Obituaries for June 14, 2013

Jun. 13, 2013 @ 05:37 PM

Troy Suddreth

Troy Wilburn Suddreth, 88, passed away on June 9, 2013, at his residence. He was born in Caldwell County on Dec. 28, 1924, to the late H.R. Suddreth and Fannie Hedrick Suddreth. He was married to Irene McGee Suddreth for more than 62 years.

Mr. Suddreth was long-time member of Gamewell United Methodist Church, where he helped build the church and then served in many capacities over the years. He was also a longtime member of the Gamewell Fire Department, where he served on the Board of Directors. He retired from Bernhardt Furniture Industries.

In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by his brothers, Wade Suddreth, Jay B. Suddreth, Thomas Suddreth, George Suddreth, Charles Suddreth; half-brothers, Cecil Suddreth, Lloyd Suddreth, and Henley Suddreth; sister, Elizabeth S. Church; and half-sister, Annie S. McCall.

Other than his wife he is survived by his son, Steve Suddreth and wife Gayle of Stafford,Va.; daughter, Sarah Yarbrough and husband Richard L. Yarbrough Sr. of Greensboro; sister, Mrs. Fletus Yoelson of Charlotte; grandchildren, Melissa Kidwell of Kokomo, Ind.; Kandace Aarons of Louisville, Ky.; Brittany Suddreth of Stafford, Va.; Wade Suddreth of Stafford, Va.; Jessica Suddreth of Stafford, Va.; Richard L. Yarbrough, Jr. of Atlanta, Ga.; and Robert A. Yarbrough and wife Mary Elizabeth of Statesboro, Ga.

The family would like to give a special thanks to Mr. Suddreth’s caregivers, Dawn Ford and Billie Dula.

A celebration of Mr. Suddreth’s life will held at Gamewell United Methodist Church on Sunday, June 16, 2013, at 3 p.m. with Pastor Alice Day and Pastor Curtis Sides officiating. Interment will immediately follow the service at Littlejohn United Methodist Church Cemetery.

The family will receive friends from 2 to 3 p.m. prior to the service at the church.

The family respectfully requests that in lieu of flowers, memorials be sent to: Caldwell Hospice, 902 Kirkwood St., Lenoir, NC 28645, or Gamewell United Methodist Church, 2897 Morganton Blvd., Lenoir, NC 28645.

Online condolences may be sent to the Suddreth Family at

Evans Funeral Service & Crematory of Lenoir is serving the Suddreth Family.

Susie Shoemaker

Susie A. Shoemaker, 58, of Charles Melton Lane, Lenoir, died Wednesday, June 12, 2013, at Caldwell Hospice and Palliative Care – Lenoir. She was born July 11, 1954, in Thomasville to Grady and Faye Wilcox of Hudson.

Mrs. Shoemaker was employed by Avery Dennison and was a member of Word in Truth Ministries.

Survivors in addition to her parents include her husband, Michael Allen Shoemaker of the home; children, Amanda Ellis of Lenoir, Michelle Shoemaker of Moravian Falls, and Matthew Shoemaker and wife Clarissa of Granite Falls; grandchildren, Kirstin Ellis, Zachary Ellis and Alexis Shoemaker; sisters, Jo Ann Cornett of Hudson and Mary Bumgarner of Pigeon Forge, Tenn.; and father-in-law, Eugene Shoemaker.

Funeral services will be held Saturday, June 15, 2013, at 2 p.m. at Greer-McElveen Funeral Home Chapel conducted by the Rev. Bill Bentley. Interment will follow at Woodlawn Memorial Gardens of Lenoir.

The family will receive friends from 1 to 2 p.m. prior to the service at the funeral home.

Serving as pallbearers will be: Bud Kincaid, Robert Burch, Tim Cornett, Wayne Ellis, Zachary Ellis and Joseph Ritch.

Honorary pallbearers will be: Will Mitchell and Billy Mitchell.

Memorial contributions may be made to: Word in Truth Ministries, P.O. Box 1801, Lenoir, N.C. 28645, or Caldwell Hospice and Palliative Care, 902 Kirkwood St., Lenoir, N.C. 28645.

Online condolences may be left at Greer-McElveen Funeral Home and Crematory is in charge of arrangements.

Jenny Oliver

Jenny Penney Oliver, 58, of Athens, Ga., died Wednesday, June 12, 2013, after a one-year battle with lung cancer. She was born on May 15, 1955, in Wilmington and came home from the hospital to the place that would be her hometown, Wallace. She was the daughter of the late Charles Brantley Penney and the late Dovie Logan Penney. She is survived by her husband of 33 years, J. Steve Oliver, and her sister, Melinda Hamrick of West Jefferson.

Jenny Oliver graduated from the Wallace-Rose Hill High School in 1973 and matriculated to North Carolina State University the following fall. At NCSU Jenny majored in psychology and in her senior year she was honored with the Psychology in the Community award given to one graduating senior of that program to recognize outstanding effort. This was just the first of many awards that would recognize her incredible sense of responsibility for the community in which she lived. After graduating from NCSU in 1977, Jenny was employed as a psychologist assistant at Broughton Hospital, a psychiatric hospital in Morganton. On June 23, 1979 she married Steve Oliver and began a life that included more education and travel. In the early 1980s she and Steve moved back to the Raleigh area where she ultimately received a master’s degree in Adult and Community College Education at NCSU while also serving as the Residence Hall manager for the International Living and Learning community of Alexander Hall on the NCSU campus. After a move to Athens, Ga., in 1983, Jenny was employed by the UGA Vice President of Student Affairs to work in the Office of Judicial Programs. Many of the students with whom she worked in that program remained friends until her death and have cited her as a powerful inspiration for their own sense of community involvement. In 1986, Jenny and Steve moved to Manhattan, Kansas and new employment at Kansas State University. In her work at KSU she began to put her intense focus on issues of multicultural education and diversity. Working there as part of a Ford Foundation-funded project to examine the nature of multicultural education found in schools of the western U.S., she traveled extensively and developed partnerships with school districts in such diverse places as Yakima, Wash., and the Navajo and Hopi Indian reservations of Arizona. This work, along with her lifelong interest in issues of equity and diversity, stimulated the dissertation that ultimately resulted in her receiving a Ph.D. from Kansas State University in 1991 in the area of Counselor Education and Educational Psychology. In 1990, Jenny and Steve returned to Athens, Ga., where Jenny served as the assistant to the Dean of the UGA College of Education through much of the 1990s. Ultimately until her death, she held a faculty position in the UGA COE in Counselor Education in the Department of Counseling and Human Development Services. At the UGA COE, Jenny served as a primary motivator of efforts to recognize and support efforts of diversity, inclusion and social justice. Throughout her career, Jenny was the recipient of many awards and recognitions for her outstanding contributions. Especially noteworthy awards and recognitions included the Outstanding Alumni Award for the NCSU College of Education in 2004, the First Annual University of Georgia Diversity Award in 2004, and the UGA President’s Fulfilling the Dream Award in connection with the annual MLK Celebration in 2009. Most recently, the COE Diversity Award was renamed the Jenny Penney Oliver Diversity Award, and Jenny was the first recipient in 2013. Jenny’s commitment and service extended outside of UGA to the Athens community and beyond, having served on many boards for organizations including the National Association for Multicultural Education, the Foundation for Excellence in Education, the Young Leadership Development Project and the Clarke County Department of Social Services. Jenny was an ardent member of the Democratic Party and played many roles within the Clarke County Democratic Party, including Chairperson. Jenny’s love of working within and across diverse communities is also reflected in the travel she and Steve enjoyed throughout her lifetime. Their travels took them to places as far away as Rome, Beijing and Bangkok, but her favorite travel may have been to a little cottage on the banks of Lake Hartwell.

Jenny led a full life with a strong sense of dedication to the many communities of which she was a part. For many, when the words justice, equality, equity, generosity, compassion, love and commitment are spoken, three letters come to mind, JPO. She will be greatly missed.

In lieu of a funeral, a memorial service will be held at the UGA Chapel on Saturday, July 20, 2013, at 3:30 in the afternoon. Persons wishing to make donations in her honor are encouraged to consider: The Cancer Foundation of Northeast Georgia, The Foundation for Excellence in Education, The Adopt a Golden of Atlanta organization, and Caringbridge. Further information will be forthcoming in the next weeks about a specific designation for donations at a local foundation that will have a specific purpose and carry her name. The family wishes that donations be sent in place of flowers.