Obituaries (Dec. 17, 2019)

Published 3:41 pm Monday, December 16, 2019

Betty Jo Brower

Betty Jo Brower, 75, died Monday, Dec. 16, 2019, at her home surrounded by her loving family.

Wells Funeral Home will post arrangements when finalized by her family.

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Marty Walter Garton

Marty Walter Garton, 75, died Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019, in Jackson, after a long battle of Central Nervous System Vasculitis.

Visitation services will be held today (Dec. 17) from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Starkville Church of Christ in Starkville. Memorial services will be held Wednesday, Dec. 18, at 10 a.m. at the Starkville Church of Christ in Starkville.

Graveside services will be held Dec. 18, at 2 p.m. at Magnolia Cemetery in Batesville.

Marty was born September 26, 1944, in Whitehaven, Tenn. to Prudie Meredith Garton Moss and Maurice Garton. He gained his Bachelor’s Degree from Mississippi State University in Agricultural Engineering in1966, and his Master’s Degree in Industrial Engineering in1969. He had a successful 30-year career with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers until his retirement in 1999.

He married his wife of 53 years, Patricia Carole Stokes Garton, on August 28, 1966. They raised 3 boys.

Marty and Pat moved to Starkville in 2003 and were devout members of the Starkville Church of Christ. For the past 15 years, he was heavily involved in World Bible School. In his spare time, Marty liked to attend all Mississippi State University events and enjoyed tending to the family angus cattle farm in Batesville.

He is survived by his wife, Patricia Garton; his three children, Byron Maurice “Marty” Garton of Vicksburg, Christopher Somers Garton, and wife Cindy, of Cumberland, Miss., and Timothy Walter Garton, and wife Susan, of Caledonia; and 5 grandchildren, Tanner Garton and Abby Garton of Vicksburg, and Gracie Garton, Nathan Garton, and Tate Garton, all of Cumberland.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the MSU University Christian Student Center, 613 East Lee Blvd., Starkville, MS 39759.

You can go online and sign guest register at


Linda Gail Gatlin

Linda Gail Gatlin, 71, died Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019, at Jackson General Hospital in Jackson, TN.

Funeral arrangements are incomplete at this time and will be posted by Wells Funeral Home when finalized.


Raye Hawkins

Raye Hawkins, 58, passed away Thursday afternoon, Dec. 12, 2019, in the line

of duty while protecting the citizens of Batesville and Panola County.

Funeral services will be at 1 p.m. on. Wednesday, Dec. 18, 2019, at the First Baptist

Church in Batesville with interment to follow at Antioch Cemetery near Courtland.

The family will be receiving the public Tuesday evening, Dec. 17, from

5-9 p.m. at the First Baptist Church in Batesville.

Raye was born January 30, 196, in Batesville to the late James Harold and Kathleen

Smith Hawkins. Raye was a member of the Courtland United Methodist Church. He had

served the citizens of Batesville and Panola County for nearly 30 years.

Raye began his law enforcement career with the City of Batesville as a police officer and graduated

from the Jackson Police Academy and Service Training. He then was elected District

Two Constable of Panola County in 1998 and served in this capacity until his untimely accident Thursday afternoon.

In the early years of Raye’s service as Constable, he continued to work for the Batesville Police Department and finally retired in 2000 as Lieutenant of Crime Prevention for the police department. When Raye wasn’t performing his duties as Constable, he enjoyed hunting and fishing in his spare time.

Those that will continue to carry on Raye’s memory are his son, Wesley Hawkins (Sarah), of Batesville; daughter, Tiffany Benton (Daniel), of Jackson; two sisters, Diane Hawkins Tutor (Ronnie), of Batesville, Gail Hawkins Caine (Terry), of Batesville; and grandson, Landon Hawkins. Along with his parents, Raye was preceded in death by his sister, Patricia Hawkins Freeman, and a brother, Donald Hawkins.

In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate memorial donations be sent to the

National Law Enforcement Officer Memorial Fund or they may be mailed to 901 E.

Street NW, Suite 100, Washington, DC 20004-2025.


Cea Mae Shegog Howell

Cea Mae Shegog Howell, 86, passed away at Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis.  

Funeral Services will be held Friday, Dec. 20, at 11 a.m. at Temple of Deliverance in Memphis. Memorial and burial will be at Mt. Pleasant M. B. Church in Enid.

She was affectionately known by her nieces and nephews as “Aunt CeCe”, a loving and free-spirited person.

She is survived by her husband, George Howell; daughters, Angelia and Sandra, and son, Terry, Panola County ties; sister, Dora McCollins and Rosie Brooks; brother, Bobbie Joe Shegog; and childhood friend, Vaneva.


Eurel L. Joyner

Eurel L. Joyner, Jr., 75, died Friday, Dec. 13, 2019, at the Mississippi State Veterans Home in Oxford.

Funeral services will be Wednesday, Dece. 18,  at 2 pm in the chapel of Dickins Funeral Home with Bro. Hal Johnson officiating. Interment will follow in Batesville Magnolia Cemetery with military honors.

Visitation will be held in the funeral home on Wednesday from noon to 2 p.m.


Melvin L. Mitchell

Melvin Mitchell,81, passed away Dec. 13, 2019.  Services will be conducted in Batesville, at Magnolia Cemetery today (Dec. 17) at 1 p.m.

Melvin was born in Lambert  on July 23, 1938. He grew up in Batesville, where he played a variety of sports, including football, and was voted Most Handsome. He attended the University of Mississippi, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering in 1960 and then obtained his Juris Doctor in 1963.

He married Sara Jane Westmoreland while in law school. After law school, he obtained his patent law license and worked several years in Pensacola, Fla., for Monsanto.

In the mid-1960s, he and his wife moved to Pascagoula, which they made their lifetime home.  After moving to Pascagoula, he soon became the City Attorney/Prosecutor and served in that position for nearly 4 years.

He also served as interim City Manager of Pascagoula numerous times.  He was recognized for his talents as an administrative lawyer. Melvin received the highest legal rating available from Martindale-Hubbell as well as the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Jackson County Bar Association.

Melvin was a member of First Baptist Church in Pascagoula. He was devoted to his wife Sara Jane and his children and grandchildren. Melvin is survived by his son Meade (and wife Holly) Mitchell and grandchildren William and Mary Mitchell, his son Steven (and wife Nuria) Mitchell and grandchildren Ruth and Rebecca Mitchell, his brother David (and wife Becky) Mitchell, and his sister Sue (and husband Ted) Tims.

He was preceded in death by his wife of over 50 years, Sara Jane Mitchell, his father Howard Mitchell, and his mother Claudine Lane Mitchell.  Melvin will be missed by his family and friends.

Memorials may be made to The Cure IBM Research Fund, Washington University, Campus Box 1082, One Brookings Drive, St. Louis, MO 63130 or to The University of Mississippi Foundation, 406 University Avenue, Oxford, MS 38655.


Catherine C. Stroud

Catherine C. Stroud, 76, of Batesville, passed away on Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2019, at her home.

She was a member of Acree Hill Church near Batesville and a loving wife, mother, and grandmother who will be missed dearly.

Visitation will be held in the funeral home today (Dec. 17) from noon until service time at 2 p.m. Funeral services will immediately in the chapel of Dickins Funeral Home. Interment will be at Acree Hill Cemetery. Arrangements are entrusted to Dickins Funeral Home.

Left behind to cherish her memory is her loving family which includes three daughters, Teresa Webb, of Sardis;  Sandy Johnson and Shelia Rupprecht, both of Batesville; two sons, Gary Winters, of Sardis, and Tommy Winters, of Batesville; two sisters, Amy Ales and Debbie Connell; four brothers, Charles Cranford, Richard Cranford, David Cranford, and Tommy Gene Cranford; 24 grandchildren; 50 great-grandchildren; and 2 great-great grandchildren.