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Obituaries — 2-10-17

Lee Elchak

Lee Elchak, 56, of Denver passed on February 4, 2017. Born on June 7, 1960, in Bradford County, Pa., he was the son of the late Leo and Dolores Elchak. Lee was an Engineer for AT&T for over 20 years. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree at Wilkes University in Wilkes-Barre Pennsylvania.

Lee enjoyed boating and wake boarding with his son, Justin. He was a fan of summer activities and Caribbean vacations but also enjoyed snow skiing and being young with his son by trying to Snow Board. But most of all just loved being home with his family, as Lee was the most wonderful husband and father. All who knew or met Lee, loved him and said they never ever saw him without a smile.

He is survived by his wife, Sue Ann Elchak; son, Justin Elchak; sisters, Deborah Elchak, and Pam Elchak Musser and husband Craig Musser; nieces, Michele Richardson and husband Christian Richardson and Shauna Dunham; great niece, Ava Richardson; and great nephew, Christopher Doyle

The Celebration of Life Services for Lee Elchak, will be held at Denver United Methodist Church at 3910 N Highway 16 in Denver on Sunday, February 12, 2017 at 3 p.m.

Donations in Lee’s memory may be made to Denver United Methodist Church, 3910 N. Highway 16, Denver, NC 28037.

The Good Samaritan Funeral Home, Denver, is serving the Elchak family.


Mabel Inez Cornwell Lowery

Mabel Inez Cornwell Lowery, age 78, of Lincoln Rehabilitation Center, passed away on Thursday, February 9, 2017.

Her funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, February 11, 2017, at River View Baptist Church with Rev. David Walker officiating. Burial will follow in the church cemetery.  The body will lie in state for 30 minutes prior to the service.  Visitation will be from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. this evening, February 10, 2017, at Warlick Funeral Home.

Mabel was born March 6, 1938, in Lincoln County, to the late Hunter Alvin Cornwell and Connie Leonhardt Cornwell. In addition to her parents, she was also preceded in death by her husband of 53 years, Charles “Gene” Lowery.  She worked for J.P. Stevens, and loved making cakes and peanut brittle for friends and family.

She is survived by two sons, Larry Lowery and David Lowery, both of Lincolnton; a brother, Carol Cornwell of Belmont; three sisters, Joyce Rudisill of Newton, Nelva Goodson of Lincolnton, and Muriel Nantz of Iron Station; and four grandchildren, Austin Lowery, Meredith Lowery, Lydia Lowery, and Mandi Auton.

Memorials may be made to Hospice of Lincoln County, 900 Dontia Drive, Lincolnton, NC 28092.

Warlick Funeral Home is serving the Lowery family.


John Ray Hoffman

John Ray Hoffman, also known as Ray, John R., Papa, Red, and sometimes Hub, died on Wednesday, February 8, 2017 when his 90-year-old heart simply said, “Enough.”

Services will be at the graveside on Sunday, February 12, 2017 at 3 p.m., at Bethphage Lutheran Church located at 3440 Hwy. 182 in Lincolnton. Family and friends will gather in the Family Life Center following the service. At other times, the family will be at the home of Billy and Carole Howell.

He was a 1943 graduate of Lincolnton High School and a Navy veteran.

In 1946 he married Daphine Wise, the little girl he had teased in high school. He learned the masonry trade and laid the brick on many an iconic building during the Charlotte building boom of the 1950s. He later went on to have his own construction and remodeling business, working on many homes and buildings in and around Lincolnton. One of his proudest achievements was designing and building St. Luke’s Lutheran Church in Pumpkin Center.

For years, he and Daphine were dedicated members of Bethphage Lutheran Church. While Daphine played the organ, Ray directed the choir, and their musical service spanned well over 40 years. He had a strong tenor voice, sharing his talent at many weddings and funerals. He especially cherished leading the family in the Doxology every Thanksgiving.

After retirement, he was known by many as the old man on the golf cart who grew muscadines on Walker Branch Road. His great hobby was wine making, and he generously shared with his friends every Christmas and throughout the year.

He was also the man known for “holding court” at Hardees every single morning, surrounded by friends, sharing laughter and lies each morning at breakfast. He cherished those friendships.

John Ray was preceded in death by his wife, his three older sisters Winnie Hoffman, Mary Rhyne, Ruth Rhyne, and nephew William Dwight Rhyne, Jr.

He is survived by his daughter, Carole Hoffman Howell, and her husband Billy, grandson Devin Donnelly, his wife Justine, and great-granddaughter Penelope of White Hall, VA; grandson, Matthew Donnelly of Lincolnton; nephew David Rhyne and wife Frances of Lincolnton; nephew Kenneth Rhyne and wife Tanya of Lincolnton; niece Shirley Rhyne Jones and husband Gary of Lexington; cousin Barbara Shrum Blanton of Lincolnton; sister-in-law Sue Wise Johnson and husband Carroll of Lincolnton; and nephew Mike Johnson and his wife Fran of Lincolnton. In addition are many, many more nieces and nephews, and step-grandchildren William Howell, Hannah Howell Keister and husband Darren, and their two children, Nathan and Lorelai.

In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting memorial contributions to Lincoln County Christian Ministries, 207 S. Poplar St., Lincolnton, NC, 28092, or to the music fund of First United Methodist Church, 201 East Main Street, Lincolnton, NC, 28092.

Warlick Funeral Home in Lincolnton is serving the Hoffman family.


Sandra Tallent

Sandra Tallent, 36, of 1804 Drew Drive in Lincolnton passed away Saturday, February 4, 2017.

Mrs. Tallent was born May 16, 1980 and was the daughter of Jerry Hight and the late Linda Hood Hight. She was also preceded in death by her step-mother, Teresa Hight; one sister, Mandy Woodell and grandparents, William Leonard Hight and Ellen Irene Hight. Mrs. Tallent worked as a caregiver.

She is survived by her father, Jerry Hight of Lincolnton; one son, Jacob Hight of the home; two brothers, Chad Hight of Bakersville, Calif. and Jeremiah Woodell of Lincolnton; three sisters, Brandy Lane, Jalyce Woodell and Hannah Woodell all of Lincolnton; grandparents, Gilma Mitchell and Tedulo N. Salazar; two nephews, Jerry Hight and Jonathan Lane and two nieces, Kristian and Kaitlyn Lane.

A Celebration of Life Service will be held on Sunday, February 12, 2017 at 2 p.m. at Open Word Holiness Church located at 3153 Blackburn School Rd. in Newton with the Rev. Matthew Sparks officiating.

In lieu of flowers please make donations to her son: Jacob Hight, 1804 Drew Dr., Lincolnton, NC 28092.


Gregory ‘Greg’ Thomas Spurling

Gregory “Greg” Thomas Spurling, 41, of Newton passed away on Sunday, February 5, 2017, at his residence.

He was born April 10, 1975, in Catawba County to Thomas and Marsha Gutyar Spurling of Belwood. Greg was the Pastor of Freedom Biker Church in Hickory; a 1993 graduate of Burns High School and a 2006 graduate of Fruitland Baptist Bible Institute. Greg was a great man who was radically changed by God’s grace. He loved God with all his heart, soul, mind, and strength. He loved his wife and kids more than anything in the world. He loved his family and his church deeply. More than anything, he wanted everyone to know the saving grace of Jesus Christ and the urgency to make the choice to follow Him.

He was preceded in death by his grandfathers, Frank Gutyar and Warren Spurling.

Those left to cherish his memory are wife of 22½ years, Dakota Nantz Spurling of the home; son, Luke Spurling of the home; daughter, Cheyenne Spurling of the home; parents, Thomas and Marsha Gutyar Spurling of Belwood; brother, Scott Spurling and wife Dawn of Belwood; sisters, Leslie Webb and husband Derek of Belwood; Myra Juban and husband Matt of Seoul, S. Korea; grandmothers, Marjorie Spurling of Shelby; Eunice Gutyar of Newton; Favorite In-laws, CB and Brenda Nantz of Iron Station; brother-in-law: Rush Nantz and wife Heather of Iron Station; 15 nieces and nephews; 1 great niece.

A memorial service celebrating Greg’s life was held February 8, 2017 at 6 p.m. at Freedom Biker Church in Hickory. Rev. Marcus Redding and Rev. Mike Beasley officiated. The family received friends following the service. Honorary pallbearers were: Bill Whisnant, Jason Moretz, John Marlar, Brett Cole, and Jack Lowman.

Memorials may be made to Freedom Biker Church of Hickory-Mission Fund, 1385 33rd Street, SE/P.O. Box 2543, Hickory, NC 28603.

Condolences may be sent to the Spurling family at www.bennettfuneralservice.com.

The Spurling family is in the care of Bennett Funeral Service of Conover, 828-465-2111.


Don Wesley Houston, Jr.

Don Wesley Houston, Jr., 77, of Newton died on February 6, 2017.

The family will receive friends today from 3:45 p.m. until 4:45 p.m. at Tri City Baptist Church. A service to celebrate Don’s life will follow the receiving at 5 p.m. at Tri City Baptist Church.

The Bennett Funeral Service of Conover is serving the Houston family.


George Russell Bolick

George Russell Bolick, 80, of Claremont died on February 6, 2017.

A graveside service was held on February 9, 2017 at 2 p.m. at Bethel Lutheran Church in Claremont.

The Bennett Funeral Service of Conover is serving the Bolick family.


Kelly Michelle Brooks Partin

Kelly Michelle Brooks Partin, 29, of Vale died on February 7, 2017.

The funeral service will be held on February 11, 2017 at 3 p.m. at the Burke Mortuary Chapel in Newton. Burial will follow at Burke Memorial Park in Morganton. The family will receive friends today from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. at Burke Mortuary in Newton.

Burke Mortuary in Newton is serving the Partin family.


Winfred Hayward Mackey Jr.

Mr. Winfred Hayward Mackey Jr., 71, of Kings Mountain died on February 9, 2017.

Funeral arrangements will be announced by Ebony & White’s Funeral Service.


Eugene ‘Pop’ Lewis Ledford

Eugene “Pop” Lewis Ledford, 91, of Hickory died on February 8, 2017.

A service to celebrate Pop’s life will be held on February 11, 2017 at 1 p.m. in the Chapel of Henline-Hughes Funeral Home in Bakersville. Burial with military honors will follow at Wilson Cemetery in Bakersville. The family will receive friends on February 11, 2017 from 11:30 a.m. until 12:45 p.m. at Henline-Hughes Funeral Home.

The Bennett Funeral Service of Conover is serving the Ledford family.

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