Russell came into this world Jan. 30, 1951, amidst one of the worst ice and snow storms in Hardin County. His parents who preceded him in death were Ellis Kerr and Clara Mae McFalls Neill.
Russell was raised in the Olivet Community, where he later made his life long home. Russell graduated from Central High School in 1969, then went to work as a carpenter. In 1974 he begin work with H&M Construction Company of Jackson, Tennessee and within a year was made a project superintendent. He continued work with H&M for 42 years, only leaving because of his health. Russell loved his work and took great pride in assuring it was done to perfection. The bigger the project, the better he liked it! He and Linda traveled over the East Coast working and living at several places till a job was complete. But always returned back to their beloved home in Olivet.
Russell wed his high school sweetheart Linda on May 31, 1969. He was a loving caring husband and enjoyed spoiling Linda. He loved his son and enjoyed hunting with him. He was a softie when it came to his precious granddaughter Sarah. He adored her and gave in to her every whim.
Russell had coached his son’s ball teams and introduced him to golf, that they both enjoyed. He always enjoyed working around the house, either on his tractor, his backhoe or in his shop. He was a master craftsman with wood and built several pieces of furniture for their home. But his most cherished piece was Sarah’s baby bed! Friends equalled family to him. He always enjoyed playing cards, sitting around a campfire, great fellowship and cookouts on the river with friends, and Sunday meals at Joe and Bridgett’s. He loved his church, church family and all the church activities. His Jeep was his favorite toy. He loved the long rides with Linda and Harley just seeing the countryside and watching for deer. And if you saw him you knew his dog Harley would be right beside him. Russell was a big man with a big heart!
Russell was a member of Savannah Church of Christ, Pickwick Shrine Club, Al Chyima Shrine of Memphis, Masonic Lodge 102, and Scottish Rite of Corinth, Mississippi.
Russell is survived by his wife, Linda Lou Alexander Neill, his son Rusty Neill and wife Freda, grandson Kirby Smith and wife Megan, granddaughter Sarah Neill, brother Eugene Neill, all of Savannah; and his constant companion, his dog Harley.
Other than his parents, he was preceded in death by two brothers, Doug Neill and wife Mary Ellen, Morgan Neill and wife Linda Joyce; sister-in-law Jessie Neill; and nephew Tommy Neill.
Donations may be made to: Hardin County Cancer Society, 40 Florence Road, Savannah, Tenn. 38372; Darryl Worley Foundation for Cancer Treatment Center, 935 Wayne Road, Savannah, Tenn. 38372; or Savannah Church of Christ, 1175 Pickwick Street South, Savannah, Tenn. 38372.
Services were held on Saturday, May 13, at 1 p.m., at Savannah Church of Christ in Savannah with Barry Binion officiating. Burial followed in Neill Cemetery at Savannah.
Tommy Wayne Handley was born in Hardin County on Dec. 3, 1945, the son of the late Arthur Jackson Handley and Emma Susan Hartley Handley.
He departed this life on Thursday, May 10, at the age of 71 years, 5 months and 7 days.
Tommy served his country honorably in the United States Army. He was a machine operator for Wise Company for 17 years. He loved hunting, fishing, raising chickens, especially show roosters, and watching football on TV. He was a member of Eureka United Methodist Church.
He is survived by a brother, Rex Handley of Savannah; a sister, Patsy Gibbs of Savannah; and 18 nieces and nephews.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brothers, Marvin Handley, A.J. Hartley, Dan Handley, William Handley, Frank Handley, Bobby Joe Handley and Ted Handley; and sisters, Thelma Boswell and Helen Greene.
Services will be held on Saturday, May 20, at 3 p.m., at Shackelford Funeral Directors of Savannah with Dennis Usner, Melinda Lee and Richard Beecham officiating. Burial followed in Savannah Cemetery.
Tim Carothers, of Savannah, was born in Madison County, Tennessee on Oct. 6, 1950, the son of the late John Linden and Wilma Faye Hughes Carothers.
After graduating Central High in 1968 he attended Ringling School of Art in Sarasota, Florida. Tim served his country in the United States Navy from 1972 to 1976. On May 30, 1978. he was united in marriage to Pamela Susan Handley, who survives.
Tim owned and operated The Gold and Silver Pawn Shop in downtown Savannah. While working there, he obtained his Doctorate of Theology. In 1992 he went to work for the State of Tennessee as a counselor. While employed for the State of Tennessee he became the pastor of First Christian Liberty Church in Henderson, Tennessee and a hospice counselor for Country Home Health. He retired in 2012 due to health concerns.
Tim never met a stranger, he always thought the best of people. He had a huge heart and was a very giving, generous and quick to forgive.
In his spare time he loved playing guitar, artwork, traveling, performing magic tricks for children, gun collecting and trading. Tim will always be remembered by his family for being a good husband, father and Paw-Paw.
In addition to his wife Pamela of 38 years, he is survived by his children, Tara Christina Carothers of Michie, Christopher Paul Carothers and his wife Susan of Savannah, Kelly Lynn Carothers Meeks and her husband Miles of Counce and Sarah Katherine Carothers Barber and her husband Shane of Stantonville; six grandchildren, Jillian Leigh Carothers of Cabot, Arkansas, Matthew Meeks of Counce, Katie Barber of Stantonville, Jacob Meeks of Counce, Olivia Barber and Allie Barber, both of Stantonville; one sister, Mary Lyn Jones-Brynamman of Wales, United Kingdom.
In addition to his parents, Tim was preceded in death by one grandchild, Christopher Soren Carothers; his grandparents, Oce and Lelah Carothers and Clarence and Willie Barnes Hughes.
Services were held on Saturday, May 13, at 11 a.m., at Shackelford Funeral Directors of Savannah with Robert House and A.J. Fowler officiating. Burial followed in Memory Gardens at Savannah.
Eula Mae Thacker was born July 4, 1923 in Michie, the daughter of the late Laney Thomas and Mary Ellen Moore Fowler.
She was united in marriage to Grady Thacker on April 14, 1942. Mr. Thacker preceded her in death on May 18, 2008, following 66 years of marriage.
Mrs. Thacker was a loving homemaker for her family. She enjoyed gardening and working in her yard, but her greatest earthly joy was spending time with her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Mrs. Thacker was a faithful member of Acton Church of Christ.
Mrs. Thacker departed this life on Tuesday, April 25, in Michie, at the age of 93 years, 9 months, 21 days.
She is survived by a daughter, Donna Mincy and husband Ed of Michie; a son, Danny Thacker and wife Deborah of Michie; three grandchildren, Missy Clapp and husband Adam of Michie, Marcie Barnes and husband Brian of Corinth, Mississippi, Sharon Barnes and husband Scott of Michie; eight great-grandchildren, Haley Barnes, Kelby Barnes, Austin Barnes, Brandon Clapp, Conner Clapp, Tedde Barnes, Jesse Barnes and Lauren Goza; a sister, Martha (Nega) Lipford of Michie; two half-sisters, Faye Massengill and husband John of Kossuth, Mississippi, Shirley Walker of Meridian, Mississippi; three sisters-in-law: Louise Fowler, Janice Fowler, Jane Fowler; and many extended family and friends.
In addition to her husband and parents, Mrs. Thacker was preceded in death by a grandchild, Michael Mincy; two sisters, Alma Gray, Madie Thacker; two brothers, L.G. Fowler and Otis Fowler; three half-brothers, Thomas Fowler, Oliver Fowler, Truman Fowler; and three stepbrothers, Alton Lambert, Kenneth Lambert and Jimmy Lambert.
Services were held on Friday April 28, at 2 p.m., at Shackelford Funeral Directors in Selmer with Shawn Weaver officiating. Burial followed at Liberty Cemetery in Michie.
Robert Edward Shelby was born Oct. 13, 1949, in Hardin County, the son of the late Oliver Webster and Ruth Ella Falls Shelby.
Mr. Shelby was a carpenter by trade. He had also worked in the logging industry as a tree cutter, had worked in masonry, and had worked for Robinson Soybean.
He was an avid sportsman who loved to hunt and fish, and spend his free-time outdoors. He was a good friend to many who always had a smile on his face, and enjoyed making people laugh.
Mr. Shelby departed this life on Friday, May 5, in Savannah, at the age of 67 years, 6 months, 22 days.
He is survived by a daughter, Dale Reynolds and husband Daryl of Savannah; three sisters, Patricia Shelby of Savannah, Laura Shelby of Savannah and Sharon Stricklin of Lutts; a brother, James Shelby of Savannah; and two grandchildren, Emma Reynolds and Ellie Reynolds; and a special friend, Debbie Stidham of Corinth, Mississippi.
In addition to his parents, Mr. Shelby was preceded in death by an infant sister, Quinn Shelby.
Services were held on Monday, May 8, at 1 p.m., at Shackelford Funeral Directors of Savannah with Artie Rivers officiating. Burial followed in Graham Cemetery at Savannah.