Obituaries of the Swannanoa Valley

Claren Jay Lyons, Jr.

Black Mountain

Lt. Col. Clarence Jay Lyons, Jr (USAF-ret), 88 died Sunday, June 26, at the North Carolina Veterans Home in Black Mountain, NC. Jay was the son of Clarence Jay and Marcella Agnes Blalack Lyons, Sr, and was born Jan. 22, 1928, in Wichita Falls, Texas.

Moving to Childress in 1939, Jay became an Eagle Scout and graduated from Childress High school in 1945 and joined the Navy CBs at the close of WWII where he spent almost two years stationed on Adak in the Aleutian Islands.

Returning to Texas, Jay entered John Tarleton College in 1948, transferring to the Agricultural & Mechanical College of Texas with a degree in Wildlife Management and graduating in 1951.

That year he was commissioned a 2nd Lt., beginning a 20 year career in the United States Air Force, retiring in 1971 a Lt Colonel. Jay then worked for the Texas Aeronautics commission, Texas Department of Aviation, Department of Transportation until his retirement in 1993.

Jay married Mildred Modena Morris on October 3, 1953, in Childress , Texas. They have four children, Mark Reed (and Arlene) of Kuwait, Kirk David (and Brenna) of Black Mountain, NC, Matthew Jay of Los Angeles, CA & Karol Kimmayne of Black Mountain, NC 11 grandchildren & 2 great grandchildren.

After Modena died in 1997, Jay spent his retirement years as an active volunteer docent at the Texas Military Forces Museum at Camp Mabry, a vestryman at Episcopal Church of the Resurrection, and a member of the George Washington Littlefield Camp #59, Sons of Confederate Veterans and the Austin Civil war Round Table.

Jay moved to Black Mountain with his daughter, Karol, in 2011.

A memorial service and celebration of his life was held Wednesday, June 29, at Lakey Gap Presbyterian Church.

A memorial service will also be conducted in Austin, his home for 40 years, place and time to be announced. Kirksey Funeral Home of Marion, NC is handling arrangements.

Michael Timothy Bridges


Michael Timothy “Tim” Bridges, 48, of Swannanoa, passed away Sunday, June 26, 2016 at his home.

A native of Swannanoa, Mr. Bridges was born September 16, 1967 to Judith Pitts Bridges, and the late William Hugh Bridges. In addition to his father, he is preceded in death by his grandparents, Clifford and Annie Limerick Bridges, and Rosalie Shope Connor.

Mr. Bridges was a graduate of Charles D. Owen High School, and worked for Lowe's Home Improvement. He was a major Red Cross Donor, having donated both blood and platelets. He was an avid NY Yankees and Miami Dolphins fan. Tim loved going to the gym to work out. He also loved baking and giving away fudge he made for his friends. He attended Biltmore Baptist Church. Tim was always willing to help his fellow neighbors.

Survivors include his wife, Diane Marie Bridges; children, Courtney Biddix of Swannanoa, Adrian Bradley (Bethany) of El Paso, TX, and Chelsea Bridges of Asheville; step-children, Justin, Alec, and Isabella; brother, Hugh Bridges (Barbara) of Fairview; nephew, Brandon Bridges, and two grandchildren with another on the way.

A memorial service was held 2 p.m., Saturday, July 2, at First Baptist Church of Swannanoa with Rev. James Lamb officiating. Honorary pallbearers are: Brian Mumpower, Troy Holder, "Bo" Hensley, Jeff Franklin, Eric Silvers, Jeff Foster, and Tim Burleson.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorials be made to the Charles D. Owen High School Athletic Department at 99 Lake Eden Road, Black Mountain, NC 28711.