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Martha K. Cook

Mrs. Martha Brunell (“Nellie”) Kelley Cook, 91, passed away Sunday, May 2, 2010 at Lee County Health Care in Leesburg. Her funeral service was held Wednesday, May 5 at Porterfield Memorial United Methodist Church; interment was at Floral Memory Gardens in Albany. The Rev. Nancy J. Scarbrough, The Rev. Leigh Ann Raynor, and The Rev William Collins officiated. Kimbrell-Stern Funeral Directors handled the arrangements.

Mrs. Cook lived in Albany since 1942 until she moved to Lee County Health Care three years ago. She was born December 25, 1918 in Baker County the daughter of the late Wright Inez Sheffield Kelley and George Washington Kelley. She attended school at Elmodel and graduated from Miller County High School before attending Georgia Southwestern College in Americus. She worked at Barfield’s shoes in the Midtown Mall for many years. She was an active member of Porterfield Memorial United Methodist Church and the Susannah Wesley Sunday school class a long as she was able to attend services. She will be remembered by her family as a wonderful cook and a talented seamstress.

Mrs. Cook was preceded in death by her husband of 50 years, Roy Rufus Cook, who died in 1989. She was also preceded in death by her brothers Lester C. Kelley, Chester Kelley, A.W. Kelley and her sisters Mrs. Georgia Mae Cook, Miss Minnie Lee Kelley, Miss Myrtle Kelley, Mrs. Inez Cobb, Mrs. Hattie McRee, and Mrs. Frances Roberson.

She is survived by her daughters Mrs. Lucy C. Tracy and Mrs. Patricia (Pat) Bullard and her husband Terry all of Albany, her grandchildren, Miss Kelley Louise Bullard of Jacksonville, Fla. and Rev. Roy Alexander (Alex) Tracy and his wife Kelly of Savannah, and a great grandson, Christopher Patrick Tracy of Savannah, a sister-in-law, Jeanette Kelley of Colquitt, and many nieces and nephews.

Mrs. Cook’s family would like to express their gratitude to Dr. Joseph Stubbs and Dr. Bernard Scoggins, and to the staff at Lee County Health Care for their compassion and care. Memorials may be made to Porterfield Memorial United Methodist Church 2200 Dawson Road, Albany, GA 31707 or to the charity of your choice. An online guestbook is at www.kimbrellstern.com.

Jimmie Arleen Dobbins

Jimmie Arleen Dobbins, 62, of Tuscaloosa, Ala., died Monday, May 3, 2010.  Her funeral service was Thursday at Crown Hill Mausoleum. Kimbrell-Stern Funeral Directors handled the arrangements.

Ralph Joseph Evans III

Ralph Joseph “Joel” Evans, III, 63, of Albany died Wednesday, May 5, 2010, of pancreatic cancer. Mathews Funeral Home handled the arrangements.

A native of Tampa, Fla., Mr. Evans was preceded in death by his parents, Col. Ralph Joseph Evans, II, U.S.A.F., and Scottie Evans. As part of a military family, Mr. Evans lived many places during his childhood including Washington, D.C., Hamilton, Bermuda, Houston, Texas, Columbus, Ohio, Loring, Maine and Homestead, Fla. Following his graduation from West Palm Beach and Miami Dade Colleges, Mr. Evans traveled and performed as a musician for most of his career.  He was last associated with Albany Title Co. as an abstractor.

Survivors include his wife, Barbara Matthews Evans of Albany, his sister, Margaret Dawn Evans of Decatur, Ga., his parents-in-law, Walter and Evangeline Matthews of Albany, and a niece, Joan Evans of Melbourne, Fla.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Albany Community Hospice, P.O. 1828, Albany, GA 31702. An online guestbook is at www.mathewsfuneralhome.com.

Charles Robert Freeman

Charles Robert Freeman, 61, of Smithville, died Friday, May 7, 2010 at his residence. Funeral services were scheduled for 11 a.m. Tuesday, May 11, at Mathews Funeral Home with Rev. Grady Morey officiating and interment at Cedar Hill Cemetery in Dawson.

A native of Albany and Parrott, born to late Charles Hubert Freeman and Cleo Mildred Ryals Freeman, Mr. Freeman grew up in Dawson and moved to Smithville five years ago from Webster County. He was employed as a timber cruiser with Kennedy Forest Services and was a member of Preston Baptist Church.

Survivors include his wife, Sharon Pitts Freeman, a daughter, Robin Freeman of Preston, Ga., step-daughter, Kristy Albritton and her husband, Joseph of Americus, Ga., a stepson, Adam Pitts and his wife, Ivy of Albany, and a stepson, Keith Seymour of Plains, Ga., three sisters, Cleo Lovelette of Gulf Shores, Ala., Betty Beamon and her husband, David of Smithville, and Diane Alred and her husband, Jimmy of Leesburg, and Linda Patterson Taylor of TyTy, Ga., two brothers, Paul Freeman and his wife, Peggy of Bronwood, Ga., and David Freeman and his wife, Karen of Smithville, three grandchildren, Ansley, Blake and Iann and four step-grandchildren, Jessica, Tiffany, Heather and Hunter. He was preceded in death by a brother, James Freeman.

The family was scheduled to receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m. Monday at Mathews Funeral Home. The family is at the residence of Betty and David Beamon, 805 Childers Road, Smithville, GA, 31787. An online guestbook is at www.mathewsfuneralhome.com.

Ethel C. Lowe

Ethel C. Lowe died Friday, May 7, 2010 at Palmyra Nursing Home. Her funeral service was scheduled for 2 p.m. Tuesday at Kimbrell-Stern Funeral Directors with interment in Sunset Cemetery in Meigs, Ga., and Dr. Don Adams officiating and the family receiving friends Tuesday at 1:30 until funeral hour.

A native of Mitchell County Mrs. Lowe lived in Albany for many years and was retired from Shaw-Burton as a sales representative. She was a member of First United Methodist Church and was active with Albany ARC. Mrs. Lowe was preceded in death by her husband Mel Lowe, daughter Mary Luke and a grandson Mark Luke.

Survivors include her grandson Scott Verner, Albany, sister, Myrtle Banks, Cairo, many nieces and nephews, and a dear friend and caregiver Margaret Swearingen, of Albany.

Memorials may be made to the Building Fund, c/o First United Methodist Church, P O Box 448, Albany, GA 31702.

Gaines McKeen

Mr. Gaines McKeen, 77, of Albany, passed away Monday, May 3, 2010 at his home. Funeral services were conducted Thursday in the chapel of Hall and Hall Funeral Home. Rev. Robin Chaplin officiated; internment was in Andersonville National Cemetery with military honors.

Mr. McKeen was born June 22, 1932 in Anniston, Ala., to the late Poulan and Gladys Key McKeen. He was a retired veteran in the U.S. Army, was a prisoner of war in the Korean conflict and received a purple heart. He also served in the Vietnam era and was very proud of his service to our country. He enjoyed riding and loved his family dearly.

Survivors include his close friend and caregiver, Mrs. Ruth Foor of Albany; children, Brenda (Ken) Stack of Lee County, Gregory (Julie) McAlpin of Atlanta, Elton (Eunice) McAlpin of California, Diana (Gus) Spurlin of Warner Robins, Elaine McAlpin of Albany, Lisa (Nathan) Carter of Fitzgerald and Scott (Fran) Foor of Albany; sisters, Marie (Gerald) Lunzer of Wisconsin, Sue Bowen of Albany, Dolly (John) Chambers of California, Vecoy (Donald) Hutto of Doerun, Shirley Chestnut of Leesburg and Judy Bird of Dalton; and several nieces and nephews.

Hall and Hall funeral Home handled the arrangements.

Maggie Ruth Greene Powell

The funeral service of Maggie Ruth Greene Powell, 73, of Leesburg, who died Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at her residence, was conducted Friday at Mathews Funeral Home. Rev. T.C. Cooley officiated. Interment was in Thundering Springs Cemetery.

A native of Eufaula, Ala., Mrs. Powell resided in Albany most of her life before moving to Lee County in 1980. Before her retirement, she was employed with MacGregor Golf Co. for 34 years. She was a member of New Hope Baptist Church and was preceded in death by her first husband, R.C. Greene.

Survivors include her husband, Fred Powell, two daughters, Lynn Cooley and her husband, Lynn and Connie Sims and her husband Joey all of Leesburg, three sisters, Pat Hunsinger, Jackie Jacobs and Sharon Worley all of Leesburg, four grandchildren, T.C. Cooley and his wife, Brie and Blake Sims and his wife, Charlye of Albany, Rebekah Sims of Jacksonville, Fla., and Kyle Sims of Leesburg, two great-grandchildren, Tristan Cooley and Lliam Cooley.

Contributions may be made to Albany Community Hospice, P.O. Box 1828, Albany, GA 31702. An online guestbook is at www.mathewsfuneralhome.com.

Troy Welch, Sr.

Harrison E. Shepard

Harrison E. “Sonny” Shepard Jr., 78, of Granby, N.Y., formerly of Albany, passed away Friday, May 7, 2010 at Oswego Hospital in New York. His funeral service was scheduled for 4 p.m. Monday at Crown Hill Cemetery with Rev. Steve Hood officiating.

Born in Ballston Spa, he was a former resident of Albany and was a longtime resident of Florida before moving to the Fulton area in 2000. Sonny retired from General Motors in Albany. He was predeceased by his parents, Harrison and Doris Perkins Shepard, his wife, Florence Shepard, his son, Charles Smith, and his sisters, Shirley Nalle and Gladys Stauffer. Everyone who came in contact with Sonny loved him.

He is survived by his children, Kenny Shepard, James Shepard, James Smith, Cathy Butler, Harold Smith, Harrison Shepard III, and Joanna Hussong; sister, Charlotte Murray; 19 grandchildren; 15 great-grandchildren.

The family was scheduled to receive friends following the service. Memorial contributions may be made to the family, c/o Joanna Hussong, P.O. Box 5882, Sylvester, GA 31791. An online guestbook is at www.kimbrellstern.com.

Troy Thomas Welch Sr.

Mr. Troy Thomas Welch Sr. 31, of Sylvester, passed away Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital. Funeral services were Thursday in the chapel of Hall and Hall Funeral Home. Rev. Chris E. Turner officiated. Cremation followed the service.

Mr. Welch was born April 16, 1979 in Albany. He was a construction crew leader. Troy enjoyed playing horseshoes and pool. He will be greatly missed by his entire family and many friends.

Survivors include his wife, Jennifer Cox Welch of Sylvester; children, Alexis Welch and Cody Cox both of Sylvester; father and stepmother, John Thomas “J.W.” Welch Jr. and Nancy Lynn of Sylvester; his mother and her fiancé, Glory Welch Young and Michael Clum of Albany; brothers, Johnny Ray Welch of Sylvester and Jason Welch and his wife, Tosha of Albany; sisters, Rebecca Welch and husband, Juan Hernandez of Albany, Haley Welch of Sylvester and Shelby Welch also of Sylvester; paternal grandfather, John Thomas Welch Sr. of Albany; maternal grandmother, Sylvia Loewenthal; step-grandparents, Thomas and Daphine Pate; and several nieces and nephews.

Troy was preceded in death by his son, Troy Thomas “Big Man” Welch Jr.; paternal grandmother, Charlene Welch and maternal great-grandmother, Ann Parker.

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Owner / Editor / Writer

Tom Knighton is the publisher of The Albany Journal. In November, 2011, he became the first blogger to take over a newspaper anywhere in the world. In August of 2012, he made the difficult decision to take the Journal out of print circulation and become an online news agency, a first for the Albany area.

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