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Obituaries 03/23/2023

Earnest La-Wayne Henry

WATER VALLEY – Earnest La-Wayne Henry, 79, passed away Wednesday, March 15, 2023, at the Yalobusha County Nursing Home. Earnest was born to the late Earnest and Edna Tubbs Henry. He married Billie Posey Henry and had two children. He spent his working career as a flatbed trucker. He was a devout member and deacon of Christ the Rock Church in Oxford for 23 years.

Earnest loved nothing more than his family, especially his wife. Their love for each other was unconditional. In his spare time when he wasn’t trucking, he enjoyed vacationing with his wife and dining out. He was a hard worker, always ensuring his wife and children were provided for. He also enjoyed taking pictures with his phone. He could not get over how “magical” it was for something to capture a breathtaking picture and having it readily accessible. He often showed off his pictures to his family. It was his favorite pastime. His character will be missed by all those that loved and cherished him.

A celebration of life honoring Mr. Earnest Henry’s life will be held at a later date. Seven Oaks Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

He is survived by his children, Bill (Janeen) Henry, of Water Valley and Michelle (David) Jones, of Hernando; grandchildren Madison Jones, Abbi Hollis, TJ Prince, Angela (Joe) Barton and Segan Prince; great-grandchildren, Piper Barton and Dalton Barton; and his brother, Randy Henry.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Billie Posey Henry; his parents, Earnest and Edna Tubbs Henry; his sister, Nickey Dickey; and his brother, Glen Henry.

Joseph D. House

MEMPHIS – Joseph D. House, 86, passed away at his home in Memphis on Wednesday, March 8, 2023. A graveside service was held Wednesday, March 15, at 4 p.m., at Wyatt Chapel Cemetery in Water Valley. Bro. Keith Burney and Bro. Dan Dickerson officiated. Seven Oaks Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.

Joseph was born to the late Joe V. and Callie Mixon House in Water Valley. He proudly served his country in the United States Air Force. After being honorably discharged, he went on the work as a journeyman in the brewing industry.
Joseph was raised on his family farm, helping his father work the field. He developed a loved for antique tractors. He helped his father buy their first one-row Farmall tractor because Joseph thought the mules his father was using were taking too much time. He was also an avid car enthusiast, was considered to be very thrifty, and an animal lover. Joseph enjoyed watching Westerns late at night. He also enjoyed conversation, talking hours with his family and friends. Raised in a Christian home, he always treated people right and never looked down upon anyone. His character will be missed by all those who loved and cherished him.

Joseph is survived by his wife, Gladys Crook House, of Memphis; his brother, Larry (Joyce) House, of Water Valley; his nieces, Susan Seals and Kimberly (Alex) Hobson; his nephew, Mark Inman; his great-nieces, Tatiana Milstead and Coravin Hobson; a host of other nieces and nephews; and his step-grandchildren, Tina Archer and Jeffery Archer.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Joe V. and Callie Mixon House; his siblings, Edward House and Mary Inman; his step-daughter, Deborah Dickey; his niece, Linda Inman; his nephew, Michael Inman; and his step-grandson, Jamie Archer.

Butler McLeod

WATER VALLEY – On Sunday, March 19, 2023, the Author and Finisher of our soul’s destiny summoned Butler McLeod to eternal rest.  He was surrounded by family in his home.
Butler McLeod was born on March 22, 1938 to the union of Bruce McLeod, Sr. and Anna Martin McLeod in Bassfield. After the death of his father in 1948 and mother in 1950, Butler went to live with his Uncle Reedus McLeod and Aunt Gussie Booth McLeod.  They raised him until he graduated from Carver High School in Bassfield 1958. They brought him up in a Christian atmosphere, and he joined the Holly Springs C.M.E. Church.

After graduating from Carver High, Butler went to Mississippi Industrial College (better known as M.I College) in Holly Springs. During college he worked as a mail clerk, and he also aided with repairs, etc. around the college. While assisting with roof repairs at M.I., Butler saw Daliah Hervey walking by. He immediately came down from the rooftop and started a relationship that lasted throughout their college career. On August 3, 1961, Butler and Daliah were married. She became his bride, soulmate, and love of his life until her demise on August 26, 2021 (60 years).
Butler graduated from M.I. College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology and a minor in Chemistry in 1962.  He moved to Long Beach, Calif. and secured a job at Long Beach Naval Base as a supply clerk. His intent was to move his family there and make that his home. However, after five months, he was inducted into the U.S. Army on October 23, 1962. He served two years of active duty as a medical specialist before receiving an honorable discharge. Afterwards, Butler served two years of inactive duty and four years of summer reserve.  In 1964, Butler returned to Water Valley and joined Miles Memorial C.M.E. Church, where he served as Sunday School Superintendent, Trustee, Steward,and Treasurer.
Professionally Butler found his true passion in education in 1964,and was employed from 1964-1966 with the Marshall County School System in Holly Springs. In 1966, he was employed with the Water Valley School System  where he taught  Biology, general science, and Chemistry at Davidson High School. He moved on to Water Valley High School when the schools merged and continued to teach the same subjects as well as serve as a coach. He coached boys and girls basketball, boys track and served as the high school football scout from 1982-1990. He coached baseball from 1970-1985 and had only one losing season. In 1979 Oak Grove beat Coach McLeod’s baseball team for the state championship.  His teaching career covered a span of thirty one and one half years of dedicated service.  He retired in May of 1996 and was honored at the Water Valley Banquet with a plaque citing his long service to the school system. Butler continued his service to the Water Valley School System by driving a school bus until 2016.

His honors include receiving the Distinguished Coaches Award in 1991 at the Coaches Hall of Fame Awards Banquet sponsored by Bryan Foods of West Point; in May, 2021, he recognized as a True Blue Fan for his service as a teacher and coach of Water Valley High School for winning several baseball championships in the Chickasaw and Tri-Lake Conferences and for being a part of the 1990 State Championship football team by scouting different teams from Booneville to Stone County. He received a state championship ring after the victorious season.  On May 21, 2022, Coach McLeod was recognized as one of two longtime Blue Devil baseball supporters named to the Water Valley High School Baseball Hall of Fame for decades of service.  Coach McLeod helped to contribute to the building of the current baseball field at the high school.

Butler was a member of Tri-Lake Lodge No. 48 and served his community well. Because he believed in giving back to the community that has given him so much, he always found projects where he could volunteer.  He helped distribute commodities to the elderly.  In 2019, he and his late wife were chosen to serve as grand marshals for the Water Valley Christmas Parade.  He was also honored, along with his late wife, on July 18, 2019, with a Northwest Mississippi College Scholarship endowed in the name of Butler and Daliah McLeod to commemorate their many faithful years of service in education.  He served as a member of the Board of Directors for Yalobusha County Economic Development Foundation with the primary objective to secure industry for Yalobusha County. He also served as Chairperson for the Democratic Party of Yalobusha County.

Preceding him in death were his wife, Daliah McLeod; parents, Bruce Sr. and Anna McLeod; one grandson, Rodrick McLeod, Jr.; brothers, Bruce McLeod Jr.; Johnny Ray McLeod and Willie Rankins; sister, Georgia Rankins; two cousins/sisters, Lola Lee Bass and Genevieve Kyle.

Loving and Lasting memories are left with one son, Rodrick (Patsy) McLeod, Sr.; two daughters Detra (Barron) Matthews and Vietta (Richard) Booker, all of Water Valley; six grandchildren; nine great grandchildren; one sister-in-law, Grace (Willie) Hardy of Memphis; a devoted nephew, Colonel Larry “Mac” McNeal (a.k.a. Ol’ Timer as his Uncle Butler jokingly called him – U.S. Army, Retired of Kuwait who Face Timed his Uncle Butler daily and visited whenever possible); a host of nieces, nephews and cousins.

Visitation will be held in the Gardiner Room at Seven Oaks Funeral Home on Friday, March 24, from 4 until 7 p.m. The funeral service honoring his life will be Saturday, March 25, at 11 a.m. in the Henry Chapel at Seven Oaks Funeral Home.  The committal will follow the funeral service at Rocky Mount Cemetery.  Repast will be at Sanders Chapel M.B. Church in Water Valley.

Kenneth Mixon

HOLCOMB – Major James Kenneth Mixon, USAF (RET) of Holcomb, passed away Friday, March 17, 2023 at his residence. He was 87.

Kenneth was born October 28, 1935 in Water Valley to the late Loren H. and Corrine Logan Mixon. He was a 1954 graduate of John Rundle High School in Grenada.

Kenneth earned an Associate of Arts degree from Holmes Community College, a Bachelor of Science in Education from Delta State University and a Masters in Public Administration from Golden Gate University in San Francisco. He also engaged in additional studies at the University of Mississippi, Thomas Nelson Community College and the University of Southern Mississippi. Kenneth enjoyed a long, successful career in public service. He began his career as a teacher at Jones Road Junior High School in Grenada. Shortly after, he joined the United States Air Force and attended officer training school and was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant. He served in a number of states and foreign countries, retiring as a Major in 1981 with 24 years of service

Following his retirement from the Air Force, Kenneth worked as a Program Director for Newport News Shipbuilding in Newport News, Va., worked for a local contractor in Grenada, served as street superintendent and purchasing director for the City of Grenada and served as interim city manager for the City of Grenada two times.

Kenneth enjoyed learning and serving God and country. He was a faithful member of Sparta Methodist Church in Holcomb where he served as trustee and other capacities.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, March 22, in Sparta Methodist Church near Holcomb. Interment with military rites will follow in the church cemetery.

Survivors include his wife, Julie Carroll Mixon; two sons, Kenny (Gina) Mixon of Virginia and Richard Mixon of Tennessee; daughter, Beth Perry (Carl) Sammons of Georgia; daughter-in-law, Vicky Perry Mitchell of Grenada; sister, Ann Mixon (Jimmy Ray) Collins of Grenada; brother, Gene Mixon of Holcomb; three granddaughters, Casey M. Mixon, Alexandra K. Perry and Caroline E. Perry; two grandsons, Brooks W. (Hannah) Sammons and Matthew Sammons; three great-grandchildren, Rhett Sammons, Emmett Sammons and Abby Marie Sammons. He was preceded in death by his parents; a son, Matthew Perry; and sister-in-law, June Mixon.

Shirley Stewart

WATER VALLEY – Shirley Stewart, 87, went home to be with our Lord on March 18, 2023. She was at home with her family at her side. Born September 1, 1935 she was a daughter of the late Martin L. Russell and Louise Jenkins.
Shirley was loved by family, friends and everyone who had the privilege to know her. She enjoyed her family get-togethers and always made everyone feel special and loved. She enjoyed reading, word puzzles, bingo, and going out to eat. Shirley never learned to drive, she didn’t want to, so she found great pleasure in riding with her children or grandchildren. She also loved country and gospel music, working in her yard, flowers, cooking and canning her special salsa and chunky ketchup for her family. She will be dearly missed by her family, and all who knew and loved her.

Visitation is scheduled Thursday, March 23, in the Gardiner Room at Seven Oaks Funeral Home from 1 until 2 p.m. Services will immediately follow at 2 p.m. in the Henry Chapel of Seven Oaks with Bro. Grant Coffey and Bro. Billy Childs officiating. Burial will be in Turkey Creek Cemetery.

Shirley is survived by her two daughters, Faye (Bill) Pryor and Wanda Gail (Larry) Tyler; four sons, George “Boy” (Hazel) Stewart, George “Rooster” (Coyanna) Stewart, Wesley (Lynn) Stewart, and Richard (Angie) Stewart; 33 grandchildren; 58 great grandchildren, 16 great-great-grandchildren; four brothers, Larry Russell, Butch Green, Paul Green, Calvin Green; and three sisters, Jaunita Parks, Glenda Ann Clark and Brenda Joyce Brock.

In addition to her parents, Shirley was preceded in death by her husband, George W. Stewart; three children, Georgia Ann Stewart, Carl (Cindy) Stewart and Wade (Helen) Stewart; six brothers; and seven sisters.

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