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Obituaries for June 21, 2012; Rebecca Dowdle, Barbara Cary, Bee Bell, Marie Ray, Minnie Godfrey, Frances Stafford, Sophia Barylak, Billy Clonts

Rebecca Dowdle

Mrs. Rebecca P. Dowdle passed away on June 14, 2012, at the age of 109 years at the Gold City Convalescent Center in Dahlonega, Ga., where she has been a resident for the last 2 years.

She was born in Greenville, Al., in 1903 and was married to Ruble Charles Dowdle of Irvington, Al., for 31 years until his death in 1960.

A native of Alabama, she resided in Irvington and Mobile (Springhill) before moving to Dawsonville in 1984. She was always active in church and was a member of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Mobile for many years and later a member of the Berean Baptist Church in Dahlonega.

Rebecca taught school full-time or performed substitute work for 35 years until the death of her husband. Widowed for over 52 years, Rebecca remained in Mobile and cared for her extended family. While there she devotedly cared for her two older sisters in the failing years and provided homecare for 10 years for her mother, Virginia Reid Powell, until she passed away at 108 years of age.  Rebecca enjoyed the same tenacity and health as her mother, remaining in the own home until the age of 81 before moving to Georgia and living with family.

She also remained active and pursued her own interests. She enjoyed her home, keeping it beautiful with many flowers and with her love of working in the yard. Rebecca cared well for the things that she owned, having been influenced by the years of the Depression. She began recycling many years before the movement became popular in an effort to reused and restore resources. She often used money from her recycling to give to the poor.

She also held a sense of adventure as noted in her willingness at 70 years of age to travel with family member to Australia for several months, enjoying her first trip out of the country since her honeymoon.  Photographs of her at the beach rolling on a barrel are a testament to her unique personality and strong will.

Rebecca was devoted to her faith in Jesus Christ and sought to be found performing good works, whether it was to help a neighbor or to write a letter to her congressman. She will be remembered for her strong beliefs, her willingness to stand upon them and her personal strength.

Survivors include her daughter and son-in-law, Becky and Ralph Drew, Dawsonville; and sons and daughters-in-law, Charles and Nellie Dowdle, Mobile,  Walter Reid and Mabel Dowdle,  Atlanta, Ga.,  and Carleton and Marilyn Dowdle, Dawsonville. Fifteen grandchildren, 29 great-grandchildren and 6 great-great-grandchildren also survive.

Visitation was held at Roper Funeral Home Saturday, June 16. A graveside service and burial are scheduled for 11 a.m. Saturday, June 23, at the Odd Fellows Cemetery in Bayou La Batre, Al., with Dr. Jonathan Lovelady of Jacksonville, Fl., officiating. In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be given to Dahlonega Care Center, 343 Grove St. N., Dahlonega, Ga.  30533.


Barbara Cary

Barbara Cary of Jasper, Ga., was called to Christ on June 12, 2012, at the age of 79.

Diagnosed with cancer in 2008, she refused to let it take her without a fight. Born August 7, 1932, to Charles and Mildred Teague in Bloomington, In., Barbara lived in Indianapolis and attended school and college there until moving to New York in 1954.

Barbara loved music, art, dancing, playing the organ, gardening, golfing and drawing.  She was a member of the PTA, served as a Girl Scout leader, was a member of Friends of the Library and was a member of the United Methodist Church.  She loved her family and enjoyed raising her children.

Survivors include her husband of 58 years, Fay Cary, Jasper; sons, Robert Cary and wife Lisa, Moorpark, Ca., Daniel Cary, Alpharetta, Ga., and William Cary and his wife Betty, Coral Springs, Fl.; daughter, Deborah Cary Bartlett and husband Ron, Enterprise, Al.;  and younger sister,  Marjorie Borgmann and her husband Floyd, New Palestine, In. Several grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews also survive.

At her request, Barbara was cremated. A memorial service was held at 11 a.m., Monday, June 18, at the Roper Funeral Home Chapel with Dr. Jerry Johnson officiating. Interment of the cremains followed at 1:30 p.m. Monday at the Georgia National Cemetery in Canton, Ga. In lieu of flowers, the family request that donations be made to Georgia Mountains Hospice, P.O. Box 581, Jasper, Ga.  30143.

“She will live in our hearts forever.”


Bee Bell

Mr. Bee Bell, age 83 of Talking Rock, Ga., died Wednesday, June 13, 2012, at Wildwood Healthcare Center in Talking Rock following a period of declining health.

Born May 9, 1929, in Cherokee County, N.C., he was the son of the late Charlie and Mae Carroll Bell. Mr. Bell was a heavy equipment operator having last worked at Vulcan Materials and was a member of the Ball Creek Baptist Church.

Survivors include his wife, Geraldine Bell Talking Rock; sons and daughters-in-law, Richard and Sandra Powell, David Bell, Daniel and Christi Bell, Donald and Tonya Bell and Doug and Shannon Bell, all of  Talking Rock; grandchildren, Josh and Holly Powell, Shaun, Adam, Brooke, Brandon, Landon and Lacey Bell; and sister, Christine Garren, Valdosta, Ga. Other relatives also survive.

The funeral service was held at 3 p.m., Saturday, June 16,  from Ball Creek Baptist Church with the Revs. Gene Childers and Don Nichols officiating. Interment followed in the church cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family ask that donations be made to Roper Funeral Home to help with funeral expenses.


Marie Ray

Mrs. Marie Ray, age 91 of Jasper, passed away Saturday, June 16, 2012, at Grandview Heath Care Center in Jasper.

She is survived by her son and daughter-in-law, Danny and Mary, Jasper, daughters and sons-in-law, Armenda and Jimmy Brooks, Tate, Bonnie Mulkey and Norman Kirk, Jasper, and Clara and Johnny Walker, Marion, N.C.; and grandchildren, John, Tom and Tim Brooks, Terry and Donald Mulkey, Keri Walker and Kris Ray. Six great-grandchildren and five great-great-grandchildren also survive.

The funeral service was held at 2 p.m. Monday, June 18, from the Chapel of Cagle Funeral Home with the Revs. Tim Pearson and Larry Johnson officiating. Interment followed in Sunrise Memorial Gardens. Pallbearers were: Larry, Lanier, Daryl and Kris Ray, Donald Mulkey and Tim Brooks.


Minnie Godfrey

Ms. Minnie Godfrey, age 76 of Jasper, passed away June 17, 2012, at Piedmont Hospital in Atlanta.

She is survived by her son, Randy Godfrey, Jasper; daughters and sons-in-law, Shelia and Ricky Page, Canton, Cecile and Donald Klein, Ball Ground, and Teresa and Jerry Frix, Cumming; brother, J.R. Stone, Rome Ga.; and sister; Ruth Cantrell, Jasper. Eight grandchildren and three great-grandchildren also survive. Ms. Godfrey was preceeded in death by her daughter, Debbie Godfrey.

The funeral service was held at 2 p.m. Tuesday, June 19, from the Chapel of Cagle Funeral Home with the Rev. Bobby Timms officiating. Interment followed in Mountain Cemetery.


Frances Stafford

Mrs. Frances Stafford, age 79 of Jasper, passed away Monday morning, June 18, 2012, at her home.

Born March 5, 1933, Mrs. Stafford was the daughter of the late Dewey and Eunice White Garrett. She worked as a nurses aid with Northwest Home Health. Mrs. Stafford was a member of Jasper Church of God.

Survivors include her children, Sandra and George Childers, Jr., Fairmount, Tim Stafford, Jasper, and Jeff and Vanessa Stafford, Adairsville; and grandchildren, Johnna and Carl Phelps, Jr., Canton, Dondra and Allen Hendrix, Fairmount, Jasmine Clark and Ezra Stafford, both of Adairsville. Six great-grandchildren also survive. Mrs. Stafford was preceded in death by her husband, Hillard Stafford; and daughter, Betty Jo Chastain.

The funeral service was held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, June 20, from the Chapel of Roper Funeral Home with the Rev. Jerrold Young officiating. Interment followed in Sunrise Memorial Gardens. Roper Funeral Home & Crematory in charge of arrangements.


Sophia Barylak

Sophia Licowska Barylak, age 94, of Manitowoc, Wi., formerly of Bent Tree, where she resided for 10 years, and Philadelphia, Pa., died peacefully on Monday morning, June 11, 2012, at the Manitowoc Health and Rehab Center where she resided for the past four and a half years.

Sophia was born in western Ukraine on Nov. 25, 1917. She married The Very Rev. Thomas Barylak on Oct. 22, 1935, in Ukraine where they endured the horrors of World War II in various East European countries.  The family found itself in Austria at the end of the War. They moved to Germany into a displaced persons camp and remained there until 1950.

Together with their four children, Sophia and Rev. Thomas immigrated to the United States in 1950. They resided in Allentown, Pa., until 1968, at which time they moved to Philadelphia.

Sophia was a warm, gentle and loving person, who dedicated her life to her family. She will be missed and fondly remembered for her kindness.

Sophia is survived by a daughter, Natalie Zmyj, Short Hills, N.J.; sons, Bo (Carol) Barylak, Bent Tree, and Dr. Edward (Chrystina) Barylak, Manitowoc, Wi.; grandchildren: Diana Zmyj Mandicz, Flanders, N.J., Lydia Zmyj, Scotch Pines, N.J., Mark Cehelyk, Princeton, N.J., Andrea Barylak ( Gregory) Lyons, Oakville, Canada, Alexander (Amy) Barylak, Denham Springs, La., Robert (Jill) Barylak, Cumming, Ga., Toma Barylak, San Francisco, Ca., and Tanya Barylak (Blake) Wirht, San Francisco, Ca.; and great-grandchildren, Alexander and Toma Mandicz, Avery and Brock Barylak, Molly and Jack Lyons and Hollis and Ben Barylak.

Sophia was preceded in death by her husband; daughter, Irene Cehelyk; son-in-law Eugene Zmyj; and two brothers and one sister.

A funeral Mass to celebrate Sophia’s life was held in St. Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic Church in Philadelphia on Saturday June 16, 2012, with burial at St. Mary’s Ukrainian Catholic Cemetery in Fox Chase, Pa. Donations may be made to Our Lady of the Mountains Catholic Church (1908 Waleska Hwy. 108, Jasper, Ga. 30143) in memory of Sophia Barylak.


Billy Clonts

William (Billy) Keith Clonts, age 61 of Jasper, Ga., passed away Monday, June 18, 2012, at Grady Hospital.

Survivors include his wife, Faye Clonts, Jasper; children, Jonathan (Jessica) Clonts, Jasper, Eric Pendley, Canton, and Kerry (Daniel) Godfrey, Talking Rock; brothers, Clyde Clonts, Canton, David Clonts, Marble Hill, Arvil and James Clonts, both of Ball Ground, and Tommy Clonts, Dawsonville; sisters, Blanche Covington, Canton, Rachel Denson and Elizabeth Fisher, both of Ball Ground, Ann Pardue, Clarksville, Beulah Smith, Waleska, Judy Mashburn and Lynn Kissinger, both of Canton, Mary Peavy, Waleska, and Linda Watkins, Canton. Several nieces and nephews also survive.

The funeral service was held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, June 20, from the Chapel of South Canton Funeral Home with the Revs. Eric Mayo, Edwin Weaver and Johnny Fisher officiating. Interment followed at Little Refuge Baptist Church Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to help with funeral expenses.