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Obituaries

Funeral services set for Cobb County brothers killed in auto wreck

Funeral services set for Cobb County brothers killed in auto wreck

Funeral services for the two brothers killed Monday in an auto wreck in Roswell have been set for Sunday, Cobb County school officials say. The service for James and Joe Pratt is scheduled for 2 p.m. Sunday at Piedmont Church, 570 Piedmont Rd., Marietta. The brothers were headed to a dental appointment when their vehicle struck a school bus Monday afternoon. James Pratt, 18, was a senior at Lassiter...
Fundraiser for Lassiter brothers killed in crash reaches $50K in a day

Fundraiser for Lassiter brothers killed in crash reaches $50K in a day

Hundreds of people are rallying around a Lassiter High School family mourning the loss of two sons. In the day since the campaign was posted online, 850-plus people have donated more than $50,000 to cover the funeral expenses of brothers 18-year-old James and 14-year-old Joseph Pratt. The teens died Monday on Ga. 92 in a wreck with a Fulton County school bus for students with special-needs...
Joan Garner, 65: LGBT, civic activist put passions in public service

Joan Garner, 65: LGBT, civic activist put passions in public service

Fulton County Commissioner Joan Garner spent decades championing gay and lesbian equality and other causes close to her heart. Some of her efforts were door-openers, including her successful push 25 years ago for domestic partner benefits for City of Atlanta employees. Atlanta City Councilman C.T. Martin said Garner “possessed an unwavering commitment to causes that she held dear, and that&rsquo...
Lassiter High brothers remembered as hard-working, fun-loving

Lassiter High brothers remembered as hard-working, fun-loving

Kids flooded out the doors of Lassiter High School eager to head home Tuesday afternoon. All was normal except for the grown, misty-eyed military men standing outside the concert hall describing two students who will never walk across that parking lot again. Capt. Jim Minta, head naval sciences officer at the school’s ROTC program, spoke through red eyes about brothers 18-year-old James...
Ben Willis, 78: Warrior for country became servant for church, others

Ben Willis, 78: Warrior for country became servant for church, others

Eight plaques hang at North Springs United Methodist Church as a testament to the congregation’s record Red Cross blood donations. Ben Willis, the drives’ organizer, knew how to sweeten the appeal for donors. Instead of giving out the standard juice and cookies, Willis had a barbecue sandwich waiting for anyone willing to roll up their sleeves and give blood. He bought the barbecue with...
Boy killed at Sun Dial ‘was sweetest, most accepting, and lovable child’

Boy killed at Sun Dial ‘was sweetest, most accepting, and lovable child’

He had a hug for everyone, and 5-year-old Charles Woody Holt had a sweet disposition to accompany his natural curiosity, his family said Tuesday. Charlie, who lived in Charlotte, N.C., died Friday after getting stuck between a wall and a table at Atlanta’s Sun Dial restaurant, atop the Westin Peachtree Plaza. His parents and others in the restaurant were able to free him, but Charlie died...
Fulton County Commission Vice Chairman Joan Garner dies

Fulton County Commission Vice Chairman Joan Garner dies

Last Wednesday, though she was too ill to make it downtown for the Fulton County commission meeting, vice chairman Joan Garner cast several votes via telephone on issues that were close to her — public health. Garner, who died Tuesday at 65 after a lengthy battle with breast cancer, was an activist long before she was a politician. She advocated for LGBT rights, and fought for more...
Eli Sotto, 93: Barber survived history’s worst, cherished life’s best

Eli Sotto, 93: Barber survived history’s worst, cherished life’s best

Midtown Atlanta barber Eli Sotto had customers who stuck with him through the decades, when his shop relocated and even after they had no hair left to cut. Some still visited him at the retirement home after he decided at age 90 to put down his comb and scissors. “His customers had actually become close friends,” a rarity in modern times, said Sue Verhoef, director of oral history and...
Former Atlanta Constitution columnist Tom Teepen dies at 82

Former Atlanta Constitution columnist Tom Teepen dies at 82

Tom Teepen, retired Cox columnist and editorial page editor of The Atlanta Constitution, died Sunday morning. He was 82. His wife of more than 30 years, Sandy Teepen, had just gone home after visiting Tom at Hospice Atlanta, where he had been since Friday. Sandy played Al Jarreau, Sun Ra and the bluegrass records that she and Tom collected over the years. She listened to the music of string quartets...
Robert Frank Meaders: Surveyor never stopped working, enjoying family

Robert Frank Meaders: Surveyor never stopped working, enjoying family

Robert Frank Meaders was known by his clients throughout Cobb County and North Georgia as an expert surveyor and development consultant. His family recalls his “amazing” work ethic and his career of more than 50 years that started right out of high school. But most of all, they remember the life-long loving relationship they had with him. “Our last conversation was a call from him...
Two visitations planned for well-traveled attorney killed in Midtown

Two visitations planned for well-traveled attorney killed in Midtown

Trinh Huynh loved to travel so much, she quit her job as an attorney in 2010 and set out to see the world. For two years, she traveled, visiting every continent except Antarctica, according to her obituary published Friday. “Trinh lived her life passionately whether as a daughter, sister, aunt, friend, or attorney,” the obituary said. Huynh, 40, died Monday after being shot as she...
Lorenzo Wallace, 97: WWII Marine served Georgia Senate in later years

Lorenzo Wallace, 97: WWII Marine served Georgia Senate in later years

Lorenzo Wallace found real joy in the part-time job he started at age 68: doorkeeper to the Georgia Senate. Wallace thrived in the chaotic atmosphere of the annual 40-day legislative session — earning a promotion to Senate sergeant-at-arms at 86. “He really loved that job,” said his son, accountant Lorenzo Wallace Jr. of Atlanta. “He liked knowing what was going on and meeting...
Friends: Life of lawyer slain in Midtown shooting ‘an incredible story’

Friends: Life of lawyer slain in Midtown shooting ‘an incredible story’

She was born in a war-ravaged Vietnam, a country she left as a toddler. But Trinh Huynh was living her own American dream. From a tiny boat drifting away from her homeland, Huynh graduated from both Princeton and Emory universities. Professionally, she distinguished herself as an attorney, but it was her passion for teaching others, humor and love of adventure that many will remember about Huynh. ...
Rhubarb Jones, country radio personality, dead at 65 

Rhubarb Jones, country radio personality, dead at 65 

Rhubarb Jones, popular Atlanta radio host and country music personality, died of a heart attack Sunday in Haralson County. He was 65. Jones, affectionately called “Rhuby” by his friends, was a morning host at country station Y106 and then Eagle 106.7 from 1985 to 2008. He was currently senior development officer at Kennesaw State University, where he also taught and helped the school launch...
Teacher dies after pickup truck goes off embankment on I-575

Teacher dies after pickup truck goes off embankment on I-575

A Cherokee County middle school teacher died Thursday morning after his pickup truck went off a 100-foot embankment on I-575, officials said. The driver of the F-150 was identified as Kevin White, 37, of Canton. He was a chorus teacher at Booth Middle School in Woodstock. The incident happened on the southbound side of the interstate at Little River Bridge near Ridgewalk Parkway in Woodstock...
Don Carter, 99: Newspaper lover found love at newspaper

Don Carter, 99: Newspaper lover found love at newspaper

Don Carter found more than interesting stories as a reporter at The Atlanta Journal in the early 1940s. He found love. Carter and Carolyn McKenzie, a reporter with the rival Atlanta Constitution, both drew assignments to cover the 4-H cattle show. McKenzie pushed her byline and prose to Page 1 with some striking photos she took. Carter’s picture-less piece landed in the back pages of the Journal...
Jack H. Bates, 92: Lifetime volunteer served country, students, others

Jack H. Bates, 92: Lifetime volunteer served country, students, others

Decatur’s Jack H. Bates was eyewitness to meetings of two American military legends while serving in World War II. Bates was 17 and three months shy of high school graduation when he enlisted in the Army. Skilled in typing and shorthand, he landed stints in an Army clerical pool and as one of Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower’s secretaries, Bates’ granddaughter, LoriBeth Blair, said. &ldquo...
Doug Paul, 59: Georgia wine visionary foresaw, helped vineyards’ growth

Doug Paul, 59: Georgia wine visionary foresaw, helped vineyards’ growth

Doug Paul had a reputation as a visionary in Georgia’s wine industry. He envisioned planting a vineyard when he first laid eyes on the 184 acres of Lumpkin County farmland where he and his wife would found Three Sisters Vineyards in 1996. And he envisioned growth in the state’s then-fledgling wine business, with more vineyards taking root throughout Georgia. Paul’s mission was to...
Erna Bryant, 88: Harvard-taught educator fought discrimination

Erna Bryant, 88: Harvard-taught educator fought discrimination

She was a soldier for good. Erna Bryant had a knack for getting to the bottom of a problem, her childhood friend Eva Jaynes, said. “She would open her door to anyone that was wanting to do something peacefully.” Erna Ballantine Bryant was born Aug. 29,1929 in Boston and passed away, surrounded by family and friends, Feb. 22. Services celebrating her life were held March 4 at the First...
Paul Light Sr., 79: Friends say integrity marked life of car dealer

Paul Light Sr., 79: Friends say integrity marked life of car dealer

Anyone who knew Paul Light knew he was a “consummate businessman” who loved the business of selling cars and set a high standard for car salesmen. “Paul had more integrity than any automobile dealer that I’ve ever met,” his friend Gary Bland said. “Paul was right down the line.” Paul Light Sr. died Feb. 11 at the age of 79. By the time his son Paul Jr. was...
Lottie Watkins, 98: Atlanta business groundbreaker was longtime leader

Lottie Watkins, 98: Atlanta business groundbreaker was longtime leader

Lottie Watkins could be called many things, but never a quitter. In almost a century of living, Watkins was a community activist, civil rights advocate, legislator and a first-of-a-kind Atlanta businesswoman. “Whatever I put my hands on I saw to completion,” she said in 2012. She worked until she was 82 and lived, she said, by the motto: “All that you give will come back to you.&rdquo...
Lewis ‘Lew’ Horne, 66: Finance attorney was respected colleague, mentor

Lewis ‘Lew’ Horne, 66: Finance attorney was respected colleague, mentor

Lew Horne played on his high school baseball team in New Bedford, Mass., and was a standout at Dartmouth College. But when his dream of a Major League career ended one summer when he was struck in the mouth with a bat, Horne switched gears. “He had the perfect skill set for a lawyer,” daughter Sydney Langdon said. “He was so analytical, and he could read a situation like no one else...
Richard Robinson, 93: ASO violinist blazed trail in electronic music

Richard Robinson, 93: ASO violinist blazed trail in electronic music

On a sunny Sunday afternoon last March, a small crowd gathered at the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia for a concert by Dick Robinson. At the audience’s insistence, Robinson, an early pioneer in electronic and electroacoustic music, kept the concert going through a scheduled intermission. At 92, Robinson’s passion for music “never seemed to decrease,” said Don Hassler...
Chandler Barton, 83: Coldwell Banker CEO kept small-town humility

Chandler Barton, 83: Coldwell Banker CEO kept small-town humility

From growing up in small-town America to leading one of the largest real estate companies in the world, Chandler Barton always stayed humble and never forgot where he came from. Barton learned his work ethic from the “nice, humble people” of Elberton, the “Granite Capital of the World.” “I think it started there,” his son, Curtis Barton, said. “And it transferred...
Carlyn Feldman Fisher, 93: Nature inspired lifelong lover of the arts

Carlyn Feldman Fisher, 93: Nature inspired lifelong lover of the arts

Carlyn Feldman Fisher found inspiration for her art in nature, painting landscapes from the beaches of Cape Cod to the North Georgia mountains. Her work was featured in galleries throughout the eastern United States and in numerous one-woman shows. Fisher was also instrumental in organizing the arts community in Atlanta, co-founding the Arts Festival of Atlanta and telling the story of Georgia artists...
Preston Mobley Sr., 88: Broadcaster helped King get message out

Preston Mobley Sr., 88: Broadcaster helped King get message out

In a downtown building two blocks from the King Center, Preston Mobley Sr. was a witness to civil rights history. Beginning in 1957, Mobley was the program manager and an on-air personality at WERD, the nation’s first African-American owned radio station. The station was in the Prince Hall Masonic Temple building on Auburn Avenue, and one floor below it was the headquarters of the newly formed...
Thomas Lux, esteemed Georgia Tech teacher and poet

Thomas Lux, esteemed Georgia Tech teacher and poet

Distinguished by his booming laugh, his arresting poetry readings and his passion for baseball, Bourne Professor of Poetry at Georgia Tech Thomas Lux, was a self-described “literary oddball” who threw himself into teaching while remaining a dedicated master of the craft. After weekly readings at Georgia Tech, “he would invite everyone who was at the reading to come to his house,...
Ray Daniel Swaim, 90: WWII amputee always kept family first

Ray Daniel Swaim, 90: WWII amputee always kept family first

It was World War II and Ray Swam was scouting for Germans in the U.S. Army (26th Inf. Div., 104th Inf., Co. K). He started to cross a forest clearing when his battle buddy alerted him to enemy fighters down range. Swaim tried to make it back to the treeline for cover, but the Germans opened fired and shot him in the ankle. Ray Daniel Swaim, born April 27, 1926, died Jan. 28 at age 90. A memorial service...
Henry Howard Smith II, 89: A legacy of beautiful buildings, friends

Henry Howard Smith II, 89: A legacy of beautiful buildings, friends

Some of Atlanta’s most attractive architecture can be attributed to Henry Howard Smith II. Smith, who followed his father, the esteemed Francis Palmer Smith into a career in architecture, was hired in the early 1990s to design a cloister for the historic Saint Luke’s Episcopal Church in on Peachtree Street in downtown Atlanta. Expectations were high. P. Thorton Mayre, arguably best known...
Dr. Joseph H. Hilsman Jr., 102: Medicine was WWII vet’s lifelong love

Dr. Joseph H. Hilsman Jr., 102: Medicine was WWII vet’s lifelong love

Joseph Hilsman knew at a very young age that he wanted to be a doctor, and he never wavered. He pursued that goal through medical school at Vanderbilt University and as a U.S. Army medical officer on World War II battlefields who participated in liberating the Buchenwald concentration camp. Hilsman not only became a physician but enjoyed a career that spanned more than four decades and was the first...
Little boy killed in dog attack ‘deserved better than this’

Little boy killed in dog attack ‘deserved better than this’

He entered the world one day after his mother’s birthday. And for the next six years, Logan Bryant Braatz was nothing less than a gift, his family said. “If you ever met Logan, you never forgot Logan,” the boy’s grandmother, Reba Whitehead, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He was compassionate and giving, willing to help his mother or an older brother with autism. When...
Funeral for dog attack victim set before his beloved Falcons play

Funeral for dog attack victim set before his beloved Falcons play

Logan Braatz sang as deep as his favorite singer, dreamed of playing the guitar and loved to watch football. On Sunday afternoon, the 6-year-old would’ve been in front of the television, watching the Atlanta Falcons play for a spot in the Super Bowl. Instead, his family and friends will gather for his funeral. And Logan’s family said Friday having the funeral an hour before kickoff would&rsquo...
Gene Hatfield, 72: Professor had big influence at Clayton State

Gene Hatfield, 72: Professor had big influence at Clayton State

Gene Hatfield, a Clayton State University Professor Emeritus of History who spent 32 years at CSU, will be missed on campus. “I cannot think of another faculty member in the College of Arts and Sciences who has had a greater impact on the larger community beyond the University,” Dr. Nasser Momayezi, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, said. “He was heavily involved...
David Poythress, 73: General became a leader in state government

David Poythress, 73: General became a leader in state government

David Poythress didn’t fit the political mold. He would read scholarly articles and listen to classical music as he crisscrossed Georgia running for statewide office, said George Langford, a former employee and friend of more than 30 years. “And nobody has a resume like him in state government,” Langford said. David Bryan Poythress — attorney, a two-time candidate for governor...
New details released for Bishop Eddie Long memorial service

New details released for Bishop Eddie Long memorial service

New details have been released for the funeral services of Bishop Eddie L. Long, pastor of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Lithonia. Long, 63, an influential and controversial pastor died Sunday after battling an aggressive form of cancer. He had recently celebrated his 29th pastoral anniversary. At its height, New Birth had more than 25,000 members. It continued to have a global reach. Services...
Norman ‘Pig’ Campbell, 85: Athlete, coach put integrity, family first

Norman ‘Pig’ Campbell, 85: Athlete, coach put integrity, family first

If you ask Norman Campbell’s family where his nickname “Pig” came from, they tell you of an old Atlanta Journal newspaper photo that captured him as a wide-mouthed young’un being fed, and a caption that read: “this little pig can’t wait for his next bite.” If you asked his Georgia Tech football buddies, it had a different origin: “He played right guard...
Beloved Cleveland gorilla, Bebac, dies of heart disease

Beloved Cleveland gorilla, Bebac, dies of heart disease

One of two western lowland gorillas at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo died Friday according to Cleveland.com. Bebac, 32, died from heart disease. The male gorilla was diagnosed nearly 10 years ago. He was one of two male gorillas the zoo has diagnosed with heart disease. In a statement, the zoo said its team of gorilla specialists were able to extend Bebac’s quality of life for several years...
Hugh S. Jordan, 95: Legislator, dad embodied fairness, serving others

Hugh S. Jordan, 95: Legislator, dad embodied fairness, serving others

The children of Hugh S. Jordan got together and assembled “smile jars.” They filled them with written memories of experiences with their father. The happy anecdotes paint a picture of Hugh’s character as an altruistic “man in motion.” Jordan, a former Georgia legislator, born April 9, 1921, died Dec. 30. He was 95. A visitation “meet and greet” will take place...
Freak accident kills former Falcon

Freak accident kills former Falcon

Keion Carpenter, a former Atlanta Falcons safety, passed away December 29 in what has been described by a family spokesperson a “freak accident.” While vacationing with his family in Florida, Carpenter fell down and hit his head causing him to fall into a coma. He died at Jackson South Community Hospital in Miami 24 hours later. Carpenter’s cousin told the Baltimore Sun that he and...
'Panda Grandpa' Pan Pan dead at 31

'Panda Grandpa' Pan Pan dead at 31

Pan Pan known for his natural breeding skill earning the nickname “Panda Grandpa” for his successful progeny died Wednesday, according to Chinese state run media. He was 31.  “Pan Pan brought hope to the center,” the conservation center said in a release. “In a group of sluggish, feeble pandas, Pan Pan stood out. He was always full of energy and vitality."
Former Falcon Keion Carpenter dies at age 39

Former Falcon Keion Carpenter dies at age 39

Former Falcons safety Keion Carpenter, who played with the team from 2002 to 2005, died Thursday, according to his family. Carpenter died in Miami at 6:47 a.m. on Thursday. Carpenter collapsed during a run on Wednesday. Carpenter, who was 39, played six seasons in the NFL. Carpenter lived in Buford and was an assistant coach at Hebron Christian in Gwinnett. • Send condolences   He was the...
Gen. James C. Smith, 93: ‘Soldier’s soldier’ in 3 wars put troops first

Gen. James C. Smith, 93: ‘Soldier’s soldier’ in 3 wars put troops first

Army Maj. Gen. James Clifton Smith (Ret.) had a chest full of medals from his combat duty in three wars. But in a 39-year military career, he was most proud of what he did to improve the safety of the troops: making training in instrument-flying standard for military pilots, advocating for night-vision goggles for fliers, and helping to develop the modern-day drone, a family member said. “He...
Bill Haynes, 53, music teacher and band leader

Bill Haynes, 53, music teacher and band leader

William Haynes, a beloved school music teacher and community band leader, died Saturday. He was 53.  Haynes, a resident of Sandy Springs, was killed in an apparent carjacking at a Sandy Springs storage rental facility.  Bill Haynes was a music and drama teacher at E. Rivers Elementary, an Atlanta public school located in Buckhead. He was also director of The Alpharetta City Band...
Winston Boteler, 95: engineer, inventor was adventurous through life

Winston Boteler, 95: engineer, inventor was adventurous through life

It’s an understatement to say that Winston Boteler had an adventurous spirit. He spent his childhood in rural Georgia searching for snakes and arrowheads. At 16 and fresh out of high school, he hopped a train to New York without a penny in his pocket and dug ditches and walked dogs to pay for college. He was an inventor and leader in the field of electro-mechanics at Georgia Tech and worked...
Edward Noble, 88: Lenox Square visionary changed shopping and Atlanta

Edward Noble, 88: Lenox Square visionary changed shopping and Atlanta

Edward Noble had a vision that changed retailing forever. He was just 28 when he moved to Atlanta in the 1950s with a plan to develop Lenox Square Shopping Center in Buckhead, one of the nation’s first and largest shopping centers and the largest in the South. “It used to be that no matter where you lived, you shopped downtown for everything because that’s where all the stores were...
Johnny Hammond, 74: Big man had a Santa spirit for all seasons

Johnny Hammond, 74: Big man had a Santa spirit for all seasons

The Christmas season was Johnny Hammond’s favorite time of the year. With his long white beard, all he had to do was don a red suit to transform himself into Santa Claus. As Santa at Southlake Mall and Phipps Plaza for two decades, “Santa Johnny” listened to the Christmas wish lists of thousands of children. He would always remind them to mind their parents, brush their teeth and...
J.T. Ford, 96: Longtime pastor was early advocate of racial harmony

J.T. Ford, 96: Longtime pastor was early advocate of racial harmony

Atlanta dubbed itself “the city too busy to hate” in the early 1960s in hopes of drawing a distinction between Georgia’s capital city and the racial violence in other Southern towns. But a single act a few years earlier helped to lay the groundwork for the slogan’s claim. In November 1957, 80 Atlanta clergymen – including Wieuca Road First Baptist Church founding pastor...
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