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Helen Myers McDuffie 

Funeral services for Helen Myers McDuffie, 92, of Baldwin, are scheduled for 2 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 6, at Whitfield Funeral Home, South Chapel, Baldwin, with the Rev. Luther Williams, the Rev. Austin Kelley and the Rev. William Baker officiating. Burial will follow in the Baldwin City Cemetery.

Mrs. McDuffie went home to be with the Lord Monday, Oct. 3, 2011, at The Oaks at Scenic View Nursing Home following an extended illness.

Born Sept. 4, 1919, in Cherokee, N.C., she was a daughter of the late Albert and Leasie Hogsed Myers. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Clarence Franklin McDuffie; her children, Howard McDuffie and Louise Parker; brothers, Amos Myers and Jack Myers; sisters, Margie Roberts, Nora Coley, Molly Moody, Maggie Jones and Nellie Myers; and infant sister, Mary Myers.

Mrs. McDuffie was of the Baptist faith, a homemaker, and enjoyed crafting. She spent many years with her sisters, “The Myers Sisters,” playing gospel and bluegrass music all over the Southeast, winning various awards for their talents in singing and song writing.

Survivors include her daughters, Bertie Chaffin of Baldwin, and Leasie M. Whitmire of Mt. Airy; daughters and sons-in-law, Ann and J.R. Reems of Baldwin, and Patsy and Virgil Alexander of Toccoa; son and daughter-in-law, Lonnie and Lucille McDuffie of Cleveland; brother and sister-in-law, John H. Sr. and Izora Myers of Alto; 16 grandchildren; a number of great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren; and countless nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.

The family will receive friends from 2-4 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. today, Oct. 5, at Whitfield Funeral Home, South Chapel, Baldwin.

Flowers are accepted or the family respectfully requests all donations be made, in her memory, to Hospice of Northeast Georgia Medical Center, 2150 Limestone Parkway, Suite 222, Gainesville, GA 30501.

Those wishing to express online condolences to the McDuffie family may do so by visiting

Arrangements are in the care of Whitfield Funeral Home, South Chapel, of Baldwin.

The Northeast Georgian

October 5, 2011

Lucille Bond Browning 

Graveside services for Lucille Bond Browning, 86, of St. George, W.Va., formerly of Mt. Airy, are scheduled for 3 p.m. today, Oct. 5, at Yonah Memorial Gardens with the Rev. Blaine Walker officiating.

Mrs. Browning died Friday, Sept. 30, 2011.

Born April 17, 1925, in Crawfordville, she was the daughter of the late Oscar and Leona York Bond. She was also preceded in death by her husband, Cecil Browning, and one grandchild, Kevin Bingham.

Mrs. Browning was a homemaker and a member of Mt. Airy Presbyterian Church.

Survivors include her sons and daughters-in-law, Timothy and Jean Browning of Clayton, and James and Marian Browning of Parsons, W.Va.; sister, Frances Chafin of McDonough; one uncle, James York of Habersham Mills; grandchildren, Holly Thompson, Lindsay Browning, Brooke Browning, Kara Stump, Wayne Hanlon; great-grandchildren, Nikki Bingham, Austin and Shaee Bingham, Clay Thompson, Logan Stump; and one great-great-grandchild, Bella Bingham.

Those who wish to express online condolences to the Browning family may do so by visiting

Arrangements are in the care of Whitfield Funeral Home, North Chapel, Demorest.

The Northeast Georgian

October 5, 2011

Alice Elizabeth Rush Jones

Funeral services for Alice Elizabeth Rush Jones, 81, of Demorest, were held at 2 p.m. Monday, Oct. 3, at Hillside Memorial Chapel with the Rev. Russ Barker and the Rev. Ralph Story officiating. Burial followed in Yonah Memorial Gardens.

Mrs. Jones died Sept. 30, 2011, at Habersham Medical Center.

Born March 29, 1930, in Habersham County, she was the daughter of the late Clifford and Mary Canup Rush. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Waymon Jones.

Mrs. Jones was a member of Mt. Carmel Baptist Church and she was retired from Ethicon with more than 30 years of service.

Survivors include sons and daughters-in-law, Kenneth and Donna Jones and Lewis Randall and Sunshine Jones, all of Milledgeville; brother and sister-in-law, Johnny and Hazel Rush of Clarkesville; and grandchildren, Valerie Knighton (Kevin), Chris Jones, Carr Jones and Brandie Reddick (Eric).

Condolences may be sent at

Arrangements by Hillside Memorial Chapel, Clarkesville.

The Northeast Georgian

October 5, 2011

Merlene Hogsed

Funeral services for Merlene Hogsed, 82, prominent businesswoman and lifelong resident of Cornelia, were held at 4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 2, at Level Grove Baptist Church with the Rev. Brian James officiating. Burial followed in Level Grove Cemetery with Lee Moore and the Rev. Mike Wilson officiating.

Ms. Hogsed died Friday, Sept. 30, 2011, at her residence following an extended illness.

Born Oct. 6, 1928, in Birmingham, Ala., she was the daughter of the late Marvin and Grace Stonecypher Mullenix and beloved granddaughter of the late “Uncle Bart” Stonecypher. In addition to her parents, she was also preceded in death by her first husband, Walter Hogsed, and great-grandson, Brent Moore.

Ms. Hogsed was an entrepreneur, having owned the first personal care home and adult daycare in Habersham County. She also was the founder of Habersham Retreat, which opened in 1980. Ms. Hogsed held many titles including being the first female commissioner for the City of Cornelia. She was a director for the Georgia Association of Community Care Providers. She also was a board member for local AARP Chapter No. 2040 and Habersham County Fair and a member of the Better Hometown Program and Cornelia Planning and Zoning Board. She took great pride in her civic duty and loved politics. She was a dedicated and faithful member of Level Grove Baptist Church.

Survivors include her daughter, Brenda Hogsed Garcia of Cornelia; son, Bill Hogsed of Cornelia; grandchildren, Brad and Tonya Moore, Sean and Rhonda Moore and Jessica Garcia; great-grandchildren, Candace Turner, Blake Moore, Brandon Moore, Brett Moore, Blair Moore, Maddie Moore and Karrie Moore; great-great-grandson, Ashe Turner.

Memorials may be made to AARP Chapter No. 2040, c/o Michael Carroll, 561 Highland Pointe Dr., Alto, GA 30510.

An online guest register is available and may be viewed at

McGahee-Griffin & Stewart Funeral Home of Cornelia was in charge of arrangements.

The Northeast Georgian

October 5, 2011

Harold A. Gosnell

Funeral services for Harold A. Gosnell, 79, of Clarkesville, were held at 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 1, at Unity Baptist Church with the Rev. Wesley Purcell and the Rev. Marty Kilby officiating. Burial followed the service in the church cemetery.

Mr. Gosnell died Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011, at his residence surrounded by his loving family.

Born July 20, 1932, in Habersham County, he was the son of the late Minor O. and Edna Holcomb Gosnell. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by brothers, Glen and James Gosnell, and sister, Monaree Gosnell.

Mr. Gosnell was a United States Army veteran, having served in Italy and in Korea. He was a member and a deacon at Unity Baptist Church. Mr. Gosnell retired from Schnadig Corporation with 25 years of service and he was a contract grower for more than 35 years with Fieldale Farms Inc.

Survivors include his wife, Elmina Worley Gosnell of Clarkesville; daughter and son-in-law, Donna and Tim Evans of Clarkesville; sons and daughters-in-law, Douglas and Brenda Gosnell, John and France Gosnell and Hoyt and Christy Gosnell, all of Clarkesville; brothers, Bill Gosnell and Ray Gosnell, both of Clarkesville; grandchildren, Michael Gosnell, Jock Gosnell, T.J. Evans, Kyle Evans, Glen Gosnell, Brian Gosnell, Drew Gosnell and Lindsey Gosnell; and great-grandchildren, Kylee Evans and Kelsie Hanley.

Those wishing may send condolences by visiting

Arrangements by Hillside Memorial Chapel, Clarkesville.

The Northeast Georgian

October 5, 2011

Gary Lee Stephenson

A funeral mass for Gary Lee Stephenson, 72, of Clarkesville, was held Sept. 24 at St. Paul’s Catholic Church.

Mr. Stephenson died Thursday, Sept. 22, 2011, at Athens Regional Medical Center following a period of declining health.

Born April 15, 1939, in Grant County, Ky., he was the son of Robert W. Stephenson and the late Ruth Lucille Reed Stephenson.

Mr. Stephenson served with honor in the United States Army following the Korean Conflict; afterward he graduated from Eastern Kentucky State University and later received his master’s degree from Florida International University. “Coach,” as he was affectionately known, taught middle school in Boone County, Ky., as well as the Collier County School System in Naples, Fla, where he retired. He and his wife moved to the Clarkesville area in 2007.

Survivors include his wife, Connie Stephenson of Clarkesville; daughters, Casey Mathis of Naples, Fla., Karen Griffin of Brevard, N.C., Kelly Disrud of Acworth; brother, Frankie Stephenson of Naples, Fla.; father, Robert Stephenson of Demorest; four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Memorials may be made to the St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church “Our Lady of Grace” Education Center Fund, 12432 Hulsey Rd., Cleveland, GA 30528; Athens Regional Medical Center, Oncology Dept, 1199 Prince Ave., Athens, GA 30606; or the Habersham Soup Kitchen, Cornelia, GA 30531.

Online condolences may be sent to the family by visiting

Alexander Funeral Home of Cleveland was in charge of arrangements.

The Northeast Georgian

October 5, 2011

Dr. Sandra P. ‘Sandy’ Riggin

A celebration of life service for Dr. Sandra P. “Sandy” Riggin, 47, of Sautee, was held at 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 29, at the Torch Worship Center with the Rev. Julia Rautenberg and Pastor Mike Franklin officiating.

Dr. Riggin died Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2011, at Northeast Georgia Medical Center.

Dr. Riggin was a very active member at The Torch Worship Center and was heavily involved in food giveaway ministries. She was active in foreign missions and the Operation Care ministry. Dr. Riggin was an avid and accomplished distance runner who loved nature and outdoor activities, such as kayaking, hiking, etc. She was an ordained minister and a licensed professional counselor. Dr. Riggin was an accomplished author, having received the Georgia Author of the Year award in 2005 and 2006. She was a third degree blackbelt Tae Kwon Do. She also enjoyed playing the guitar, singing praise and worship songs and playing with her dogs, Rosie and Sadie.

Dr. Riggin held multiple advanced degrees, including doctor of ministry in Christian counseling from Jacksonville Theological Seminary with a 4.0 GPA, associate degree in Biblical Studies from Mustard Seed Biblical Institute with a 4.0 GPA, Master of Education in Rehabilitation Counseling from the University of Georgia with a 4.0 GPA, and a bachelor of arts in psychology from Armstrong State College, graduating Cum Laude.

Dr. Riggin is survived by her brother, Patrick Probst of Diablo, Calif.

Memorials may be made to The Torch Food Giveaway Ministry, 800 Cannon Bridge Rd., Demorest, GA 30535; or to the United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation, 8085 Saltsburg Rd, Ste 201, Pittsburg, PA 15239 or online at

A complete obituary will be announced soon.

An online guest register is available and may be viewed at

McGahee-Griffin & Stewart Funeral Home of Cornelia was in charge of arrangements.

The Northeast Georgian

October 5, 2011