Carl N. Ratcliff


Carl Nelson Ratcliff, 79, of Mustoe passed away Monday, March 10, 2014 at his home.

He was born February 18, 1935 at Mustoe a son of the late John Howard and Elva Kate (McLaughlin) Ratcliff. 

Mr. Ratcliff had worked at Howell’s Leather Company in Frank, WV, H.H. Dice Stock Farm and Mill Run Farm.

He is survived by a nephew, great-nephew, cousins and special friends, Allen and Kathy Downs of Moon and Herb Lightner of Monterey.

He was preceded in death by his sister, Clara Ratcliff and his brother, Gerald H. Ratcliff.

A graveside service will be conducted 2 p.m., Wednesday, March 12, 2014 at Hamilton Chapel Cemetery with Pastor Mike Puffenbarger officiating.

Memorial contributions may be made to Hamilton Chapel Cemetery, c/o Carol Waybright, 98 Airport Terrace Rd, Monterey, VA 24465.

Posted in March 2014 | Leave a comment

Maxine J. Huffman


Maxine HuffmanMaxine J. Huffman, 73, of McDowell passed away Saturday, March 1, 2014 at her home.  She was born February 2, 1941 in Moyers, WV a daughter of the late Dewey Marcelles and Shirley Ruth (Hoover) Jamison. 

Maxine was a past secretary for the Electoral Board of Highland County.  She was a member of St. John Lutheran Church, charter member of McDowell Volunteer Fire Company Ladies Auxiliary and a loyal volunteer in assisting the Highland County Fair Association and Stonewall Ruritan Club. Her favorite pastimes were gardening, growing flowers and a passion for hunting morel mushrooms.  Maxine loved spending time with her family and large circle of friends.

She is survived by her husband, William B. “Bill” Huffman, whom she married on December 4, 1964; son, Michael M. Jamison and wife, Lisa of Moyers, WV; daughter, Teresa Lynn Duncan and husband, Dennis of Blue Grass; seven grandsons, Jonathan, Shaun, Joshua, Cody, Chris, Steven and Aaron.; two great-grandchildren, Colton and Peyton; two brothers, Arlin Dale Jamison and wife, Freda of Franklin, WV and Gary Lee Jamison of Franklin, WV; sister, Geraldine M. Neil of Moyers, WV and a very special “sister”, Adeline Hull of Doe Hill.  Maxine is also survived by a foster daughter, Debra J. Young of Cloverport, KY; a foster son, Billy D. Campbell of Radcliff, KY; her special girls, Ashley, Sarah and Rachel and three special caregivers, Kay Smith, Patricia Warner and Alice Shumate.

She was preceded in death by her three siblings, Delmas Clyde Jamison, Anna Lynn Fleisher and Charles Henry Jamison.

A funeral service will be conducted 1 p.m., Wednesday, March 5, 2014 at Obaugh Funeral Home in McDowell with the Rev. Beth Pyles officiating.  Burial will follow in McKendree Cemetery. 

Active pallbearers will be Wesley Fleisher, David Jamison, Steven Jamison, Greg Jamison, Rick Neil, Jonathan Gwin, Shaun Gwin and Josh Gwin.  Honorary pallbearers will be Brent Obaugh, Kyle Obaugh, David Simmons, Craig Smith, Wes Eye, Olin Hoover, Willard May, Wilt Simmons, Larry “Bub” Armstrong, Rodney Via, Dennis Jamison, Benny Armstrong, Steven Beverage and Ken Nelson.

The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m., Tuesday at Obaugh Funeral Home.

Memorial contributions may be made to McDowell Volunteer Fire Department, c/o Delbert Rexrode, 527 Windrush Lane, Doe Hill VA 24433 or St. John Lutheran Church Building Fund, c/o Mr. Eston Propst, treasurer, 101 Rebel Lane, Sugar Grove, WV 26815.

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Thomas J. Simmons


Thomas SimmonsThomas Jefferson Simmons, 80, of Woodbridge, passed away Friday, February 21, 2014 at Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center.  He was born January 7, 1934 in Doe Hill, VA, son of the late Thomas and Leta Belle (Mitchell) Simmons.

Mr. Simmons served in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Korean Conflict.  A Maintenance Superintendent with the Virginia Department of Transportation, he retired after 21 years of service.  He was an avid gardener and enjoyed time spent watching and feeding “his” birds.

He is survived by his wife, Dollie Recie (Galford) Simmons, whom he married December 26, 1955; daughter and son-in-law, Linda and Gary Stoffregen of Woodbridge; two sons and daughter-in-law, Jimmy and Kathy Simmons of  Woodbridge and Jeffrey Simmons of Fredericksburg; two grandchildren, Paul Botto and Amber Simmons; great-granddaughter, Kayla Botto; step-granddaughter, Brandy Knighting; sister, Lillian Dever and husband, Garland of Monterey and brother, Wallace Simmons and wife, Norine of Dunmore, WV.

A graveside service will be conducted 2 p.m., Monday, February 24, 2014 in Monterey Cemetery with the Rev. C. William “Bill” Cox officiating.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Monterey Cemetery, c/o Nancy Sweitzer, 228 Triple Oak Lane, Hot Springs, VA24445.

Posted in February 2014 | 4 Comments

Frances Maloy Rives


Frances Maloy Rives, 101, departed this life February 12, 2014 at Westminster- Canterbury, Richmond, where she had resided since 1992.  She was the widow of Branch K. Rives and is survived by her daughter, Shannon Rives Trent and her husband, Wistar Trent of Richmond;  grandson, Branch Trent and wife, Abigail of San Francisco, CA and grandson, David Trent of Richmond.  She is also survived by several nieces and nephews. 

She was preceded in death by her parents, Emmet J. Maloy and Georgia (Vance) Maloy; sisters and brother, Susie Maloy, Mary Maloy, Stella Hiner, Bonnie Stephenson, Ruth Wade and Patrick S. Maloy.

Mrs. Rives was an active member of the Fieldale United Methodist Church.  She served as an officer of the United Methodist Women and also taught an adult Sunday school class for many years.

Mrs. Rives received a B.S. in Home Economics from State Teachers College, Harrisonburg (now known as James Madison University).  At one time she was an active member of the Fieldale Readers’ Club, the Martinsville Woman’s Club, Patrick Henry Chapter DAR and the Sigma Chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma.

Services will be conducted 11 a.m., Monday, February 17, 2014 at the McDowell Presbyterian Church with the Rev. Lester LaPrade officiating.  Burial will follow in the McDowell Presbyterian Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorials may be given to Westminster-Canterbury Foundation, 1600 Westbrook Ave, Richmond, VA 23227 or McDowell Presbyterian Church, P.O. Box 66, McDowell, VA 24458.

Posted in February 2014 | 3 Comments

Dr. Thaine E. Billingsley

Harrisonburg, VA

Billingsley PhotoDr. Thaine Edward Billingsley, 88, died Friday, February 7, 2014 at the University of Virginia Medical Center in Charlottesville, surrounded by loved ones.  His death was the result of complications from a fall suffered the day before.

Formerly a resident of Monterey, Dr. Billingsley had been living at Sunnyside Retirement Community in Harrisonburg for the past decade with his wife of 65 years, Anita (Moore) Billingsley, and oldest son, Gary. Until the time of his move to Sunnyside, Dr. Billingsley practiced medicine, serving as Highland County’s only physician for most of his career. A general practitioner, he did everything from delivering babies to treating terminal illnesses, often making house calls. He was the prototypical “country doctor” who was known for whistling while he worked.

A native of Marysville, Kansas, Dr. Billingsley was born June 5, 1925, the only child of the late Leslie Kirk and Belmont Hazel “Monty” (Collins) Billingsley. After graduating from high school in 1943, he joined the U.S. Army Medical Corps and became a lab technician, spending time in New Guinea, Japan, and the Philippines. Following WWII, he met Anita on a Methodist mission trip while earning his undergraduate degree from Baker University in Baldwin   City, Kansas. In 1953, he earned his medical degree from the University of Kansas. After medical school, through the Virginia Council of Health and Medical Care, Dr. Billingsley sought out an area in the country in need of a physician. He and his family decided on Highland County, and with generous support from the Stonewall Ruritan Club, they moved to the county in 1954.

Dr. B, as he was known by many in the county, made countless contributions – a humble man, he didn’t just preach his strong values, he practiced them every day. He was active in a number of community organizations, including the Stonewall Ruritan Club, Monterey United Methodist Church, and the Highland County Chamber of Commerce. It was through his involvement with the Chamber that he was instrumental in starting the Highland County Maple Festival.  In Harrisonburg, Dr. Billingsley was a member of Otterbein United Methodist Church.

An avid reader and history buff, Dr. Billingsley enjoyed music, rummy games with Gary, travel, outdoor activities, and time spent with family.

In addition to his wife and son, Gary, survivors include: son, Robert and spouse, Anna of Fredericksburg; daughters, Mary Anita of Winston Salem, N.C., and Sarah Lyn and spouse, Nola of Union City, Calif.; and son, Kirk and spouse, Kim of Monterey. He was predeceased by his daughter, Carol Elaine. Dr. Billingsley also left behind six granddaughters: Carol Billingsley, Leslie Billingsley, Hayley Billingsley, Julia Billingsley, Rosemarie Torres and Priscilla Torres; and three great-grandchildren.

At the time of Dr. Billingsley’s retirement, several hundred people attended a reception in his honor. The Recorder lauded him for “a legacy of hope and healing.”  An editorial stated: “Dr. B leaves behind a community grateful for his service, his friendship and his inspiration, which allowed many of us to face our own hardships more bravely. The heart of this fine country doctor remained constant….The whistling doctor will be sadly missed and fondly remembered.”

A memorial service will be held at the Monterey United Methodist Church on Monday, February 10, 2014 at 1:00 pm with the Rev. James Tongue, Rev. Erin Geoffrion and Rev. Ed Pruitt officiating.  A reception will follow at the church. An inurnment service will be private.

Memorial contributions may be made to UMCOR, P.O. Box 9068, New York, NY, 10087.

Posted in February 2014 | 16 Comments

Donald Ray Spitzer


Donald Ray Spitzer, 62, passed away Tuesday, January 28, 2014 at Louk House in Broadway. He was born June 14, 1951 in Newport News a son of the late Robert Lee, Sr. and Ruby (Puffenbarger) Spitzer.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother, Guy Douglas Spitzer.
Family members include his brother and sister-in-law, Robert Lee Jr. and Mary Ann Spitzer of Staunton.
A graveside memorial service will be conducted at 11 a.m., Saturday, February 1, 2014 in Head Waters Cemetery with the Rev. Stanley Farthing officiating.

Posted in January 2014 | Leave a comment

Doris Ann Smith


Doris SmithDoris Ann Smith, 75, of Doe Hill passed away Tuesday, January 28, 2014 at Augusta Health. She was born February 17, 1938 at Doe Hill a daughter of the late Meredith Ilo and Elsie Mae (Harris) Hull.

She was a homemaker and a member of Doe Hill United Methodist Church. She enjoyed flowers, listening to country music, reading, as well as crossword puzzles. Above all, she loved her family, most especially time spent with her grandchildren.

On March 23, 1957, she married Cleveland R. Smith, who preceded her in death on January 25, 2009.

She is survived by two daughters, Sharon Elaine Crider and husband, Danny of Brandywine, WV and Tammy Dawn Lambert and husband, Ronnie of Sugar Grove, WV; her son, Daniel Grey Smith and wife, Sandie of Franklin, WV; five grandchildren, April Crider Simmons and husband, Justin, Derek Crider and wife, Amanda, Lacey D. Simmons and husband, Travis, Breanna A. Smith and Adrian A. Lambert; great-grandson, Colby Ryan Simmons; as well as three sisters, Meredith Colaw of Hot Springs, Darlene Harold and husband, Junior of Doe Hill and Leta Grey Norfleet and husband, Larry of Warm Springs and her brother, Noel Hull and wife, Doris of Doe Hill and a number of nieces and nephews.

A funeral service will be conducted 2 p.m., Saturday, February 1, 2014 at Obaugh Funeral Home in McDowell with the Rev. Dave Boger officiating.  Burial will follow in Doe Hill Cemetery.

Active pallbearers will be Tom Hull, Juny Hull, Scotty Armstrong, Travis Simmons, Tim Harold, Robert Moyers, Charlie Moyers, Derek Crider and Justin Simmons.

The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m., Friday at Obaugh Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Doe Hill Cemetery, c/o Larry Armstrong, P.O. Box 73, McDowell, VA 24458.

Posted in January 2014 | 3 Comments