Obituaries 6-26-14


Ione Howard

Ione Jeanette Stucker Howard, 83, of Jeffersonville, formerly of Madison, passed away at 7:30 a.m. Friday, June 20th, 2014, at Clark County Memorial Hospital in Jeffersonville.

She was born January 25th, 1931, in Saluda, Indiana, the loving daughter of the late Isom Lee and Olda Mae Jenkins Stucker. She was raised in Saluda and attended school there. Ione served as a private duty nurse for King’s Daughters’ Hospital for 10 years. She worked as a housekeeper for Historic Madison, Inc., for several years. She had also worked at the Fiesta Restaurant and Ann’s Truck Stop in Madison. She had worked as a veterinarian assistant for Dr. Jones. Ione worked at the Madison Salvation Army and served as the Kitchen Coordinator, Bell Ringer and Sunday School teacher. She also enjoyed delivering food and clothing to the unloved, unwanted souls. She had resided in Floyd and Clark counties for the past 25 years. Ione was a member of the Salvation Army, Jefferson Post 9, of the American Legion Auxiliary and the First Southern Baptist Church in Clarksville. She enjoyed flowers arranging, collecting, antiques and living life to the fullest. She was a loving mother, grandmother and friend.

Ione was united in marriage in 1946 to Herbert Young and this union was blessed with two sons and four daughters.

She is survived by her six daughters, Darlene Ashcraft and her husband, Ronnie of Madison, Laurel Sheets and her husband, Chris of New Albany, Sue Blair and her husband, Hank of Letcher, Kentucky, Loretta Wynn of Hanover, Sabrina Stewart of Clarksville and Barbara Howard of Jeffersonville; her two sons, Victor Young and his wife, Pauline of Madison and Shane O’Brien of Los Angeles, California; her two sisters, Virginia Stucker Heitz of Madison and Phyllis Carter of Madison; 20 grandchildren; 36 great-grandchildren; nine great-great-grandchildren; several nieces, nephews and other relatives

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her sons, Tony Earl Young, Sr., on August 29th, 2009, and Terry Howard, in April 1989; her brothers, Thomas “Jabo”, Ray, Bart and Floyd Stucker; and her sisters, Donna Hayes, Ivy Stephanus and Mary Hineman.

Funeral services were held Wednesday, June 25th, at the Morgan & Nay Funeral Centre in Madison, with Pastor Russ Lievers officiating. Interment was in Mt. Zion Cemetery in Saluda.

Memorial donations may be made to the Center For Lay Ministers, 213 E. Maple Street in Jeffersonville.

Online condolences may be sent to the family via the funeral home’s website at

George Wesbecker

George William Wesbecker, 83, of Madison, passed away at 11:05 a.m. Thursday, June 19th, 2014, at the King’s Daughters’ Hospital in Madison.

He was born February 7th, 1931, in Louisville, Kentucky, the loving son of John William and Mary Jane Alvey Wesbecker. He was raised in Louisville until the age of 10 when his family moved to Madison. He was a 1948 graduate of Madison High School. George graduated from Purdue University in 1952 with a degree in agriculture. George was inducted into the U.S. Army on April 11th, 1952, in Indianapolis. He rose to the rank of Corporal, serving in the 288th Signal Company during the Korean War. He was honorably discharged on August 11th, 1954, from Fort Hood, Texas, receiving the National Defense Service Medal. He then remained in the Reserves until he was discharged on August 11th, 1960.

On April 7th, 1953, he was united in marriage to Clarita Dattilo at St. Mary Catholic Church in downtown Madison. This happy union of 61 years was blessed with four daughters.

George went to work with his father, John William, at Wesbecker Implement in downtown Madison, a company his father started in 1941. George eventually took the company over and owned and operated it until he retired in August of 1984, with 43 years of servide to his farming community. George had been a member of the Knights of Columbus, Madison Moose Lodge No. 765, Madison Elks Lodge No. 524, and Jefferson Post 9, of the American Legion. He was a faithful member of the Prince of Peace Catholic Church and also attended the Sorrowful Mother of God Catholic Church in Vevay. George loved landscaping and working in his yard and around his home. He enjoyed using his landscaping skills by serving on the Madison Riverfront Development Committee and had served on the Madison Parks Department board. George loved socializing with his family and friends. He found great enjoyment in playing golf, reading, working with copper, landscaping, traveling and being with his wife. He wa a beloved husband, devoted dad and grandpa.

He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Clarita Dattilo Wesbecker of Madison; his four daughters, Genise Huey and husband Scott of Mt. Vernon, Indiana, Marie Abbott and her husband Terry of Madison, George Deveary and husband Wayne of Sellersbirg, Marlene Siderys and husband Bill of Indianapolis; his sister, Rose Marie Eldridge of Louisville, Kentucky; his grandchildren, Kevin, Derek, Tony, Abbigail and husband Jerry, Gretchen, Regina, Molly and Will Wesbecker; his great-grandchildren, Adelaide and Kathryn; several nieces, nephews and other relaitves.

He was preceded in death by his father, John William Wesbecker on June 23rd, 1976; his mother, Mary Jane Alvey Wesbecker on July 1st, 1999; and his grandson, Steven Anthony Huey on July 12th, 1988.

Funeral mass was held Monday, June 23rd, at Prince of Peace Catholic Church in downtown Madison, with Father Christopher A. Craig officiating. Interment was in St. Joseph Cemetery in downtown Madison with full military honors conducted at the graveside by Jefferson Post 9, of the American Legion.

The Rosary was prayed Sunday evening during visitation at the Morgan & Nay Funeral Centre in Madison. Memorial contributions may be made to Pro Life or St. Vincent DePaul Society. Online condolences may be sent to the familuy via the funeral home’s website at

Leon Knigga

Leon Knigga, 75, of Summitville, Indiana, passed away Wednesday, June 18th, 2014, at his residence following a brief illness.

 He was born on May 29th, 1939, in Switzerland County, to Arvel and Maxine (Fisher) Knigga. Leon has lived in the Summitville-Alexandria area for the past 51 years. He was a graduate of Vevay High School, Class of 1959. He served our country in the United States Navy and was honorably discharged in 1963. He was a dedicated member of Our Blessed Savior Lutheran Church of Alexandria, where he served in several positions including deacon and vice president of the church council. Leon was one of those church members who would step in do whatever was needed for the church, but he was very devoted to maintenance of the church building. He was a member of UAW Local 662. He enjoyed hunting and any outdoor activity, but was especially fond of tinkering and puttering in his garage.

 Survivors include his wife, Connie (Smith) Knigga whom he married July 25th, 1964; his son, Kenneth (Lori Beeson) Knigga of Nappanee; his daughter, Shanon (Mike) Harvey of Anderson; five grandchildren, Amber (John) Blosser of Butler, Indiana, Josh Fox of Indianapolis, Amanda Knigga and Kenneth Knigga II, both of Nappanee, and Jessica Harvey of Anderson; two great-grandchildren, Brant and Madison Blosser, both of Butler; his brother, the Rev. Dr. Larry (Debbie) Knigga, of Fostoria, Ohio; his nieces and nephews; his close friends, Bob Fletcher, Ada Cross, Larry Gilkison, Kal and Debra Rissman, and Bill and Janet Feldhiser and the members of his church family.

 He was preceded in death by his parents; and his brother, Ronnie Knigga.

 Services honoring Leon’s life were held Tuesday, June 24th, in Our Blessed Savior Lutheran Church in Alexandria, with Pastor Kal Rissman officiating. Interment followed in Vinson Memorial Cemetery in Summitville. Owens Funeral Home of Alexandria was in charge of arrangements.

 Memorial contributions are suggested to Our Blessed Savior Lutheran Church through the funeral home. Online condolences:

Sharon Brown

Sharon Lea King Brown, 69, of Madison, passed away at 2:30 p.m. Monday, June 23rd, 2014, from injuries sustained in a car accident at Michigan Road and Mouser Street in Madison.

She was born November 15th, 1944, in Colorado Springs, Colorado, the loving daughter of the late Wilbur LeRoy and Viola Catherine Rowlett King. She resided all of her life in Madison and was a 1963 graduate of Madison High School where she was a cheerleader and was crowned Homecoming Queen. She graduated from New Albany Beauty School in New Albany.

On May 5th, 1967, she was united in marriage to John Byron Brown, who passed away August 29th, 2004. This happy union was blessed with three daughters, Julie Ann, LeAnne Marie and Pamela Sue.

One of Sharon’s first jobs was at Ann’s Beauty Salon as a hairdresser until she opened Brown’s Beauty Salon in 1969 and operated it until 1989. She also had worked as program assistant at E.O. Muncie Elementary School with the ESL program until 1998. She began her career with Edward D. Jones as the office administrator from 1998-2012 and continued working part time after her retirement. Sharon also had worked as a proud Phi Mu house mother at Hanover College for six years. Sharon enjoyed organizing her Madison High School class reunions, most recently her 50th reunion. Sharon loved music, painting, going to auctions, watching tennis, caring for her grand dogs and being with her family. She was an avid “Tuesday” bridge player who, when partnered with her lifelong friend Janice, became known to many as “The Defenders.” Sharon was very supportive of her friends, her community and would volunteer her time whenever she was needed. She was a member of the First Baptist Church in downtown Madison and pursued her spiritual nature outside of the church in many different ways; with her sisters in a weekly Bible study, by attending various different Christian programs, and practicing her Christian values throughout her daily life.

She is survived by her three daughters, Julie Ann Brown and companion David Pond of Madison, LeAnne Marie Brown and companion Chad McAlister of Madison, Pamela Sue Brown and companion Seth Bickis of Madison; her granddaughters, Catherine Makenna Tullis and Kimberly Whitehead; her four sisters, Barbara Ann King Walters Dixon of Madison, Donna Marie King Jones of Madison, Ellen Sue King Bare and husband Ed of Hanover, Nancy Jane King Moore and husband Paul Delbert of Lexington, Indiana; her aunt, Becky Goebel of Madison; several nieces, nephews, cousins and other relatives.

Funeral services will be held Sunday, June 29th, at 1 p.m. at Morgan & Nay Funeral Centre in Madison, with John Mills officiating. Interment will be in Springdale Cemetery in downtown Madison.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Sharon King Brown In Memory Fund through the funeral home. Online condolences may be sent to the family via the funeral home’s website at

Wanda Furnish

Wanda Lee Sampson Kennett Furnish, 82, of Madison, passed away at 3:30 a.m. Sunday, June 22nd, 2014, at Kentuckiana Medical Center in Clarksville, Indiana. She was born February 26th, 1932, in Brookville, Indiana, the loving daughter of the late Ezra Ray and Della Baker Sampson. She was a 1950 graduate of Brookville High School and received her engineering degree from IUPUI.

Wanda was united in marriage on December 16th, 1950, to Willis Junior Kennett in Franklin County. This happy union of 46 years was blessed with four daughters and a son.

The family settled on a farm in Jefferson County on February 14th, 1964. Wanda was employed for 25 years with Grote Industries, retiring in 1991 as an industrial engineer. She then worked a short time with Reliance Electric and Madison Walmart. Wanda was a member of the Dillsboro Chapter Order of Eastern Star, Grote Lamp Lighters and Quarter Century Club. She was a faithful member of the Liberty Christian Church.

On August 8th, 1998, she was united in marriage to Earl Wayne Furnish at the Liberty Christian Church.

Wanda loved genealogy, history, playing cards, baking, cooking, crocheting, reading, country music and being with her family. She was a devoted wife, loving mom, adoring grandma and sister.

She is survived by her husband of 15 years, Earl Wayne Furnish of Madison, formerly of Switzerland County; her son, Kevin Kennett of Madison; her four daughters, Patti Cranfill and husband Steve of Holton, Della Gilles and husband Charles of Madison, Debbie Risk and husband Mike of Hanover, and Lillian Olie Gilles and husband Donald of Madison; her two stepsons, David Furnish and wife Sherri of Madison and Alan Furnish of Madison; her three sisters, Helen Hertel and Bonnie Estridge, both of Brookville, and Jean Selvor of Temecula, California; her two brothers, Glen Sampson and wife Martha and Larry Keith Sampson and wife Judy, both of Brookville; her grandchildren, Rachel Cranfill, Heather Flood, Larry Cranfill, Jason Cranfill, Mike Risk, Jr., Jennifer Cornelius, Carol Risk, Tom Kennett, Zachary Kennett, Chris Rowlison, Tabby Kennett, Erin Alsher, David Gilles, Ryan Gilles, Lisa Thompson, Laura Todd, and Kelly Simpson; her step-grandchildren, Bryce, Andy, Meagan and Alex; her great-grandchildren, Brittany, Alyssa, Emily, Brooklyn, Kaley, Kendra, Krista, Savannah, Leah, Dillon, Bryar, Bergen, Beckham, Brody and Katie; her great-great-grandchildren, Carson, Ladanian, Jegger and Tracent; numerous nieces, nephews and other relatives.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, June 27th, at Morgan & Nay Funeral Centre in Madison, with Brother Dale Canull officiating. Interment will be in Grandview Memorial Gardens near Madison.

Friends may call today (Thursday, June 26th) from 4-8 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m. until service time at the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be made to the Wanda Furnish Memorial Fund or the Autism Society of America.

Online condolences may be sent to the family via the funeral home’s website at

Betty Eckert

Betty Ann Grooms Eckert, 91, of Madison, passed away at 1:30 p.m. Sunday, June 22nd, at her home.

She was born February 3rd, 1923, in Akron, Ohio, the loving daughter of Charles Grooms and Anna Laura Eaglin Grooms

In 1945, she married John B. Eckert who predeceased her in 1996.

She is survived by her four children Ellen and her companion Tony, John and his wife Cheryl, Tom and his wife Mary, and Susan; grandchildren Whitney of Dallas, Texas, John David of Chicago, Illinois, John Zink of Washington, D. C. and Riley Zink of Chicago, Illinois. Betty is also survived by her brother Charles “Poogie” Grooms of Madison. Betty was beloved by her canine grandchildren “Shadow,” “Pucci,” “Allie,” “Gabby” and “Ellie.”

Born in 1923, she attended Madison School systems beginning with Eggleston in 1928 and was a graduate of Madison High School in 1941. She graduated third in her class and was a Custer Contest Contestant. She attended Hanover College in 1941 and was a member of Alpha Delta Pi Sorority. She left college after one year to support the World War II war effort and worked at the Charlestown Powder Plant in the chemistry lab. She then was accepted to Case Western Reserve School of Nursing in Cleveland, Ohio. She was a member of the Nurse Cadet Corp with the Army and graduated with honors from Case Western.

In 1958, she began working at King’s Daughters’ Hospital as a full time Registered Nurse. In 1988, she was King’s Daughters’ Hospital Employee of the Year. She retired in 1996, but still continued to volunteer in the surgery waiting room. In 2008, she was awarded “Woman of the Year” by the Speaking of Woman’s Health Group.

Betty was a woman of great energy, drive and optimism and was very active in the community and with family and friends which continued up until the time of her death. She was a member of the Madison Presbyterian Church her entire life. She made several mission trips to Appalachia, as well as a mission trip to Panama with Prison Fellowship where she assisted in the provision of dental services to Panamanian prisoners. At the age of 75, she became a Big Sister to a young Madison girl. Besides her many activities, upon retirement she delighted in white water rafting on the Gauley River in West Virginia and traveling throughout the world. Her travels included Europe, Eastern Europe, Thailand, Hong Kong, China, the Greek Islands, Israel, Jordan, and Egypt. In 2003, at age 80 she traveled to South America where she traversed the Amazon River and while visiting Peru climbed Mt. Machupichu. Betty was a woman of great humility and kindness who always sought to see the best in others. She donated her body to the Indiana University School of Medicine.

Private services were held at Betty’s request, with Reverend Bill Johnson officiating. Interment will be in Springdale Cemetery, 600 West Fifth Street in Madison, Indiana at a later date

The family requests memorials in memory of Betty to the Hope and Healing Campaign of the King’s Daughters’ Hospital Foundation, or the Madison Presbyterian Church, contribution cards are available at the funeral home.

Morgan & Nay Funeral Centre of Madison is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be sent to the family via the funeral home’s website at