Lee Ernist Blackwell, 74, of Leachville, died Sunday, Oct. 7, 2001, at St. Bernards Medical Center in Jonesboro. Born at Jerome, he was the son of the late John and Athie Blackwell and had been a Leachville resident for nearly 60 years. He was a retired gin manager for the former B.C. Land Company and was a U.S. Army veteran of World War II. He was a member of the Leachville Masonic Lodge and had served many years as the fire chief for the Leachville Volunteer Fire Department.
Survivors include his wife of 53 years, Nell Dean Taylor Blackwell of the home; two daughters, Barbara Halsey of Jonesboro and Doris Willyerd of Leachville; four grandchildren, Jerry Lynn Halsey of Jonesboro, Leah Wright of Hot Springs, Erin Willyerd and Emily Willyerd of Leachville; three great-grandchildren, Brandon Cole of Wappapello, Mo., Taylor Halsey of Jonesboro and Olivia Grace Wright of Hot Springs.
The funeral was at 2 p.m. Tuesday at the Howard Funeral Service Chapel in Leachville with Rev. Tom Bray officiating. Burial was in the Leachville Cemetery.
Active pallbearers were Ervin Sexton, Jesse Johnson, Wilburn Lovelady, Marlon Miller, Kenneth Blocker and Wayne Heidelberg.
Honorary pallbearers were Dr. T.N. Rodman, Wendy Cole, Pete Dortch and Monte Grimes.