Courier Obituaries 8-16-23


SENECA — Sandra “Sandy” Nimmons Stricker, 71, loving wife of 18 years to William Stricker, passed away on Wednesday, August 9, 2023, at Prisma Health Baptist Easley Hospital.

Born April 24, 1952, in Pickens County, Sandy was the daughter of the late Clarence Nimmons and Ruby Bryant Nimmons. Sandy was a devout Christian and brought joy to everyone she knew. For many years, she ran the Six Mile Cafe with her brother, Rick Nimmons, serving breakfast and lunch to people from all over Pickens County. Following the closure of the restaurant, Sandy worked at Wal-Mart in Central, where she continued to make many friends with her kind, caring demeanor. She loved pansies, enjoyed crossword and sudoku puzzles and loved being around people. Above all else, Sandy loved her family and selflessly took care of them, and she especially loved her nieces and nephews.

Survivors include her husband, Wiliam Stricker of the home; her brother, Rocky Nimmons (Marty); nieces and nephew, Kelly Holmes, Katie Merritt (T.J.) and Bru Nimmons; and great-niece and great-nephews, Audrey Merritt, Spencer Merritt and Artemis “Xander” Holmes.

In addition to her parents, Mrs. Stricker was predeceased by a brother, Rick Nimmons, and a nephew, David Holmes.

Visitation will be held from 2-3 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 17, 2023, in the chapel of Mountain View Funeral Home, with a memorial service to follow at 3 p.m.

Flowers will be accepted.

Mountain View Funeral Home – Pickens Chapel is serving the Stricker family.



LIBERTY — Earnest Grady Merck, 94, loving husband of 20 years to Marion Brooks Merck, went home to be with his Lord and Savior on Tuesday, Aug. 8, 2023, at his home, surrounded by his family.

A native of Pickens County,  Grady was born Sept. 10, 1928, the son of the late Frank Merck and Nettie Swords Merck. Mr. Merck was an avid Christian who previously served as a deacon at Smith Grove Baptist Church. He was a faithful member of Jones Avenue Baptist Church. He was owner and operator of GM Grading Company, retired in his 80s and re-entered the work world, continuing his passion operating earth-moving equipment several more years. In his early years, he participated in the rodeo as a calf roper and judge. A cowboy at heart, he always had his hat, boots and western belt buckle that he wore proudly. He was a member of a bluegrass gospel quartet, sang lead and played guitar.

Survivors include his wife, Marion Brooks of the home; his children, Jean Watson and Sue Wade and bonus daughter Lana Roper, all of Liberty; grandson, Jason, and bonus grandchildren, Andrea, Nate and CeCe; nine loving and caring great-grands; six great-great-grands; and a brother, Fulton Merck.

In addition to his parents, Mr. Merck was predeceased by his first wife, Martha Nalley Merck; son-in-law, Randy Broome; grandson, Shane Watson; six brothers and three sisters.

Visitation was held on Aug. 11 in the sanctuary of Jones Avenue Baptist Church, with the funeral service following. Burial followed after the service at the Smith Grove Baptist Church cemetery.

The family is at the home.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in Grady’s honor may be made to the American Cancer Society by visiting, by mailing P.O. Box 6704, Hagerstown, MD 21741, or by calling 1-800-227-2345.

Mountain View Funeral Home – Pickens Chapel is serving the Merck family.



LIBERTY — Mrs. Bobbi Jean Turner Gilstrap, 87, passed away Sunday, Aug. 6, 2023, at Prisma Health Greenville Memorial Hospital.

Mrs. Gilstrap was born in Pickens County on Jan. 15, 1936, to the late Floyd and Stella Lowe Turner. She was thrice married, first to the late Furman G. Edwards, second to the late Leroy Alexander and third to the late Fred Gilstrap. Mrs. Gilstrap had an amazing sense of humor, and in her free time loved to write poetry, garden and sing. She loved her family and loved to spend Christmas and Thanksgiving with them. She also loved to cook for her family and always enjoyed the time spent sharing memories and meals with them. Mrs. Gilstrap was a member at Missionary Baptist Church for more than 20 years and truly loved her church family.

Mrs. Gilstrap is survived by her three children, Helen Brooks, Sandy Cook (John) and Furman Michael Edwards (Tammy); her two sisters, Sue Woods (Jason) and Mary Bigness; four grandchildren, Travis, Amy, Eric and T.J.; and numerous great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren.

In addition to her three loving husbands and her parents, Mrs. Gilstrap was preceded in death by a daughter, Nancy Haynes, and two sons-in-law, Troy Brooks and Mac Haynes.

Funeral services were conducted Aug. 10 at Landmark Baptist Church in Easley, with interment following at Hillcrest Memorial Park in Pickens.

The family members are at their respective homes.

Flowers are accepted, or the family requests that memorial donations be made to Missionary Baptist Church at

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



LIBERTY — Faye Gravley Sanders, 90, formerly of Liberty, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, July 26, 2023, at Rainey Hospice House.

Born in Liberty, she was the widow of Cecil Wayne Sanders and a daughter of the late Walter Carey Gravley and Lillie Gilstrap Gravley Bryant.

Faye was a longtime member of Liberty United Methodist Church.

In the early years of her marriage, she loved farming and canning all the vegetables they grew.

She enjoyed traveling to Myrtle Beach with her late husband following his retirement, but most of all she loved and enjoyed spending time with her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Surviving are a daughter, Donna Rogers (Ken) of Liberty; a son, Rick Sanders (Cindy) of Liberty; one sister, Louise Harrison of Clemson; two brothers, Mac Gravley of Liberty and Walter Carroll Gravley (Louise) of Anderson; nine grandchildren, Genny Sanders (Dallas), Lori Simpson (Randy), Brandon Vinson (Stephanie), Scott Sanders (Jenn), Derek Vinson (Shay), Stephen Sanders, Elizabeth LaFleur (Russ), David Rogers and Patrick Rogers (Haley); along with 19 great-grandchildren and two great-great-grandchildren.

In addition to her husband and parents, she was preceded in death by two sisters, Avanelle Gaunce and Martha Pace.

Memorial services to honor Faye’s life were held Aug. 5 at Liberty United Methodist Church. A reception followed in the church social hall.

In lieu of flowers, the family respectfully requests memorials be made to Hospice of the Upstate, 1835 Rogers Road, Anderson SC 29621, Liberty United Methodist Church, 310 Mae Street, Liberty SC 2967, or the charity of one’s choice.

To share a memory or leave a message for the family, please visit Liberty Mortuary and Cremation Services is handling arrangements.


EASLEY — Mrs. Janice Hope Bridges Crews, loving wife of Donald Ray Crews, went to be with her Lord and Savior on Wednesday, Aug. 9, 2023.

Jan was born in Anderson County, but was raised in Easley, which was the place she called home. Jan was a 1959 graduate of Easley High School. After marrying Don in 1963, Jan traveled with her husband across the United States, living in several states and overseas in Germany while he served in the Air Force. Together, Jan and Don began their family, becoming parents of two special daughters, Michelle and Melinda. Jan was a lifelong homemaker and an active member of Georges Creek Baptist Church, where she served in the Children’s Ministry and Benevolence Committee.

Jan lived her life serving others and loved others above herself. She was an attentive and devoted wife, mother, sister, aunt and friend. She would light up when her grandchildren, great-grandchildren or any child was present, as her greatest joy was being a mom and nana. Jan was always happiest surrounded by her family, hosting holidays in her home.

Surviving, in addition to her husband of 60 years, are her two daughters, Michelle Crews Amrien (James) of Simpsonville and Melinda Crews Kirkley (Charles) of Poplar Bluff, Mo.; her five grandchildren, Morgan Warner (Jacob), Kendall Lark, Andrew Arthur, Jessie Dickson and Emily Amrien; her 12 great-grandchildren; and two sisters, Shirley Williams and Joy Wilson, both of Easley.

She was predeceased by her parents, Milford Bridges and Velma Burns Bridges, along with three brothers, Bobby Bridges, Don Bridges and Thomas Bridges.

Our family would especially like to thank Terri Gray and Maria Garces, who assisted with Jan’s care for the past two and a half years. They loved and cared for not only Jan, but all of us as well.

Memorial services were held Aug. 12 at Georges Creek Baptist Church.

Flowers will be accepted, and memorials may be made to the National Alzheimer’s Association by visiting

Visit or Robin Funeral Home and Crematory-Downtown Easley.