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Friday December 2nd – OBITS (7)

David Lee Tollerson

David Lee Tollerson, age 49, passed away at his residence in LaGrange. Memorial services will be held on Saturday, December 3, 2016 at 2:00 pm at the Long Cane Baptist Church with Rev. Randy Gilbert officiating. Family will receive friends one hour prior to the service at the church.

Higgins LaGrange Chapel Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.



Betty Ann Baker

Mrs. Betty Ann Baker, age 81, a resident of Valley (Riverview), AL passed away Wednesday, November 16, 2016 at her residence. Funeral services were held at 2:00 PM on Sunday, November 20, 2016 at Riverview Baptist Church. Rev. Lanny Sledge officiated. Burial followed at Resthaven Cemetery in Lanett. Visitation was held on Saturday from 6:00 – 8:00 PM EST at Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home in Valley. Survivors include her son, Richard Earl Baker of Valley; daughters, Debra A. Cannon (Rickey) of Lanett, AL; Katherine A. Baker (Rickey) of St. Mary’s, GA; and Valarie A. Howard (Ed) of Valley, AL; grandchildren, Melanie B. Caldwell (Anthony) of Valley and Richard Andrew Baker of St. Mary’s, GA; brothers, Don Williams (Betty) of St. Johns, FL; Morgan Williams (Angelyn) of Winter Haven, FL; sister, Rebecca Hamlet (David) of Opelika, AL; sister-in-law, Sandra Letson (Bob) of Navarre Beach, FL; brothers-in-law, Ray Anthony of Valley; Edward Anthony, Jr. (Cheryl) of Slocomb, AL; a host of several nieces and nephews; and her beloved pet dog, Sam.  She was preceded in death by her husband of 61 years, Richard Baker; parents, Bernard & Geraldine Williams, and a brother, Jerry B. Williams. Mrs. Baker was born in Riverview on February 20, 1935 and retired from West Point Pepperell. She loved to cook and was known for her famous chocolate pie.  She was especially looking forward to the arrival of her first great-grandson, Hawkins Rhett Caldwell in February. The family would like to thank Riverview Baptist Church and Hospice Compassus for their care and support during her illness.

Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home of Valley directed.



Ivarene “Giggy” Hay

Mrs. Ivarene “Giggy” Hay, age 92, of Valley, went home to be with her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, on Sunday, November 20, 2016. Mrs. Hay was born on November 23, 1923 in Cullman County, Alabama to the late William H. Ferguson and Mattie Powell Ferguson. She was a lady who loved her Lord and her family.  She was of the Baptist Faith.  She loved reading the Bible, spending time with her family, and cooking excellent dishes. Funeral services were held on Wednesday, November 23, 2016 at 2:00P.M. at the Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home chapel in Valley with interment in Fairfax Cemetery. The Rev. Sam Wood and the Rev. Tim Campbell officiated. Her family received friends at the funeral home Tuesday evening from 6:00P.M. EST until 8:00P.M. EST. She is survived by her children, Beverly (Don “Pop”) Smith, Barbara (Richard) Swank, Deborah (Bob) Johnson, Jud (Patricia) Hay; brother, Dwight (Shirley) Ferguson; grandchildren, Kathy Sorrells, Tracy Sorrells, Wanda Penny, Donna Turner, Lynn (Jon) Martin, Samuel (Larisa) Wood, Bobby Johnson, Amanda Treadwell, Aimee (Matt) Gordon, Andrew (Holly) Treadwell, Joy Hay; 12 great grandchildren; 5 great great grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband, Ira Hay; daughter, Betty Sue Blanks; stepson, Paul Hay; grandsons, Jonathan Wood and Adam Treadwell. Please visit our website at to sign the online guest book.

Johnson Brown-Service Funeral Home of Valley directed.



Lillie Pearl Tucker Thomas Cox

The end of lie is too full to be confined to writing, too noble and beautiful to be described by any one human tongue. It would take all the lives that were touched by Mrs. Lillie Pearl Cox to complete the description of her life’s greatness. Lillie Pearl was born May 11, 1930 in Gabbettville, Georgia to the late, Will Tucker and Missouri Talley Tucker. Death opened the door to Everlasting Life for her on Wednesday, November 23, 2016 at West Georgia Hospice of LaGrange, Georgia. At an early age, she received Christ and joined Friendship Baptist Church. Her commitment to the Principals of Christianity became a guide to her footsteps and a light to her path. The sunset of her wonderful life is mourned and celebrated by her husband, Grover Cox; two step sons, Terry L. Cox of Winston Salem, NC; and Grover (Andrea) Cox, Jr. of Fayetteville, GA; seven step-grandchildren, Quintavious, Kiara, Shanterrika, Charessa, Alex, Mylena, Jalen, and one special great granddaughter, Khloiie; she also leaves to cherish, one sister, Mary Gilbert, LaGrange, GA; two brothers, Cleveland Tucker and Dallas Tucker, both of Atlanta, GA; one special nephew, Rono Tucker; and a host of nieces, nephews, and friends. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death five brothers and five sisters.

Lakes-Dunson-Robertson Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.



Derrell W. Gilliam

Mr. Derrell W. “Booty Joe” Gilliam, of West Point, GA passed away Sunday, November 13, 2016. Mr. Derrell Wendell Gilliam, the son of the late Charles, Sr., and Ella Pearl Phillips Gilliam was born October 5, 1966 in Troup County, GA. He departed this life on Sunday, November 13, 2016 in West Point, GA.

“Booty Joe”, “Booty”, as he was known to all, received his education in the West Point Public School System. “Booty spent countless hours enjoying the peace and wide open space that he found beneath the John C. Barrow Bridge. The river banks provided a lot of peace and calmness for him. In later years, “Booty Joe” formed a personal relationship with his ride-or-die companion, “Black Beauty” in which he named his wheelchair. During that time he also had a brief encounter with a motorized chair that ended shortly after it was donated. “Booty Joe” knew me, you and everyone one else as well as everyone knowing him. He and “Black Beauty” would be seen here, there and everywhere. Derrick, as he was also known, was an independent person. He enjoyed gathering with family, friends and others he was surrounded by engaging in a variety of his favorite activities. He especially loved his nieces and nephews. “Booty-Joe” did not have a problem telling you and whomever exactly what was on his mind. He would tell you exactly what he was thinking regardless. He leaves to cherish his precious memories: one sister, Bridgett L. Gilliam, Lanett, AL; five brothers, Charles Gilliam, Jr., Adrian(LaShelle) Gilliam, Tamarko Gilliam, West Point, GA, Bernard Gilliam, Lamano(Tiffany) Gilliam, LaGrange, GA; one aunt, Anita Huguley, West Point, GA; three uncles, Tommy(Dorothy) Gilliam, Joe(Hattie) Gilliam, Eddie Phillips, West Point, GA; one great aunt, Doris Woody, Lanett, AL; three nieces, his baby girl, Lacresha Davidson, Breuna Gilliam, Alexandria Gilliam, West Point, GA; two nephews, Charles Davidson, Jaylen Gilliam, West Point, GA; four great nephews, Lorenzo Davidson, Noreago Brooks, Adrian Davidson and Camelo Brooks and a host of other relatives and friends; his favorite cousin Adrian” Ade” Gilliam, West Point, GA and his two special friends, Virginia and Lorenzo Russell, West Point, GA. A Celebration of Life Service For Mr. Derrell Wendell Gilliam “Booty Joe” was held on Friday, November 25, 2016 at 2:00 pm at Bethlehem Baptist Church, 1111 East 10th Street, West Point, GA 31833. Dr. W.T. Edmondson, Pastor, Rev. Adrian Frazier, Eulogist, Rev. Gary L. Fanning, and Rev. Jerry Ledbetter officiated. Burial was held at Marseilles Cemetery.

M.W. Lee Mortuary, of West Point, GA was in charge of arrangements.



Iris M. Higgins

Mrs. Iris M. Higgins, of Rex, GA passed was on Tuesday, November 22, 2016 in Stockbridge, GA. Iris Butler Higgins was born May 31, 1956 to Irie and Elmenta Butler in Frankfurt, Germany. She departed this life on Tuesday, November 22, 2016. Iris attended Columbus High School and was a member of the graduation class of 1974. Iris was a people person; she never met a stranger. Her most used words were” Treat everyone with respect, because you never know when you are in the company of an angel.”

“Boot”, as she called by her husband, Horace, had a great passion for children. The majority of when you saw her, she had her baby, Brian with her. He loved going here and there with “Nana.” Iris enjoyed decorating her home, cooking and entertaining family and friends. She was preceded in death by her father, Irie Butler and a sister, Janice Butler. Iris leaves to cherish her memories: her husband of 15 years, Horace Higgins, Rex. GA; her mother, Elmenta Butler, Tabor City, NC; one son, Christopher Butler, New York, NY; three daughters, Kelly(Murphy)McFarland, Marrero, LA; Clarissa and Co-Co Higgins, LaGrange, GA; four grandchildren, Kylah, Alex , Andrew and a much loved grandchild, Brain Cowling; three brothers, Kurt(Dianne) Cogdell, Columbus, GA, Zack Butler, Tink(Angela) Butler, Tabor City, NC; one sister, Kathy Matthews, Tabor City ,NC; sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law, aunt, uncle, nieces, nephews and a host of other relatives and friends; special friends, Rachael, Bridget, Donna, Joy and Clara.  A Celebration of Life for Iris Butler Higgins was held on Wednesday, November 30, 2016 at 11:00 am at Bethlehem Baptist Church, 1111 East 10th Street, West Point, GA 31833. Dr. W.T. Edmondson, Pastor, and Bishop Clarence Jones, Eulogist, Deacon Naye Higgins, Elder Willie Heard, and Reverend Quincy Carswell officiated. Interment was held at Marseilles Cemetery Hwy. 29, West Point, GA.

M.W. Lee Mortuary was in charge of the arrangements.

Infant Brandon Lee Wilkerson

Infant Brandon Lee Wilkerson peacefully passed away November 25, 2016 at Egleston Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Brandon was born September 10, 2016 in Columbus, GA. He was the son of Ernest Wayne and Wendy Rose Wilkerson. In addition to his parents, he is survived by his twin brother, Christopher Kyle Wilkerson. The Memorial Service will be held at 11:00am on Friday, December 2, 2016 in the Chapel of Striffler-Hamby Mortuary with Reverend Donnie Benefield officiating. The visitation will be from 10:00am until service time. Those wishing to share a condolence or remembrance with the family may do so by visiting

Arrangements are by Striffler-Hamby Mortuary.