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Obituaries for Sept. 19, 2013; Betty Wofford, Kenneth Fields, Bonnie Palmer, Eva Walker, Evelyn Goss, James Mercer, Mack Stancil, Charles Smith, Bob Justice, Marjorie Cochran, Joshua Richards

Betty Wofford
    Roper Funeral Home and Crematory announces the death and funeral arrangements of Mrs. Betty Wofford, age 77 of Jasper, who passed away Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2013, at Piedmont Mountainside Hospital.
    She is survived by her husband, Mr. Lester Wofford, Jasper; special nieces and nephew, Darlene Chapman, Dallas, Ga., Barbara Vaughn, Crockett, Tx., and Jake Tatum, Douglasville, Ga.; brothers- and sisters-in-law, Paul and Janet Wofford, Jasper, Vertie and Randall Moody, Clayton Community, Billy and Donna Wofford, Jasper, and Wynelle Wofford, Yellow Creek Community. other nieces and nephews also survive.
    The funeral service was held at 2 p.m. Friday from the Chapel of Roper Funeral Home with the Rev. Robert Allen officiating. Interment followed in the Long Swamp Baptist Church Cemetery. In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made to the Long Swamp Baptist Church Cemetery Fund.

Kenneth Fields
    Kenneth Dee Fields, age 87, passed away on Sept. 11, 2013, following a lengthy illness. 
    He was born in Marble Hill, Ga., and was a long time resident of Clay County. He proudly served in the U.S. Air Force until his retirement in 1965 and later retired from the US Postal Service. 
    He was predeceased by parents, Olie and Martha Fields; loving wife of 62 years, Marjorie Lee Fields; and daughter, Cecelia Lea Olson.
    Survivors include his son, Kenneth D. Fields, Jr. and wife K. Kay Fields; daughter, Marti J. Comer; brother, J.M. Fields; sister, Nina Winters;grandchildren, Eric Olson and wife Jennifer Olson, Becky Olson, Don K. Comer, Jr. and Travis Comer; and great-grandchildren, Kyle and Ryan Olson. A number of nieces and nephews also survive. 
    The funeral service was held at 11 a.m. at Holly Hill Funeral Home, 3601 Old Jennings Road, Middleburg, Fl., with the Rev. Rick Crews officiating. Burial followed in Holly Hill Memorial Park.

Bonnie Palmer
    Mrs. Bonnie Stone Palmer, age 59 of Jasper, Ga., passed away on Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2013, at her residence.
    Born Feb. 25, 1954, in Pickens County, she was the daughter of the late Carter Tate Stone and Margaret Chastain Stone. She was also preceded in death by her husband, Melvin Edward Palmer; daughter, Amanda Marie Palmer; granddaughter, Shannen Palmer; and sister, Ruby Duckett.
    Mrs. Palmer had worked as a cashier at Dollar General Store in Hinton and was a member of the Pleasant Hill Baptist Church.        
    Survivors include her daughter and son-in-law, Roseanne and Jason Hamrick, Jasper;  son and daughter-in-law, Merrick and Gabriele Palmer, Ellijay, Ga.; grandchildren, Cody, Dylan and Kaylin Nelson and Josie, Justin and Dawson Hamrick; sisters, Susie Young, Jasper, Margie McDaniel, Ellijay, Ga., Mary Bell Palmer, Jasper, and Sandy Rafferty, Kennesaw, Ga.;  and brothers, Jack Stone, Jasper, Robert Stone, Calhoun, Ga., and Elbert Stone, Jasper. Several nieces and nephews also survive.
    The funeral service was held at 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 14, at Pleasant Hill Baptist Church with the Revs. Buck Parker, Ronnie Ray and Harold Cantrell  officiating. Interment followed in the church cemetery. Arrangements and services were entrusted to the staff of Roper Funeral Home & Crematory of Jasper.

Eva Walker
    Roper Funeral Home and Crematory of Jasper announces the death of Mrs. Eva Jane Prather Walker, age 75 of Jasper, who passed away at her home Sunday morning, Sept. 15, 2013.
    She was preceded in death by her parents, Woodrow and Georgia Prather; husband Floyd Walker; and brother, Tommy Prather. She is survived by her son, Jerry D. “Jerky” Walker, Jasper; daughter and son-in-law, Becky and Jackie Bannister, Jasper; and brother and sister-in-law, Harley “Buck” and Jessie Prather, Jasper. Nieces and nephews also survive.
    The funeral service was held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18, at the Chapel of Roper Funeral Home with the Revs. Bill Lawrence, Carter Payne and Kris Stancil officiating. Interment followed in Refuge Baptist Church Cemetery. The family received friends Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday morning until the funeral hour.

Evelyn Goss
    Mrs. Evelyn Goss, age 83 of Jasper, passed away Saturday, Sept. 14, 2013, at Piedmont Mountainside Hospital following a sudden illness.
    She was born Dec. 15, 1929, to the late Fuller and Addie (Gaddis) Forrest.
    She was preceded in death by her husband, S.E. Goss, Jr.; and brothers, Edward and Edsal Forrest. Mrs. Goss is survived by her sister, Dorothy Forrest; and brother, Eugene Forrest, both of Jasper. Nieces, nephews and other relatives also survive.
    A private graveside service was held Tuesday, Sept. 17, at 11 a.m. at Philadelphia Baptist Church. Cagle Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.

James Mercer
    James E. Mercer was born Nov. 25, 1947, in Pickens County, Ga. He served in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War. He enjoyed hunting, fishing and mechanic work. Mr. Mercer retired from McKinney Drilling Co. after approximately 35 years.
    Mr. Mercer passed on July 30, 2013, after battling kidney disease.
    Survivors include his wife, Donna Mercer, McDonough Ga.; former wife, Elaine Lathem, Jasper; children, Dwayne Mercer, Jasper, Tabby Rice and Justin, Seth and Aiden Mercer, all of McDonough, Ga.; sisters, Marie Brittain, Newnan, Ga., Jean Archer, Rome, Ga., and Patricia Yates, Jasper. Eight grandchildren, four great-grandchildren and several nieces, nephews and other relatives also survive. He was preceded in death by his mother, Annie Maude Duckett; and father, Robert “Ben” Mercer.
    Mr. Mercer was cremated. There will be a memorial service celebrating the life of James E. Mercer at Arbor Hill Baptist Church in Marble Hill on Sept. 28 at 2 p.m. All family and friends welcome. A covered dish dinner will be held after the service.   

Mack Stancil
    Guy Mack Stancil (“Mack”), age 79, formerly of Pickens, Cherokee, Hall and Lumpkin counties, Ga., Charlottesville, Va., and Gulf Shores, Al., passed away on Tuesday, August 27, 2013, at his home in Smyrna, Ga.
    Mack was a man of many talents – a student; a teacher; a golfer; a singer; an entertainer; a storyteller; a builder and “fixer” of homes, fine furniture and a putt-putt golf course; a chicken farmer; an artist; an astronomer; a florist; a master packer of car trunks (one of the many traits inherited by his daughter); and a lover of life.
    Mack was born to Guy and Ruby McFarland Stancil in Tate, Ga., where he fondly remembered attending first grade at Tate Elementary School. He was quite an intelligent man who worked hard for his multiple college, university and administrative degrees, attending Reinhardt Academy and Reinhardt College, North Georgia College and University of Georgia. In 1965, Mack was awarded National Science Foundation scholarships related to the space program, and studied science and biology at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville.
    During his career in education, Mr. Stancil was a biology teacher and golf coach at Cherokee High School in Canton; biology teacher at Arlington High School in Arlington; teacher, basketball coach and principal at Clayton Community Elementary School in Cherokee County; assistant principal at Gainesville Jr. High School, Gainesville; principal at Lumpkin County Middle School in Dahlonega; principal at Miller Park and Enota Elementary Schools in Gainesville; and principal at Tippens Elementary, Canton, from where he retired in 1988. Mr. Stancil made an impact on many young lives throughout his career in education, and he always wore his shirttail tucked in.
    He was a sweet man, although some folks may not remember him as such if he was ever their principal or adversary on the golf course.
    Oh, how Mack loved to sing (gospel and barbershop music) with his family and friends. He was part of and directed many barbershop quartets and choruses. His children knew the words to many barbershop songs before they knew their ABC’s. He was especially proud when his son joined him in the barbershop quartets and choruses.         Mack grew up playing golf with his father, uncles and cousins; throughout his life he was a member of various golf courses, winning multiple course championships, tournaments and awards. He continued to play the game well, and became giddy when he was still able to “shoot his age” or better in his 70s.
    Mack was a member of the Sharptop Masonic Lodge in Canton where he was a Master Mason as well as a Past Grand Master Mason. Of his many awards, one of his most prized was being named an Outstanding Young Man of America in 1965.
    In addition to singing and golf, Mack loved God, his family, friends and crossword puzzles, but most of all he loved Joyce Dobson Stancil, his childhood sweetheart and bride of just over 60 years. After retirement, Mack and Joyce enjoyed life to the fullest, traveling and doing pretty much whatever they wanted to do. They traveled the continental U.S. in their motor home for several years until settling down in Gulf Shores, Al., in 1997.
    Mack’s body has been cremated; a memorial/celebration of his spirit will take place at a later date when the family is ready, which may be a month from now or may be six months. For those who would like to know, Mack was diagnosed with dementia several years ago, and the family was preparing for that eventuality. However, he was diagnosed with a rare and very aggressive form of cancer in early August which spread extremely quickly. In fact, he was still exercising on July 8, just two days before exhibiting any signs of being ill.
    In addition to his beloved Joyce, Mack is survived by his son and daughter-in-law, Mark and Linda Baker Stancil, Gainesville; and his daughter and favorite son-in-law, Letha Stancil Bullard and Michael Bullard of Smyrna, Ga.; grandsons, Jesse and Jamie Stancil, Gainesville, and Andrew Bullard, Marietta; granddaughter and grandson-in-law, Jennifer Bullard Hyden and Michael Hyden, Dallas, Ga.; and one great-grandson, Braydon Hyden. He is also survived by a sister, Gail Stancil Ayers, Canton; and too many cousins, nieces and nephews to mention.     The family has received countless messages and cards from family and friends expressing sympathy and support, and truly appreciates them all. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to The Jackson Laboratory, 600 Main Street, Bar Harbor, Maine 04609, where research is performed regarding cancer and neurobiology. Mack and Joyce enjoyed many trips to the Bar Harbor area where they ate their collective weight in lobsters.

Charles Smith
    In loving memory of Mr. Charles Lester Smith, age 76 of Talking Rock, who entered into rest on Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, at his residence.
    Mr. Smith is survived by his wife, Annette Smith, Talking Rock; daughter and son-in-law, Sylvia and Robert Odom, Blue Ridge; brothers, Hugh Smith, Acworth, Thomas Smith, Marietta, Larry Smith, Stockbridge, Mike Smith, Dallas, and Lonnie Smith, Talking Rock; and sister, Virginia Groover, Marietta. Mr. Smith had one grandchild, Robert Charles Odom, and several nieces and nephews who also survive.
    The funeral service was held 2 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 16, at Cagle Funeral Home Chapel with the Rev. Gerry Davis officiating. Interment followed at Sunrise Memorial Gardens.  Pallbearers were: Robert Odom, Robert C. Odom, Larry Smith, Donnie and Todd Barber and Hugh and Mike Smith. Cagle Funeral Home was honored to serve the Smith family.
Michael Murphy
    Michael Peter Murphy, beloved husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend, passed away at age 74 on Saturday, Sept. 7, at Piedmont Mountainside Hospital in Jasper, Ga.      Michael was born in Dexter, Mi., on Sept. 24, 1938, to Marguerite Hartman and Thomas Murphy. He was one of 9 children.
    Michael grew up in Chelsea, Mi., and joined the Navy out of high school. Following his military service he moved to Anaheim, Ca., where he met and married the love of his life, Dee Lancaster of Logan, WV.             Michael earned his Bachelor’s degree from California State University, Fullerton. He served on the Anaheim Police Department for 30 years. After retirement he relocated to the beautiful community of Bent Tree in Jasper, Ga., where his grandchildren loved to visit.         Michael enjoyed many hobbies throughout his lifetime which included: beekeeping, carpentry, landscaping, gardening, hunting and fishing. He appreciated opportunities to participate in church charity work and was a member of Our Lady of The Mountain Men’s Club in Jasper.  
    Michael is survived by his wife, Dee; son and his wife, Shawn and Susan, and their three children; daughter and her husband, Erin and Roland Steadham, and their six children; step-son and his wife, Travis and Rene Cain, and their four children; brother, Daniel; and sisters, Patricia Marion, Kay Bertino and Penelope Smedley.  He was preceded in death by his parents; his brother, Matthew’ and sisters, Angella Coppernol, Judith Lewis and Margaret Kohenn.

Fare thee well on this sojourn until we meet again
May God hold you in the palm of His hand
    The funeral Mass will be held Tuesday, Sept. 24, at 11 a.m. at Our Lady of the Mountains Catholic Church, 1908 Waleska Hwy. 108, Jasper, Ga. 30143. Interment of the cremains will be at Georgia National Cemetery at 2:30 Tuesday with military honors by the U.S. Navy. Memorial contributions may be made to Our Lady of the Mountains Catholic Church. Services and arrangements were entrusted to the staff of Roper Funeral Home & Crematory of Jasper.

Bob Justice
    In loving memory of Mr. Robert (Bob) Alexander Justice, age 81 of Marble Hill, who entered into rest on Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2013, at his residence.
    Bob Justice was a hard working man growing up in the mountains of North Carolina.  He was a devoted husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather.  He was the kind of friend everyone wants.  He was loyal and willing to do all he could to help. 
    Bob served in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War and on his return to the states he started a long career with Southern Bell Telephone, retiring with almost 40 years of service.  His passion was the restoration of classic Ford Mustangs, winning many awards at local and national car shows.
    He is survived by his wife, Patricia Chambers Justice, Marble Hill; son, Steve Justice; daughter, Susan Justice Naden; step-son, Mark Chambers; aunt, Jeanne Creasman Lance; grandchildren, Kaytie, Joshua, Christy and Courtney; and seven great-grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his father, Clarence Justice; mother, Ruby Creasman; and first wife, Nancy Culler Justice.
    He will be missed dearly by all who loved him.
    The funeral service was held at 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 15, at Cagle Funeral Home Chapel with Kacey Kurter officiating. Interment was at 10:30 a.m. Monday, Sept. 16, at the Georgia National Cemetery in Cherokee County. Pallbearers were: Paul Casey, Mike Reuss, Bruce Kelly, Lon Tanner, B.T. Joyce and Daryl Williams. The family accepted flowers or donations to The American Cancer Society. Cagle Funeral Home was honored to serve the Justice family.


Marjorie Cochran
    In loving memory of Ms. Marjorie Voyles Cochran, age 80 of Dawsonville, Ga., who entered into rest on Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, at Embracing Hospice House in Cumming.
    Ms. Cochran is survived by her sons, Wayne and Stevie Cochran, both of Dawsonville; daughters, Sharon Goode, Sandra Wigington and Melody Ray, all of Dawsonville, and Wanda Wesley, Canton; and brother, Lenton Voyles, Dawsonville. Ms. Cochran had 11 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren. Ms. Cochran was preceded in death by her son, Ronnie (Runt) Cochran.
    The funeral service was held at 2 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 16, at Mount Vernon Baptist Church with the Revs. William Blackwell and Larry Beck officiating.  Interment followed at Mount Vernon Baptist Church Cemetery. Pallbearers were: Thomas Wigington, Alvin Ray, Stevie Cochran, Matthew Martin, Wesley Roberson, Robbie Wesley and Doyle Sanders. Cagle Funeral Home was honored to serve the Cochran family.

Joshua Richards
    Mr. Joshua Alan Richards, age 26 of Jasper, Ga., died Friday, Sept. 13, 2013, at his residence.
    Joshua was born on Oct. 21, 1986, in Canton, Ga.
    He is survived by his parents, Mitchell and Dena Richards, Marble Hill; fiancée, Lacy McDonald, Jasper; sister and brother-in-law, Amberly and Mathew Powell, Ocala, Fl.; grandparents, Shirley Fowler, Canton, Donald and Louise Richards, Ludville, and Jerry Elliott, Al.; and great-grandmother, Martha Mullinax. Several nieces, nephews and other relatives also survive.
    At his request Joshua was cremated and no services are scheduled at this time. Arrangements were entrusted to the staff of Roper Funeral Home and Crematory of Jasper