Obituaries — Feb. 7

Published 12:00 am Thursday, February 7, 2019

Fred Alexander Benton Jr.

Fred Alexander Benton Jr, 66, departed this life on Jan. 27, 2019. Born in Charlotte, on Sept. 22, 1952, to Fred Alexander Benton Sr. and Jewel Marie Chapman Benton, he lived most of his life in the Winston-Salem area. He was preceded in death by his father, Fred Sr. and his brother, Steve Benton. He leaves behind his wife of 35 years, Cheryl Tutwiler Benton; sister, Ann White (Jim), sister, Tamra Welborn (Greg); nephew, Jeff White (Jenny); nieces, Alyssa Wagner (Mike), Ashley Coleman (Aaron) and Erin Welborn and several great nieces and a great nephew. Fred was a talented guitarist and vocalist and loved playing in the many bands he was a part of over the years. And, he usually had a guitar with him so if invited to sit in with another band, he was prepared. Music was a part of his soul. He was an excellent carpenter and had a knack for figuring out how to fix things. He loved animals, traveling and gathering with his friends and family. A memorial service was held at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 2, 2019, at Loma Hopkins Theater (Summit School), 2100 Reynolda Road in Winston-Salem. After the service, friends and family gathered at Old Nick’s Pub in Lewisville. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Hospice of the Piedmont, the Humane Society, a local animal shelter or charity of choice.

William Howard Messer

Mr. William Howard Messer, 86, passed away Sunday, Jan. 27, 2019. He was born in New Jersey on Sept. 12, 1932, to the late Monroe Howard and Allie Henson Messer. Mr. Messer retired from Western Electric/AT&T with over 30 years of service. He was a member of Lewisville Baptist Church and loved to garden. Preceding him in death were three brothers and three sisters. Surviving is his wife of 61 years, Helen Lyerly Messer; two sons, Jason Messer (April) and Brian Messer (Diana); three grandchildren, Caitlin Roberts (Andrew), Luke Messer, and Aimee Messer (Angela); two great-grandchildren, Clara Roberts and Evelyn Roberts; two brothers, Robert Messer (Becky) and Joe Messer; two sisters, Doris Cearley (Robert) and Pauline McEwen (J.C.); also surviving are many nieces and nephews. A funeral service was held at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2019, at Lewisville Baptist Church where Dr. George D. Smith officiated. Burial followed at the church cemetery. The family received friends from 11:30 a.m.-12:45 p.m. prior to the service. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Lewisville Baptist Church, 125 Lewisville-Clemmons Road, Lewisville, N.C., 27023 or to a charity of the donor’s choice. Online condolences may be made at

Patsy Walker Messick

Mrs. Patsy Walker Messick, 86, passed away Sunday, Jan. 27, 2019, at Forsyth Medical Center. She was born in Forsyth County on Oct. 22, 1932, to the late Elbert Anthony and Mabel Lancaster Walker. Mrs. Messick was a faithful member of Center Grove Baptist Church. She served as a company nurse for many years for AT&T prior to her retirement. Preceding her in death was her first husband, Norman Ketner. Surviving is her husband, Bobby Messick; three sons, Neal Ketner (Pam St. Clair), Keith Ketner (Kathy), and Mark Ketner (Jan); four step-children, Bobby Messick Jr. (Lynn), Jeff Messick (Janine), Susan Luebchow (Tom), and Lisa Fields (Todd); three grandchildren, Kevin Ketner (Brynne), Kelsey King (Jerrod), and Jack Ketner, one great-grandson Creede King; 10 step-grandchildren and 13 step-great-grandchildren and loving cat Buddy. A funeral service was held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Jan. 31, 2019, at Hayworth-Miller Lewisville Chapel where Dr. Steve Corts officiated. Burial followed at Westlawn Gardens of Memory. The family received friends one hour prior to the service. Online condolences may be made at

Frances R. Ogburn

Mrs. Frances R. Ogburn, 84, of Clemmons, passed away Friday, Feb. 1, 2019, at Forsyth Medical Center. She was born Dec. 8, 1934, in Forsyth County to the late Robert A. Ronk and Jessie Marshall Ronk. She had retired from AT&T. Frances was a very kind woman and will be dearly missed by her family and neighbors. She was preceded in death by her husband, James Sprinkle Ogburn.  Surviving is a son, James Robert “Bobby” Ogburn of Clemmons; her four-legged children, Carley, Carl and Cleopatra and a host of very special cousins. A funeral service was held at 11 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 4, 2019, at Westlawn Gardens of Memory Mausoleum Chapel with Rev. Francis Smith officiating. The family received friends following the service. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to a charity of the donor’s choice. Online condolences may be made to

Dr. Brian Joseph Welsh

Dr. Brian Joseph Welsh Ph.D., 56, passed away on Jan. 22, 2019, in a tragic car accident in his current hometown of Clemmons. Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Aug. 24, 1962, to Bernard and Patricia (O’Brien) Welsh, he was raised in Williston Park, N.Y., along with his five siblings — older sisters Maureen and Kathleen, and younger brothers Thomas, Patrick, and Kevin. He graduated from Mineola High School in 1980 and eventually went on to get his undergraduate degree, as well as his master’s and Ph.D., from St. John’s University. He was able to help many students in his work at the Henry Viscardi school in Albertson and as a guidance counselor in the Garden City and Half Hollow Hills school districts on Long Island, N.Y. He was also an adjunct professor at St. John’s University. In 2014, he relocated to N.C., where he had been working in real estate. An avid sports fan, Brian enjoyed watching and discussing his beloved N.Y. Yankees and Dallas Cowboys, and was a frequent caller on the Mad Dog radio program. His creativity was channeled in a variety of ways — photography, writing, acting; and he used these many avenues to tell stories. One of his favorite “stories” to share was that he had never worked on his birthday and never had a sip of coffee. He enjoyed riding his bike, swimming, driving his Jeep, and watching his kids play sports. Brian had many roles in his lifetime, but the one he cherished most was being a dad. He is survived by his wife of almost 24 years, Helena Tenedorio Welsh, and their three amazing and beautiful children Brianna, 20, Andrew, 19, and Jacob, 17. Services was held in N.Y. at Dalton’s Funeral Home in Williston Park on Friday, Feb. 1, 2019. In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting donations be made to a college fund set up for his children through the Go Fund Me account link on Facebook.