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Betty Ruth Byford


COFFEEVILLE—Betty Ruth Byford, age 82, of Coffeeville, died peacefully Thursday, December 6, 2018, in Baptist Memorial Hospital—North Mississippi at Oxford. 

Born April 30, 1936, in Coffeeville, she was a daughter of the late Benford and Helon Waddell. She had worked as a quality control technician for Holley Carburetor and BorgWarner. Betty Ruth enjoyed working in the yard and in her flower garden. She loved spending time with her family and enjoyed a special relationship with her dogs, T’man and Birdie.

Visitation was held Tuesday, December 11, 2018, in Coffeeville United Methodist Church from 1-2 p.m. The funeral service followed immediately with Bro Stacy Douglas  officiating. Burial was in Harbor Cemetery with Greg Rotenberry, Jeremy Hill, Blake Richardson, Drew Richardson, Joshua Byford and Taylor Byford as pallbearers. Honorary pallbearers were Donald Byford and Ray Wolfe.

Betty is survived by two daughters, Rita Lancaster (David) of Water Valley and Ravonda Richardson (Tracy) of Henderson, Nev.; one brother, Gary Waddell (Jacque) of Princeton, Texas; seven grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren; and two great-great- grandchildren.

Along with her parents, Betty was preceded in death by her husband of 54 years, Charles Ray Byford; one son, Donald Byford; a grandson, David Zan Lancaster; one brother, Jimmy Dean Waddell; and a sister, Bennie Mae Rotenberry.


Jonathan Wayne Gray


COFFEEVILLE—Jonathan Wayne Gray, 48, of Coffeeville passed away Friday, December 7, 2018, in the University of Mississippi Medical Center at Jackson. 

He was born February 16, 1970 in Water Valley and was a son of the late Rufus Gray, Jr. and Helen Delores Sanders Gray. He was a member of First Baptist Church in Coffeeville and was a grounds keeper and custodian for Southern Management.

The funeral service was held at 2 p.m. Tuesday, December 11, in First Baptist Church at Coffeeville with Rev. Craig Baker and Rev. Truman Scarborough officiating. Interment followed in the Coffeeville Cemetery with Jamie Arbuckle, Bill Gray, Christopher Gay, Steven Kendall, Bert Sanders and Jody Sanders as pallbearers. Honorary pallbearers were Cody Ford, Richard Ford, Randy Melon, and Josh Smith. The family received friends one hour prior to the service. Arrangement were entrusted to McKibben and Guinn Funeral Service in Grenada.

Survivors include his wife, Stephanie Gray of Coffeeville; a daughter, Helen Melinda “Millie” Gray of Coffeeville; a sister, Tina Evans of Coffeeville; one brother, Bill Gray of Coffeeville; and a host of aunts, uncles and cousins.


Betty Sanders Griffin 

WATER VALLEY—Betty Sanders Griffin, age 76, of Water Valley died Wednesday, December 5, 2018,  in Yalobusha General Hospital.

Born August 21, 1942, in Bruce, she was a daughter  of the late Ivan and Christine Sanders. Betty had worked in different management positions in the food service industry. She enjoyed reading and gardening.

Survivors include two sons, Michael Griffin (Angel) and Jeff Griffin (Jessi), and one daughter, Christy Gentry (Eddie), all of Pontotoc; 12 grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.

In addition to her parents, Betty was preceded in death by two sisters, Melba Warren and Shirley Schmitz; and two brothers, Billy and Richard Sanders.

The family is planning a private memorial service at a later date. Seven Oaks Funeral Home was entrusted with arrangements.


Norma Harrison

CORINTH—Norma Harrison, age 80, died Wednesday, December 5, 2018, in Magnolia Regional Health Center at Corinth.

Born January 13, 1938, in Water Valley, she was a daughter of the late Jimmy and Hattie (Bill) Bennett. 

Survivors include two sons, Bennett R. Harrison (Lita) of Newark, Calif. and Patrick T. Harrison (Debbie) of Batehaven, New South Wales, Australia; one grandson, Gabriel Harrison of Newark, Calif.; and one sister, Nancy Hart of Corinth.

Norma was preceded in death by her husband of 60  years, Billy Raymond Harrison.

A graveside service will be held in Oak Hill Cemetery, with Bro. Billy Childs officiating. A time and date for this service will be forthcoming.


Jesse P. Hart, III

CORINTH—Jesse P. Hart, III, age 78 of Corinth, died Saturday, December 8, 2018, in North Mississippi Medical Center at Iuka.

Born November 17, 1940, in Water Valley, he is a son of the late Jesse P. Hart, Jr. and Evelyn Grace Hart. Jesse graduated from Memphis State University with a B.S. Degree, majoring in math and physics. He was employed for 20 years at ITT as Sales Manger for the Western United Sates and later started his own company, Hart Products. Jesse loved the game of golf and was the proud owner of three hole-in-one trophies. He also enjoyed photography as a hobby, especially capturing old railroad depots and old barns before they vanished. He belonged to Hillandale Country Club and Shiloh Ridge Golf Club and was a member of First Baptist Church of Corinth. 

Visitation was held Tuesday, December 11, in Seven Oaks Funeral Home from 9:30-11 a.m. The funeral service followed at 11 a.m. in Henry Chapel of the funeral home with Bro. Dennis Smith officiating. Burial was in Oak Hill Cemetery with Larry Hart, Craig Hart, Drew Hart, Lane Hart, Ron Hart and Charlie Edwards as pallbearers. Honorary pallbearers were Hubert Long, Jr. and Lowell  Edwards.

  Jesse is survived by his wife of 55 years, Nancy Hart of Corinth; a daughter, Mona Hart (Sam Lewis) of Nashville, Tenn.; a son, Drew Hart of Corinth; two sisters, Peggy Long (Hubert) of Heber Springs, Ark. and Holly Edwards (Lowell) of Water Valley; two brothers, Larry Hart (Betty) and Craig Hart (Mary Jane), all  of Water Valley; and two grandchildren, Erika Hart and Betsy Baldwin.

Along with  his parents, Jesse was preceded in death by his sister, Patsy Riley, and one grandson, Weston Baldwin.


Bobby Ray Lott

TILLATOBA—Bobby Ray Lott, Sr., 55, of Tillatoba, passed away Thursday, December 6, 2018, at his residence.

Born November 27, 1963, in New Albany, he was a son of Jimmy Ray and Lynda Patterson Lott. He had spent most of his working life as a  plumber and attended Hope Church of God in Oakland. He was an avid hunter and fisherman and a talented artist.

A private family memorial service will be held at a later date. Arrangement have been entrusted to McKibben and Guinn Funeral Service in Grenada.

Survivors include his wife, Tami Lott of Tillatoba; two sons, Bobby Ray Lott, II of Lander, Wyoming and Jeremy Hunter Lott of Tillatoba;  his mother Lynda Lott of Sardis; grandmother, Flora Patterson of Myrtle; a brother,  Bill Lott (Sherry) of Sardis; and a granddaughter, Brookelyn Michelle Lott. He was preceded in death by his father.


 Kenneth Earl Mitchell

HOLCOMB—Kenneth Earl “Kenny” Mitchell, 61, of Holcomb, passed away Friday, December 7, 2018.

Born May 24, 1957, in Greenwood, he was a son of the late Andrew Ray and Fannie Hood Mitchell. Kenny retired after working for BellSouth for 30 years. Following his retirement Kenny purchased Woodlawn Memorial Park in Grenada and the Sears Hometown Store. He was also active in several other business ventures in the community. Kenny enjoyed being a member of  Holcomb Baptist Church, the Grenada Exchange Club, and also served as president of the Poor House Water Association Board of Directors.

The funeral service was held Monday, December 10, at 2 p.m. in Emmanuel Baptist Church with Dr. Clarence Cooper and Rev. Kevin Tribble officiating. Interment followed in Sparta Cemetery with Kevin Henson, Mike Mabry, Ricky Mabry, Kevin Martin, Greg Mitchell, Jay Mitchell, Stephen O’Neal, Ethan Presley, and Darrell Robinson as pallbearers. The family received friends from 5-7 p.m. Sunday evening in McKibben and Guinn Funeral Service and one hour prior to the service on Monday at the church. 

Survivors include his wife, Vicky Gardner Perry Mitchell; three daughters, Tiffany Mitchell Presley Martin (Kevin) of Grenada, Kathryn Mitchell Henson (Kevin) of Holcomb and Sarah Grace Mitchell of Holcomb; two sons, Jason Mitchell  of Bay St. Louis and Hayden Mitchell of Holcomb; two step-daughters, Alexandra and Caroline Perry, both of Grenada; one sister, Dianne Belton (Richard) of Gastonia, NC; a brother, James Mitchell (Janice) of Holcomb; and seven grandchildren, Ethan Presley, Austin Martin, Tyler Martin, Kaidyn Mitchell, Mary Mitchell Martin, Claire Martin, and Roxie Henson.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by wives, Missy Cooksey Mitchell and Dr. Nina Evans Mitchell; and a sister, Jean Ingram.


Mable Thomas

WATER VALLEY—Mrs. Mable Thomas, 89, passed away Sunday, December 9, 2018, in the Yalobusha County Nursing Home at Water Valley.

Visitation was held Tuesday, December 11, from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in Coleman Funeral  Home. The funeral service immediately followed at 1:30 in the funeral home. Interment was in Old Union Baptist Church Cemetery, 476 CR 444, Oxford. Bro. Joey Sword officiated and Coleman Funeral Home of Oxford was in charge of arrangements.

Mrs. Thomas had a great passion for traveling and had been many places over the years, but her favorite place was the Great Smokey Mountains. She taught Sunday School and could always be counted on to be there when the church doors were open. She had a great love of the Bible and kept it right next to the head of her bed for her nightly devotions. She was a member of  Old Union Baptist Church. Mrs. Thomas adored her family and grandchildren, her great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren. She loved it when her children came home, and she always made sure to make their favorite meals for them.

Survivors include three sons, Gale Thomas (Loretta), Ricky Thomas (Marie), and Ronnie Thomas (Tina), all of Oxford; two daughters, Paulette Dennis (Charles) of Water Valley and Sandra Collums of Golden; a daughter-in-law, Peggy Thomas of Oxford; one brother, Kenny Daniels (Joanna) of Douglasville, Ga.; 12 grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; five great-great-grandchildren; and a host of nieces and nephews.

Mrs. Thomas was preceded in death by her husband, James Thomas; one son, Keith Thomas; her parents, Emmitt Daniels and Mary Ann Daniels; two brothers, Travis Daniels and Bobby Daniels; and two sisters, Erma Yeagar and Jimmy Lee Ragland.

Memorials may be made to the Old Union Baptist Church Cemetery Fund, 2040 Wellsgate Dr., Oxford, MS 38655.



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