Carl J. Garrich

Posted in Obituaries on February 11th, 2016 by Stephen Duch

Carl J. Garrich died on February 8, 2016 peacefully at his home at the age of 97. Carl was preceded in death by his wife of 53 years, Gloria Ward Garrich, his mother Pauline Dolny Garrich, his father Mike Garrich and his sisters Marie Garrich Hamel and Frances Garrich Senko.

Carl was a lifelong farmer and began farming in 1941. Carl was active on many levels including being past president of the Lonoke Farm Bureau, president of the Lonoke Grain Dryer, and serving on the Riceland Foods executive committee. In 1971 Carl began growing organic rice and became one of the largest growers in the country. He took great pride in recalling that he was the first farmer to produce 200 bushels of rice per acre in Arkansas.

In 1946 he married Gloria Jean Ward and and they had one child, Stephanie. Carl is survived by his daughter Stehanie Garrich McGhee, her husband Dr. Timothy McGhee and 5 grandchildren, Christopher Stephen McGhee, Michael Stuart McGhee, Matthew Mattimore McGhee, Bridget McGhee Wiggins and Zachary Michael McGhee as well as 8 great grandchildren. Pallbearers will be Mr. Bob Skarda, Mr. William Skarda, Mr. Danny Smith, Mr. Christopher McGhee, Mr. Michael McGhee, Mr. Matthew McGhee and Mr. Jason Smith. There will be visitation at St. Rose of Lima Catholic church in Carlisle at 10:00 on Friday, February 12th, with a funeral mass at 10:30.

The family would like to express their gratitude to Mrs. Alice Smith who was his primary caregiver for the last 16 months. We would also like to thank Mrs. Louise Grayson and Mrs. Helen Holoman for all they have done to help Mr. Garrich over the years. A special thanks to Ellen Woodyard who was Carl’s Hospice nurse for all of her love and care for him. In Lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to either St. Rose parish or Baptist Hospice.

Marion Steele Phifer

Posted in Obituaries on February 9th, 2016 by Stephen Duch

Marion Steele Phifer, age 85 of Paris, Tennessee, formerly of Hazen, Arkansas, died Monday, February 8, 2016 in Paris.  Marion married Donald T. Phifer on May 20, 1955.  He preceded her in death on May 2, 1998.  She was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Hazen, Arkansas and attended Trinity United Methodist Church in Paris.  She and her husband were former owner’s and operators of Don’s Food Store in Hazen.  Marion taught 4th grade at Hazen Elementary School.  She loved to fish, watch sports(especially the St. Louis Cardinal’s), loved gardening and canning, and was very involved in church work with the Ladies Auxillary in Hazen Methodist Church and helping the Hazen Arkansas Fire Department.  Marion volunteered at Tomorrow’s Hope in Paris.

She was preceded in death by her husband, her parents Mildred and Loyce Steele, her sister, Frances Wages, brother, Maxie Steele, and grandchild, Tori LaDonna Dukes.

Marion is survived by her daughter, Karen Dukes and husband, Bro. Larry Dukes of Paris, Tennessee; son, Kevin Steele Phifer of Hampton, Arkansas; sisters, Marie Boone of Baldwyn, Mississippi and Ruby (Leon) Wigginton off West Memphis, Arkansas; sister-in-law, Nadine Steele of Baldwyn, Mississippi; grandchild, Lance (Christy) Dukes of Huntingdon, Tennessee; special granddaughter, Kate Sherard of Paris, Tennessee and great-grandchildren, Gavin Robbins, Haley Robbins, and Levi Dukes.

Memorial contributions may be made Tori Dukes Memorial Scholarship Fund c/o Merchant & Farmers Bank, P.O. Box 700, Holly Springs, Ms. 38635.

A visitation will be held at Ridgeway Funeral Home in Paris from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. Tuesday, February 9, 2016.  Funeral services will be 1:00 P.M., Wednesday, February 10, 2016 at Westbrook Funeral Home Chapel in Hazen with visitation from 11:00 to 1:00 prior to the service.

Burial will be in the Hazen Cemetery.

Homer Cecil Choate

Posted in Obituaries on January 28th, 2016 by admin


Homer Cecil Choate, 73 of De Valls Bluff died January 26, 2016. He was born in Lonoke, Arkansas on March 18, 1942. He served in the U.S. Army with the 25th Infantry Division in Vietnam (1966-1968) and was awarded two purple hearts with an oak leaf cluster; lifetime member of the Illinois V.F.W.. Preceded in death by his parents, Clarence and Alva Choate. Survived by wife, Patricia (nee Thornton); father of Ryan (Melanie) Choate, Shannon Choate, Erin Mashburn (Steven). Papa of Eric, Addison, Amari and Amiah Choate; brother to, Judy Walton (Jim), Doris Davis (Ron), and James Choate. Uncle to many nieces and nephews. Visitation will be Monday February 1, 2016 from 5:00 to 7:00 P.M. at Westbrook Funeral Home in Hazen. Funeral services will be 10:00 A.M., Tuesday, February 2, 2016 at the Westbrook Funeral Home chapel in Hazen. Burial with full military honors will be 1:00 P.M. at the National Veterans Cemetery in North Little Rock.

Zachary Thomas Lee Whiteside

Posted in Obituaries on January 21st, 2016 by admin

Whiteside-Zachary-10-96Zachary Thomas Lee Whiteside, 17 of De Valls Bluff, died January 18, 2016.  Zachary was a student at Hazen High School.

He is survived by his father and step-mother, Jason and Crystal Whiteside; mother, Chessnie McKinney; two sisters, Alexas Whiteside of De Valls Bluff and Ashley Gibson of Oklahoma; four brothers, Seath Whiteside, Christopher Whiteside, Slayden Whiteside of De Valls Bluff and Curtis Gibson of Oklahoma; grandmother, Tresha Dickey; grandfather, Allyn Wilson; nephew, Gabriel Franks and friend, Brandy Gibson.

Funeral services will be 3:00 P.M., Sunday, January 24, 2016 at the community center in Hazen. Visitation will be from 12:00 to 3:00 p.m. prior to the service.

Elmer L. “Buddy” Ulry

Posted in Obituaries on January 20th, 2016 by admin

Elmer L. “Buddy” Ulry, 85 of Pine Bluff passed away January 18, 2016.  He was born February 27, 1930 in De Valls Bluff, Arkansas.  He graduated from Ulm High School in 1947.  He served in the U.S. Air Force for four years during the Korean conflict.  He retired from International Paper with 33 years service.

Elmer was preceded in death by his parents, Alfred James Ulry and Orphie Mae Hendricks Ulry; a brother, Henry A. Ulry and his loving friend, Alma Walker Powell.

He is survived by a brother James Earl Ulry and wife, Rosemary of Greenbrier, Arkansas and a devoted friend and caretaker, Bobby Ashcraft of Whitehall, Arkansas.

Funeral services will be 11:00 A.M., Saturday, January 23, 2016 at Westbrook Funeral Home chapel in Hazen, Arkansas with Bro. Freddie Mark Wilcox officiating.  Visitation will be one hour prior to the service.  Burial will be in the Hazen Cemetery.

John C. Highfill

Posted in Obituaries on January 18th, 2016 by Stephen Duch

John C. Highfill, 93 of Carlisle, died January 16, 2016.  He was born December 30, 1922 in Carlisle to the late John A. and Cora (Wilson) Highfill.

He was an Army veteran of World War II.  He helped breech the seawall at Omaha Beach on D-Day.  After the war, he operated heavy operated heavy equipment and was a supervisor in the construction industry.  Later working in Carlisle.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 58 years, Nadine (Hackney) Highfill; two sisters, Ola May (Highfill) Puim and Lois (Highfill) Wilson and one brother, R.D. Highfill.

He is survived by four sons, Don Wayne Highfill of Morgan, Dennis Highfill of Plainview, Dale Highfill of Carlisle, and Daniel Highfill of Thornburg; one daughter, Danea (Highfill) Felts of Carlisle; 11 grandchildren; 7 step-grandchildren, 12 great-grandchildren, and 10 step-great grandchildren.

Services for Mr. Highfill will be Tuesday, January 19, 2016 at 2:00 P.M. at Landmark Baptist Church in Carlisle by Bro. Albert Young and Bro. Roy Matlock.  Burial will be at Hickory Plains Cemetery with military honors.  Pallbearers are Chuck Highfill, Dale Highfill, Jr., Clint Felts, Heston Highfill, David Highfill and Yancy Kelly.  Honorary pallbearers are Jamey Highfill and Dale Highfill III.  Arrangements are by Westbrook Funeral Home of Hazen.

Marylin Jeanne Kelly

Posted in Obituaries on January 15th, 2016 by admin

mkMarylin Jeanne Kelly, 80 of Carlisle, died January 13, 2016.  She was a homemaker and a resident at Des Arc Nursing Home.  Marylin is survived by six daughters, Pamela Shanks, Cathy Kirk, Tammy Kendrick, Kimette Carpenter, Cindy Underwood and Gina Martin; two sisters, Ellie Kelly and Dianna Mertz; one brother, Keith Kelly; 20 grandchildren; 21 great-grandchildren and 1 great-great grandchild.  She was preceded in death by one daughter, Malinda Barnes.

Arrangements by Westbrook Funeral Home of Hazen.

Julia Lueise Taylor (Sample) Hart

Posted in Obituaries on January 8th, 2016 by Stephen Duch


Julia Lueise Taylor (Sample) Hart, of North Little Rock, Arkansas left here to go home to her Heavenly Father on Tuesday, January 5, 2016, at the age of 84.

Julia was born on July 9, 1931, in Des Arc, Arkansas to Johnny and Lou Della (Horton) Taylor.  She was the oldest of two children.

On September 2, 1949, she was married to J. E. Sample and together they had 6 children- 3 girls and 3 boys.  They were married for 45 years before J.E. was called home.  Several years later, she married R.L. Hart, gaining 3 step-children, Brenda, Judy and Larry, as well as their children and grandchildren.

Julia was a lady of many talents and lived her life using them to bless others.  She was a homemaker, a beautician and a childcare provider.  She had a gift for writing short stories, plays and poems, many of which were presented and performed in her attending churches.  She was a youth director,  a member of The Eastern Star, and most importantly, a child of God.

Julia was preceded in death by her parents, both husbands, and two daughters, Debbie (Sample) Schreve of Milton, Florida and Robin Sample of Lonoke, Arkansas.

She leaves behind to cherish her memories, a sister, Mary Jo (Bill) Haynes of Monticello, Arkansas; sons, Curtis Sample of Milton, Florida, John Sample of Bonneylake, Washington; a son, Tracy (Mary) Sample of Shretz, Texas; a daughter, Patti Hart of North Little Rock; grandchildren, Tina Shreve of Pensacola, Florida, Stephanie (Frank) Smith of Cypress, Texas, Rebecca (Kevin) Mills, of Abbeville, Alabama, Julia (Kevin) Habey of Milton, Florida, Nicholas and Andrew Sample both of Texas, Jennie (Todd) Cole and Joe (Sarah) Mills, both of Hazen, Arkansas, Sara (Seth) Justice of North Little Rock, Arkansas, Lonnie Reed of Tacoma, Washington, Leslie Sample of Bonneylake, Washington, Taylor and Kelsey both of Shertz, Texas, Gabriel and Regan Hart, both of Scott, Arkansas; 19 great and 6 step-great grandchildren, one great-great grandchild on the way and 6 step-great-great grandchildren; 2 nephews, Larry (Polly) Haynes of Andover, Kansas, and Blake Haynes of Arkadelphia and a host of other nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.

Julia was known and loved by many and will truly be missed by all.

Visitation will be Sunday, January 10, 2016 from 4:00 to 6:00 P.M. at Westbrook Funeral Home in Hazen.  Funeral services will be 2:00 P.M., Monday, January 11, 2016 at the Center Point Baptist Church.  Burial will be in the Center Point Cemetery.

Fannie Jo Hackney Flynn

Posted in Obituaries on January 4th, 2016 by Stephen Duch

Fannie Jo Hackney Flynn, 91 of Carlisle, died January 3, 2016 at Chambers Nursing Home in Carlisle.  She was born September 20, 1924 to Marshall and Della Blanche Hillyard.

Jo was a graduate of Carlisle High School and Draughon School of Business in Little Rock.  She worked as an office manager for Young’s Department Stores for over 40 years then at Citizen’s Bank and Trust until she retired.

Survivors include a sister, Addie L. Petrus of Carlisle; one daughter, Jill Miller and husband, Doug of Traverse City, Michigan; four granddaughters; nine great grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by two husbands, Bud Hackney and Wendy Flynn; her parents; one brother, Earnest Hillyard and one sister, Cora Ellen Dabbs.

Pallbearers are Larry Hillyard, Jim Petrus, Michael Anderson, Rick Bransford, Bobby Petrus, Doug Miller and honorary Scott Anderson.

Funeral services will be Wednesday, January 6, 2016 at 2:00 P.M. at the Landmark Baptist Church in Carlisle, with visitation one prior to services.

The family would like to thank the nursing staff and administration of Chambers Nursing Home for their loving care and support of our beloved Jo for over 19 years.  

Arrangements are by Westbrook Funeral Home of Hazen.

Patti Fitzpatrick Sims

Posted in Obituaries on January 3rd, 2016 by Stephen Duch


Patti Fitzpatrick Sims, of Hazen, passed away January 2, 2016 at the age of 76 following a long and courageous battle with cancer.  She was surrounded by her loving family.

Patti was born June 3, 1939 in St. Louis, Missouri, the daughter of the late Morton and Ruth (Lyles) Fitzpatrick.  She was preceded in death by her parents and 2 grandsons, Kyler and Brayden Sims.

Patti was a member of the First United Methodist Church where she sang in the choir and was a youth leader for many years.  She loved the children of Hazen and they loved her.  “Miss Patti” ministered to many children through Vacation Bible School, Brownies, Cub Scouts, and Girl Scouts.  Whether guiding young women through their first beauty pageant or delighting children with her fun portrayal of a witch at Halloween, Patti never missed an opportunity to be involved in her community.  After her health declined, she still loved life and enjoyed reading, playing bridge and visiting with family and friends.

The family would like to thank Chambers Nursing Home of Carlisle for the love and excellent care given to our mother.

Patti was a loving mother and friend and she will be greatly missed by all.  Patti is survived by her husband, Burk Sims; her children, Kathy Carter and Joe B. Carter, Jr. of Fayetteville, Lori (Brad) Caviness  and Luke (Amanda) Carter of Hazen; her step-children, Buck Sims of Hazen, Shane (Kristi) Sims of Benton and Scarlett (Chris) Goodwin of Colorado.  She also leaves behind many beloved grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

Visitation will be at Westbrook Funeral Home in Hazen on Monday, January 4, 2016 from 5:00 to 7:00 P.M..Funeral services will be at the First United Methodist Church in Hazen at 10:00 A.M., Tuesday, January 5, 2016.  Interment will be in the Hazen Cemetery.  Arrangements are by Westbrook Funeral Home of Hazen.  In honor of Patti’s love of life and vibrant personality, the family requests those attending to add a splash of color to their attire.

The family requests memorials be made to the Hazen First United Methodist Church of the American Cancer Society.