Obituaries
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Chapel: 1235 Walnut Street, Bedford, VA 24523 | Office/Visitation: 317 West Main Street, Bedford, VA 24523

Obituaries

Lynwood Hartwell "Jack" Wheeler

Wheeler LynwoodLynwood “Jack” Wheeler, 89, of Shady Grove, passed away Friday, July 22, 2016. Dad suffered for 5 years with dementia. He was cared for in his home till his last days. Born on October 28, 1926, he was the oldest of seven children, the son of late Warner Hartwell Wheeler and Minnie Zola Creasy Wheeler. Along with his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife of 64 years, Juanita S. Wheeler and brothers, James and Joe Wheeler. He is survived by his children, Dale Wheeler, Jane W. Moore, David Wheeler; grandchildren, Shane Wheeler, Christina Wheeler, John (Jessica) Moore, Jenny Moore, Gabe Wheeler; great grand-son, John Moore IV (JoJo); special nephew that dad and mom helped raise, Berkley Matthews, niece, that helped with his illness, Connie Scarrow; sisters, Dorothy Ragland, Faye Graham (Vincent); brothers, Alfred Wheeler (Nancy), Kenneth Wheeler (Arlene); special sister-in-law, Lucille Caniff; sister-in-law, Shirley Wheeler, and many other friends and relatives. Jack proudly served in the United States Navy during W.W. II in the Pacific Theatre.  He was a long time member and deacon of Shady Grove Baptist Church.  Jack worked at Vinton Weaving Mill, a truck driver for M & M Tank lines, and a driver for Russell Short Inc. He was a founding member of Shady Grove Fire & Rescue. Dad kept his sense of humor making jokes till his last days. The family greatly appreciated the care he received at CRMH palliative care unit, Bedford Adult Day Care with special thanks to driver, Bobby Collins. While flowers are appreciated please consider donations to Shady Grove Fire & Rescue, in his memory. A funeral service will be held 2:00 p.m., Tuesday, July 26, at Shady Grove Baptist Church with Rev. Bill Mitchell officiating. Military honors by American Legion Post 16. Family will receive friends 4 – 8 p.m., Monday, July 25, at Burch-Messier Funeral Home (Main Street location). Arrangements by Burch-Messier Funeral Home, Bedford, 540-586-7360.

Betty Ruth Terry Fields

Fields Betty 1Betty Ruth Terry Fields, 75, of Bedford, died Thursday, July 21, 2016.  She passed away peacefully surrounded by her loving family.  She was born in Russell County, VA to Ben S. Terry and Hettie Johnson Terry.  She met her husband, Calvin, and was a supporting wife, mother and grandmother for 60 years.  She was an active member of the Christian Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses and firmly believed in the teachings of the Bible with a hope of a resurrection to everlasting life.  She is survived by her husband, Calvin Fields, three children, Diana Bennett of Baltimore, MD; Douglas Fields of Bedford; Lorrie Hausler of Greenville, NC; six grandchildren and  six great-grandchildren; her siblings, Jay Terry, Ada Woodward, MaeBelle Poston and Ruby Thompson.  Services will be held 2p.m. Saturday, July 23, 2016 at the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses, 1534 Link Rd. Bedford with the service lead by Dave McGrath. Arrangements by Burch-Messier Funeral Home, Bedford, 540-586-7360.

Mark William Lerner

Mark William Lerner, 56, of Lynchburg, passed away in his home on Saturday, July 16, 2016. He was born in El Paso, Texas on January 25, 1960, a son of the late Charles Frederick Lerner and Evelyn Candler Lerner.  Mark excelled in sports and loved to play the guitar. He was a country boy at heart who enjoyed riding bulls in the rodeo. His favorite pet was his cat Charlie. He is survived by his brothers, Ronald Lerner (Jennifer) of New York, Chuck Lerner (Lisa) of Texas; step-brothers, Adrian (Maggie), Marten (Dara), Daniel Lerner of North Carolina; step-mother, Ankie Lerner of North Carolina; special friend, Deisa Reynolds of Virginia; nieces and nephews, Lauren, Holly, Tyler, Katlynn, Jada, Analise, Gaven, Gie, Vada, and Jacob.  A memorial service will be held 12 Noon, Saturday, July 23, at Burch-Messier Walnut St. Chapel, 1235 Walnut St, Bedford.  Arrangements by Burch-Messier Funeral Home, Bedford, 540-586-7360.

Omer Carroll Rudrud

Rudrud OmerOmer Carroll Rudrud, age 98, passed peacefully on Wednesday, July 13, 2016 at English Meadows Elks Home Campus. Born on October 18, 1917 in Hillsboro, North Dakota, Carroll was the son of the late Palmer and Bertha (Tronson) Rudrud. Carroll served in the United States Army during WWII and received a Bronze Star for his valor during combat. Upon being honorably discharged from the United States Army, he returned to his hometown of Hillsboro to complete art school and enter the field as a freelance commercial artist. He retired following a near thirty-eight year career as a sign painter for the Marine Base of Twentynine Palms, CA. Throughout his life, he held various offices to include Exalted Ruler and Chaplain with the Elks. He was also actively involved with The American Legion. Carroll was a talented artist and participated in numerous art exhibits over the years, ultimately leading to the meeting of his beloved wife, Jackie. Other interests of his included golf, travel, and all things music. Carroll was a man of faith who especially loved being with others and giving of his time and efforts through service. Carroll is survived by his loving wife of 16 years, Sara "Jackie" Falls Rudrud; her 4 children; and 7 grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his parents and sisters, Pearl and Garda. A celebration of Carroll's life will be held in the chapel at English Meadows Elks Home Campus in Bedford on August 6, 2016 at 1:30 PM, with a reception to follow. A memorial will also take place at Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Hillsboro, North Dakota at a later date. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Carroll's honor to Centra Hospice of Bedford, 1621 Whitfield Drive, Bedford, VA 24523. Additionally, the family extends a special thank you to the staff of English Meadows' Special Care Unit, Carroll's home for the last few years. He led a very long and meaningful life and will be greatly missed by his family and community; he was embraced by all who met him. Arrangements by Burch-Messier Funeral Home, Bedford, 540-586-7360.

Betty Margie Link

Betty Margie Massie Link, 81, of Bedford, VA passed away on Sunday, July 10, 2016, at her residence. She was born on May 6, 1935 in Lynchburg, VA, a daughter of the late Walter Lemmon Massie and Susie Wheeler Massie.  She is survived by beloved friend Dallas Cochran; one son, Issac Jacobs; daughter, Susie Jacobs; two granddaughters Melissa Ferguson and husband Sky; Ashley Vermillion; and three great grand children; Kylee Ferguson, Kayden Ferguson and Layla Hockman; Numerous Nieces and Nephews and other family; and her special four legged friend Romeo.  A funeral Service will be held 1:00 PM Friday, July 15, 2016 at Bethesda United Methodist Church with Rev. Rick Barton officiating. The family will receive friends 6:00- 8:00 PM Thursday, July 14, 2016 at Burch- Messier Funeral Chapel 1235 Walnut Street, Bedford, Virginia 24523. Arrangements by Burch-Messier Funeral Home, Bedford, 540-586-7360.

Berry Overstreet

Berry Overstreet

For some of us, death isn't the end. While we may leave this earth, we go on to a life that is eternal and full of love, joy and devotion. For Berry Overstreet, who passed away at 81 on July 9th, death isn't the end. His family and the many friends that he had take comfort in knowing that Berry's story doesn't end here. Anyone who ever met Berry knows that his story also continues here on earth in the legacy of pure, genuine kindness that he leaves behind. Wh...en you live a life like Berry's you live forever in memories and you live forever in heaven. Berry was loved by so many--namely his wife, Helen Overstreet; his daughter and son-in-law, Teresa and David Norcross; his granddaughter Megan Norcross; his granddaughter and her husband, Ashley and Caleb Tomlin; his two great-grandchildren, Owen and Nora Tomlin; and his two sisters, Wilma Noell and Zina Smith. To say that he will be missed would be an understatement, but we know we will see him again. The family would like to extend extensive gratitude to those who showed special love and care to Berry during his last few weeks: MaryLou and Thomas Gardner, Jr.; Lynchburg General Hospital; and Amedysis Hospice. Berry will be laid to rest at the Thaxton Baptist Church Cemetery on Tuesday, July 12, at 11:00 a.m.. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you either consider making a donation to the Thaxton Baptist Church building fund or simply help them continue his legacy by choosing kindness every single day, just like Berry did. Arrangements by Burch-Messier Funeral Home, Bedford, 540-586-7360

O.P. "Stan" Stancer

Ovid “Stan” Stancer Jr, 86, departed this life on Saturday, July 9, 2016, in his hometown of Lynchburg, VA. Stan was born April 26, 1930 in Athens, Michigan, to the late Ovid Pierce Stancer, Sr. and Elizabeth McAlpine Stancer. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his wife, Peggy Joanne Stancer. Stan served four years in the Air Force, and retired from the Ford Motor Company where he was a service representative for the east coast many years ago.

Stan lived his life to the fullest, enjoying such adventures as traveling, airplanes, fast cars, sail boating, learning magic, painting, and favorite of all, dancing! He was an avid ham radio operator for years and became president of the Ham Radio Club of Bedford, VA. He actively attended both Tree of Life Church on Greenview Drive and Thomas Road Baptist Church.

Stan is survived by two children, Emily Fletcher and Gregory Stancer, and three step-children, Toni Naylor, Patrick and Michael Bernheisel as well as six grand-children and ten great grand-children. Stan will be missed by special friends, Catherine and Jamie Osborne, their children Sara Grace, Rachael Sophia and John-Marc, Bill and Bonnie Picking, and so many others who filled his life with joy and purpose. A celebration of his life will be held on Sunday, July 17, 2016 at 4 PM at Burch Messier Walnut Street Chapel, 1235 Walnut Street, Bedford, VA. His good friend, Reverend Jamie Osborne will officiate. The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be sent to Providence Farm, Concord, VA, a non-profit that offers free, faith-based recovery classes for our veteran population. (www.providencefarm.org). Arrangements by Burch-Messier Funeral Home, Bedford, 540-586-7360.

Joseph Adam Newman

Joseph Adam Newman, 53, of Bedford, died Saturday, July 2, 2016 at his residence.  He was born in Bedford on April 13, 1963 a son of the late, John Lee Newman and Rachel Martha Virginia Stanley Newman.  He was employed by Bedford Weaving. Survivors include his brothers, Rucker Newman, Gerald Newman and Ben Newman.  A funeral service will be held 2:00 Wednesday, July 13, 2016 at Walnut Street Chapel

David Earl Mitchell

David Earl Mitchell, 35, of Roanoke, died Saturday, July 2, 2016. He was born in Bedford County, on September 20, 1980, a son of Earl Lewis Mitchell and Lisa Holloway Mitchell. He was a pressman at Chocklett Press in Roanoke, VA.In addition to his parents he is survived by his children, Ava Mitchell, Shamas Mitchell, Dexter Mitchell; brother, Robert Mitchell and wife, Demi; niece, Emma Mitchell; grandmother, Joan Jackson; and his best friend, Josh Dobyns. A funeral service will be held 2:00 p.m., Wednesday, July 6, at Sedalia Baptist Church with Rev. Mike Jones officiating. Burial will follow in the church cemetery. Arrangements by Burch-Messier Funeral Home, Bedford, 540-586-7360.

Frances Irene Scott Bays

Bays FrancesFrances Irene Scott Bays passed away on June 27, 2016 at Lynchburg General Hospital. She was born August 2, 1932, first born of the late Prentiss G. Scott and Frances Robertson Scott. She was preceded in death by her youngest sister, Florence “Flo” Scott Lambert and her brother James Douglas “J.D.” Scott. She is survived by her sister, Shirley Scott Manning of Hayesville, N.C.; brother, Prentiss G. “Buddy” Scott Jr., and Carolyn of Bedford, sister-in-law, Alice Ferguson Scott of Scott’s Strawberries, and Martha Scott of Bedford. She was married to the late Morgan Bays and William David Thompson. Recognizing an endearing special friend, the late Curly Stevens. She is survived by her loving daughters, Stella Thompson Blanks, late husband Danny, Patricia Ann Thompson, Bonnie Thompson Simmons and husband, Dave, Faye Thompson Bobbitt and husband, Dean, Kaye Thompson Thomas and husband, Randy; one special son, Thomas E. Croft; nine beautiful grandchildren, Crystal Martin, Chris Martin and wife, Lisa, Tonya Gordon and husband, Ron, Tracy Craghead and Kelley, Nicole Jacoby and husband, Gabriel, Jonathan Simmons and wife Rachael, Chad Bradley and Melissa, Sara Mae Bobbitt and Cameron, Katherine Grace Rowlett and husband, James, Jeanna Markham and Jason, Jennie Payne and husband, Joseph; great-grandchildren, Kayle Marie Martin, Christopher Martin Jr., Caleb Gordon, Jacob Gordon, Gracie Kate Gordon, Zachary Leo Simmons, Grant Levi Simmons, Lauren Bradley, Jacob Bradley, Joshua Bradley, Ethan Payne and Braxton Markham. Irene was a cultured, articulate lady. As much as she was known for her fine qualities, she was a down to earth, southern, country woman that was well loved by many. She was employed by Rubatex of Bedford for 20 years. Among noteworthy friends were Nadine Puckette, Ola Lynch, Charlotte Sexton, Joanne Nichols, and Gypsy Nichols. In accordance with Ms. Bays’ wishes, a formal funeral and viewing will not be held. The family would like to thank Burch-Messier Funeral Home of Bedford, for all of their support and special care. Special thanks to the Bedford ER, especially RN Juli, also to the Lynchburg General Hospital, the Progressive Cardiac Care Unit and many attentive nurses and staff. Also a special thanks to Carolyn Webber for all of her help and support. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be sent to St. Judes (www.stjude.org) or the Moneta Rescue Squad.