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Obituaries from the Pendleton Times, 

12 January 2012

Burdette “Burt” Clausen

Burdette “Burt” Daly Clausen, age 66, of Charmco, passed away on Saturday, December 24, 2011 at his residence.

He was born at Pike Bay, MN on February 24, 1945, the son of the late Dorothy Evelyn Falsfether, the late Frank Weaver, and step son of the late Axel Christian Clausen.

Mr. Clausen attended Minneapolis Minnesota schools, was an Electronics Technician, and attended the Tabernacle of the I Am Church in Charmco. He was a Veteran of the US Army after serving twelve years and was a member of the American Legion.

He was married to Sue C. Bowers of Wayside.

Mr. Clausen is survived by two daughters, Ruth E. Clausen of Franklin, Dorothy C Clausen of St. Paul, MN; three sons, Allen C. Clausen of St. Paul, Alex R. Clausen of St. Paul, Clayton Clausen of Bena, MN; a sister, Charlene Dahl of Bena, MN; 10 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Pastor James Johnson conducted a graveside service on Friday, at the Hedrick Family Cemetery, Smith Creek Road, Franklin, WV, with military honors provided by Pendleton County Veterans Honor Guard.

Memories and words of comfort may be left at

Arrangements were under the direction of the Basagic Funeral Home, Franklin

Roger Dale Westfall

Roger Dale Westfall, age 64, of Dorcas, died Friday, December 30, 2011 at Grant Memorial Hospital, Petersburg.

He was born May 10, 1947 in Rough Run, and was the son of the late Seymour Westfall and Lena (Kesner) Ketterman Westfall.

Mr. Westfall graduated from Petersburg High School in 1966 and served in the United States Army during Viet Nam War. He was a member of Hedrick Chapel United Methodist Church.

He worked for the former Fort Hill Exxon Service Station in Petersburg and later worked for Allied Energy for over 20 years. At the time of his death he worked for Region 8 Solid Waste Authority Transfer.

His wife of 36 years, Janet M. (George) Westfall, formerly of Ruddle, survives.

Also surviving are one brother, Paul E. Westfall of Dorcas; several nieces and nephews including Brian Westfall, Jodi Westfall Kuhn, Teddy Ketterman and Suenette Ketterman Pomeroy; and one half sister: Eula Bowman of Timberville, VA

He was also preceded in death by three half brothers, Oliver Ketterman, Walter Westfall and Roscoe Westfall.

His body was cremated.

A memorial service was held Monday at the Schaeffer Funeral Home with Rev. William R. Brown and Rev. Richard L. Longbon officiating.

Memorials may be made to Burlington United Methodist Family Services, RR 3, Box 3122, Keyser, WV 26726 or Potomac Highlands Animal Rescue, HC 59, Box 200 Cabins, WV 26855.

William Russell Grogg

William Russell Grogg, 90, of Harrisonburg and Bridgewater Retirement Community, left this earth to join his beloved wife in Heaven on December 23, 2011.

Mr. Grogg was born on April 22, 1921, in Sugar Grove, and was the son of the late William Harry and Caddie Waggy Grogg. He was the middle child of five boys. The close-knit family fared better than some through the Great Depression because they had their own land that they knew how to live on, and they had each other.

Growing up during that era instilled in Russell a resolve and tenacity that would carry him through life. He was a good student and graduated near the top of his class at Franklin High School in 1939.

Although he had a generally pacifist nature, he was proud to have answered the call to serve his county in WWII. He was a radio operator in the 97th squadron of the 440th Troop Carrier Unit of the United States Army Airborne Division. The 440th received a Distinguished Unit Citation for their role in D-Day, June 6, 1944. Mr. Grogg was honorably discharged in 1945 and became a member of the VFW.

After the war he returned to farming and logging with his father and brothers. During this time, he was also a Sunday school teacher at St. Michael’s Lutheran Church in Sugar Grove.

He joined Asbury United Methodist Church. They made their home in Harrisonburg, VA and lived there together for over 50 years.

Upon moving to Harrisonburg, he began his career in construction. He specialized in building forms for bridges and other large concrete structures. Russell almost always worked side by side with his brother Everette. One notable project that they worked on was the Bath County Pumped Storage Station.

The construction industry usually allowed him to have weekends off to be with his family, which he valued very much. He was also able to maintain a small cow-calf operation as a hobby on his property, near his home place. This was made possible with the help of his brothers. He loved the outdoors but shunned purely recreational activities, unless for the enjoyment of his children and grandchildren. He personally preferred activities with a purpose, such as making hay, cutting firewood, or hunting. For all of his accomplishments, Russell Grogg was the epitome of what has been dubbed, “The Greatest Generation.”

On September 21, 1957, he married Willie Mae Kathleen “Kathy” Hughes Grogg, who preceded him in death on May 29, 2010.

Surviving are two brothers, Everette Grogg of Sugar Grove, and Harry Grogg of Hinton, VA; four children, James R. Grogg, Charles H. Grogg and wife, Sharon, Michael G. Grogg, all of Harrisonburg, VA and Kathleen “Kathy Ann” Sanchez and husband, Johnny of St. Augustine, FL; four grandchildren, John R. Grogg and wife, Kristin of Hinton VA, Jennifer D. Jackson and husband Matthew of Mildenhall, England, Angela N. Reid and husband, Jeremy of Linville, VA and William E. Bresley and wife, Sarah of Stonewood; five great-grandchildren, which includes Nathaniel D. Jackson, Isaac S. Bresley, Conner Reid, Ashton Reid, and Shalah Brooks.

He was also preceded in death by two brothers; Elmer Curtis Grogg and Otis Floyd Grogg.

Funeral services were held December 29, 2011 at Kyger Funeral Home in Harrisonburg, VA with Rev. William Garber and Pastor Matt Light officiating. Burial followed at Eastlawn Memorial Gardens, near Harrisonburg, VA.

Online condolences may be sent to the Grogg family by visiting

Mary “Louise” Mullenax

Mrs. Mary "Louise" Mullenax, 85, of Upper Tract, West Virginia died Wednesday, December 21, 2011 at Winchester Medical Center in Winchester, Virginia.

She was born December 13, 1926 at Upper Tract, West Virginia and was the daughter of the late Earle Wheaton and Lena Heavener Wheaton.

A 1945 graduate of Franklin High School, she worked as a receptionist/secretary at Monongahela Power Company and retired from Atlantic Oil Company after thirty years of service. Louise was a member of the Upper Tract Presbyterian Church, where she had served as Elder, Secretary, Treasurer and Sunday School Teacher. She was also a member of the South Branch Ruritan Club, where she served as Secretary and was a member of the South Branch Home Demonstration Club.

On October 21, 1951, she married Hobert Mullenax, who survives.

Also surviving are one son, Gary (& his wife, Radonna) Mullenax of Martinsburg; two sisters, Patricia (& her husband, David) Swecker of Franklin, Emma Kate Hathaway of Upper Tract; one brother, Richard (& his wife, Carolyn) Wheaton of Leesburg, FL; and two grandsons, Phillip Mullenax and Gregory Mullenax.

She was also preceded in death by one brother, William Earle Wheaton and one sister, Jean Mays.

Funeral services were held December 28, 2011 at the Upper Tract Presbyterian Church with Rev. Kevin Hand officiating. Burial was at Cherry Hill Cemetery at Upper Tract.

Memorials may be made to the Upper Tract Presbyterian Church, P. O. Box 34, Upper Tract, West Virginia 26866.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at

Funeral arrangements were under the direction of the Kimble Funeral Home in Franklin

Derrick Mullenax, 32

Derrick “County” Allen Mullenax, 32, of Blue Grass, VA, passed away Sunday, Jan 1, 2012, at Pawnee Valley Community Hospital in Kansas.

He was born Oct 11, 1979, in Harrisonburg, VA, a son of Richard Dale and Sharon Ann (Simmons) Mullenax of Blue Grass, VA.

Mr. Mullenax was a logger. He had also worked at Hanover Shoe Company and a poultry plant.

Surviving are a son, Damiaen Allen Mullenax of Franklin; a sister and brother-in-law, LeJetta Marie and Jeremy Allen of Staunton, VA; and a maternal grandfather, Harold D. Simmons of Harrisonburg, VA.

A funeral service will be conducted at 2 p.m. Friday at the Obaugh Funeral Home in McDowell, VA, with the Rev. Andre Crummett officiating. Burial will follow in Blue Grass Cemetery.

The family will receive friends this evening from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the funeral home.

Memorial contributions may be made to Highland County Volunteer Fire Department, PO Box 267, Monterey, VA 24465.

Alston Thompson, 87

Alston H. Thompson, 87, of Franklin passed away Tuesday morning, Jan. 3, 2012, at his home.

His wife, Teretha Thompson, survives.

Funeral arrangements were incomplete at press time and under the direction of the Kimble Funeral Home in Franklin.

Matthew Burkett, 28

Matthew Franklin Burkett, 28, a resident of Hinton, died Wednesday, December 21, 2011, from injuries sustained in an automobile accident.

A son of Dana Grogg Hiles and Franklin Burkett, he was born on December 19, 1983, in Harrisonburg, VA.

Mr. Burkett graduated from Turner Ashby High School and had been working as a delivery driver for Dave's Taverna.

Surviving are his mother and step-father, Dana Grogg Hiles and James Hiles, Jr., of Hinton, VA; father, Franklin Burkett of Harrisonburg, VA; grandparents, Harry Grogg of Hinton, VA and the late Maxine Grogg; James and Sue Hiles of Deepwater and formerly of Fort Seybert, and Robert Burkett of Harrisonburg, VA and the late Berniece Burkett; one brother, Joseph Lee Burkett of Hinton, VA; and a number of aunts, uncles and cousins.

A graveside service was held Dec. 26th, at Rawley Springs Mennonite Church Cemetery with Pastor Michael Fallin and Pastor W.L. "Sonny" Henkel officiating.

Online condolences may be sent to

Arrangements were under the direction of the Lindsey Harrisonburg Funeral Home, Harrisonburg, VA.

Vivan Curtis Alt 

Vivan Curtis Alt, age 80 of Petersburg, died Monday, December 26, 2011 at Grant Memorial Hospital.

He was born April 29, 1931 in Smoke Hole, and was a son of the late Okey T. Alt and Kate E. (Calhoun) Alt.

His wife, Hazel G. (Mueller) Alt preceded him in death on July 2, 2005. 

Mr. Alt retired from Ashland Chemicals, Newark, NJ. and served in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War.

Surviving are one daughter: Susan Carlon of Petersburg, two sons: James L. Alt of Nanticoke, Pa. Peter Alt of Maysville; one sister: M. Rosalie Heavener of Petersburg; twelve grandchildren, twenty-two great-grandchildren and one great great granddaughter.

He was also preceded in death by one son, David C.Alt, one daughter, Lynne D. Maschefzky, one brother, Maxel D. Alt and one infant sister, Anna Dale Alt.

At his request, the body was cremated.

Memorial service was held Friday at the Schaeffer Funeral Home in Petersburg.with Pastor Glen Hamrick officiating.

Henry Ford Ruddle

Mr. Henry Ford Ruddle, 87, of Harrisonburg, VA died Sunday, December 25, 2011 at Oak Lea Nursing Home in Harrisonburg, VA.

He was born December 1, 1924 at Riverton, and was the son of the late Russell Ruddle and Floda Bennett Ruddle.

Mr. Ruddle was a Veteran, having served in the U.S. Army during World War II. He was a farmer, had worked for West Virginia Park Services and retired from Peoples Life Company. He was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

On August 22, 1947, he married Glenna Marie Judy Ruddle, who preceded him in death on April 10, 1982. He is survived by his second wife, Ingelene Ruddle. His third wife, Georgia Kathryn Ruddle preceded him in death on May 3, 2011.

Also survived are three daughters, Sandra K. Heal of Provo, UT, Jane M. Ruddle of Circleville, Pamela S. Moore of Mineral, VA; two sons, Terry M. Ruddle of Circleville, Paul A. Ruddle of Valdosta, GA; two sisters, Wilda Carver of Orlando, FL, and Wanda McDermond of Bowie, MD; one uncle, Berlin Ruddle of MD; three step-daughters, Tina Davis, Lisa Peterson and Mary Ellen Rohrbaugh; 23 grandchildren; 38 great-grandchildren; 14 step-grandchildren; 11 step-great-grandchildren; and two step-great-great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by one stepson - Hans Cross; one son-in-law - Billy Moore; five brothers; two sisters; three grandchildren.

Funeral services were held Saturday at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Franklin. Burial was at North Fork Memorial Cemetery at Riverton, West Virginia with military graveside services conducted by the Pendleton County Honor Guard and Mr. Ruddle's great-grandson, Gregory Ryan.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Wounded Warriors Fund or the LDS Philanthropies Fund at

Online condolences may be sent to the family at

Funeral arrangements were under the direction of the Kimble Funeral Home in Franklin.

Gary W. Whetzel, 60

Gary Wayne Whetzel, age 60, of Penn Laird, VA, passed away peacefully, surrounded by his wife and children on Dec 20, 2011.

Mr. Whetzel was an owner/operator of subway restaurants of Elkton, Grottoes and McGaheysville, VA. He was a sports enthusiast, playing softball for many years before coaching the Yankees in Harrisonburg Little League baseball.

His loving wife of 41 years, Stella King Whetzel, survives.

Also surviving are four sons, Derrick and wife, Evette of Penn Laird, VA, Kevin and wife, Phebe of Lancaster, PA, Travis and wife, Melissa of Charleston, SC, and Bradley and wife, Brandy, of Mineral, VA; a daughter, Sherra Holland and husband, Jeremey of Harrisonburg, VA; 16 grandchildren; five sisters, Peggy Nicholson of Concord, NC, Betty Lawson and husband, Tommy of Madison, VA, Marcia Warner and husband, Harry of Franklin, Donna Miller and husband, Harold of Tarboro, NC, and Judy Coffman of harrisonburg, VA; two brothers-in-law, Jim King and wife, Pam of Georgetown, GA, and E. J. King of Harrisonburg, VA; many nieces and nephews; and Jimmy Little, who was considered as a son.

At his request, his body was donated to medical science.

Memorial contributions may be made to the UVA Medical Center.

Cleo K. Smith, 93

Cleo Kiser Smith, 93, of Harrisonburg, passed away Thursday, December 22, 2011 at White Birch Estates, Harrisonburg, VA.

Mrs. Smith was born in Bridgewater, VA on March 15, 1918, and the daughter of the late Joseph Cecil and Vela (Kiser) Hill.

She was a member of Bridgewater United Methodist Church.

She was united in marriage on July 31, 1947 to Oather B. Smith, who preceded her in death on April 26, 1999.

Surviving are a daughter, Sue Ann Sheets and husband Stanley of Churchville, VA; a son, Jerry Smith and wife Julia of Sugar Grove; a sister, Charlsey Puffenbarger of Bridgewater, VA; four grandchildren, Doug Sheets, Wendy Smith, Jerilyn Lopez and Kayla Smith; and three great grandchildren.

A funeral service was held at Johnson Funeral Service Chapel in Bridgewater, VA on December 26, with Rev. James M. Tongue officiating. Burial followed at Oak Lawn Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to Bridgewater Rescue Squad, PO Box 268, Bridgewater, VA 22812 or Bridgewater United Methodist Church, 219 N. Main St., Bridgewater, VA 22812.

Online condolences may be made to the family at

Obituaries are used with the permission of the Pendleton Times.



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