The family of Barbara Bitely Staton Holley of Hot Springs, formerly of Pine Bluff, would like you all to know that God has finally called her to join Him and her precious husband, Herbert, in Heaven. She’s been longing for that trip for a while and she got her ticket on Saturday, January 20, 2018.

She never stopped praising how sweet, thoughtful and wonderful Herb was and how thankful she was that God had brought them together in 1983. The last 16 months, without Herb by her side, were difficult for Barbara. But now, they are finally together again, strolling down the golden streets, hand in hand. Herb is likely smiling and nodding as Barbara is telling him an interesting story from her past.

So, while Heaven is rejoicing at Herb and Barbara’s reunion, her family and many friends are missing her and her “stories” (and she had a million of them). If you didn’t know Barbara but happened to meet her while walking across a parking lot or sitting in a waiting room, you would soon know lots of her childhood memories and many details of her life. She never met a stranger that she couldn’t talk to. Even people who might have accidentally dialed a wrong number would find themselves being regaled with her funny little tidbits (or sagas) and being surprised at finding they had been talking for 30 minutes or more to that “wrong number”. She loved to talk, but also loved her church, First Baptist of Hot Springs, watching the Razorbacks play, creating beautiful quilts, and watching Dr. Phil.

She will certainly be missed by her surviving sister, Beatrice Bitely Miles of Guild, TN; her children, Marsha Staton Kealer of Malvern, Greg Staton of Bonnerdale, and Beth Staton Boshears (Bowden) of Little Rock; and her step-children, Sharon Holley Hanson, Terry Holley and Bruce Holley. She will also leave a gap in the lives of her nine grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; and many friends from everywhere.

Barbara was born September 7, 1934 at Tamo, AR to Cyrus and Hazel Cooksey Bitely, who both preceded her in death along with her brother, Beyrl Bitely, and son-in-law, David Kealer.

Visitation will be Thursday, January 25, 2017, starting at 12:00 noon in the Chapel of Ralph Robinson & Son Funeral Directors in Pine Bluff. The memorial service will begin at 1:00 p.m. with Dr. John McCallum officiating. Interment will be private.

Memorials are requested to First Baptist Church, 2530 Central Avenue, Hot Springs, AR 71901.

Barbara and much of her history will be remembered for a long time, but the best story has just begun. Now she’s finally home for eternity.

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Gloria Cook

WACO, TEXAS - Gloria “Dodie” Clark Cook went to be with Jesus on January 20, 2018 in Waco, Texas. A memorial service will be held at 2:30 p.m., Thursday, January 25, 2018, at The First Methodist Church of Waco, 4901 Cobbs Drive, with Pastor Wayne Williams officiating. Visitation will proceed the memorial at 1:30 p.m., at the church.

‘Dodie’ was born in Madison, Arkansas, on Valentine’s Day, 1934, to Pearl and Merwin Clark. Her family relocated to Pine Bluff, Arkansas where she attended school. During High School, she and her future husband, Charles ‘Cookie’ Cook became ‘sweethearts’ and were married December 26, 1952 during their Freshman year in college.

Their first child King was born in 1954, as Cookie graduated from USMC boot camp. They were stationed in 29 Palms, California, for two years, before returning to college on The GI Bill. Cookie earned a BS in Engineering from The University of Tulsa in 1959 and immediately joined the Magnolia Petroleum Company as a Geophysical Engineer.

During this time Cookie and Dodie moved around and lived in many locations in the southwest. Their journey to find a home ended when they settled in Woodway in 1967, Texas where they would rear their three sons, King, David, and Dan Pat.

Cookie and Dodie were one of the early residents of Woodway and were recently featured in the Woodway Today newsletter as one of the longest residing families of Woodway. Dodie and Joyce Bowden procured funds from The Cooper Foundation in 1971 to build the Woodway Boys Club, now, the Woodway Family Center.

In 1971, Cookie joined Chemical Lime Company as sales manager. This led Dodie into a new life of supporting Cookie in the marketing arena attending various business functions. She was an instant hit with new friends and business associates establishing her ‘charm and enthusiasm’ wherever they went. After retirement in 1999, they enjoyed traveling on ‘small boat’ cruises, senior golf events, following the Baylor Bears and visiting many old friends from high school days. Their calendar was always filled with plans to visit family and friends.

Dodie was a “stay at home” Mom, refereeing the sandlot games in their large backyard. She followed the boys religiously throughout their high school sports careers as well as raising animals for their FFA projects. She was an active member of The First Methodist Church of Waco and the New Beginnings Sunday School class. She taught Sunday School with Cookie, chaperoned youth groups on mission trips, served the ‘meals on wheels’ ministry and attended many bible studies through the years.

Five years ago, she was diagnosed with signs of dementia and Parkinson’s disease.

She continued to be a part of the church and community, but her cognitive skills became very limited. Unfortunately, an accidental fall in December 2017 fractured her spine and brought on a serious physical and mental decline. She entered Wesley Woods on January 2, 2018 for increased care and comfort during her final days.

She was preceded in death by her parents; sister, Joyce Young; and brother, Gene Clark.

Dodie is survived by her husband, Charles; sons, King and wife, Barbara, David and wife, Karen, Dan Pat and wife, Cindy; grandchildren, Hunter Cook, Spencer Cook, Meredith Cook, Lexie Chapman, and Hannah Cook; and sister, Gwen Stevens.

Dodie will always be remembered as a Mom, Grandmother and Wife that ‘Exceeded Expectations’ in all phases of her life!

Marie Tolbert-Hilson

TILLAR - Mrs. Marie Tolbert-Hilson, 93 of Tillar, Arkansas passed Friday, January 19, 2018 at Jefferson Regional Medical Center in Pine Bluff. Arrangements will be announced by Brown Funeral Home of Dumas.

Felton Humphries

LITTLE ROCK - Deacon Felton Ladell Humphries, 63,of Little Rock, AR departed this life January 17, 2018. He is preceded in death by: father, James Humphries; mother, Nora Humphries; sisters; Ethel Wrightsell and Louise Jackson. He was a proud deacon at Greater Mount Calvary Baptist Church in Pine Bluff, AR.

He leaves to cherish his memory: children, Frederick, Felton Jr., Audrea Michelle, Lebraylon, Bernedia; siblings, Girtha Mitchell, Earnestine (Edward) Austin, Jerline Humphries, Beatrice Jackson, Jeanette Jenkins, Jerry (Mildred) Humphries, Fred (Lillian) Humphries, Debra Wayne; 16 grandchildren; a host of relatives and friends.

Family Hour: Friday: 5:00- 6:00 p.m. at Robinson Mortuary, LR. Visitation: Saturday, January 27, 10:00- 11:00 am. Service: Saturday, 11:00 am both at Mt. Calvary Baptist Church, 3700 West 13th St. Pine Bluff, AR; Dr. Travis Harden, Pastor. Services entrusted to Robinson Mortuary, 1201 Dr. MLK Jr Drive., LR. (501) 371-0111. “Service You Can Trust.”

Velma Weaver

Mrs. Velma Weaver, 93, of Pine Bluff, AR passed January 22, 2018. Arrangements will be announced by Brown Funeral Home of Pine Bluff, AR.