and had many friends. His love for music led him into the Jr. and Sr. High School bands, where he played the French horn, served as drum major and was noted for spectacular twirling of fire batons. He continued exhibiting his twirling skills as drum major of the Reddie marching band at Henderson State Teachers College where he did his pre-dental studies. From there he attended the University of Tennessee School of Dentistry in Memphis where he obtained his DDS Degree. While there, he married his childhood sweetheart, Rene Boschetti. After graduation and three years of military service at Ft. Dix, N.J., he was in private dental practice in Pine Bluff for 11 years. From the marriage issued an incredibly blessed and long life together, producing three children, taking them into an ever-deepening spiritual life which led them to life and ministry in a number African countries and the Indian Ocean Islands. In preparation for missionary service he studied at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky. and Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland. Harold’s dental skills and musical gift with the French horn gave him many ministry opportunities. His always active wit caused him to give himself the nick-name, “the horn of Africa.” While in Africa Harold served in a number of capacities, including conducting bush dental clinics, leader of the International Baptist Church of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and clinical instructor at the Muhimbili Medical Center there. Harold maintained his heart for service after retiring from Africa. He was pastor of Second Baptist Church in Pine Bluff and associate pastor at Eastside Baptist Church. He became involved in the KAIROS prison ministry, and served as chaplain at Randal Williams Correctional Institution in Pine Bluff. Harold was a life-long member of First Baptist Church, Pine Bluff, where he served as Sunday School teacher, deacon and Boy Scout leader. In recent years he worked with youth at First Baptist, Maumelle, and was a member of the Rock of Ages Sunday School class. It has been said that a life well lived brings its own rewards. Harold would agree that he was rich indeed with countless blessings from his beloved Lord Jesus. A celebration of Harold’s life will be held at a later date to be announced. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorial contributions be made to: International Mission Board, 3806 Monument Avenue, Richmond, Va., 23233.
Bill Holland
Date of passing: April 3, 2022
James “Bill” William Holland was called home to be with the Lord on Sunday, April 3, 2022. He was born January 9, 1959, in San Antonio, Texas. He was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, son, brother, and a decorated veteran of the United States Air Force, serving thirty-two years retiring as a Senior Master Sergeant of the 93rd Bomb Squadron. Most importantly, he was believer in Christ. His faith and sense of humor was a gift and light to all who knew him. He previously pastored Riverside Baptist Church in Donaldson. Bill was preceded in death by his father, Wendell J. W. “Jim” Holland of Hot Springs, Arkansas. Survivors are his wife of forty-five years, Debbie Holland of Donaldson, Arkansas; sons, Jerry Holland and wife, Amy of Durant, Oklahoma, Nathan Holland and wife, Julie of Claremore, Oklahoma; mother, Mary Elizabeth Bruton of San Antonio, Texas; sister, Tammy Guttry of Kissimmee, Florida; brothers, Robert Perez of Gilroy, California, Ricky Perez of San Antonio, Texas, John Holland of Dallas, Texas and Matthew Holland of Hartville, Missouri; granddaughters, Taylor Holland of Claremore, Oklahoma, Emma Holland of Claremore, Oklahoma, Kamryn Holland of Durant, Oklahoma, Addison Holland of Claremore, Oklahoma, Mary Beth Holland of Durant, Oklahoma and Macy Holland of Claremore, Oklahoma. Visitation will be 6-8 PM Wednesday, April 6, 2022, at Social Hill First Baptist Church. Memorial service will be at 2:00 PM Thursday, April 7th at Social Hill First Baptist Church. Military honors will be rendered at the conclusion of the service. Memorials may be made to Social Hill First Baptist Church Building Fund 25432 Hwy. 84 Malvern, AR. 72104.
Nancy Lee Hall
Date of passing: March 10, 2022
Nancy Lee Stringer Hall went home to be with the Lord on March 10, 2022. Nancy was born on August 22, 1930, the youngest of nine children born to Guy Earl and Effie Knowles Stringer. She was a member of First Baptist Church of Little Rock, the Ruth Sunday School Class, and SAGA. Nancy also spent several years with the ministry at the Arkansas Baptist Children’s Home at Monticello. She was educated in the public schools of Arkansas and spent most of her career at various financial institutions. In addition to her parents, she was preceded by her husband, Norman Russell Hall. Survivors include nephews, Wayne Cullins of Hot Springs, Bruce Cullins of East End and Arnold Stringer of Pine Bluff; three nieces, Barbara Taylor of Amity, Shirley Bennett of Cabot, and Mona Clark of East End. Graveside services will be 2:00pm, Tuesday, March 15, 2022 at Sheridan Cemetery. Memorials may be made to the Arkansas Baptist Foundation, Nursing Scholarship Fund, the Arkansas Baptist Children’s Home’s, or the Pulaski County Humane Society.
Johnny A. Green
Date of passing: March 3, 2022
Rev. Johnny A. Green, 89, of Wynne, Arkansas, passed from this walk of life on Thursday, March 3, 2022, in Wynne. He was born on February 6, 1933, in Trumann, Arkansas, to Allen Green and Minnie Lock. Bro. Johnny served our country for three years in the United States Army. He was united in marriage to Frances E. Aston on January 18, 1953, in Arlington, Virginia and together they celebrated over sixty-nine years of marriage. Bro. Johnny was an ordained Southern Baptist minister who served faithfully in pastoral work as well as spending several years as an evangelist. He traveled many miles preaching the gospel message throughout the United States, Africa, Korea, and Argentina, and pastored churches in Arkansas and Oklahoma. After retiring from evangelism he continued serving as interim pastor in several churches and lastly served as Associate Pastor of Trinity Baptist Church in Wynne. He also served as chaplain of Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department and the Cross County Sheriff’s Department, as well as bailiff for Cross County Sheriff’s Department. Left to cherish his memory are his wife, Frances Green of Wynne, Arkansas; son and daughter in law, Steven A. and Annette Green of Arlington, Tennessee; daughter, Kathy Wallace of Horseshoe Bend, Arkansas; daughters and son in laws, Carol and David Hunter of Soddy Daisy, Tennessee and Kay and Kenneth Holland of Horseshoe Bend, Arkansas; ten grandchildren; several great grandchildren; and a host of family and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, Allen Green and Minnie Lock, brothers, Irvin Lawrence, James Lawrence and Bill Lawrence, sister, Arnetti Ragland, and son in law, Jr.Wallace. A Funeral Service will be Tuesday, March 8, 2022, at 12:00 p.m. at the Trinity Baptist Church in Wynne, Arkansas with Dr. David Hunter officiating. Visitation will be at 11:00 a.m. until service time. Interment will follow the service in the Arkansas State Veteran Cemetery in Birdeye, Arkansas at 2:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to the Trinity Baptist Church, P O Box 156, Wynne, Arkansas 72396 or the church or charity of your personal choice.
Mary Shambarger
Date of passing: February 27, 2022
Mary Shambarger, age 86, passed away Sunday February 27, 2022, in Rogers, Arkansas. She was born March 6,1935 in Morrilton, Arkansas. She was preceded in death by her parents and her husband Jake Shambarger. Mary was born and raised in Morrilton, Arkansas., by her parents, Clifford, and Emma Lee Stobaugh. After graduating from Morrilton High School, she earned a Bachelor of Music degree from Louisiana State University, later earning her master’s from the University of Arkansas. Mary’s first teaching job was at Cassville High School in Missouri, where she met her husband, the late Dr. Jake Shambarger, a basketball coach. As newlyweds, the two moved to Walnut Ridge, Ark., to teach at Williams Baptist College, where they remained for six years before moving on to Ouachita Baptist University in 1966. While at Ouachita, Mary formed and directed The Ouachi-Tones, an all-female choral ensemble. The group traveled and performed extensively throughout Arkansas, the U.S. and abroad, serving as ambassadors for the university. In 1991, after 25 years, she chose to restructure the group and formed The Ouachita Sounds, an ensemble combining women and men. While on faculty at OBU, Mary also served as chair of the Department of Applied Music, coordinator of voice and Arkansas governor of the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS), and she was OBU’s representative for the Arkansas Women of Higher Education. At the time of her retirement from Ouachita in1998, she was the Lena Goodwin Trimble Professor of Music, emerita. The same year, the Mary Shambarger Competition for Singers was established and continues to be held on the OBU campus each February. Mary’s other professional accomplishments include producing, writing, and directing shows for Magic Springs Theme Park in Hot Springs, Arkansas; Kentucky Kingdom in Louisville, Kentucky; and Frontier City in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. She has served as minister of music for Baptist churches in Tuckerman, Piggott and Walnut Ridge, Arkansas. Mary has made investing in the lives of others her life’s work. For more than 30 years she served on the faculty of Ouachita Baptist University in the Department of Music. Mary has shown grace, leadership, integrity and faith, qualities she instilled in her students. Mary loved her Sunday school class, her book clubs, shopping, playing cards with her friends, cooking, and dining out, going to the movies, the symphony and beautiful music of all kinds. However, her greatest love was spending time with her family. Mary lived in Bentonville, Arkansas. She lived near her daughter, Susan, and son-in-law, Dr. Steve Goss (both graduates of Ouachita). She has two grandsons, Chad and his wife Ashley of Bentonville and Jake and his wife Mariah of Los Angeles, California, two sisters Martha Davis and her husband Jack of Rogers, Arkansas and Marjorie Halbert and her husband John of Nashville, Tennessee, three great grandchildren Adeline, Whit and Juno, and six nieces Joy Lynn, Debbie, Jacque, Barbie, Christy and Keri. She was an active member of First Baptist Church in Bentonville, a member of Philanthropic Educational Organization (PEO) and the Bentonville Garden Club. Other professional affiliations include the Andante Music Club, NATS, American Choral Directors Association, Pi Kappa Lambda national music honor society, Sigma Alpha lota international music fraternity for women and the Governing Board of Opera in the Ozarks. Memorial Service will be held 11:00 a.m. Friday March 4, 2022, at First Baptist Church Bentonville with a reception to follow in the Family Life Center under the direction of Nelson-Berna Funeral Home Rogers. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to the: Tangible Truth Ministries https://www.tangibletruthministries.com/give/ Bentonville Public Library Foundation https://interland3.donorperfect.net/weblink/weblink.aspx?name=E252031&id=1 Ouachita Baptist University and please specify the Mary Shambarger Vocal Scholarship Fund https://obu.edu/development/give.php
Sarah Plyler
Date of passing: February 21, 2022
Sarah Ann Wingfield Plyler age 72, of Arkadelphia, passed away on Monday, February 21, 2022 at her home. Sarah was born November 27, 1949 to James William and Reva Tarpley Wingfield. She was a member of Holly Springs Baptist Church. Sarah taught school with the Gurdon School System. She and her husband were missionaries, serving in Guatemala for several years. She enjoyed reading, especially her Bible and was a devoted prayer warrior. She ran the race set before her with endurance and grace. Sarah was every aspect of a Proverbs 31 woman. She loved her family fiercely and prayed for them fervently. She had the most beautiful soul and pursued righteousness every day of her life. The world was a better place because of her. She touched countless lives and will be missed by many. She was preceded in death by her parents and a great-nephew, Luke Baker. Survivors are her loving husband of fifty-three years, Larry Plyler; three sons, Dr. Michael Plyler and wife, Sharon of Hot Springs, Mark Plyler and wife, Mandy of Glen Rose and Mitch Plyler and wife, Lynsey of Gurdon; six grandchildren, Lawson Plyler and wife, Madison, Cole Plyler, Peyton Plyler, Noah Plyler, Tessa Plyler and K. K. Plyler; a great-grandson, Shepherd Plyler; one sister, Mary Beth Downey and husband, Dennis of Conway; brother-in-law, Gary Plyler and wife, Wendy of Gurdon; nephews, Dennie Downey, Joe Plyler and wife, Kayla, Jake Plyler and wife, Rebecca and nieces, Gena Downey and Jill Jester and husband, Jon, several other great nieces and nephews. Visitation will be 5-7 PM Thursday, February 24th at Ruggles-Wilcox Funeral Home. Service will be 2:00 PM Friday, February 25th at Third Street Baptist Church with Bro. David Dillard and Bro. James Guthrie officiating. Burial will follow at Rest Haven Memorial Gardens. Pallbearers will be Joe Plyler, Jake Plyler. Jon Jester, Dennie Downey, Jay Downey, Rusty Ross and Kerry Baker. Memorials may be made to International Mission Board Lottie Moon at www.imb.org.
Stephen Ellison
Date of passing: February 15, 2022
Stephen Wayne Ellison, age 63, of Board Camp, Arkansas, died, Tuesday, February 15, 2022 at the National Park Medical Center in Hot Springs, Arkansas. Steve was born on Wednesday, January 7, 1959 to Wayne Gene and Annette LaForge Ellison in Hallettsville, Texas. Steve grew up on the family farm in Board Camp, AR and attended Board Camp Baptist Church. Steve had many fond memories from those days. Pastor and Mrs. Vernual Ridgeway were instrumental in him coming to Christ and surrendering to the ministry. Pastor Ridgeway baptized Steve in Board Camp Creek when he was thirteen years old. Steve graduated 3rd academically in the 1977 class of Mena High School. Steve participated in basketball and was a starter on the 1976 Arkansas State Champion Football Team from Mena H.S. After high school, Steve earned a Bachelor of Science in Education degree from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. Steve later graduated with highest honors with a Master of Arts in Theological Studies degree from Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City, MO. Steve also earned certification in Intentional Interim Ministry from the Center for Congregational Health in Wake Forest, North Carolina. He later earned certification in Basic Christian Apologetics from the Creation Apologetics Teachers College based in Idaho. In 1984, Steve put his double majors of Physical Education and Social Studies to use as a public school teacher and coach for ten years in Gatesville, TX. Steve also taught and coached in Cedar Hill, TX as well as Waldron and Mena, AR. Steve was active in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes as a student at Mena H.S. and in three of the schools where he coached. That FCA involvement led him to raise the necessary funds to open an FCA office in Waco, TX where he served as that office’s first Area Representative. Steve ministered on more than two-hundred school campuses in a twelve county area around Killeen and Waco including Baylor University. During that time, Steve was ordained to the gospel ministry by Trinity Baptist Church in Gatesville, TX. Because of their FCA relationship, Grant Teaff preached Steve’s ordination message. Steve served in FCA as a volunteer for many years and for nine years in a variety of paid positions. He worked alongside many great and humble men, including Coach Teaff, Gene Stallings, Burton Lawless, Bobby Bowden, Cody Carlson, Tom Osborne, Spike Dykes, Tom Landry, and many others. Because of the FCA position, Steve began to receive requests to fill in for ill or traveling pastors. Before long, a small country church in Crawford, TX asked Steve to be their bi-vocational pastor where he served for four and one-half years while also continuing to serve as the Area Director for the Heart of Texas FCA. After that, Steve transitioned into a full-time pastorate in Hodgen, OK and later in the Hot Springs area. In January of 2012, Steve simultaneously began serving as the Manager and Administrator for the Ouachita Baptist Assembly and as the Interim Pastor for Horatio FBC. After his ministry at Horatio, Associational Missionary duties were added to his OBA responsibilities. Steve then served as Interim Pastor at Mena FBC and Calvary BC. Steve wrote a weekly devotional column published across several southern states in hundreds of newspapers. Steve was even selected to serve on the Board of Directors for the Arkansas Baptist Newsmagazine for 2018 and 2019. Steve’s final pastorate was at Salem Baptist Church in Nunley, AR. During his ministry at Salem he continued to teach Seminary Extension classes through the Ouachita Theological Training Institute in Mena, DeQueen, and at the Jim E. Hamilton Correctional Center in Hodgen. He loved the Salem children dearly and the entire Salem church. His heart was for discipleship across all ages. Steve tirelessly and faithfully served the Lord at home and vocationally throughout his entire life. He was preceded in death by his father, Wayne Ellison and one brother, Michael Ellison. Steve is survived by his wife of 30 years, Malea Ellison of Board Camp; his mother Annette Ellison of Board Camp; his sons and wives, Levi and Jessica Ellison of Mena and Caleb and Sidney Ellison of Conway; bonus son and fiance, Kendall Pearce and Ronni Denham of Hot Springs; his brother and wife, Brandon and Linda Ellison of Mena; one unborn grandson, Daniel Scott Ellison of Mena; Malea’s parents, Richard and Mary Ruth Martin of Mena; several nieces and nephews and a host of other relatives and friends.
Bill Hickem
Date of passing: February 10, 2022
Billy Gene Hickem, 94 years of age, passed away on Feb. 10, with peace and dignity, at Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center, with two of his children by his side. He entered his glorious, eternal reward in Heaven, at 8:15 pm. He had been a patient under the care of Covenant Hospice for the past two years. He is preceded in death by his dear wife of 68 years, Billie Jean; a daughter, Debbie Forrester; 2 grandchildren, his parents & sister, and a host of other loved ones. He is survived by his daughter, Christy Deese (Harold); his son, Rev. Neil Hickem, both of Panama City; and his daughter, Becky Stanslaski (Dave) of Boone, NC; and 7 grandchildren & 7 great grandchildren. Bill was born on Feb. 5, 1928, in his home, in the small coal mining town of Royalton, in southern Illinois, to the parents of Harry & Loueva Hickem. Bill became a Christian, and accepted Christ as his Lord & savior when he was 8 yrs. old, while attending a tent revival with a friend. Soon after, he was baptized and had the blessing and joy of leading his parents to Christ, within the year. They immediately became active in a local Baptist church and were baptized. His little sister Betty got saved several years later. At the age of 16, Bill got his first job, working with the Illinois Central Railroad. Tragically, he lost his wonderful, loving father in a coal mining accident, his senior year in high school, at the age of 17. He quickly had to grow up and become “the man of the house”, for his grieving mother and little sister. After high school. He moved to Arkadelphia, Arkansas, where he attended Ouachita Baptist University. During his college years, God called him into the ministry and he met the love of his life & future wife, Billie Jean Mosley, of Little Rock. They joined hands and hearts in marriage on Aug. 22, 1948, and were married for 68 wonderful years, until her death in 2016. Between graduating from college and beginning seminary, Billy wore many hats. He worked in the junior high school in Prescott, Ark. where he was the principal, science teacher, band director and head coach of the boys football and basketball teams. For a short time, he also worked for The National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA), the new rocket & aeronautical program for the federal government, which would become NASA, a few years later. Within the next year, he and his wife Billie moved to Louisville, Ky., where he enrolled in The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. While there, he pastored 2 different churches, his wife taught school, and they had their first child, Christy. He received his Master of Divinity Degree and moved to Bentonville, Ark. in the beautiful Ozark Mountains, to pastor the First Baptist Church. While there, his other three children were born and he became an ardent Ark. Razorback fan (and was until the day he died). Bill and his family moved to Crossett, Ark., where he served as pastor for 7 years. This was a very enjoyable time and chapter in his and his family’s life. The church experienced much growth, under his leadership, numerically and in construction and renovations of buildings. Dr. Hickem served the Lord for over 55 years and pastored churches in 4 different states…Kentucky, Arkansas, Florida & Georgia. Before his death, Dr. Hickem requested that in lieu of flowers, donations be made in his memory, to the Building Fund of First Baptist Church, P. O. Box 1200, Panama City, FL 32402; and/or Covenant Hospice, 107 W 19th St, Panama City, FL 32405 “For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.” 2 Timothy 4:6-8 “Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your Lord.” Matthew 25:23 For the full obituary, go to www.kentforestlawn.com/tributes/Billy-Hickem
Louise Moore
Date of passing: February 8, 2022
Etta Louise Moore, 85, of Benton, Arkansas, went home to be with her Lord and Savior on Feb 8th, 2022 surrounded by the ones she loved the most, her family. Louise “Granny” Moore, born on November 7th, 1936 to Cecil and Pearl Thornton in Hot Springs, Arkansas, immediately brought joy and something very special into this world. Louise went on to graduate from Hot Springs High School in 1955. After graduating from high school, Louise immediately began working at the Arlington Hotel. In 1955, she met Doyle Moore and the two started a courtship for the next 4 years. Doyle and Louise were married on April 25th, 1959 and had two children, the late Vicki Moore Martin and Brian Moore, both of Benton, Arkansas. Louise was a fiercely dedicated wife, mom, and grandmother. Family came first and was above all else to her, a value she instilled in all those around her. The hole left by her absence will be impossible to fill. Louise’s relationship with her Lord and Savior was an example to us all. She has left behind a legacy of prayer for her family and those that knew her. Louise understood the power of prayer and her greatest desire was to know Him and make Him known. Louise was predeceased by in death by her daughter Vicki Martin of Benton. Her parents Cecil and Pearl Thornton of Hot Springs. Brothers, Kenneth and Howard Thornton of Hot Springs, Arkansas. She is survived by her husband of 62 years, Doyle Moore. Son, Reverend Brian Moore (Elizabeth) and their six children: Layton, Mattie, Cade, Rylie Jo, Callie, and Isabell, of Benton, Arkansas. Granddaughter, Amy Martin, of Benton, Arkansas. Grandson, Aaron Martin (Melanie) and their three children: Kynlee, Easton, Lillian, of Benton, Arkansas. Survivors also include sister Katherine Hughes and brother Roger Thornton (Brenda) of Royal, Arkansas. And a host of nieces and nephews. Doyle and Louise were members of Geyer Springs First Baptist Church in Little Rock for 43 years where Louise taught Sunday School, taught women’s bible studies, worked with students, was a member of BSF, and more. In 2012 they moved their membership to Highland Heights Baptist where their son is pastoring in Benton, Arkansas.
Michael P. Smith
Date of passing: February 6, 2022
Rev. Michael Perry Smith “Mike”, age 62, of Hot Springs, Arkansas, passed away on Sunday February 6th, 2022. Michael Smith was born to Uless Clifton Smith and Lillian Onedia Bain on April 24th, 1959. He is survived by his wife Betty Ann Curtis Smith, son Nicholas Michael Smith, daughter and son-in-law Lillian Ann and Joseph Alderman, Grandson and “Little Buddy” Maximus Alderman, brother and sister-in-law William Joey “Joe” and Peggy Smith, Nephews Willias Smith (Stephanie), and Wesley Smith (Leslie), Sister-in-Law Judy Smith all of Hot Springs, Sisters Brenda Nooner of Texas, Beverly Garrett (Jerry) of Malvern, and Brother Wayne Smith of FL, Brother-in-Law Brian Curtis of Texas, Sister-in-laws Debbie Jones (Jason) of FL, Crystal Mitchell (Tim), Linda Thomas, Sarah Rabaz (John), Midge Mcgarr, and Angla Crumpton all of Hot Springs. He is also survived by dozens of other beloved family members including nieces, nephews, cousins, aunts, uncles and hundreds of close friends. Mike graduated from Mountain Pine High School in 1977, and went on to attend Hendrix college and Quapaw Technical School, where received a certificate in appliance repair. After that, he earned two Associates degrees from Garland County Community College. A lover of knowledge and dedicated to a life-time of learning, in 1992, he earned a Bachelor of Theology from Andersonville Theological Seminary and a Master of Science in Theology in 2007, and in 2020 he began work on his Doctoral Degree. Mike loved Mountain Pine School and Community with his whole heart. Michael was awarded the 1st ever LARGEST HEART AWARD FOR RED DEVILS FOOTBALL. He carries the record as one half of the only Red Devils Double Tennis Team. He was an Honor Graduate of The Class of 1977. Michael remained an active member of the community and an advocate for the school, the students, and the community for the rest of his life. He was the “Voice of the Red Devils”, the Announcer and Color Commentator for the Football Team, for over 3 decades. He proudly commentated for the Championship game of 2021 played at War Memorial Stadium. He also coached Pee Wee Football for several years, and was the official scorekeeper for the High School Baseball team for over 7 years. Mike proudly served on the Mountain Pine School Board for 11 years, earning the highest level of honors as a Pinnacle Board Member for his dedication to training and education. Mike truly lived the motto “Once a Red Devil Always a Red Devil ”. Michael was truly a jack-of-all trades, he held many positions and job titles over the course of his life. He taught appliance repair at Quapaw Vocational Technical School. He joined the Arkansas Air National Guard in 1981 and proudly served our country for 11 years. During that time, he received a degree from the Community College of the Air Force. In 1985, he joined the Hot Springs Police Department. Mike’s passion for people was shown so often through serving the community of Hot Springs as a Patrol Officer, Beat Officer, Street Crimes Officer, Detective, Certified Law Enforcement Training Officer, and in PCR. In 1986, his fellow officers voted him FOP Rookie of the Year. He also served as a certified DARE Officer at Hot Springs Schools during his time on the police force. He loved every aspect of law enforcement. In 1992, he retired due to an injury sustained in-the-line of duty. After retiring from the Police Department, Mike surrendered to full-time ministry. He was called to pastor at Shady Grove Baptist Church in Curtis, Arkansas in 1992. He was the pastor at Shady Grove for two years, during which he received his ordination. In 1996, he was called to pastor his home church, Rector Heights Baptist Church in Hot Springs. He faithfully led this congregation for over 25 years. Obedience to God’s Word held the top place in Michael’s heart. He worked diligently to help people fall in love with the Savior and become a disciple of Jesus Christ and work every day to win and make disciples for Jesus. During this time, Mike was a faithful member of the Quarterback Club, and was awarded Rookie of the Year. He also partnered with the Veteran’s Community Partnership of the Ouachitas and received his certification as a Veteran’s Clergy and Advocate. For the past few years, he also served as a Client Advocate, teaching Fatherhood, Parenting, and Anger Management at Changepoint Pregnancy Care and Parenting Center. Over the last 5 years, he served in the Jail Ministry in Saline County and Garland County Detention Centers. In December of 2021, he began his work as the Garland County Jail Ministry Chaplain and Board President. He was honored to serve God and his community in this role, and prayed that “God opens ways to bring diverse ideas to the mission field of serving with GCJMI.” Mike loved people, and he loved serving his community. He served on the Board of the Piney Fire Department for the past several years, and as board President this year. He was also a member of the Hot Springs Masonic Lodge for most of his adult life. Michael also fell in love with the ministry of the Christian Motorcyclist Association, as much as he loved bikes, he loved the ministry more. He was an active member of the Spring Riders Chapter of the CMA.
R.E. Clark
Date of passing: December 19, 2021
Ralph Ernest “R.E.” Clark, 67, of Bentonville, Ark., entered the throne room of Heaven on December 19th, 2021. He was born July 7th, 1954, in Baton Rouge, La. He faithfully served more than 40 years in the gospel ministry, which included 18 years as a pastor and 22 years as Associational Missionary with the Northwest Baptist Association. His missionary service abroad has resulted in the spreading of the Gospel to five continents. He was the author of three daily devotionals, several Bible study manuals, and a book on revival preparation. Above all, he always placed his family first. In the home, he lived what he preached leaving a legacy that will continue to point others to Christ. He is survived by his wife, Trudy Grimmett Clark; three daughters, Amy Holliman (Kevin), Jennifer Bertrand (Glynn), Kayre Chastain (Andrew); a son, Jonathan Clark (Courtney); 10 grandchildren; one great-grandchild; four stepchildren; eight step-grandchildren; and three step-great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife of 36 years, Kay Clark; his parents; sister; and brother. Visitation and service at First Baptist Church of Rogers, Ark. (Pleasant Grove Campus) on Tuesday, Dec 21st, from 6-9 p.m., and on Wednesday, Dec 22nd, from 1 p.m. until service begins at 2 p.m., with Glynn Bertrand officiating. Honorary pallbearers are Grant Holliman, Jacob Bertrand, Dylan Bertrand, Matthew Chastain, Joel Clark, and Kayden Clark.
Devellyn Oliver
Date of passing: December 8, 2021
DeVellyn Oliver, 89, of Charleston, Arkansas, passed from this life on Wednesday, December 8, 2021 in Fort Smith. She was born March 29, 1932 in Hampton, Arkansas to Walter “Pete” and Katherine (Witherington) Oliver. She was a member of First Baptist Church in Barling and was a missionary for the Foreign Mission Board. She also was an RN at Mati Baptist Hospital in the Philippines for 40 years. She is preceded in death by her parents before mentioned; her brother, Sam Oliver; and her infant sister, Juanita. Funeral services were held on Saturday, December 11, 2021, at First Baptist Church in Hampton with burial at Camp Ground Cemetery in Hampton, under the direction of Roberts Funeral Home. DeVellyn is survived by one sister, Marigail Toney of Magazine; 3 nieces, Laura Staton (Bruce), Paula Russell (Kenny), and Lori Fawbush (Nathan); 1 nephew, Walter Toney; and numerous great nieces and nephews. Pallbearers: Walter Toney, Kenny Russell, Blake Russell, Bruce Staton, Mark Hodnett, and Nathan Fawbush
Ben Craft
Date of passing: December 4, 2021
David Benjamin “Ben” Craft, Jr. of Little Rock passed away in the early morning hours of Saturday, December 4, 2021 at the age of 86. Ben graduated North Little Rock High School in 1953 and in 1955 married Jackie Sims with whom he celebrated 66 years of marriage. He worked as a lineman and eventually an assigner for Southwestern Bell, from where he retired. In his younger years he also served our country as a member of the 153rd Infantry of the Arkansas National Guard. Music was Ben’s first love which led him to share his beautiful bass voice with thousands of people over the years. He participated in many choirs and quartets including the senior boys quartet at North Little Rock High School. He was later a member of “Joe Roper and the Melody Boys” then the Venable Quartet which entertained television audiences every week in the late 50’s, early 60’s. He was an active member of the Rackensack Folklore Society for nearly 50 years where he was well-known to perform and write funny songs. Ben continued sharing his talent and gifts through the years as director of music at Rosedale Baptist Church and First Baptist Wakefield, both in Little Rock. As a man of strong faith, for many years, he not only taught Sunday School but was a Deacon of the Baptist Church and always served in many capacities wherever he chose to worship. With a love of the outdoors, Ben was an avid hunter and loved to fish, spending many hours in the woods and on the lakes in Arkansas. Ben is survived by his wife of 66 years, Jackie Sims Craft, his son David Craft, III (Cindy) of Little Rock, his daughter Melanie Craft Cook (Kevin) of Texas, 5 Grandchildren, Laura Millspaugh (Andrew), David Craft, IV (Katherina), Jeff Craft, Wyatt Cook (Kaitlin), Holly Cook, and 5 Great Grandchildren, Claire and Patrick Millspaugh, Sawyer and Samuel Cook, and Sophia Craft. He was preceded in death by his parents, Benny and Iva Craft, half-brother Billy Belcher, and brother Jacob “Jay” Craft, and brother-in-law Jerry Sims. Funeral will be at 1:30 p.m., Wednesday, December 8, 2021 at Roller-Chenal Funeral Home Chapel. Visitation will be 12:30-1:30 p.m. prior to the service. Burial will follow at Pinecrest Memorial Park.
Bobbie Lois Easter
Date of passing: December 4, 2021
Bobbie Lois Sesser Easter passed away December 4, 2021 at Evergreen Living Center at Stagecoach Road, Bryant, AR. Mrs. Easter was born September 20, 1931 in Malvern, AR to Claude and Audie Bridges Sesser. She was retired after more than 20 years at Ouachita Baptist University Bookstore. She has been an active member of Park Hill Baptist Church for over 63 years and has served in various leadership roles including the starting of several Sunday School Classes. She was known for baking homemade apple pies from her trees. She also loved gardening, growing flowers and plants for her home. Preceding her in death are her parents, Claude and Audie (Bridges) Sesser, as well as her beloved husband of 45 years, David Eugene Easter. Her three brothers also preceded her in death: Austin (Jack) Sesser, J.D. Sesser and Billy Joe (Pete) Sesser. She is survived by one daughter, Peggy Jo and Rev. Joseph Burt of Arkadelphia, AR. two sons: Lt. Col. (Ret.) Max and Kathy Easter of Cabot, AR and Lt. Col. (Ret.) Clark and Lisa Easter of Sheridan, AR. She is also survived by her one sister, Stella and Jack Hazzard of Hot Springs, AR. Mrs. Easter has seven grandchildren: Dr. Daniel Burt, Sara Jo Morris, Christopher Easter, Courtney Waggoner, Christine Easter, Roxanne Easter, Tiffany Easter. She also has 10 Great Grandchildren. Pallbearers are: Brent Garner, Tom Wright, James White, Richard Womack, Chris Babb, Paul McDade, Brent Bridges, Charles Holland, and Quinton Cooper. Services will be held 10:00am (Visitation at 9:00am) Saturday December 11, 2021 at Park Hill Baptist Church in Arkadelphia. Burial will be at Rest Haven Cemetery. Memorials and contributions may be given to Red River Baptist Association, Arkadelphia, AR
John F. Addison
Date of passing: November 22, 2021
John Addison, age 83, of Bartlett, Tennessee passed away on Monday, November 22, 2021. John was born October 19, 1938 in Osyka, MS to the late Charlie and Annie Lou Addison. John Addison was a faithful servant at Bellevue Baptist Church for over 50 years. John joined Bellevue in 1963 with his wife, Janice and they taught Sunday School class to 6th grade students. After 36 years, they transitioned to the Family of Friends Life Group which he taught for 15 years. John served as a deacon, a Disciple Life Teacher, a Bellevue Baseball Coach, and he served with the Bellevue Foundation. He graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi with Majors in Chemistry and Biology with minors in Mathematics and German. John received a Masters in Chemistry from Memphis State University. He worked at Baxter Laboratories, Velsicol Chemical and began his career at Schering – Plough as a Senior Methodist Chemist in 1966. He was ultimately promoted the Vice President of Quality Control and Technical Service, a position he held until his retirement in 1997. During the 1982 tampering deaths involving Tylenol, he chaired The Expert Technical Committee on Tamper – Resistant Packaging working with the Food and Drug Administration to develop the Tamper – Resistant Packaging Regulations to protect the general public. John had many accomplishments including: serving on multiple advisory boards for educational institutions at every level, serving on the Endowment Fund Committee for Chemistry Scholarships at University of Southern Mississippi, contributing to a Pharmaceutical textbooks and being a Professor at multiple Universities. He and Janice also endowed a scholarship for chemistry students at Southern Mississippi. John is preceded in death by his brother, Charles Addison. He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Janice Wells Addison, he is survived by his children; Greg Addison, (Janet), Wayne Addison (Suellen)and Kathy Armstrong (Rex) his grandchildren; Mabry, Ben, Grant, Ryan, Joseph, Nicholas, Mark, Weston and Emily, his siblings; Robert Addison, Margaret Anne Champagne, and David Addison. A visitation will be held Friday, November 26, 2021 from 9:30 AM to 11:00 AM at Bellevue Baptist Church, 2000 Appling Rd, Cordova, TN 38016 followed by a funeral service at 11:00AM. The committal service will be Friday, November 26, 2021 at 12:00 PM at Memphis Funeral Home and Memorial Gardens, 3700 North Germantown Parkway, Bartlett, TN 38133. In lieu of flowers, gifts in memory may be offered to Love Worth Finding Ministries (lwf.org) Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.MemphisFuneralGermantownParkway.com for the Addison family.

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