Obituaries — 11/15/15

Published 12:34 am Sunday, November 15, 2015

Marie Blevins

Marie Mollett Skaggs Blevins, 88, of Wheelersburg, passed away on Nov. 6, 2015, at her home in the presence of her family.She was born April 27, 1927, in Inez, Kentucky, to Vince and Leona Spence Mollett.

She spent her life taking care of her family and was known as a wonderful cook. Marie was a member of Living Word Pentecostal Church in Highland Bend.

Marie is survived by her husband, Frank; three sons, Raymond Skaggs (Helen) William Skaggs, Samuel Skaggs (Brenda), all of Franklin Furnace; five daughters, Carolyn Ruggles (Arnold) of Ironton, Helen Williams (Clifford) of Flatwoods, Kentucky, Bonnie McKenzie (Ray) of Pedro, Karen Bailey (George) of Pedro, Debbie Horner (Homer) of Wheelersburg; 19 grandchildren; 34 great-grandchildren; seven great-great grandchildren. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her first husband, Chester Skaggs.

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Funeral services were Monday at Wolfe-Nelson Funeral Home in Sciotoville with pastor Ronnie Blevins officiating.


Lynn Hopper

Lynn Marie Moritz Hopper, 51, of Ironton, passed away Thursday Nov. 12, 2015, at Cabell Huntington Hospital in Huntington. The Ironton native was born Feb. 16, 1964, the daughter of Rosetta Ackison Moritz of Ironton and the late Charles Moritz.

Lynn was a 1982 graduate of Ironton High School and 1996 graduate of the Ashland School of Beauty Culture. She was a homemaker and worked at Kay Jewelers in the Ashland Town Center Mall.Lynn was a wonderful person that always had a smile on her face and a kind word in her heart.She touched many people in a short amount of time, was always the life of any event and will be greatly missed by many special friends and family members.

In addition to her father, she was preceded in death by her son, Michael David Cooke; brother, John Michael Moritz; grandparents, Robert and Sabra Ackison and Carl and Hazel Moritz; stepson, Adam Hopper; mother and father-in-law, Betty and Glen Hopper; and brother-in-law, Scott Hopper.

In addition to her mother, she is survived by husband, Carl Douglas Hopper of Ironton;’ son, Christopher Cooke of Dublin; daughter, Kayla Elkins of Ironton;

her fur baby, Max; sister and brother-in-law, Mary Moritz Linn and Jeffrey Linn of Ironton; brother, David Moritz of Columbus; sister and brother-in-law, Charla and Terry Reedy of Equatorial Guinea of West Africa; brother-in-law, Tony Hopper of Hanging Rock; brother-in-law, Noah Dean Hopper of Hanging Rock; and special friends, Cindy Haney, Tom Issac, Rick Crance, and Di Issac

Friends may call from 5-7 p.m. Monday at the Tracy Brammer-Monroe Funeral Home. A memorial service will follow at 7 p.m. with the Rev. James E. Wells officiating. To offer condolences to the family, please visit


Gene Jones

Earl E. (Gene) Jones Major, USA (Ret), husband of Elizabeth B. Readnower Jones, passed away Friday, Nov. 13, 2015, in Lexington, Kentucky. Major Jones was born Aug. 20, 1927, in Cleveland, the son of the late Donald Jackson Jones and Louise Pike Jones Lutz. He was reared in Ironton and graduated from St. Joseph High School. He received degrees from Eastern Kentucky and Morehead Universities. He did additional graduate work at Marshall University.

Gene was in the U.S. Navy from 1945 until 1949, having served in Shanghai, China, aboard the cruiser Los Angeles and in the submarine USS Halfbeak as a high-speed radio operator. During his Army service, Major Jones served at various stateside posts, in Germany with the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment and in the Republic of Vietnam in Special Operations.

After military retirement in 1978, Gene became the assistant principal and an assistant football coach at Ironton High School, retiring in 1992. In ensuing years he became the principal of St. Patrick High School in Maysville, Kentucky and served for two years as the principal of St. John School in Georgetown, Kentucky

In addition to his wife, Mr. Jones is survived by two daughters, Karen (Larry) Patrick of Oxford, North Carolina and Suzanne (Mike) Beebe of Lexington, Kentucky; two granddaughters, Lindsay (Will) Poore and Chelsea Jones Patrick; two sisters, Lila Ann Pollock of Richmond, Virginia and Marian Pinkerton of Ironton; three brothers, CJ Lutz, Jim Lutz and Bob Lutz, all of Ironton; and numerous nieces and nephews

Gene was preceded in death, in addition to his parents, his first wife of 45 years, Marlene Readnower Jones; a son, John Cambridge Jones; and a sister, Barbara Lutz.

Among his awards and decorations, Major Jones received the submarine qualification Badge, the master parachutist badge, the army “Rigger” wings and the Vietnamese master parachute badge, the Bronze Star and the Meritorious Service Medal in addition to numerous campaign and service ribbons. Major Jones was a member of the Knights of Columbus Council 1405 of Ironton, the VFW Post 8850 of Ironton and the American Legion Post 8 of Lexington, Kentucky.

Funeral Mass will be 10 a.m. Monday at Saint Joseph Catholic Church in Ironton with Father David Huffman officiating. Burial will follow in Calvary Cemetery with military graveside rites by VFW Post 8850 and visitation will be today from 4-7 p.m. at Phillips Funeral Home. Donations may be made in Major Jones’ name to the Bluegrass Hospice, 2409 Members Way, Lexington, KY 40504 or the Wounded Warrior Project, 4899 Belfort Rd. Suite 300, Jacksonville, FL 32256.To offer condolences to the family please visit


James Russell

James Valentino Russell, 31, of Ironton, passed away Monday, Nov. 9, 2015. The Ironton native was the son of Jimmy Russell of Ironton and Billie Jackson Leyva of Gallatin, Tennessee.

James was a 2004 graduate of Rock Hill High School, where he was an all star athlete in football, baseball, track and field and basketball, and also attended Ohio University Southern. He also enjoyed playing the acoustic guitar and formally attended and was baptized at Woodland Chapel Freewill Baptist Church. He was a blaster/painter for the Advance Blasting and Painting Company and the Painter Local 172 in Ashland, Kentucky.

He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Virginia and Robert Jackson; a brother by heart, Jonathan Craig Jackson; an aunt, Vickie Jenkins; and two uncles, Carl Jenkins and Ronnie Jenkins.

In addition to his parents, he is survived by his son, Dreyden Elias Russell and Dreyden’s mother, Elisha Gillespie, both of Ironton; a sister, Ashley E. Russell and her fiancé, Joe Wilds of Ironton; his stepfather, Roger Leyva of Gallatin, Tennessee; his stepmother, Jamie Delawder of Ironton; three stepbrothers, Josh Delawder, John Delawder, and Alonzo Leyva; two stepsisters, Maddy Delawder and Valeria Leyva; aunts and uncles, Bobbie Jackson, Ronnie and Patty Webb, Cheryl and Keith Justice, Lennie and Tony Jenkins, Amber and Billy Don Cooper, Tracy Russell, Mike and Kelli Russell, Darrin and Lisa Russell, Allen and Jen Russell, Ronnie Russell, Lonnie and Billie Russell, David and Edith Crown, and William and Beverly Jackson; grandparents, Mary and Jim Russell; brothers by heart, Richie Webb and Wayne Jenkins; nieces, Brylie-Shae and Penelope Rain Wilds; and many dearly loved cousins.

Funeral services will be 1 p.m. Tuesday at Phillips Funeral Home with Brother Dave Schug officiating. Burial will follow in Woodland Cemetery and visitation will be Monday from 5-7 p.m. at the funeral home. To offer condolences to the family, please visit



Rose Norman

Rose Lee Preston Harmon Norman, 71, died Thursday, Nov. 12, 2015, surrounded by loved ones at her home in Ironton. She was born on Dec. 3, 1943, in Williamsport, Kentucky, to Rebecca May and Elmer Preston. Rose is preceded in death by both of her parents, her husband of 15 years, Kelly Harmon Jr., brothers James Preston and Elmer Preston Jr., and sisters Emma Jean Meeks and Lillie “Jean” Shope.

Rose attended Meade Memorial School. She was a loving mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, sister and friend. Prior to her failing health, Rose was a loyal member of Hanging Rock Apostolic Church of God. She loved attending church, cooking, singing gospel songs and spending time with her loved ones. She devoted herself to her family and despite her prolonged battle with illness, her faith in God never wavered. She is now at peace and her race is run. She has finally earned her eternal reward.

She is survived by one sister, Arlene Pruett; daughter, Gina Walker; two stepdaughters, Mary Harmon and Linda Bailey; four stepsons, Ronnie Harmon, Donnie Harmon, Danny Harmon, and Jeff Harmon; grandchildren, Mark Harmon, Matthew Harmon, Adam Harmon, Kelli Harmon, Gayle Bailey, David Bailey Jr., Edith Bailey and Markus Harmon; and many great-grandchildren.

Funeral services will be at 3 p.m. today at Hanging Rock Apostolic Church of God with Elder Glen Jenkins officiating. Burial will follow in Hanging Rock Cemetery and visitation for family will begin at 1 p.m. and friends are welcome at 2 p.m. at the church. Phillips Funeral Home is assisting the family with the arrangements. To offer condolences to the family please visit www.phillipsfuneralhome.



Harold VanPelt

Harold E. VanPelt, 91, of Crown City, died Friday Nov. 12, 2015, at home. Funeral service will be conducted 2 p.m. Tuesday at Hall Funeral Home and Crematory, Proctorville.Burial will follow in Crown City Cemetery, Crown City. Visitation will be from 1-2 p.m. Tuesday at the funeral home.Condolences may be expressed to the family at



Mendy Stevens

Mendy Stevens, 49, of Chesapeake, died on Friday, Nov. 13, 2015, at the Emogene Dolin Jones Hospice House, Huntington. Funeral service will be conducted 2 p.m. Monday at Christ Temple Church by pastor Chuck Lawrence. Burial will follow in Rome Cemetery, Proctorville. Visitation will be from 12-2 p.m. Monday at the church. Hall Funeral Home and Crematory, Proctorville is charge of arrangements. Condolences may be expressed to the family at


Verna Schilling

Verna Mae Schilling, 79, of Ironton, went home to be with the Lord on Thursday, Nov. 12, 2015, in the loving care of Community Hospice Care Center of Ashland. She was born in May 30, 1936, in Ironton, to the late Fred and Bertha (Jenkins) Stamper, and graduate from Rock Hill (Pedro) High School in 1954.

Verna married Earl P. “Pat” Schilling on March 28, 1959. Verna held several jobs throughout the years, and enjoyed numerous hobbies, but her main passion in life was taking care of her family, and lending a hand to others. She loved to cook and many of her favorite moments were preparing a meal to be enjoyed around the table with guest, especially around the holidays.

She also enjoyed volunteering, having been a member of the Women’s Auxiliary of Ironton-Lawrence County Hospital, and giving time to the Lawrence County

Historical Society. She also had previously been involved in the Ironton Garden Club, as well as served in the PTO with the Ironton City Schools.

She was an active member of Ironton First Church of the Nazarene, and enjoyed singing in the choir. She served many years as financial secretary for the church.

Verna was an active member of the Beta Sigma Phi Sorority for over 35 years, enjoying the social aspects of the organization even in recent years, and from which she held many wonderful friendships.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by seven brothers, Andrew, Fred, Cecil, Charles, Chester, Henry and Wilbur Stamper; and one sister Shirley Kelley Dement.

She is survived by her husband, Earl “Pat” Schilling; one son Jeff (Sheri) Schilling of Wooster; two grandsons, Ryan Schilling and Kevin Schilling both of Wooster; one brother, Thomas (Daisy) Stamper of Ironton; a sister Betty Harmon of Ocala, Florida, and many nieces and nephews.

Verna was a caring, devoted wife, mother, mother-in-law, grandmother, sister and friend to all who knew her. She loved children, and had a wonderful sense of humor. Her kind and compassionate heart not only gently cared for her family, but touched the lives of everyone she knew.

Funeral services will be 1 p.m. Monday at First Church of the Nazarene Church with the Rev. Rob Hale officiating. Burial will follow in Woodland Cemetery and visitation will be today from 4-7 p.m. at the Tracy Brammer-Monroe Funeral

Home and Monday from 12 p.m. until time of the service at the church. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Verna’s name to First Church of the Nazarene, Fifth and Pleasant streets, Ironton, Ohio, or Community Hospice, 1480 Carter Ave. Ashland, KY 41101. To offer the family online condolences, please visit



LaVern Thomas

LaVerne Fox Thomas, daughter of the late Curtis and Sadie (Edwards) Fox, a lifelong resident of Ironton, passed away peacefully on Nov. 8, 2015, after an extended illness.She was the wife of the late Emerson Thomas; beloved mother of Sheila Knapper, Beverly (Philip) Carter and the late Carl Emerson Thomas.

She is survived by brother, Fred Fox; sister-in-law Wilma Fox; eight grandchildren; 10 great-grandchildren; and 12 great-great grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by a granddaughter Crystal Knapper;

She graduated from Ironton High School and was an LPN at Lawrence County General Hospital where she worked until retirement. In her free time LaVerne liked to volunteer at the church and help care for the sick. She enjoyed being the nurse at Central Christian’s day camp for children.

LaVerne was a member of Central Christian Church and a friend of Quinn Chapel AME Church.

Funeral service will be 11 a.m. Monday at the Tracy Brammer-Monroe Funeral Home. Burial will follow in Woodland Cemetery and visitation will be Monday from 10 a.m. until time of the service. Arrangements are entrusted to Tracy Brammer-Monroe Funeral Home. To offer the family online condolences, please visit


Gary Webb

Gary Reuben Webb, 51, of Huntington, West Virginia, died Sunday Nov. 8, 2015 at St. Mary’s Medical Center, Huntington. A memorial service will be at 6 p.m. Thursday at Hall Funeral Home and Crematory, Proctorville.



Martha Dean

Martha Dean, 69, of Huntington, West Virginia, died Saturday Nov. 14, 2015, at St. Mary’s Medical Center, Huntington. Funeral service will be conducted 11 a.m. Tuesday at Hall Funeral Home and Crematory, Proctorville. Burial will follow in Rome Cemetery, Proctorville. Visitation will be from 6-8 p.m. Monday at the funeral home.


David Plybon

David Lee Plybon, 77, of Chesapeake, died Saturday, Nov. 14, 2015, at St. Mary’s Medical Center, Huntington. He is survived by his wife, Donna Gail Plybon. Arrangements are pending at Hall Funeral Home and Crematory, Proctorville.