T’Essence Turner


T’Essence Turner, 26, of Pine Bluff, passed away June 5, 2020. Funeral Service will be 11:00 am on Saturday, July 4, 2020 at Central Community Baptist Church in Lake Village, Arkansas, with Evangelist Karolynn Crosby Taylor officiating. Interment will be in Old Holly Grove Cemetery by Paradise Funeral Home of Pine Bluff.


Visitation will be 5:00 pm-6:00 pm on Friday, July 3, 2020, at Paradise Funeral Home Chapel. Social Distancing will be strictly enforced. “Only Paradise Can Serve You Better!”


Isaiah Ento


Mr. Isaiah Ento, 77, of Indian Springs, Ohio passed away Saturday, June 27, 2020.


Viewing 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday, July 6, 2020, at Brown Funeral Home Pine Bluff, AR. Graveside service will be 2:00 p.m. Tuesday, July 7, 2020, at Forrest Lawn Cemetery Pine Bluff, AR. Services are entrusted to Brown Funeral Home of Pine Bluff, AR. www.brownfuneralhomeandmortuary.com.


Ethan Traugott


Ethan Cole Traugott, age 18, passed away on Tuesday, June 30, 2020 from injuries received in a motorcycle accident.


Born October 16, 2001, at Plano, TX, he was the son of Larry Stanley Traugott and Tiffini Leah Shumaker Traugott. He attended Watson Chapel High School.


Ethan loved to rap, skateboard, hunt, fish, and especially loved to drive. He played keyboard, guitar, drums, and trumpet. He also loved animals and spending time with his family and friends. Gifted with a good heart, everyone enjoyed his funny and goofy personality. Once he set his mind on something, it was hard for him to change it.


Ethan was saved on August 24, 2008, and was a member of Providence Missionary Baptist Church. He worked as a groundskeeper at Tyson Foods.


Preceding him in death are his paternal grandparents, Larry and Judy Traugott.


In addition to his parents, Ethan is survived by his fiancée, Erica Nicole Wrinkle; two brothers, Ralf Traugott and Clayton Traugott; two sisters, Erica Meshell and Laura Gaston; grandparents, Judy and Herkey Capel, Darryl Shumaker, and Kay Shultz; along with many other loving family and friends.


The funeral service will be Monday, July 6, 2020, 10:30 a.m. in the Chapel of Ralph Robinson & Son with Brother David Leopard officiating. Interment will follow in Providence Cemetery. Masks and Social Distancing will be required.


Visitation will be Sunday from 4:00 until 6:00 p.m. at Robinson’s. The service will be live-streamed at RalphRobinsonandSon.com.


Ethan’s favorite Scripture passage was Numbers 6: 24-26: “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face to shine upon you; the Lord lift his face upon you and give you peace.”


Winston Gardner Jr.


Winston Gardner Jr., 85, of Pine Bluff, died June 30, 2020. Born December 25, 1934, a son of the late Winston and Lucille Gardner.


Survivors: Children – Mahavis Fletcher (Keith), Rozene Ederington, Namon Gardner, Michael Gardner; Siblings – Joe Gardner (Evelyn), Bobby Gardner (Mary), Robert Gardner (Annette), Dennis Gardner.


Graveside service 11:00 A.M., Monday, July 6th, Wilmar Cemetery, Wilmar, AR. Elder Aaron Withers officiating. Hammons Funeral Home.


Virgil Wesley Sr.


Mr. Virgil Charles Wesley, Sr. 75, of Pine Bluff, Arkansas passed away Saturday, June 27, 2020. Viewing 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday, July 6, 2020, at Brown Funeral Home Pine Bluff, AR. “Private” service will be held 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, July 7, 2020, at Brown Funeral Home by Pastor La Vara Henry. Interment in Arkansas State Veteran Cemetery, North Little Rock, AR. Services are entrusted to Brown Funeral Home of Pine Bluff, AR. www.brownfuneralhomeandmortuary.com.


Charles Thomas


Charles Edward Thomas, 80, of Pine Bluff, died Thursday, July 2, 2020, at his home surrounded by his family. He was born September 6, 1939, in Plumerville, AR, to Frank and Avis Rainbolt Thomas. He was a United States Air Force veteran, and was an agricultural pilot. His hobbies included traveling across the United States and Canada in his RV, and restoring antique cars for the Barrett Jackson auction.


He was preceded in death by a daughter, Debbie Thomas in 2012.


He will be missed by his wife of 58 years, Joetta Stubblefield Thomas; a son, Steve Thomas and wife, Rachel; a daughter, Courtney Darrow and husband, Aubrey; two grandchildren, Taylor Francis and Amanda Haynes; three great-grandchildren, Jaxon Snow, Cayden Darrow, and Hudson Bowers; and a number of other relatives.


A memorial service will be held at 4:00 P.M. Monday, July 6, 2020, in the Ralph Robinson and Son Funeral Chapel with Rev. Josh Dutton officiating. The family will receive friends in the chapel immediately following the memorial service. Online registration is at www.ralphrobinsonandson.com.


Hattie Simpson


Hattie Merle Culpepper Simpson, 88, of Springdale, AR, passed away at home surrounded by her loving family on Friday, June 19, 2020 as a result of complications of Alzheimer’s Disease.


Born February 13, 1932, in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, she was the daughter of the late Marguerite Locke Culpepper and late William Carr Culpepper and preceded in death by her brothers Bill and Bob Culpepper.


Hattie attended Watson Chapel High School where she graduated Valedictorian. She served as President of the Future Homemakers of America, President of the F.H.A. Federation, State F.H.A. Treasurer, served on the Student Council, and was the best basketball statistician. She earned a full-scholarship to Arkansas Tech, but left during the first semester to marry the love of her life, Sid Simpson on December 22, 1950.


Hattie returned to college in 1960 when Sid was hired to coach at McMurry College in Abilene, TX. She completed 3 years of study there while also serving as Dorm Mother to hundreds of college students. She then transferred to East Texas State to finish her B.S.E. degree graduating with highest honors. She and her family moved to Denison, TX in 1965 when her husband was hired to open the athletics program at Grayson County College. Hattie taught 3rd grade at Hyde Park Elementary before moving to Denton, TX where she served as a faculty member with the library at North Texas State University (now UNT).


Hattie earned her Masters Degree in Library Science and became Associate Librarian at Western Texas College in Snyder, TX. In 1977, Hattie was initiated into Beta Phi Mu, the international scholastic honor society for library science. She was also a member of Alpha Lambda Sigma, the North Texas State University honor society for library science graduates, served as State Chairperson of the Texas Library Recruitment Committee, as well as serving as the Secretary/Treasurer of District 1 of the Texas Library Association.


That same year Hattie and Sid returned to Arkansas where Hattie closed out her career as Elementary School Librarian in Pulaski County and then twelve years in Pine Bluff at Oak Park School. Hattie received numerous awards for her innovation in school libraries including recognition from noted children book authors and the Britannica Award School Library Programs given for exemplary library media programs. Hattie was very active in her faith, not just confined within the church walls, but in all that she did to live a life that would please her Savior, Jesus Christ.


These accomplishments do not even come close to the impact Hattie had on everyone that knew her. She was a loving and fun wife to Sid for 69 ½ years. She had a love for books and shared the enjoyment of reading with her family as well as the schools where she was librarian. She was an amazing artist in many different mediums and some of our best memories are sitting around the kitchen table painting, crafting, and eating chocolate. As a mother she was our safe haven where we knew we were loved unconditionally. Her voice and touch were soothing, loving, and always available.


There was something about her warm and nurturing personality that made everyone feel special and loved and every child felt heard and acknowledged. Her sense of humor and her wonderful laugh made for many warm memories. Hattie was someone that genuinely and easily embodied the good qualities so many of us strive for. She was intelligent, beautiful inside and out, had a sharp wit, and had a servant’s heart. She was the sweetest and kindest soul you could ever meet and it was a privilege to know we belonged to her.


Hattie is survived by her beloved husband, Dr. Sid Simpson, her daughter, Margie Bordovsky and son-in-law David of Springdale, AR, a son Mike Simpson and his wife Sara of Austin, TX, four grandchildren (Bryna Bess Burkemper of Centerton, AR, Mariah Bordovsky of Bentonville, AR, Callie Simpson Arnold of Boerne, TX, and Talmadge Simpson of Mountain Brook, AL); six great-grandchildren (Dominic, Mathias, and Laurelin Burkemper, Bailey and Parker Simpson, and Libby Raymond); sisters Sue Trucks of Pine Bluff, AR and Maggi Wadsworth of Lewisville, TX, and so many extended family members who will miss her big bear hugs and her beautiful smile. Due to COVID-19 there will be a private burial with a memorial service scheduled for a later date.


Memorials may be made to either the John Paul II Medical Research Institute Alzheimer’s Disease Research Dept. at 2500 Crosspark Rd, Suite W230, Coralville, IA 52241 or The Springdale Public Library Children’s Section at 405 S. Pleasant St., Springdale, AR 72764, or for those in the Pine Bluff area you may donate to Good Faith Carr Methodist Church at 3703 Ryburn Rd, Pine Bluff, AR 71603. We encourage you to visit https://www.memories.net/page/6653/hattie-merle-culpepper-simpson# for her Memorial Page.


Henry Rayfus


Mr. Henry Rayfus 73, of Pine Bluff, AR passed away Thursday, July 2, 2020. Arrangements will be announced by Brown Funeral Home of Pine Bluff, Arkansas. www.Brownfuneralhomeandmortuary.com.