Obituaries 10.9.19

Christine B. Gaines

MERIDIAN, MS – Christine B. Gaines, 42, born to the union of the late Roosevelt and Earnestine Grayson Bolden, entered into eternal rest at her residence surrounded by family October 6, 2019. Service of Memory is slated for Saturday, October 12, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. from Grants Chapel CME Church, 5290 Kinterbish 10, Cuba, Alabama. Sis. Gaines will lie in repose one hour prior to funeral time. Pastor William Griffin, Jr. will deliver the eulogy and offer words of comfort and consolation; Rev. Izea Blanks is church pastor. Interment follows in Cagus Cemetery, also off of Kinterbish 10. Visitation for family and friends is Friday evening (October 11th) from 3-6:00 p.m. in the Weatherly Chapel with the 5-6:00 p.m. hour designated for the Wake.

Christine confessed faith in Christ and joined Mt. Calvary Baptist Church, Meridian, Mississippi.

She was preceded in death by her parents; four brothers – Roosevelt, Jr., Bobby Joe, Eugene and Tommy and one sister, Lisa.

Those who remain to cherish precious memories and to honor a beautiful life are: a loving and devoted husband, Mr. Sammy Gaines; two beautiful loving daughters, Kashawna and Sammya; a God son- Malachi Lay, six brothers, Jimmie, Montgomery, Al., J.B. and Manuel, San Antonio, Tx., Johnny Ray, Seguin, Tx., James (Valerie), Tuscaloosa, Al., Billy, Bladon Springs; four sisters – Terrie, Orlando, Fl., Betty, Killeen, Tx., a special sister who raised her- Arnett (Frank) Duff of Meridian, MS., Jannie, Adkins, Tx; a host of aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews who adored her; three brothers-in-law; three sisters-in-law and numerous other relatives friends and former co-workers who loved her.


Veara H. Ridgeway

BUTLER – Funeral services for Veara H. Ridgeway were held Thursday, September 5, 2019 at 12:00 p.m. Mt Gillard Baptist Church, LaGrange, Georgia. Viewing was held on Saturday, September 14, 2019 from 9:00 -11:00 a.m. at Hayden & Butler Funeral Home, 10031 Crowell Drive, Lisman, Alabama 36912. Interment in Ridgeway’s Cemetery, Highway 10, Butler, Alabama 36904.

Mrs. Veara H. Ridgeway departed this life on August 30, 2019 at Dekalb Medical Center in Decatur, Georgia presumptive complications from car accident.

Mrs. Veara Ridgeway was born in Cleveland County, Alabama on December 16, 1925 to the late Mr. & Mrs. Thomas Wiley Heard. She was the sixth of eight daughters and three sons to join their union. Mrs. Ridgeway inherited her faith and trust in God early in life from St. James A.M.E. Church in Graham, Alabama.

She married Mr. Nolie Earl Ridgeway of Lavaca, Alabama in 1947, where they lived and added five children to their union. As the family grew Mr. Ridgeway secured his family on property and a home he built himself using his gift in carpentry until their divorce in later years. In 1993 Mr. Ridgeway preceded her in death followed by their son Thomas Wiley Ridgeway (2002) and daughter Alvenia Owens (2004). Also preceding her in death are six sisters: Gladys Williams, Marian Johnson, Myrtle Johnson, Nancy Joiner, Mary Newell and Bernice Crowe. Three brothers: Nathan, Willie, and A.D. Heard. She leaves to mourn her passing two daughters Bernice O. Ridgeway and Mary E Ridgeway of Atlanta, Georgia; one son; Nolie J. Ridgeway of Butler, Alabama. Also to mourn her passing is one sister Ms. Byte Lumpkin of Lorraine, Ohio; two grandsons Sawadi (Sarah) Ridgeway, Nolie (Christina) Ridgeway, Jr., five granddaughters; Felicia, Amelia, Cynthia (Paul); Michelle and Raven Ridgeway. One great grandson and two great granddaughters.

Mrs. Ridgeway desired to change her status from a regular housewife to join the workforce in the 1970’s when she worked in the textile industry in Toxey, Alabama then joining custodian services for East Choctaw Elementary School.   Later retiring to home and began offering service to Foster Children in State custody; in addition to her gardening, flowering, quilting, among other things.

Final arrangements entrusted to West Georgia Mortuary, 1408 Hamilton Road, LaGrange, Georgia 30241 and Hayden & Butler Funeral Home, Inc., 10031 Crowell Drive, Post Office Box 128, Lisman, Alabama 36912. Condolences may be posted at


John L. Portis

LISMAN – Funeral services for John Lee Portis were held Saturday, October 5, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. at Pleasant Hill Baptist Church, 146 Concord Road, Lisman, Alabama 36912. Interment was held in the Church cemetery with Rev. Willie Pringle, Officiating.

John Lee Portis was born on March 30, 1948 to Willie and Martha Portis in Lisman, Alabama.

He entered into eternal transition on Friday, September 20, 2019.

He accepted Christ as his Lord and Savior at an early age and joined the Pleasant Hill Baptist Church in Lisman, Alabama. He attended Choctaw County Training School in Lisman, Alabama.

John was united in Holy Matrimony to Clara Aretha Brown from Meridian, Mississippi. They had two (2) sons. John resided in Victorville, California for 10 years and then moved to Cleveland, Ohio.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Willie and Martha Portis; daughter, Chasity Portis; sister, Shirley Pearl Portis Ruffin; brother, Billy Earl Portis.

He leaves to cherish his memory: two (2) sons, Johnathan Lashawn (Paula) Portis and Kelvin Devell Portis; one (1) daughter, Moneak Portis; six (6)siblings, Willie James Portis, Meridian, Mississippi; Earnest James Portis, Victorville, California; Willie Ruth (Willie) Blakely, Lisman, Alabama; Tommy Lee Portis, Butler, Alabama; Minnie (Ezra) Hopson, Meridian, Mississippi; Larry Portis, Lisman, Alabama; one special friend from early childhood, Frank Wimberly of Louisiana; and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and other relative and friends.

Final arrangements entrusted to Hayden & Butler Funeral Home, Inc. 10031 Crowell Drive,

  1. O. Box 128, Lisman, Alabama 36912. Condolences may be posted at


Carol C. Jones

BUTLER – Funeral services for Carol C. Jones were held Saturday, October 5, 2019 at 12:00 p.m. at Wahalak Missionary Baptist Church, 1177 Wahalak Road, Butler, Alabama 36904. Interment was in the Church cemetery with Pastor Shern Collins, Sr. and Pastor Claude Collins, Sr., Officiating.

Carol Jones was born on April 9, 1967 to the late Preston and Elner Collins. She departed this life on September 29, 2019.

Carol was a member of Northside Church of Christ, where she participated in various ministries.

She was united in Holy Matrimony to the late Richard Jones.

She was preceded in death by her parents, husband and brother, Preston Collins, Jr.

She graduated from Choctaw County High School in 1986. Carol began working in various industries, but her love for helping others led her to working with numerous health care facilities as a CNA. She was also a sitter in the community.

Even though Carol did not give birth to children, she was a mother to all of her nieces, nephews and god-children.

Carol leaves to cherish her memories: three sisters, Rose (Levorn) Harbin of Butler, Alabama; Josephine (Arthur) Spear of Killeen, Texas; Patricia (Sellie) Ross of Detroit, Michigan; three brothers, Anthony Collins of Butler, Alabama; Pastor Claude (Janet) Collins of Meridian, Mississippi; Calvin (Thomasena) Collins of Birmingham, Alabama; two god-sons, Dykerrious Ruffin of Lisman, Alabama; Malcom Walker of Forrest, Mississippi; one aunt, Dorothy Dickerson of Mobile, Alabama; two great-aunts, Effie Johnson of Butler, Alabama and Velma Collins of Indiana; two uncles, William (Barbara) Jackson of Butler, Alabama and Robert Jackson of Louisiana; four nephews, eleven nieces, nine great-nephews, nine great-nieces; and a host of cousins and friends.

Final arrangements entrusted to Hayden & Butler Funeral Home, Inc. 10031 Crowell Drive,

  1. O. Box 128, Lisman, Alabama 36912. Condolences may be posted at


Nell E. McDowell

BUTLER – Funeral services for Nell Ezell McDowell, 89, of Butler were held Friday, October 4, 2019, at 2:00 P.M. at Bumpers Funeral Home in Butler with Rev. Johnathon Johnson officiating. Burial followed in the Rest Haven Memorial Gardens. Visitation was at the funeral home one hour prior to the service.

Mrs. McDowell passed away Tuesday, October 1, 2019, at her daughter’s residence in Corner, Alabama. She was born March 25, 1930, in Clarke County, Alabama, to Morgan and Lula Mott Faile.

Survivors include her daughter, Barbara Estes (Paul) of Corner, AL; son, Joe McDowell (Mary Jo) of Jackson, MS; six grandchildren, Chris Estes (Kayla); Morgan Estes (Marla Hogue); Jodie, Thomas, Jenna, and Kara; and four great grandchildren, Kyler Scott, Carly Estes, Chloe Estes, and Norah Estes.

She was preceded in death by her first husband, M.T. Ezell, Jr. and her second husband, William “Shine” McDowell; and her son, Donnie Ezell.

Mrs. McDowell loved her family and everyone she ever had the privilege of meeting. She was employed at the Choctaw Advocate for many years.

Pallbearers were Paul Estes, Chris Estes, Morgan Estes, Joe McDowell, Stephen Scruggs, and Evan Retherford.

Visit to sign the online register and post condolences to the family.

Arrangements by Bumpers Funeral Home of Butler.


Carlton R. Smith

GILBERTOWN – Funeral services for Mr. Carlton Robert Smith, were held at 10:00 a.m., Wednesday, October 2, 2019 from the chapel of Phillips Funeral Home in Gilbertown, AL, with Reverend Travis McManus officiating. Visitation was held Tuesday, October 1, 2019, from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. at Phillips Funeral Home. Interment followed the service in the Smith Cemetery in Gilbertown, AL.

Mr. Smith, passed away on Sunday, September 29, 2019 at his residence in Gilbertown, AL, at the age of 91. He was born January 8, 1928 in Gibertown, AL. He was a member of the Shady Grove Pentecostal Holiness Church in Theadville, MS. He was an avid outdoorsman who loved hunting and bee keeping.

He is survived by his wife, Mary Louise “Eze” Tompkins Smith of Gilbertown, AL; sister, Christine Bridges of Providence, RI; nephew, James Troyce Smith (Beverly) of Gilbertown, AL; niece, Diane Roohanie (Saheed) of Providence, RI; great nephew, Jacob Smith of Gilbertown, AL; and great niece, Keyanna Roohanie of Providence, RI. He was preceded in death by his father, Robert Kindrick Smith; mother, Julia Mittie Waites Smith; and brother, Franklin Smith.

Serving as pallbearers were Troyce Smith, Jacob Smith, John Henry Abston, Jeff Ulrich, Stevie Connor, and Tommy Utsey. Honorary pallbearers included Shady Grove Pentecostal Holiness Church Thursday Morning Men’s Breakfast Group.

Expressions of condolence may be offered at Arrangements provided by Phillips Funeral Home, 116 West Main Street, Gilbertown, AL 36908.


Christine Williams

TOXEY – Services for Christine Williams, 75, passed away on September 14, 2019. She was born on August 24, 1944 to the late Lola Joe Roberts and Laura Collins.

She was married to Ernest Williams in 1973 and then relocated to Cleveland, OH were she was a member of Garden of Prayer COGIC. She retired from Von Roll USA, Inc. after 20 years.

She was preceded in death by her parents and her sister, Alberta Collins.

She is survived by her children, Joseph Robinson, Valerie Williams, Victoria (Reginald) Sturdivant, Veronica (Clifton) Ancrum, Tanquetta Weatherspoon, Tyrone Williams, Alexander Williams, Mary Williams, Hope (Carlton) Samuels, Priscilla Williams, Yolanda (Shaun) Smith, son-in-law, Emanuel Williams; brothers and sisters, William (Barbara) Johnson, Charles (Doretha) Collins, Jimmy (Shirley) Collins, Robert (Juanita) Collins, Melinda (Earnest) Jackson, Amanda Collins, Angela (Richard) Chess, Willie (Veronica) Collins; 23 grandchildren; 8 great grandchildren; and a host of other relatives and friends.

Pallbearers were Robert Collins, Alexander Williams, Tyrone Williams, Joshua Williams, Aaron Weatherspoon, and Christian Ancrum.

Services were rendered by Strowder’s Funeral Home.

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