Obituaries Week of May 15, 2019




WILLIAMSTON – Ellen Emmerline Simmons Smith, 95, wife of the late Elbert Richard Smith, passed away Tuesday, May 7, 2019 at the Rainey Hospice House in Anderson.

Born in Pelzer, she was a daughter of the late Calvin Gus and Margie Lou Stanton Simmons. The last surviving member of her immediate family, she was predeceased by two sisters, her twin, Helen S. Creamer, and Elizabeth Thacker; four brothers, Woodrow “Woody”, Milton J., Truman, and W.G. Simmons.

Mrs. Smith retired from the Kendall Company and was a member of Williamston First Baptist Church. She dearly loved her church and church family.

She is survived by her daughters, Martha Ashley (Donnie) of Belton, and Rachel Ellison (late husband, Jimmy) of Williamston; four grandchildren and their spouses; seven great-grandchildren; two great-great-grandchildren – all who loved and adored her; and three special nieces, Marian West (Mike), Lisa Robinson (Mike) and Patsy Callaham (Ray).

Visitation was held Friday, May 10, from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m. at Williamston First Baptist Church. The service followed at 4:30, with burial at Forest Lawn Memorial Park.

Memorials may be made to Williamston First Baptist Church, P.O. Box 477, Williamston, SC 29697.

Gray Mortuary, Pelzer



RIALTO, CALIFORNIA- Virginia Burton, 95, of 451 W. Cromwell Street, wife of the late GORDON P. STONE and Delmar Ray Burton passed away Thursday, April 25 in her home in Rialto, California.

Born March 5, 1924 in Williamston, South Carolina. She was the daughter of the late James and Alice Ferguson.

Survivors include her son, Gordon (Don) P. Stone, Jr of Chesapeake, Virginia, Her daughters Barbara Ann Roach of Evergreen, Colorado, Danita Rae Kubik of Beaumont, California; four Grandchildren; and eight Great-Grandchildren.

Funeral Services were May 14, 2019 at Riverside National Cemetery, Riverside, California.


Martha Ann Gilstrap Kearney, 71, of Pelzer, wife of Charles Wallace “Chuck” Kearney, Jr., died Friday, May 10, 2019.

Born in Asheville, NC, she was a daughter of the late John Gilstrap and Arsula Mullikin Gilstrap Coggins. She retired as the office manager for Dr. Richard Jacques. She was a member of Hillcrest Baptist Church.

In addition to her husband, she is survived by sons, Charles Edward Kearney of Jackson, GA, Brent Kearney of Woodstock, GA; daughter, Angela Rodgers of Greenville; sisters, Linda Smith of Anderson, Jane Scoggin of Boiling Springs; brothers, Johnny Gilstrap of Cedar Hill, TN, Brad Gilstrap of Blue Ridge; seven grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Funeral service was held Monday, May 13, at Hillcrest Baptist Church.

Burial will be Friday, May 17 at 3:00 p.m. at M.J. “Dolly” Cooper Veterans Cemetery.

Flowers will be accepted, or memorials may be made to Hillcrest Baptist Church, 1300 Anderson Drive, Williamston, SC 29697.


The Unity Mortuary of Williamston announce that family and friends gathered 1:00 p.m. Friday, May 10, 2019, to celebrate the life of Danielle Blanding at New Prospect Baptist Church 619 Greenville Drive Williamston, SC with interment following in the church cemetery. The family is at 333 E. Caroline Street Williamston, SC 29697.


Angela “Angelita” Heredia (Gonzalez Nazario), 76, of Easley, died on Saturday, May 11, 2019.

Born in Jayuya, Puerto Rico, she was the daughter of the late Valentin Gonzalez Custodio and Julia Nazario De Jesus.

She was predeceased by her husband, Rafael Heredia Pagan.

She attended the Catholic Church of St. Lukes in Easley.

Surviving are her children, Rafael Heredia, Jr.  of Easley, Evelyn Maldonado of Piedmont, Carmen Buntenbach of Easley and Ana Maria Brown of Greenville; 11 grandchildren; four great grandchildren; brothers, Juan Gonzalez of Navarre, FL and Agustin Gonzalez of Jayuya, Puerto Rico.

A Funeral Mass was held on Wednesday, May 15 in the chapel of Robinson Funeral Home-Powdersville Road, with burial following in Robinson Memorial Gardens.

Memorials be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 301 University Ridge # 5850, Greenville, SC 29601 in her honor.


James Renny Lands, Jr., 78, of Piedmont, husband of Linda M. Lands, died Thursday, May 9, 2019.

Born in Spartanburg, he was the son of the late James Renny Sr. and Lois Dobbins Lands. He was retired from the state of South Carolina where he worked in Pickens County.

Surviving in addition to his wife are two sons, Matthew Lands, of Asheville, and Drew Lands of Spartanburg.

A memorial service will be announced by Robinson Funeral Home at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorials be made to the Outdoor Dream Foundation, PO Box 802 Anderson, SC 29622.


Arnice “Whitney” Miles, 80, of Greer, died on Sunday, May 12, 2019.

He was born in Scranton, SC, the son of the late Colon and Janie Coker Miles.

He was a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps He was a truck driver by trade retiring from Roadway Express.

In addition to his wife, Scarlett Rae, he is survived by daughters, Janice Phipps of Spartanburg, Theresa Cooper of Piedmont, Lisa Rodgers of Taylors, and Dameris Lollis of Piedmont; seven grandchildren; eleven great-grandchildren; sisters, Minnie Indart, and Maria Caballero both of Gray Court, and Edith Shady of Florence.

Funeral service was held Wednesday, May 15 in the Chapel of Thomas McAfee Funeral Home, Southeast. Burial followed in Greenville Memorial Gardens.

Memorials may be made to the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation, 230 East Ohio Street, Suite 500, Chicago, Illinois, 60611.


Melba Jolley Garrison, 78, of Piedmont, wife of the late Norman Sewell Garrison, Jr., died on Monday, May 13, 2019.

She was born in Inman, a daughter of the late William Dewitt Jolley and the late Jessie Lea Abernathy Jolley.

She was broker-in-charge for Powdersville Realty, Inc. and a faithful member of Rock Springs Baptist Church.

Surviving are a son, Jeff Garrison; daughters, Melinda Garrison and Melanie Elrod; a brother, Gerald Jolley; sisters, Brenda Miller, Sandra Clary, and Pam Taylor; and eight grandchildren.

Funeral services will be held at 2:00 p.m. Thursday, May 16, 2019 at Rock Springs Baptist Church. Entombment will follow in Robinson Memorial Gardens Chapel of Reflection Mausoleum.

Flowers are accepted, or memorials may be made to Open Arms Hospice, 1836 West Georgia Road, Simpsonville, SC 29680.