Passages Spring 2023

Winnie Elizabeth Bell (’49), 97, of Crossville, Tennessee, died Nov. 28, 2022. After graduation, she worked as a secretary to the president of Security State Bank in Wewoka, Oklahoma, from 1949-1959. She then moved back to Searcy to serve as a bookkeeper in the Brackett Library. She served as assistant librarian from 1960-1975 when she became head librarian, a position she held until retirement in 1990. After retirement, she continued to volunteer in various capacities at the library. She was a member of the American Library Association, Arkansas Library Association, American Association of University Women, Harding Business Women, and Christian College Librarians. She received the Arkansas Library Association Distinguished Service Award in 1987, a Tribute of Appreciation from the Christian Librarians Conference in 1990, and the Distinguished Service Award from Harding College in 1978. Additionally the Bell House at Harding University was named in her honor. She was a member of the Crossville Church of Christ. She was preceded in death by her foster daughter, Gwendolyn DeLong Carter. She is survived by three foster daughters, Lana DeLong Davis, Lynnette DeLong Jeffrey and Joanne Miller Satele; 10 grandchildren; and 27 great-grandchildren.

Peggy Ruth Crutcher Turnbow (’53), 91, of Mobile, Alabama, died June 16, 2022. She was a piano teacher and kindergarten teacher as well as a dedicated volunteer for her children’s schools. She worked with her husband in the family CPA practice for more than 40 years. She was a member of Port City Church of Christ. She was preceded in death by her son, Robert Wood “Woody” Turnbow Jr. She is survived by her husband of 70 years, Robert (’53); two children, Donny and Tracey Lane; and seven grandchildren.

Dr. Leonard D. Hall (’54), 90, of McKinney, Texas, died Nov. 24, 2022. He served as an educator, coach and administrator in three private Christian schools as well as public schools in Texas, Oklahoma, Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming. He also preached on both a full-time and part-time basis for churches of Christ in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Arizona, Colorado and Wyoming.  He was preceded in death by his wife of 64 years, Bonnie Bell. He is survived by three children, Bonnie Lynn, DeWayne and David (’89); a brother, Richard; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

Ronald D. Bever (’55), 88, of Oklahoma City, died Nov. 5, 2022. He received a doctorate in public address and group communication from Northwestern University. In 1964, he joined the faculty at Oklahoma Christian College. During his 32-year tenure, he served as chair of the communication and fine arts division for 20 years and was prominent in the formation and operation of the campus radio station. For 10 years, he served as faculty sponsor of a student missions organization, which later became Outreach. He organized, promoted and led numerous mission trips. He encouraged many to become missionaries and everyone to share their faith regardless of their vocation. He had a particular passion for Hope for Haiti’s Children, a ministry his son, Ken, and daughter-in-law, Rhonda, began in 1995. He filled numerous roles for churches of Christ including preacher, youth minister, song leader, deacon and elder. He served as an elder at the Britton Road Church of Christ from 1975 until his death. He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Doris Jones (’57); four children, Ken, Stan, Jane Raulston and Annette; a brother, Dale; eight grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

William Joseph Mattox (’55), 86, of Wilmington, North Carolina, died Sept. 5, 2022. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Harding and his medical doctorate from University of Arkansas School of Medicine in 1959. He served as an intern at the U.S. Public Health Service in New Orleans and completed his residency training at the USPHS hospital in Galveston, Texas. He returned to Searcy in 1962 to open a private family practice. He served as Harding’s team physician for football and basketball. As a 1965 founding member of Harding’s President’s Council, he served to advance Christian education. He later had a private practice in Boulder, Colorado, from 1969-72 and served as team physician for the University of Colorado at Boulder football team. He then moved to Wilmington, North Carolina, where he opened a private family practice and joined the staff of New Hanover Memorial Hospital and Cape Fear Memorial Hospital. While his children attended Greater Atlanta Christian School from 1987-1991, he served the Atlanta area through Shallowford Hospital and private practice. He is survived by his wife of 48 years, Kathy; and five children, Mark, Gretchen Davis, Jill Berkana, Ryan (’01) and Brent (’02); a sister, Patti Bryant; and six grandsons.

Marilyn Lee Caldwell (’59), 85, of Kennett, Missouri, died Nov. 30, 2022. She was a piano teacher; a member of the National Federation of Music Clubs since 1961 and life member since 1985; a member of the Missouri Federation of Music Clubs serving in various offices such as state president (1983-85), chaplain (1997-99), historian, first vice president (1991-93), editor of Missouri Music Notes (1979-81 and 1983-85), education chairman and district president (1977-79); a member of the Wednesday Music Club serving as president (1971-73) and chairman of the Scholarship Endowment Fund; a member of the Azalea Garden Club; and a member of the Slicer Street Church of Christ. She is survived by her husband of 65 years, Finis Jay Jr. (’57); six children, Tim (’84), Garrett, Craig (’86), Jeremy, Kerry (’17) and Christine Harris; five grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

​​Charlene Kimbro Stewart (’59), 84, of Statesboro, Georgia, died Feb. 22, 2022. She graduated from Tillar (Arkansas) High School where she played basketball on the 1954-55 county championship team. She attended Harding, Texas Tech University and Mississippi State College earning her Master of Science. After living in Lubbock, Texas; Columbus, Mississippi; and Tuscaloosa, Alabama, she and her husband moved to Statesboro, Georgia, where she taught at Marvin Pittman Laboratory School and was instrumental in starting the physical education program. Later, she was assistant professor in the College of Education at Georgia Southern University, retiring in 1997. She was a member of the church of Christ; served on various volunteer boards and committees, many in leadership roles; and was involved in many civic and social clubs including Bulloch County Friends of the Library, Community Bible Study, The Botanic Garden at GSU, Civic Garden Club and Daughters of the American Revolution. She is survived by her husband of 64 years, Lewis Moore Stewart Sr. (’57); two sons, Lewis Jr. and Richard; a sister, Louellen Glosup (’64); two grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Harold A. Valentine (’61), 83, of Searcy, died Oct. 15, 2022. He earned a master’s degree in education from Harding. He spent the majority of his career in education. He was an official on the city, state and national levels. He participated in state and national track and field programs and was always encouraging young people to participate. He was inducted into the Arkansas Track and Field Hall of Fame, Harding University Sports Hall of Fame and the Arkansas Officials Association Hall of Fame. He not only officiated track and field events but also was a national director of Dixie Youth Baseball. He was a lifelong member of the church of Christ. He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Dolores Christal (’62); three sons, Stan (’83), Scott (’87) and Michael (’91); six grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.

Paul DuWayne Learned (’64), 80, of Hendersonville, North Carolina, died Nov. 16, 2022. He graduated from Harding in 1964 and earned a master’s in theology from Harding Graduate School of Religion in 1967 and a master’s in religious education from Southern Baptist Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, in 1968. He served as minister of education for Richland Hills Church of Christ in Fort Worth, Texas, and Gateway Church of Christ in Pensacola, Florida. He also worked for Sweet Publishing Co., David C. Cook Publishing Co., and Standard Publishing Co. He taught workshops all over the country for the National Training Institute. He also taught many Christian education workshops for Bible school teachers and small group leaders. He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Nan; three sons Perry, Dustin and Evans (’01); a sister, Suzanne Bennett (’67); six grandchildren; and a great-grandson.

Mary Ann Bettis Flippin (’75), 86, of Searcy, died Oct. 23, 2022. She taught fifth grade at Kensett Elementary. She owned the Suntan Shop with her husband, was secretary for the Arkansas State Board of Optometry, and was a licensed cosmetologist. She served as a Cub Scouts leader and a Girl Scouts leader. She was preceded in death by her husband of 63 years, Howard (’58). She is survived by three children, Karen Thomas (’85), Patricia Cunningham (’91) and Dane (’91); and seven grandchildren.

Jack M. DeLong Jr. (’84), 63, of Williston, Tennessee, died Dec. 1, 2022. He graduated from DuBois Area Senior High School in 1977 and earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Penn State University. He later attended Harding and the University of Arkansas. In 1990 he earned a bachelor’s in civil engineering from Memphis State University. He was a licensed professional engineer in 27 states. He was a structural engineer with Williams Steel Company in Jackson, Tennessee, and was a founding partner and vice president of engineering for WDE Structural Engineers Inc. where he worked for 27 years. He is survived by his wife of 38 years, Jeanne Chambers (’84); a son, Taylor Bishop; mother, Beverly Miller DeLong; three siblings, Debbie Flanary (’83), April Bundy and Doug; and a grandson.

Tamara Lynn Carter Tapp (’84), 59, of Fort Wayne, Indiana, died Dec. 11, 2021. She loved her family and took care of them as a stay-at-home mom. She was a member of Pathway Community Church. She is survived by her husband of 37 years, Marvin (’89); three children, Meghan Wallace, Jonathan and Ryan; parents Pat Carter (’62) and Gail Shoptaw Lackey (’59); three siblings, Kerry Holder (’81), Mark (’86) and Jessica Blosser; and 11 grandchildren.

George Frank Carder III (MBA ’06), 71, of Searcy, died Nov. 17, 2022. He earned his Juris Doctor from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock Bowen School of Law in 2004. He was also a graduate of the Institute of Politics and Government and General Motors University College of Dealership Management. His diversified career included banking, real estate, the automobile business and law. During his time in banking, he enjoyed positions with First National Bank, National Bank of Commerce of Memphis, Central Arkansas Mortgage, and White County Guaranty Savings and Loan. In 1979, he joined Carder Buick-Olds Co. During his tenure, he served as director and later regional vice president of the Arkansas Automobile Dealers Association. He also served as the president of Carder Investments and as a former secretary-treasurer of Searcy Aviation. In 2004, he joined Carder Law Firm. He served as the president of White County Bar Association and was recognized as “Best Attorney” by the Daily Citizen. He served as a Little Rock Air Force Base honorary commander for the 19th Airlift Wing JAG and an Arkansas oil and gas commissioner. He served as president of the Rotary Club, director of the Searcy Public School Education Foundation, and a director of the White County Community Foundation. He is survived by his wife, Sharon; four children, George Frank “Beau” IV, Casey Rockwell, Casey Hawkins and Blaine Jones; and five grandchildren.

Bill Wayne Oldham, 87, of Searcy, died Oct. 18, 2022. He earned his master’s from Oklahoma State University and his doctorate from University of Northern Colorado. He taught in public schools in New Mexico and Oklahoma and at Harding from 1962-2000, serving as a professor of mathematics and director of math education. He was preceded in death by his wife of 63 years, Monda Ruth Underwood (’89), and a son, Brent (’83). He is survived by two sons, Clifford (’79) and Bill Jr. (’92); a brother, Cecil (’53); eight grandchildren; and six great- grandchildren.

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