Courier Obituaries 12-22-21


PICKENS — Dr. Gaye S. Mouritzen, 84, passed from this life on Tuesday, Dec. 14, 2021.

Dr. Mouritzen was born in Sharon, Pa., daughter of the late Clifford and Edith Sweesy.

Gaye earned a B.A. from Houghton College in 1959, an M.S. in Education from Wagner College in 1964 and an Ed.D. from Nova Southeastern University in 1993.

From 1961 to 1980, she supported her husband, Wayne, in his pastoral work at several churches. including Morgan Memorial Wesleyan Church in Upstate South Carolina, High Bridge Reformed Church in New Jersey and Royal Oak Reformed Church in Michigan.

Dr. Mouritzen’s career as a teacher spanned five decades, ranging from elementary school to bible college, and culminated in 21 years as a high school English teacher and then lead teacher at what is now the Dr. Marvin Dunn Academy for Community Education, an alternative education high school in the Miami-Dade County Public School system.

Gaye loved books. She participated in library organizations and book clubs, read to children at day care and elementary school in her retirement years and read a book to match the theme at every childhood birthday party for her granddaughters. Also, in her retirement, she proofread several book manuscripts for a friend.

Gaye was a member of several church choirs throughout her life, including singing with her daughter in the Pickens Presbyterian Church Choir and the Pickens Concert Choir. She was an inspiration to many with the vast number of hymns she could sing from memory. She also taught Sunday school and VBS classes throughout her life, ranging from children to older adults.

She is survived by her daughter, Donna Simms, and her husband, Robert, of Pickens; two much-loved granddaughters, April Simms and June Simms; and two nieces, Christy Hunter and Tricia Ryan of Pennsylvania.

In addition to her parents, Gaye was preceded in death by her brother, Clifford Mark Sweesy.

A memorial service was held on Dec. 18 at Pickens Presbyterian Church.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Pickens Presbyterian Choir, 311 W Main St., Pickens, SC 29671; Hobe Sound Bible College, PO Box 1065, Hobe Sound, FL 33475; or Friends of the Pickens Library, 124 N. Catherine St., Pickens, SC 29671.

Online condolences may be expressed to the family by visiting Dillard Funeral Home is assisting the family with arrangements.



PICKENS — Born on Sept. 29, 1942, to Clarence and Louise Reeves, Bessie R. Cassell went to her heavenly home on Dec. 14, 2021.

She was a hard worker her entire life before retiring to take care of her husband, the late Ray Cassell.

Mrs. Bessie loved her church family at Glassy Mountain View Baptist Church and was always bragging about her family and friends.

She is survived by her daughters, Connie Medlin of Pickens and Gail Franks of Greenville; sister, Dot Norris; five grandchildren, AJ Tinsley, Lacey Nalley, Kelsey Scranton, Jamie Graves and Daniel Franks; five great-grandchildren, Gabriel Graves, Aiden Graves, Atticus Finley, Ryder Finley and Memphis Finley; many special nieces and nephews; a daughter-in-law, Cathy Graves; and a very special and dear nephew, Scott Raines.

She was predeceased by her baby boy, Dennis Medlin. She was also predeceased by both her parents and her brother, Buddy Reeves.

It is definitely shouting time in heaven as she is able to be at peace with her sweet Jesus and many loved ones who have been waiting on her arrival.

Visitation was held on Dec. 17 at Robinson Funeral Home-Downtown, Easley, with the graveside service following at the Blue Ridge View Baptist Church cemetery.

Visit or Robinson Funeral Home and Crematory-Downtown, Easley.





LIBERTY — Paul Alexander Maw, 71, husband to Brenda B. Maw, passed away on Dec. 3, 2021.

Born in Pelzer, he was the son of the late Lloyd and Mary Frances Wilhoit Maw. Mr. Maw proudly served his country in the United States Army, retiring as a Chief Warrant Officer 3 after 21 years of service. During his military career, he served in Vietnam and spent two tours in Germany. He was a member of Five Point Church in Easley, American Legion Post 151 and the Military Officers Association of America.

Mr. Maw is survived by his wife of 52 years, Brenda B. Maw; daughter, Alisha Johnson of Clemson; son, Steven Maw (Miranda) of Anderson; brother, Rusty Maw (Libby) of Liberty; and sister, Elizabeth Beach of Easley. He is also survived by his three grandchildren, Jaxson, Seth and Katelyn.

Paul was predeceased by his parents and a brother, Ralph Maw.

Funeral service was held on Dec. 8 in the Duckett-Robinson Funeral Home chapel. Burial with military honors followed at the Lawrence Chapel United Methodist Church cemetery.

Visit or Duckett-Robinson Funeral Home and Cremation, Central-Clemson Commons.



LIBERTY — Terry Alan Randall, 53, husband of Jenny Randall, passed away on Wednesday, Dec. 15, 2021, at his home.

A native of Mecklenburg, N.C, Mr. Randall was born on July 8, 1968, to Edward Randall and Pauline Ballard. Terry loved his grandchildren, motorcycles and fishing.

In addition to his wife of nine years, Mr. Randall is survived by his children, A.J. Kennedy of Greenville, Brian Adams (Ginger) of Liberty, Austin Adams of Liberty and Marisa Adams of Liberty; grandchildren, Natalie, Taelor, Scarlett, Rayelynn and Alexandria; his mother, Pauline Ballard; and his brothers, Floyd Randall and Eddie Randall.

Mr. Randall was predeceased by his grandmother, Stella Linsenbigler.

A memorial service was held on Dec. 21 in the chapel of Mountain View Funeral Home.

Mountain View Funeral Home Pickens Chapel is serving the Randall Family.



CENTRAL — James Walker Hunter, 90, passed away on Dec. 19, 2021.

Born in Central, he was the son of the late John Curtis and Sara Satterfield Hunter. Mr. Hunter enjoyed splitting firewood to burn in his wood stove during the winter.

James is survived by his sister, Ruth Reynolds of Central. He is also survived by many nieces, nephews, extended family members and friends.

Mr. Hunter was predeceased by his parents; brothers, Charles Hunter and Curtis Hunter; and sisters, Lucille Hamilton and Mary Abels.

The family will receive friends on Wednesday, Dec. 22, from 2-2:45 p.m. at Duckett-Robinson Funeral Home.

Funeral service will follow at 3 p.m. in the funeral home chapel. Burial will be at Mt. Zion Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Hospice of the Foothills, 390 Keowee School Road, Seneca, SC 29672.

Visit or Duckett-Robinson Funeral Home and Cremations, Central-Clemson Commons.



LIBERTY — Mrs. Rachael Snipes Bryant, 73, wife of the late Michael Dale Bryant, passed away on Sunday, Dec. 19, 2021.

Born in Pickens County, a daughter of the late Floyd Black Snipes and the late Irene Gular Smith Snipes, Mrs. Bryant retired from Dayco Products and attended Mt. Sinai Baptist Church.

Surviving are a son, Buddy James “Bud” Bryant (Jamie) of Marion, N.C.; four grandchildren, Gabby Bryant of North Carolina and Ryne, Amber and Irene Bryant of Easley; two great-grandchildren, Shawn and Bo Bryant of Easley; and many family and friends. She will be missed by all who loved and knew her.

In addition to her husband and parents, Mrs. Bryant was predeceased by a son, Allan Joe “Joey” Bryant; five brothers, Harold Snipes, Bobby Snipes, Richard Snipes, J.R. Snipes and David Snipes; and two sisters, Christine Gray and Frances Pilgrim. She was the last surviving member of her immediate family.

The family hosted a memorial service on Dec. 21 at Mt. Sinai Baptist Church.

Visit or Robinson Funeral Home and Crematory-Downtown, Easley.



EASLEY — Samuel Ray “Sammy” Lesley, 66, husband of the late JoAnn Lesley, passed away on Sunday, Dec. 19, 2021, at St. Francis Hospital.

Born on Oct. 22, 1955, in Pickens County to the late J.D. and Mary Lesley, Sammy was a member of Blue Ridge View Baptist Church.

He is survived by his children, Melissa James (Phillip) of Greenwood, Joshua Lesley of Easley and Jesse Lesley of Pickens; grandchildren, Carter James, Campbell James and Lexie Pollard; a brother, David Lesley (Linda); and a sister, Patsy Taylor (Charles).

Sammy was predeceased by his wife, his parents and a brother, Larry Lesley.

Funeral services for Sammy will be held at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 22, in the chapel of Mountain View Funeral Home – Pickens Chapel. Visitation will be held an hour prior starting at 1 p.m. in the chapel. Burial will follow at the Blue Ridge View Baptist Church cemetery.

Flowers will be accepted, or donations can be made to The Cancer Treatment Center.

The family will be at the home of Charles and Pat Taylor (634 Anthony Road, Easley, SC 29640).

Mountain View Funeral Home is serving the Lesley family.



PICKENS — Basil Trotter, 74, passed away peacefully into the presence of the Lord, at his home on Dec. 19, 2021.

A native of Pickens County, he was born Sept. 24, 1947. He was a son of the late Allen and Lillie Garren Trotter.

In his younger years, he enjoyed playing football and softball. He played for several league teams throughout the ‘70s, including The Rejects, Bootleggers and Marietta Pallets, just to name a few. He enjoyed riding horses with friends to the Horse Pasture and Issaqueena Trail, up Pinnacle Mountain and trails off the Blue Ridge Parkway. As he got older, he began a love of golf and worked part time at the Pickens Country Club for several years. He was a brickmason and a builder and could do anything. He enjoyed working and staying busy. He was a Christian man and a member of Red Hill Baptist Church. He was a wonderful husband, dad and papa. His family was his greatest joy.

He is survived by his loving wife, Susan; their son, Justin (Brittany); and his daughters, Tina Stewart (Tony) and Darla Atkins (Chris). He also leaves behind grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews, and his four special little buddies, Gracie, Cooper, Violet and Moses.

In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by a sister, Connie Bryant, and a stepdaughter, Jessi Reeves.

He will be remembered for many things, but mostly his love of people, always ready to lend a hand and his great work ethic. He is and will always be sorely missed.

Mountain View Funeral Home is serving the Trotter family.



EASLEY — Ray H. Wilson, 79, husband of 30 years to Vallie Jean Wilson, passed away on Thursday, Dec. 16, 2021, at Prisma Health Baptist Easley Hospital.

Ray was born in Pickens County and was a son of the late Bobby Guy Wilson and Polly Wilson. Ray loved his family and his church.

Survivors include his wife; children, Bobby Ray Wilson, Harold (Kim) Wilson and Sonia Denis; a stepdaughter, Kim Pickens; grandchildren, Darby Childress, William Wilson, Gabriel Childress, Aaron Wilson and Meagan Stanton; a twin sister, Faye Crowe; a sister-in-law, Elizabeth Wilson; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Ray was predeceased by his parents; his in-laws, Mr. and Mrs. Loggins; brothers, Malcolm Wilson, Bobby Guy Wilson, Mell Wilson, Rudy Wilson and Randy Wilson; a sister, Patricia Whitmire; and a brother-in-law, Bobby Crowe.

The family will host a memorial service at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 2, 2022, at West End Baptist Church in Easley.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Ray’s memory to West End Baptist Mission Fund in Easley.

Mountain View Funeral Home Pickens Chapel is serving the Wilson family.



PICKENS — Richard P. Birchett, 65, passed away on Saturday, Dec. 18, 2021, at his home.

Richard was born on Oct. 23, 1956, in Vicksburg, Miss.

He is survived by his sister, Kim Vaughn Brockway and her husband, Ronnie of Seneca; and a nephew, Caleb Morgan of Pickens.

Richard was predeceased by his parents, Richard Birchett Sr. and Emile Vaughan Birchett, and a brother, Bruce Birchett.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Traditions Health Hospice.

Mountain View Funeral Home Pickens Chapel is serving the Birchett family.