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Frankie “Doodie” Ratliff, 52, or Peoria, IL, formerly of Ruleville

Frankie “Doodie” Ratliff, 52, or Peoria, IL, formerly of Ruleville, died December 10, 2017, at St. Francis Medical Center in Peoria.
Funeral service will be at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, December 16, 2017, at William Chapel Church in Ruleville with Elder Kelvin White officiating. Interment will be in Turner Chapel Cemetery in Ruleville.
Visitation will be from 2-6 p.m. Friday, December 15, 2017, at Byas Funeral Home in Ruleville.
Survivors include brothers Perry, Bennie and William Earl Ratliff, all of Peoria, Bennie and Malcolm Gary, both of Olive Branch, Angelo and Avis Gary, both of Houston, TX, Alvin Gary of Memphis, Michael Boone of Ruleville, Toris Boone of Greenwood and Tony Boone of Columbus; sisters Arlicia Gary Billips, Sharon Gary Lynch and Dollie Gary, all of Houston, TX, Jennifer Boone of Greenwood, Laura Lee Robinson of Memphis, Elaine McCain Evans of Ruleville, Rosie Stidhum of Chicago, and Denise Ratliff of Peoria; children Frankie D. Surney, Ammisha Roberts and Francequilla Hogan, all of Ruleville; and three grandchildren.

Arthur Moore, 77, of Cleveland

Arthur Moore, 77, of Cleveland died December 10, 2017, at his home.
Funeral service will be at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, December 16, 2017, at Mt. Pilgrim Church in Cleveland with Rev. Irving Baker officiating. Burial will follow in North MS Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Kilmichael.
Visitation will be form 2-6 p.m. Friday, December 15, 2017, at Byas Funeral Home in Cleveland.
Survivors include daughters Sharon Herron of Charleston, Marilyn Ocx of Renova and Gechabarski Scott of Cleveland; sister Dr. Loretta Shannon of Greenville; 5 grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.

Henry Lee Maxwell, 62, of Cleveland, formerly of Greenville,

Henry Lee Maxwell, 62, of Cleveland, formerly of Greenville, died December 5, 2017, at his home.
Funeral service will be at 11 a.m. Saturday, December 16, 2017, at United Baptist Church in Cleveland with Rev. Jimmy Barnett officiating. Burial will be in Delta Heights Cemetery in Cleveland.
Visitation will be from 2-6 p.m. Friday, December 15, 2017, at Byas Funeral Home in Cleveland.
Survivors include his wife Sherron H. Maxwell of Cleveland; sons Hengré Maxwell of Alexandria, VA; daughters Juanita Maxwell and Tomeka Manuel, both of Alexandria, VA, Aleycia Hollans of Shaw, Ans Secondria Washington of Southaven; brothers Robert Gayden of NC, Rodney and John T. Gayden of Dallas, L.A. Gayden of Chicago, Tarcey Gayden of Norfolk, ND, Earl Williams of Clarksdale and John W. Gayden of Rockford, IL; sisters Jewistine Lee of Rome, Nina Robinson of Drew, Pam Boyd and Debra Sampson, both of Dallas, Mary Wright of Tutwiler, Sara Miller of Sumner, Willie Hoskins of Florida and Sheronda Mitchell of Parchman; and 10 grandchildren.

Ruby G. McAtee

Services for Ruby G. McAtee will be held Saturday, December 16, 2017, at 2 p.m. at Williams & Lord Funeral Home in Ruleville.
Mrs. McAtee, 88, died Wednesday, December 13, 2017, at her residence in Oakland.
She was born October 28, 1929, in Drew to the late James William and Effie Bell Ward Guest and lived in Oakland.
She was preceded in death by her son Billy Joe McAtee, five brothers and two sisters.
She is survived by her husband of 70 years Charles J. McAtee of Oakland; son Charles E. McAtee of Oakland; four daughters Jeannie Storey of Oakland, Linda Daniel of Oakland, Jackie Morris of Drew and June Davis of Sumner; brother Tom Ed Guest of Oxford: eight grandchildren; 17 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild.
Visitation will be held on Saturday, December 16, 2017, from noon-2 p.m. at Williams & Lord Funeral Home in Ruleville. Rev. Ben Kennedy and Rev. Derrick Simmons will officiate the services.
Pallbearers will be Sid McAtee, Chris Morris, Zack Wright, Kalean Morris, Brandon Windham and Seth Scaife.
Honorary Pallbearers will be Kolten McMinn, Kameron McMinn, and Colby Scaife.
Burial will follow at Drew Cemetery.
Online guest book may be signed at www.williamsandlord.com

Ann Morrison Bode

Ann Morrison Bode passed away Sunday, December 3, 2017, at Singing River Nursing Home in Moss Point. She was 84 years old.
Ann was born in Memphis on October 24, 1933, and grew up in the small Delta town of Shelby where her father Scott Morrison was mayor for forty-one years. Ann’s family was one of the first to settle in Shelby and they were engaged in farming and ginning operations until the late 1960s.
Ann attended Shelby High School, Gulf Park College for Women in Gulfport and Delta State University. She made her debut at the Delta Debutante Club in Greenville in 1950 and for many years she was involved in the Cotton Carnival in Memphis. Ann lived in Shelby until her early forties and then she moved to the Mississippi Gulf Coast and lived in Pass Christian and Long Beach for the rest of her life.  She was an avid lover of the arts in the Mississippi Delta and on the Mississippi Gulf Coast and she enjoyed painting and playing the organ.
Ann was an active member of Trinity Episcopal Church in Pass Christian where she was a chairman of the Altar Guild and was involved with the restoration of the cemetery at Trinity. She was also a member of the Altar Guild board of the Diocese of Mississippi.
She is preceded in death by her daughter Gabrielle Coopwood; her husband Paul G. Bode; her parents Scott and Ruth Morrison; her grandparents J.W. and Ellen Thomas; and her uncle and aunt J.W. and Elizabeth Thomas all of Shelby.
Ann is survived by her children Betsy Coopwood Carter of Moss Point, Candy Myles (Michael) of Jupiter, FL, Scott (Cindy) Coopwood of Cleveland; and seven grandchildren.
The family would like to thank Kathy Parnel for her kind, professional and loving care of Ann during the last years of her life.
Memorials may be made to Trinity Episcopal Church Cemetery Fund, 125 Church Avenue, Pass Christian, MS 39571.

Randolph “Rudy” Seals Sr.

Randolph “Rudy” Seals Sr. was born on February 17, 1952, to the late Harry and Grace Seals. He was the fourth of 11 children. Randolph was introduced to Christ and baptized at the St. John M.B. Church under the leadership of Pastor R.L.T. Smith. It was evident that God had a special plan for Randolph’s life at an early age.
He began his early years of education in the Jackson-Hinds County School District and was a part of the Jim Hill High School’s graduating class of 1970. Rudy graduated high school at the age of 16. He attended Hinds Community College and graduated with a degree in culinary arts in 1973. While attending Hinds Community College, Rudy took part in many social organizations such as the “Black Students Association” where he served as the president; also holding positions on the choir council, male chorus, and ensemble. During his high school years he was known as the “class favorite.” He later attended Jackson State and Delta State University to further his education.
In 1975, he began working at Mississippi State Department of Corrections in Parchman, where he served as the kitchen instructor. He formed the first choir during his time there. Soon after, he began working at Mississippi Delta Community College where he taught Culinary Arts along with Social Studies. After serving both these institutions for over 30 years, he later retired.
In 1986 he was assigned by God to pastor the New Kingdom Missionary Baptist Church; and in 1988 Rose Hill Missionary Baptist Church. After much prayer and discussion both churches merged under his leadership in 2004.
He was known for dressing, preaching, singing, cooking, and catering for weddings, parties, and other events large and small. Some of his favorite songs included, “I Won’t Complain,” “I Stood on the Banks of Jordan,” “When the Gates Swing Open,” “It Will Be Always Howdy, Howdy,” and “Amazing Grace.”
Penning his favorite sermons, “In the Year King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord,” Isaiah 6:1 and “Lord, Teach Us to Pray,” Matthew 6:9-13. Despite his busy life of preaching, singing, cooking, and teaching he spent most of his time caring for his family and church family.
After almost 40 years of fighting on the battlefield and seven years of sickness Pastor Randolph “Rudy” Seals made his peaceful transition from earth to eternity on Tuesday, December 12, 2017.
He was a loving, loyal and faithful husband, father, brother, pastor, mentor, and friend. Even in his sickness he dedicated and sacrificed for his family and church family. He was certainly a pillar for the Cleveland Community, Bolivar County and the state of Mississippi. He was loved and will be missed by many across the globe.
Pastor Seals was preceded in death by his parents Grace Seals and Harry Seals; his mother and father in love, Reverend Mose and Lucille Martin; four siblings Harry Seals, Willie Earl Seals, Charles Seals and Doris Johnson; son Fred Ray Jr.; brothers Albert Fisher Sr. and Joe Wilson, Fred Joiner Jr.
Pastor Seals leaves to cherish his precious memories, his loving and devoted wife and caretaker of 42 years Pamela Seals; six loving and devoted children Youlanda (Anthony) Keaton of Douglasville, GA, Trayceea Ray, Kimberly (Lekendric) Richard of Cleveland, Ebony of Memphis, TN, Randolph “Rudy” Jr., Crystylle, Sarita Simmons of Cleveland and Korneshia Collier-Seals of Southaven; 10 grandchildren Quennerial, Quenneshna, Diamonique, Destinee, Casada, Anthony “AJ”, Haleigh, Kyland, Nailah, and London, Benjamin and Rafeal; five great-grandchildren; six brothers Albert, Jerry, Leroy (Diana) Seals of Jackson and David of Houston, TX, and Lee (Denise) Dixon; five sisters Earnestine Seals of Jackson, Charlene (Eric) Smith of Memphis, TN, Pattie (Tyrone) Brown, Barbara Wilson of Gary, IN, and Vicky Fisher of Jacksonville, FL. Lastly, a loving and devoted church family, The Greater New Kingdom M.B. Church of Cleveland; and many, many, many other children, nieces, nephews, friends and family members.
Visitation will be held from 4-6 p.m. Sunday, December 17, 2017, at Greater New Kingdom M.B. Church in Cleveland, following will be a remembrance service from 6-7:30 p.m.
Visitation will be held from 10 a.m.-noon Monday at United Baptist Church in Cleveland, followed by the funeral service at noon.
Interment will be in Westlawn Memorial Garden in Cleveland.
Rev. Randolph Seals Jr. will officiate.

Letter to the Editor — Cindi Q. Lofton

To the Editor:
Wow, it’s Christmas!  We are all scrambling to figure out what gifts will be meaningful to the folks on our lists as we fill our carts online and at downtown shops to make sure our selections are special. One place you may be assured your gifts are always special is the United Way of Bolivar County. Though there is not a “To and From” name tag to fill out, please know that you are gifting countless numbers of men, women and children with many different types of very basic needs, from counseling for depression or anxiety, the provision of food, clothing, youth activities and other special services. Those working with the non-profit agencies of the United Way have the privilege of working to meet those needs year around, even at Christmas, and it is only your contributions that make that help possible! Thank you!!  To provide a gift of service that will help people now and all through the year, checks can be mailed to: United Way of Bolivar County, P.O. Box 1796, Cleveland, MS. 38732, or call Corley Mullins, Executive Director of the United Way at 662-846-1646 for more information. May your holiday be filled with bountiful blessings!
Cindi Q. Lofton
Executive Director,  
Community Counseling Center
Cleveland & Greenville

What's Going On: Dec. 15, 2017

Friday
 8 a.m.-4 p.m. — GED class for advanced students at United Family Life Village in Cleveland.
 9:30 a.m. — Parks Elementary Holiday Program
 9:30 a.m. — Bell Academy will hold a ribbon cutting for its PE Building.
 10 a.m. — Story hour for stay at home parents will be held at the Robinson-Carpenter Memorial Library in Cleveland.
 Noon — Lions Club will meet at the Cleveland Country Club.
 6 p.m. — Closed AA meeting at 400 N. Sharpe Ave. in Cleveland
 6 p.m. — Al Anon meeting at 400 N. Sharpe Ave. in Cleveland. Al Anon Family Groups offer strength and hope to anyone who has been affected by someone else's drinking. For more information, call 662-846-1132.

Saturday
 10 a.m.-6 p.m. — Women’s Business Holiday Expo, Delta State University Coliseum
 10 a.m.-2 p.m. — Grammy Museum Mississippi Blues Family Day
 11 a.m.-noon — Pre-School Storyhour will be held at the Robinson-Carpenter Memorial Library
 Noon — Pace will host its 16th Christmas Parade.
 Noon — Closed AA meeting at 400 N. Sharpe Ave. in Cleveland
 1-4 p.m. — Santa at the Caboose, downtown Cleveland
 2-5 p.m. — Carriage Rides, downtown Cleveland
 3-6 p.m. — Traveling Nativity, First United Methodist Church
 4-6 p.m. — Live music in downtown Cleveland by Robin Webb
6 p.m. — Santa and Cider in downtown Cleveland

Sunday
 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. — Blood Drive, First United Methodist Church
 8:30 a.m. — Closed AA meeting at 400 N. Sharpe Ave. in Cleveland.
 2-5 p.m. — Carriage Rides, downtown Cleveland, 2-5 p.m.
 2-4 p.m. — Live music in downtown Cleveland by Lions of Winter
 4 p.m. — Closed AA meeting at 400 N. Sharpe Ave. in Cleveland (Non-smoking)
 6 p.m. — Lessons and Carols Service, St. Luke United Methodist Church
 7:30 p.m. — Closed NA meeting at First Methodist Church, 318 S. Court, in Cleveland

Monday
 8 a.m. — ABE/GED classes at the Cleveland WIN Job Center
 8 a.m.-4 p.m. — GED class for advanced students at United Family Life Village in Cleveland.
 5-7 p.m. — Youth of Bernice’s Booster Club for Youth Inc. will meet.
 6:30 p.m. — Open NA meeting, Step Study at Yale Street Baptist Church in Cleveland.
 7:30 p.m. — Closed AA meeting at Renova Town Hall (non smoking)
 8 p.m. — NA meeting in the Fellowship Hall of the United Methodist Church in Rosedale

Tuesday
 8 a.m.-4 p.m. — GED class for advanced students at United Family Life Village in Cleveland
 9-11:45 a.m. — GED classes at St. Gabriel Mercy Center in Mound Bayou
 9 a.m.-3 p.m. — Sewing class at St. Gabriel Mercy Center in Mound Bayou
 11 a.m. — Holiday Playlist Workshop, Grammy Museum Mississippi
 11:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m. — Microsoft Word class at St. Gabriel Mercy Center in Mound Bayou.
 6 p.m. — A mixed level yoga class at the Delta Arts Alliance Annex in Cleveland
 6 p.m. — The Tuesday Night Pickers will play at Grover's Corner in Cleveland
 7 p.m. — Open AA meeting at 400 N. Sharpe Ave. in Cleveland

Wednesday
 8 a.m.-4 p.m. — GED class for advanced students at United Family Life Village in Cleveland
 9-11:45 a.m. — GED classes at St. Gabriel Mercy Center in Mound Bayou
 10-11 a.m. — Microsoft Excel class at St Gabriel Mercy Center in Mound Bayou
 11 a.m. — Ribbon Cutting at Burger King
 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. — Power Point class at St. Gabriel Mercy Center in Mound Bayou
 Noon — Rotary Club of Cleveland will meet at the Cleveland Country Club
 7 p.m. — Closed AA meeting at 400 N. Sharpe Ave. in Cleveland.

Thursday
 8 a.m.-noon — ABE/GED classes at the Cleveland WIN Job Center
 8 a.m.-4 p.m. — GED class for advanced students at United Family Life Village in Cleveland
 9-11:45 a.m. — GED classes at St. Gabriel Mercy Center in Mound Bayou
 9 a.m.-3 p.m. — Sewing class at St. Gabriel Mercy Center in Mound Bayou
 10-11 a.m. — Microsoft Access class at St. Gabriel Mercy Center in Mound Bayou
 Noon — Exchange Club of Cleveland will not meet at the Cleveland Country Club.
 5 p.m. — Weight Watchers will meet at Our Lady of Victories Catholic Church.
 7 p.m. — AA meeting at 400 N. Sharpe Ave. in Cleveland
 7 p.m. — Al Anon meeting at 400 N. Sharpe Ave. in Cleveland. Al Anon Family Groups offer strength and hope to anyone who has been affected by someone else's drinking. For more information, call 662-846-1132.

WGO Policies
All items for WGO (What's Going On) should be submitted in writing to The Bolivar Commercial at least one day prior to publication. All items should pertain to meetings and events that are open to the public. We do not run church briefs, sporting events, or invitations to private parties. Items will be run on a space available basis.

Charlene Russell Barr of Cleveland

Mrs. Charlene Russell Barr of Cleveland passed away Monday, December 11, 2017, at her home.
Visitation was from 9:30-11 a.m. Wednesday, December 13, 2017, at Covenant Presbyterian Church.
Celebration of Life service immediately followed beginning at 11 a.m. Wednesday, December 13, 2017, at Covenant Presbyterian Church with Rev. Tim Starnes officiating. Interment was in North Cleveland Cemetery.
Charlene Russell Barr was a daughter of the soil and agriculture in Tennessee, Missouri, and Mississippi. She was born to Charles Aaron and Hazel Adcock Russell in a hillside village near Jackson, TN, on June 21, 1943. She started early as a farm child when, at three months of age, she was pulled along a cotton sack in the fields with her mother. In 1947, Charlene’s family left their family’s 173 year old homestead in Tennessee, and crossed the Mississippi River by ferry to reach the Missouri Bootheel, where her brother was born and where she was later baptized at the age of ten at Micola Baptist Church.
After thirteen years of farming the Missouri soil, the family moved to Pace-Beulah, where Charlene attended Pace Baptist Church and Rosedale High School. It was here where Charlene met her future husband, Lanny Barr, to whom she lovingly gave the nickname “Jack.” After earning her degree in Education from Delta State College, the couple was married on June 27, 1965, at Pace Baptist Church. Charlene’s life continued to be associated with agriculture, as Lanny and their three sons have maintained farming interests in the Bolivar County area to this present day.
After twenty years of dedicated homemaking and child-rearing, Charlene became involved in the electoral process on County and National levels. For four years, she served as Chairwoman of the Bolivar County Republican Party. She was also a volunteer for many civic groups such as the City Beautification Committee, Cleveland Tree Board, Ambassador of the BPAC, Friends of the Library, Cleveland Women’s Club, Cleveland Garden Club, and for fifty years the Rosedale Homemakers’ Club. Her concern for historical preservation resulted in long-standing memberships in the Daughters of the American Revolution and the United Daughters of the Confederacy. In 1997, Charlene was honored by Beta Sigma Phi Sorority as their First Lady of the Year for her service through numerous community activities.
Charlene was a faithful, active member of Covenant Presbyterian Church where she sang in the Sanctuary Choir for over thirty years.
Charlene had an artist flair, which she demonstrated by gathering together unique items to make eye-catching centerpieces for luncheons and other social events. At Christmastime she would use her talents for drawing and painting displays in the pageants her grandchildren would perform for holiday celebrations with family. Their favorite prop she created was a life-size camel which the children, as well as family and friends, could ride and depict the coming of the Three Wise Men.
Charlene found delight in growing daylilies and dogwood trees, photography, and traveling. She stated that one of her biggest blessings in life was being able to see thirty-two countries in seventeen years with her sister-in-law by her side. Turkey was her favorite because of the seven churches of the New Testament being located there. Like most grandmothers, Charlene dearly loved her ten grandchildren, and she was fervent in teaching them about spiritual matters, praying, and their Christian faith.
She is survived by her husband of fifty-two years, Lanny Barr; her three sons, Bradley Russell Barr (Lynne), John Aaron Barr (LeaAnn), and Andrew Benton Barr (Kasey); her brother, Terry Russell (Linda); stepmother, Lois Merene Russell; and grandchildren, Brittnee Short, Kateland Barr, Russell Barr, Taylor Barr, John Reed Barr, Reagan Barr, Andrew Rogers Barr, Sam Barr, Layla Rose Barr, and Forrest Barr.
Pallbearers were Tommy Worthey, Russell Barr, Bennie Lessie, David Arant, Bill Lester, and John Conico. Honorary pallbearers were Wayne Blanchett, Gene Godwin, David Robinson, Joey Herbison, Jim Armishaw, and Houston Weaver.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations made to The Gideon’s International, P.O. Box 140800, Nashville, TN 37214-0800.

Martha Rose Koehler Pillar, 62, of Aurora, IL

Martha Rose Koehler Pillar, 62, of Aurora, IL, passed away peacefully, Dec. 6, 2017, at Edward Hospital of Naperville.
She was born Feb. 20, 1955, in Cape Girardeau to her loving late parents, Melbourne and Berniece Koehler.
She was the wife of Raymond R. Pillar, whom she wedded October 2, 1982.
She is survived by son Kirk (fiancé0 Sarah Spain) Pillar of Montgomery, IL, and Kyle Pillar of North Aurora, IL; grandmother of Tiberius Pillar; sister of Marilyn (Charles) Weber of Cape Girardeau, Melbourne Koehler Jr. of Rossville, GA, Ron (Catherine) Koehler of Cleveland, Margaret (Mike T.) Meyer of Gordonville and Steven (Mary) Koehler of Scott City; and many nieces and nephews.
Martha was a 1978 graduate of Southeast Missouri State University. She worked for Homeland Security and Emergency Management of DuPage County for many years. Martha and Ray then started their Molly Maid Franchise in 2003, serving the Illinois areas of St. Charles, Aurora, Naperville and Plainfield.
Visitation will be from 4-8 p.m. Friday and 3-4 p.m. Saturday at Faith Lutheran Church, 3000 Liberty St., Aurora, IL.
The funeral will be at 4 p.m. Saturday at the church. Interment will be private.
Arrangements entrusted to Friedrich-Jones Funeral Home & Cremation Services.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be sent to: Mutual Ground 418 Oak Ave, Aurora, IL 60506.
Online condolences may be made at www.friedrich-jones.com