Search Obituaries

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Dennis D. Purcell

Dennis Dequan Purcell, 17, of Raeford, died Tuesday, June 4, 2019.  Affectionately known as Quan, from an energy-filled little boy, he was unforgettable to anyone who encountered him. He was born on July 21, 2001, to Dennis Purcell and Sarah Morris Purcell. He attended Pinecrest High School and was in the graduating Class of 2019. He was also a beloved member of Rock Salvation Ministry in Raeford.

He had a smile that could light up the room; you could always find him making other people literally laugh out loud with his jokes, singing, and impressions. He loved spending time with family, especially his cousins and his older sister, Vernita. He and his big sister were inseparable. He was a friend and brother to many. A member of the Pinecrest football team, he was a true servant leader who encouraged and mentored younger players. He was an athlete, a maturing musician, and a rookie hunter. 

He was preceded in death by his maternal grandfather, George Morris Jr. He will be lovingly remembered by his parents, Dennis and Sarah Purcell, and his sister Vernita Purcell, all of the home. He is also survived by his maternal grandmother, Bernice Morris, and his paternal grandparents, Walter Ree Purcell and Glinnie Mae Purcell, all of Raeford; his aunts, Jenell (Greg), Clara (Carl), Ann (James), and Marilyn; and uncles, James (Jackie), Kenneth (Barbara), and Tony. 

Online condolence can be made at

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Dennis D. Purcell

Dennis DeQuan Purcell 17, of Raeford, was called home to be with the Lord on Tuesday, June 4,
2019.  Funeral arrangements are incomplete and will be announced at a later time.  Services are
entrusted to Purcell Funeral Home

Monday, June 3, 2019

Monica K. Smith

Monica Kathleen Smith was tragically taken from her family on May 25th, 2019, falling victim to a violent crime in Charlotte.

She will be forever remembered by her loving son, Tristan; her parents, Lisa and Luis Meletiche and Duane Smith Sr.; and her brothers, Duane Smith Jr. and Luis Meletiche III.  She will also be remembered by her extended family and friends. 

She is a graduate of Hoke County High School, where she received her cosmetology license from Sandhills Community College. She was a veteran of the United States Army.

A viewing and memorial gathering will be held from 6:30 pm – 8:30 p.m. on Monday, June 3rd, with full military honors at Unity Chapel at Cliffdale, 1037 71st School Road, Fayetteville. 

Online condolences may be sent to

John W. McNeill

John Watson McNeill, 66, died on June 2, in Raleigh. He was born to Sarah Margaret McPhaul McNeill and John Watson McNeill Jr., on August 3, 1952. He grew up in Raeford, where he learned to be an avid fisherman, hunter, and reader—enjoying these activities for the rest of his life with lifelong friends Paul Livingston and Eddie Williams.  He graduated from Hoke County High School in 1970 and from UNC Chapel Hill in 1975 with a B.S. degree in Industrial Relations. After working in Pomona, California for three years, he returned to Raleigh, in 1978 where he met his wife Pauline Zobel, originally from Mt. Kisco, New York.

He went on to complete his Civil Engineering Technology Degree from Wake Technical College and was licensed as a Professional Land Surveyor in 1984.  In 1998, he became a Professional Engineer. He retired from DOT as a Private Engineering Firm Coordinator in 2017 after 30 years of service; he then joined colleague and friend of 30 years, Parks Icenhour, at GEL Solutions of NC as a Senior Land Surveyor.         

He is survived by his wife, Pauline; their two children, Gus (his partner Vanessa) and Emily; three grandchildren, Kaylin McNeill, Luke Cherry, and Evan Cherry. He is also survived by his sister and brother-in-law, Gwen McNeill and Gary Ashburn of Asheville and three nieces and a nephew: Mary Gwen Thomas Welborn (Derek) of Raeford, Maggie Ashburn (Rich Mason), Catie Ashburn Hester (Paul), and Brent Ashburn (Samantha). He was preceded in death by his parents, and his sister and brother-in-law, Kay and Crawford Thomas.

On Wednesday, June 5 at 2 p.m. a service will be held at St. Giles Presbyterian Church in Raleigh, where he served as an Elder. The family will receive friends following the service. There will be a Minyan Service at Temple Beth Or, Raleigh at 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 5.  He will be interred on Thursday, June 6, at noon in the cemetery of Antioch Presbyterian Church, Red Springs, where his family has been members since its founding in 1833. Donations may be made to St. Giles Presbyterian, 5101 Oak Park Road, Raleigh, NC 27612;  Antioch Presbyterian Church, 6582 Red Springs Rd, Red Springs, NC 28377; or Temple Beth Or,  5315 Creedmoor Rd, Raleigh NC 27612.


Debra A. Hinnant

Debra A. Hinnant, age 59, of Milan, Tennessee, formerly of Red Springs, died suddenly on Friday, May 24, 2019 in Milan.
She was born in Germany to Robert and Emma Gross Mehan. She was retired from Stanley Black & Decker as a lead technician. 
She is survived by her husband of 34 years Michael Hinnant of Milan; one son, Jonathan Hinnant of Milan; three brothers, Michael Mehan, Randy Mehan, and Bobby Mehan; and one sister, Barbara Revard.
A visitation will be held on Tuesday, June 4, 2019 from 6-8 pm at Crumpler Funeral Home 131 Harris Ave. Raeford.
A graveside memorial service will be held 10:30 am on Wednesday, June 5, 2019 at Antioch Presbyterian Church Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, please donate to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital P.O. Box 1000 – Dept. 142, Memphis, Tn 38148.  
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