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Obituaries Nov. 23 – 30

Roger L. Ragsdale


Mr. Roger L. Ragsdale died Nov. 22 at Decatur Morgan Hospital. He was born Oct. 24, 1952, in Morgan County to Claude Ragsdale and Irene Nell Miller Ragsdale. He was a construction worker prior to his retirement.

Survivors include wife Julie Diane Ragsdale of Hartselle.

No services are scheduled.


Marlon H. Tapscott


Marlon Hugh Tapscott, 81, of Hartselle left his earthly home and entered Heaven Nov. 21. He passed away peacefully in his home surrounded by family and those who loved him.

Marlon was born Aug. 13, 1939, in Morgan County to Louie and Altha Sanders Tapscott. Mr. Tapscott served in the Army National Guard in the 279th Signal Battalion and served in active duty during the Berlin Crisis. He worked for many years at Monsanto and ConAgra, and he retired from Hartselle City Schools, where he served as a bus driver for 22 years.

For many years he owned and operated a furniture refinishing business, making old things new again. He loved history, cutting the grass, gardening, fishing and watching wildlife outside his window.

Marlon spent many days camping and fishing with friends and family on Lake Guntersville. He was notorious for taking country roads when on a family trip as well as making a U-turn to read a historical marker he had spotted. He had a great sense of humor, an infectious smile and an amazing ability to make strangers feel as if they had known one another for many years.

Mr. Tapscott loved the Lord and was a lifelong member of Mt. Zion Baptist Church, where he served as a trustee until he was no longer able. He loved his church family and was faithful in attendance as often as his health allowed.

He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Laura Fuller Tapscott, and four children, Lasanna Holmes (Joey, deceased), Myron Tapscott (Christy), Leanna Tennyson and Lana Tew (Brandon). Marlon had nine loving grandchildren, who he loved to watch play sports and aggravate at every possible chance. His grandchildren are Justin Tapscott (Nikki), Thomas Alexander (Brittany), Coty Tapscott (Emily), Levi Tapscott, Lawson Tew, Judson Tew, Gracie Tennyson, and Chandler and Stephen Radford.

In addition to his grandchildren, Marlon enjoyed being a part of the lives of his five great-grandchildren: Lexie Howard, Bryant and Mason Alexander, Layne Tapscott and Lane Thrasher. One sister, Joyce Tapscott Wallace (Tommy, deceased), as well as brothers and sisters-in-laws and a host of nieces and nephews, also survive him.

Services were held Nov. 25 at 1 p.m. at Peck Funeral Home Chapel with Dr. Edwin Hayes and Dr. Jerome Ward officiating. Burial was in the Mt. Zion Cemetery.

Pallbearers were Justin Tapscott, Thomas Alexander, Coty Tapscott, Levi Tapscott, Heath Tapscott, Lawson Tew and Judson Tew.

In lieu of flowers, people may donate to the Mt. Zion Baptist Church building fund at 250 Mt. Zion Road, Hartselle, AL 35640.

Special thanks to Hospice of North Alabama for their support and care of Mr. Tapscott in his last days.


Jerrie Stroup Legg


A graveside funeral service and interment for Jerrie Stroup Legg, 73, were held Nov. 24 at 3:30 p.m. at Stroup Cemetery with Bro. Donnie McDonald and Bro. Roger Ammons officiating and Peck Funeral Home directing.

Ms. Legg died Nov. 22 at her residence. She was born April 28, 1947, in Morgan County to Beverly Curtis Stroup and Eva Lee Stover Stroup. She was employed at the Mariott as the kitchen manager prior to her retirement. She was member of the Tunsel Road Baptist Church.

Preceding her in death were her children’s father, Julis Legg, an infant son, her parents and a brother-in-law, Billy Kirby.

Survivors include one son, Dwight “Brother” Legg; two daughters, Angela Carol Legg and Thresa Legg; three sisters, Beverly Woodall, Helen Kirby and Joann Robbins (Bobby); a grandson; the love of her life, Garrett Legg; her friend and companion of 34 years, Richard McMillian; a host of nieces and nephews; and her beloved pet Mona.

Pallbearers were Garrett Legg, Pacer Stroup, Walter LouAllen, Mike Byrd, Jason Boyd and Patrick Caver.


Jackie Atchley


A memorial visitation for Jackie Atchley, 59, was held Nov. 28, from 2-3 p.m. at Peck Funeral Home with Peck Funeral Home directing. Mr. Atchley died Nov. 23 at Decatur Morgan Hospital. He was born July 9, 1961, in Morgan County to J.W. Atchley and Mary Fagan Atchley. He was a supervisor for Copeland prior to his passing.

Survivors include wife, Miranda Atchley; one son, Robert Atchley; three step-daughters, Christian Gibson, Jazmyn Holt and Kaytee Gibson; one brother, Jim Atchley (Kay); one sister, Jan Atchley; and a host of aunts, uncles, cousins and other extended family.


Mary Ruth King Burch


Graveside service for Mary Ruth King Burch, 87, of Hartselle was held Nov. 27 at 1 p.m. at Johnson Chapel Cemetery with Peck Funeral Home directing. The family visited with friends after the service.

Mrs. Burch, who was born July 9, 1933 in Hartselle to Gilbert Eugene King and Mary Eugie Ward King, died Nov. 23 at Decatur Morgan Hospital. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, William Dois Burch; two daughters, Donna Legg and Vicki Latham; two brothers, Gilbert Eugene King Jr. and Bobby Ray King; and a sister, Hilma Murphy.

She retired from Family Dollar Store, where she worked as a cashier.

She is survived by three sons, Mike Burch (Lolly), Dale Burch (Tammy) and Charlie Burch; a daughter, Connie Morris (Ronald); three sisters, Shirley Howard, Bettie Randolph and Wynell “Nell” Dobbins (Bobby); 10 grandchildren; and 24 great-grandchildren.


Ray L. Byrom Sr.


A graveside funeral service and interment for Ray Leonard Byrom Sr., 80, were held Dec. 1 at 2 p.m. at Jefferson Memorial Cemetery with the Rev. Joey Bennett officiating and Peck Funeral Home directing.

Mr. Byrom died Nov. 23 at Cullman Regional Medical Center. He was born Feb. 18, 1940, in Jefferson County to William Roy Byrom and Josie Nime Byrom. He was employed by the City of Gardendale as a building inspector prior to his retirement.

Ray was a retired SGM Veteran of the United States Army Reserve and was a retired Mason. He was a member of the First United Methodist Church of Hartselle.

Preceding him in death were his parents; a brother, Jerry Byrom; and a sister, Daisy Price.

Survivors include his wife of 47 years, Anne M. Byrom; three sons, Ray Byrom Jr. (Brigitte), Kenneth D. Gospodareck (Judy) and William Keith Gospodareck (Kathy); one daughter, Susan B. McGill (Greg); nine grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren

Pallbearers were family and friends.

In lieu of flowers the family requests memorial donations be made to First United Methodist Church of Hartselle.


Grady Allen Houser


Funeral service for Grady Allen Houser, 82, of Priceville, was held at New Friendship Baptist Church Nov. 28 at 2 p.m. The Rev. Greg Standridge and Rev. Ronald Manley officiated the service, while Peck Funeral Home did the directing.

Grady Allen Houser changed his address to Heaven Nov. 23. Those closest to him are saddened by the move but are very thankful that he was not only a part of their past, but he is now a part of their future.

He went by many names throughout his lifetime. He was Allen, “Hoss” to his closest friends, Daddy to his girls, Grady to his G.E. friends and, his favorite, Pawpaw. He was overheard many times by family members telling those he’d just met to “call me Pawpaw.”

Grady (Pawpaw Allen) was a lifetime resident of Priceville. He was born June 14, 1939. He graduated from Priceville High School in 1957.

He married the love of his life, Emma Jean Lawrence, Oct. 10, 1958; they were married 62 years.

Grady (Pawpaw Allen) was a farmer pure and simple. He was most at home on a tractor. He could tell you more than you ever wanted to know about cotton, soybeans, wheat, corn and pigs. Apart from his family, farming was his love. However, to supplement his income, he did retire from G.E. in Decatur. There he made many friends, whom he cherished.

Grady Allen Houser is survived by wife Emma Jean Houser; children Kim Houser Smith (Spike), Connie Houser Roy, Kerry Houser Ozbolt (Mark) and Emily Houser Fennel; sister Mable Houser White; grandchildren Chas Darnell (Lindsay), Cassie Roy Richards (Lucas), Randall Roy (Jessica), Mark Thompson (Whitney), Austin Long, Elizabeth Long and Jacob Long (Samantha); and great-grandchildren Alyssa, Madison, Grady, Natalie, Noah, Ryleigh, Thomas, Clara, Keelan, Trace and Asher.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Dewey and Omal Houser.

Pallbearers were Chas Darnell, Randall Roy, Alex White, Donnie Barber, Richard Mordic, and J.C. Martin.

Honorary pallbearers and lifelong friends were Ted Grantland Billy Van Clark.

In lieu of flowers, please make donations to New Friendship Baptist Church, 1145 Friendship Road, Somerville, AL 35670 (Attention: Cemetery Fund).

Larry John Bates


Larry John Bates, 83, went to meet his Lord at home in the presence of family Nov. 25.

He was born Oct. 23, 1937, in Morgan County. He was preceded in death by his parents, John Bruner Bates and Audie Texie Bell Bates. He is also preceded in death by four brothers and one sister.

He is survived by his brother, Hurbert Lee Bates “Rocky” (Maxine), Florida; his wife of 61 years, Sarah Jenell Owens Bates; daughter Loronda Lee Sparkman (Glyndon) of Hartselle; son John David Bates (Cindy) of Hartselle; daughter Angie Necole Green (Matthew) of Petersburg, Tennessee; and bonus daughter Gina Marie Vest (Mike) of Eva.

He had seven grandchildren, Jacob Dan Patterson, David Heath Bates, Hannah Elizabeth Armstrong (Jesse), Hunter Lee Patterson (Kourtney), Nathaniel Emmett Green, Chloe Love Green and Harper Ruth Green.

Mr. Bates loved the Lord with all of his heart. He would praise the Lord waving his white handkerchief. He was a member of Eva Baptist Church for many years.

Mr. Bates was retired from Bell South as a telephone cable repair technician. He was involved in Hartselle sports as a referee and umpire. He drove the school bus for all three school systems in Morgan

County. He loved to work in his garden and help others. He also had a special relationship with all of his grandchildren.

Pallbearers were Tom Owens, Hunter Patterson, Jacob Patterson, Jesse Armstrong, Stephen Robinson and Larry Orr.

Funeral service was held Nov. 28 at 1 p.m. at Peck Funeral Home Chapel with Bro. Phillip Robinson, Bro. Zack Scott and Bro. Dustin Smith officiating. Burial was in Oden Ridge Cemetery. Peck Funeral Home directed.


Dianne Beard


Funeral service for Dianne Beard, 58, was held Nov. 30 at 11 a.m. at Peck Funeral Home Chapel with chaplain John Tucker officiating and Peck Funeral Home directing. Burial was in New Hope North Cemetery.

Ms. Beard died Nov. 25 at her residence. She was born Sept. 27, 1962, in Nassau County, Florida, to Carroll Woodrow Reed and Ida Inez Aldridge Reed.

She was preceded in death by her parents; three brothers, Harley Taylor, Pendleton Griffin and Lewis Taylor; and one sister, Shirley Taylor.

Survivors include a son, Marcus Reed (Christiana); a daughter, Christi Ray; two brothers, Herbert Reed and Harvey Taylor; four sisters, Eva Harris, Rela Taylor, Fannie Taylor and Mary Taylor; and four grandchildren, Jacob Reed, Charlotte Reed, Brie Ray and Ava Ray.

Pallbearers were Michael Dean, Mitchell Beard, Marcus Reed, Vernon Johnson, Robert Schmitz and Charles Johnson.


Douglas Franklin Harris


Funeral service for Douglas Franklin Harris, 63, was held Nov. 28 at 1 p.m. at Christ Fellowship Church with Bro. Danny Garrison and Bro. David Bozeman officiating and Peck Funeral Home directing. Burial was in Cook Cemetery.

Mr. Harris died Nov. 25 at Decatur Morgan Hospital. He was born April 18, 1957, in Illinois to James Edward Harris and Dorothy Steele Harris. He was a mill operator for Valley Rubber prior to his retirement.

He was preceded in death by his parents and two granddaughters, Destiny Patterson and Jazeman Glover.

Survivors include Melissa Harris, his wife of 44 years; two daughters, Melissa Dawn Glover and Shalauna Marie Collier; one son, Shawn Douglas J.L. Harris; six grandchildren, Christopher Patterson, Trea Harris, Mersadies Harris, Britney Collier, Bradley Joiner and Braydon Harris; great-granddaughter Destiny Patterson; and five sisters, Carolyn Johnson, Marie Hood, Janice Terry, Edna Thompson and Jewel Ann Mills.

Pallbearers were Shawn Harris, Alton Weaver, Chris Walls, Westley Tidwell, Wade Wilbanks, Darren Langford, Bradley Joiner and Trea Harris.


Kevin M. Cagle


Private family graveside service for Kevin M. Cagle, 52, of Hartselle was held at Roselawn Cemetery in Decatur with Brother Ben Bates and Brother David Eddy officiating and Peck Funeral Home directing.

Mr. Cagle, who was born Jan. 22, 1968, in Boaz to Jerry Ronald Cagle and Venita Medlock Cagle, died Nov. 28 at his home. He was employed by BMSI and was preceded in death by his father.

He is survived by his two daughters, Alex Berzett and Noel Jump; his mother and step-father, Venita Rigsby (Earl); two sisters, Sonya Shirley (Earl) and Heather Lovelace; four precious grandchildren; and his life partner Angie Maples and her daughter, Allie.

John William Lovelace, Trevor Shirley, Doug Bowling, Greg Garner, Clayton Speed and Blake Jump served as pallbearers.


Billy Wayne Alexander


Billy Wayne Alexander, 60, died Nov. 28 at Decatur Morgan Hospital. He was born May 4, 1960, in Michigan to Gertrude Harris.

Mr. Alexander served in the Navy and was a truck driver for Western Express prior to his retirement.

He was preceded in death by his mother, Gertrude Harris.

Survivors include Lisa Niles, his partner for 20 years, of Hartselle; brother David Terry, of Moulton; brother Clarence Oliver of Missouri; and sister Margie Oxley of Missouri.

No visitation or services were scheduled. Peck Funeral Home assisted the family.


Gayle Strider


Funeral service for Doris Gayle Conner Strider (“Gayle”), 84 years young, was held Dec. 1 at 2 p.m. at Hartselle First United Methodist Church with the Rev. Harold Thompson officiating and Peck Funeral Home directing. Burial was held at Hartselle City Cemetery.

Mrs. Strider passed away at her residence at The Terrace in Priceville Nov. 28. She was born in Ottawa, Kansas, Dec. 24, 1935. She was a graduate of Ottawa University with a degree in primary education and was an elementary school teacher and lifelong artist.

June 3, 1955, she married Dale Keyes Strider and moved to Hartselle in 1963. They raised four sons at Hartwood Farm, and she lived there until moving to the Terrace in 2012.

Gayle is well known as a Southern artist who specialized in Southern landscapes, cotton and magnolias. She influenced countless lives in her art teaching at Hartwood. Her art designs have been used by Romanian porcelain lace artists for RomAmerica based on 19th-century style. She was a huge supporter of the Hartselle Historical Society and Fine Arts Center at the former F. E. Burleson Elementary School. She taught art classes at the Fine Arts Center during Camp Hartselle in 2006.

A member of Hartselle First United Methodist Church, she participated in many charitable organizations, including The Faith House and Good Samaritan Ministry.

Her career in fine arts took her to southern France in 1987, where she and her lifelong friend and fellow Alabama artist Mitch Coon studied with international artist Nall Hollis.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Earl and Maude Conner; husband, Dale Strider; son, Larry Strider; brother, A. L. Conner; and sister, Esther Conner Berg.

She is survived by sons Robert Strider (Gay) of Huntsville, daughter-in-law Connie Strider of Chelsea, Scott Strider (Marilou) of Hollywood, Florida, and Joseph Strider (Janie) of Decatur; nine grandchildren, Meagan Strider McDonald (Todd), David Strider (Anna Laura), Thomas Strider, Scott Moss (Veronica), Jason Moss (Julie), Nicole Baure, Jesse Nolan (Raven), Cassandra Nolan and Warren Nolan (Carol Ann); and 12 great-grandchildren, Stella Blue McDonald, Sage McDonald, Allison Moss, Avery Moss, Nick Titus, Reagan Baure, Jackson Nolan, Ryleigh Nolan, Julian Nolan, Wyatt Nolan, Weston Nolan and Willow Nolan. The Strider family wishes to thank everyone for their love and support and requests that in lieu of flowers donations be made to Alzheimer’s of Central Alabama and Hospice of North Alabama.


Joe Williams


Masonic graveside service for Joe Williams, 62, of Hartselle was held Dec. 1 at 1 p.m. at the Reeves Family Cemetery with Brother Rayford Milligan and Brother Israel Milligan officiating and Peck Funeral Home officiating. No visitation was planned.

Mr. Williams, who was born April 4, 1958, in Ohio to Clifford D. Williams and Wilda Dobbs Williams, died Nov. 28 at Decatur Morgan Hospital. Joe had worked for many years at Tanksley Machine Shop before becoming an instructor at Calhoun Community College’s Machine Tool Technology Program. He was a member of Crossroads Fellowship Church since 1982, was a Mason and a Shriner and was a member of the Nunn-Oden Lodge in Hartselle.

Joe was a loving husband, father and grandfather and loved his family, community, students and his church family.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

He is survived by his wife of 45 years, Vickie Milligan Williams; a son, Wesley Williams; a daughter, Wendey Williams Towe (Adam); a brother, Tommy Williams (Kay); a sister, Rosemary Helms (Gene); and six grandchildren, Alexus, Kady, Slade, Caiden, Skyler and Arabella.