Obituaries — Elkton / Rockingham County

Everette C. Rodgers

Everette C. Rodgers, 97, of McGaheysville, passed away Saturday, April 15, 2017.

He was born Oct. 31, 1919, in Port Republic, and was a son of the late William Russell and Agnes Letitia Rodeffer Rodgers.

On July 26, 1941, he married Irma Lee Burner, who passed away in 2007.

He graduated from Port Republic High School in 1936.

He was a longtime member of Mount Olive Brethren Church, where he served for many years as a Sunday school teacher, Sunday school superintendent, director of church education, moderator and served on the board of deacons.

In later life, his vision would not allow him to travel to Pineville and he began attending the Church of the Brethren Mount View Fellowship.

He was also active in the McGaheysville school and community.

He was employed by Merck and Co. for 43 years, starting as a chemical operator and retiring as supervisor of inventory control.

During those years, he was drafted in November of 1943 and was discharged in December 1945, serving 25 months in the U.S. Army stationed in the European Theater.

He also enjoyed operating a farm raising Angus beef.

He is survived by two children, Paulette Symolon of Apopka, Fla. and Doug Rodgers of Richmond; a sister, Agnes Raines; 12 grandchildren; and 11 great-grandchildren.

A funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 29, 2017, at Kyger Funeral Home in Harrisonburg with Pastor Wayne Pence officiating.

Interment will follow at Eastlawn Memorial Gardens. The family will receive friends from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, April 28, 2017, at the funeral home.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Mount View Fellowship Church of the Brethren, 8601 McGaheysville Road, McGaheysville, VA 22840.

Condolences may be shared online at

Keegan L. Eakle

Keegan Lee Eakle, infant, of Dayton, passed away Monday, April 17, 2017, at the University of Virginia Medical Center from anencephaly.

He was a son of Jennifer (Kisling) and Danny Lee Eakle Jr. of Dayton.

Surviving, in addition to his parents, are his twin brother, Elias Ryker Eakle; a sister, ShLace Lynn McKay Eakle; brother, Landon Xavier Eakle; grandparents, Charlene Frances Parsons of Dayton, James Boyd Kisling Sr. of Shenandoah and Dan Lee Eakle Sr. and wife, Rebecca Lynn, of Charlotte, N.C.

A graveside service will be held at Rest Haven Memorial Gardens at 5 p.m. Thursday, April 27, 2017.

Donnie W. Smith

Donnie Wayne Smith, 77, of Hinton, passed away Thursday, April 20, 2017, at Harrisonburg Health and Rehabilitation Center.

He was born Aug. 2, 1939, in Rawley Springs, and was a son of the late Russell Edward and Tenie May (Eye) Smith.

He worked as an equipment operator for Neff Lumber Mills for 25 years and later for Frazier Quarry for 15 years.

On Dec. 24, 1959, he married the former Nancy Scott, who survives.

He is also survived by his children, Annette S. Hooke of Port Republic and Donald W. Smith Jr. of Hinton; two grandchildren; and sisters, Dorothy Smith, Frances Smith, Thelma Shifflett and Carolyn Eye.

A graveside service was held at the Rawley Springs Cemetery.

A memorial service was held Tuesday, April 25, 2017, at the Mount Olive Presbyterian Church with Wendell “Sonny” Henkel and Pastor Stacy Meyerhoeffer officiating.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Clover Hill Volunteer Fire Company and Rescue Squad, 2100 Clover Hill Road, Dayton, VA 22827, or to the Mount Olive Presbyterian Church, P.O. Box 182, Hinton, VA 22831.

Those wishing may share a memory or an online condolence by visiting

Helen D. Landis

Helen Dovel Landis, 86, of McGaheysville, passed away Wednesday, April 19, 2017, at Sentara RMH Medical Center.

She was born Feb. 14, 1931, in Rockingham County, and was a daughter of the late Homer Franklin Linzor and Hettie Lam Dovel.

On April 17, 1954, she married Ervin Landis, who preceded her in death on Aug. 9, 1995.

She worked at Bluebell and later retired from Camelot.

After her retirement, she worked at the bakery in Costco and was a cafeteria monitor at McGaheysville Elementary School.

She was a member of Soul’s Harbor Church.

She is survived by daughters, Sandra Landis of Harrisonburg and Arnetta Landis of North Carolina; two brothers, Elbert Dovel and Homer “Leo” Dovel; one sister, Ruth Landis; a grandchild; and a great-grandchild.

The family received friends Friday, April 21, 2017, at Kyger Funeral Home in Elkton.

The funeral service was held Saturday, April 22, 2017, at Soul’s Harbor Church near Elkton with the Revs. Corey Herod and Robert Shepherd officiating.

Entombment followed at Eastlawn Memorial Gardens.

Memorial gifts may be made to the Soul’s Harbor Church, c/o Kristen Houston, 6384 W. Donnagail Drive, Apt. 4, Penn Laird, VA 22846.

Condolences may be shared online at

Winston R. Meadows

Winston Ray “Willie” Meadows, 76, of Staten Island, N.Y., went to be with our Lord Sunday, Feb. 12, 2017.

He was born June 10, 1940, in Elkton, and was a son of the late Sebastian and Betty Breeden Trapani of Queens, N.Y.

Willie attended the University of Virginia, Pace University in New York and Pratt University in New York City, where he graduated with a degree in business.

He was employed by both First American Title and Chicago Title in Brooklyn, N.Y. He later retired as vice president of American Title Company in Brooklyn.

He is survived by his sister, Bonnie Wyant of Elkton; a half brother, Richard Jackson of Staten Island, N.Y.; a nephew, Johnny Wyant of Elkton; nieces, Vickie Smith and Alison Minnick of Elkton; and numerous grand-nieces and grand-nephews.

Willie was an avid collector of antique and jewelry. He loved cooking, playing the guitar, traveling and spending time with family, friends and his beloved pets.

A celebration of Willie’s life will be held at his home in Elkton at a later date. — Paid obituary

Casey E. Desper

Casey Edward Desper, 32, of McGaheysville, passed away Tuesday, April 18, 2017.

Born in Harrisonburg on Nov. 15, 1984, he was a son of Vicki Alderson Lerz and her husband, William Lerz, of McGaheysville and Wayne E. Desper and his wife, Peggy Desper, of Goshen.

In addition to his parents, he is survived by his wife, Josie Desper of Harrisonburg; a brother, Dean Shoemaker; a sister, Sabrina Desper; grandparents, Dorothy Desper and Nancy Alderson; and stepsisters, Angel, Brandy and Jessica.

A memorial service was conducted Sunday, April 23, 2017, at Kyger Funeral Home in Harrisonburg with Pastor Scott Reese officiating.

The family received friends prior to the service.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that memorial contributions be made to a local homeless shelter or a charity of your choice.

Condolences may be shared online at

John D. Weakley

John David Weakley, 83, of Luray, passed away Sunday, April 23, 2017, in Luray. He was born April 10, 1934, in Luray.

A graveside service will be held at Leaksville Cemetery Thursday, April 27, 2017, at 11 a. m. Visitation will be at Bradley Funeral Home from 7 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, April 26.

He worked for the U.S. Postal Service for more than 20 years.

On July 11, 1958, he was married to Dorothy Buracker, who survives. He is also survived by a daughter, Sonya Weakley of Bethesda, Md.; sister, Sybil Weakley Dodson of Luray; and two granddaughters.

He was preceded in death by his father, Everett David Weakley, and mother, Mary Frances (Vanner) Weakley.

Memorial contributions can be made to the Christ Episcopal Church in Luray, VA 22835.

The Bradley Funeral Home in Luray, Va., will be handling arrangements.

Cecil E. Blakemore

Cecil E. “Blake” Blakemore, 83, of Massanutten, passed away unexpectedly April 12, 2017, from a brain aneurysm while visiting family in Pennsylvania.

He was preceded in death by his mother, Bertie Lee Blakemore.

He is survived by his wife, Ginnie Blakemore; and a sister, Sandy Yancey.

He was a well-known athlete at Harrisonburg High School and held many basketball scoring records. He was one of the first athletes nominated into the HHS Hall of Fame.

He was also recognized for his artistic talents, which could be seen at the many craft shows in which he and his wife participated.

Per his wishes, he was cremated and there will be no services.

Memorial contributions may be made in his name to Shenandoah Valley Animal Services Center, 1001 Mount Torrey Rd., Lyndhurst, VA 22952.

Joyce A. Smith

Joyce Ann Smith, 71, of Grottoes, passed away Tuesday, April 18, 2017, at her home.

She was born Sept. 20, 1945, and was a daughter of the late Ollie and Rufus Polk.

She was self-employed and loved bird-watching, filming nature and gardening.

On Sept. 18, 1971, she was united in marriage to Larry W. Smith, who survives.

She is also survived by three sons, Michael Baker of Grottoes, Steven Baker of Grottoes and Phillip Smith of Grottoes; a brother, Robert Polk of Mount Jackson; three grandchildren; and a great-grandsone.

The family received friends Thursday, April 20, at Johnson Funeral Service in Grottoes. No formal services were scheduled.

Subscribe to our mailing list
Twitter  FaceBook  RSS