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Updated: 12/14/2017 08:30:01AM
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Anelia Sullivan

Anelia Sullivan



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James Edwards

James Edwards, 84, of Okeechobee passed away Dec. 10, 2017. He was born Nov. 25, 1933, in Arab, Ala., to Lofton and Leona (Green) Edwards. He is survived by his wife, Ruthie Lee of 56 years, his daughter, Linda Gayle Edwards-Butts and son Keith Alan Edwards. He is also survived by grandchildren; James Elmer Butts, Arcadia, Fla., and Melinda (Mendy) Corrine Butts, and great-grandchildren; Alexis Chloe Backer, Okeechobee, Fla., and Haley Butts, Arcadia, Fla., and a first cousin “Big” James Edwards, Arcadia, Fla. He is also survived by many nieces and nephews and also great nieces and great nephews in Arcadia, Fla., and Arab, Ala.

Mr. Edwards enjoyed fishing, coon hunting, singing, gardening, farming and eating southern food with family and friends. Mr. Edwards was a proud member of the Coon Hunter’s Association.

No services will be held at this time. All arrangements are entrusted to Seawinds Funeral Home and Crematory, 3833 SE 18th Terrace, Okeechobee, Fla. 34974, 863-357-7283. Online condolences may be left at

William C. McAnly

William C. “Bill” McAnly, age 81, passed away on Nov. 21, 2017, in Sebring, Fla. He was born Oct. 7, 1936, in Arcadia, Fla.

Mr. McAnly graduated with honors from the University of Florida in 1959 with a degree in civil engineering and was a member of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity. He owned and operated McAnly Surveying and in 1965 became Arcadia’s city manager and engineer. In 1970 he accepted an engineering position with Lely Development until 1985, when he opened McAnly Engineering and Design and worked until his semi-retirement in 2012.

Bill was of the Presbyterian faith and enjoyed golfing, fishing, horses and his work, and especially loved family and his grandchildren. He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Bettie McAnly (Peck) of Sebring, Fla.; children Elizabeth M. Bohan (Timothy) and William McAnly, both of Sebring; sister Kerry M. Wegner (Peter) of Naples, Fla.; sister-in-law Stephanie McAnly of Arcadia, Fla.; grandchildren Amy, Laura, Thomas and Sara Bohan; nephews Christopher Wegner (Lindsey) of Naples, Fla.; Ross McAnly and Jamie McAnly; cousins Donald T. Davis, Arnold Pemberton, Robert Wey, Kay Dees, Roy Ola, Debbie Ola, and Mike Cochran and Sandy Cochran.

Mr. McAnly was preceded in death by his parents, William and Margaret (Hickman) McAnly, brother James H. McAnly and mother-in-law Helen S. Peck. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Dec. 16, 2017, at the First Presbyterian Church in Arcadia, 209 W. Hickory St., with Pastor Bill Teng officiating and a reception to follow. Memorial contributions may be made to the church.

Services entrusted to: Stephenson-Nelson Funeral Home, 4001 Sebring Parkway, Sebring, Fla. 33870. Online condolences may be left at

Anelia Sullivan

Anelia Sullivan was born in Arcadia, Fla., Oct. 29, 1936. The second of three children, her sister, Melda Cline Allen, is the youngest, her older brother, Frank Earl, and her parents Frank Winfield Cline and Alma Landon Cline, preceded her in death. In her younger years she enjoyed hanging out with her friends at the Mint, or Fish Eating Creek, or racing horses with friends around Lake Catherine.

Anelia came from a very long line of patriots and servicemen. At least three ancestors fought in the American Revolution. Anelia’s family has been in Florida since 1842. Her GGG Granddaddy commanded Fort Meade and died defending the Tillis Homestead there.

When he got out of the Army, Anelia married her sweetheart, Lloyd Gilbert Sullivan, in February 1955. She raised two boys; Gilbert Winfield Sullivan of Port Charlotte, Fla., and Lloyd L. (Van) Sullivan of Arcadia, Fla.

Anelia loved and was a second mother to Gilbert’s wife, Jeri, and Van’s fiancee, Leona.

She and her husband, Gilbert worked for her dad, Frank Cline, who had just received a patent for his Hydraulic Track Adjuster, where she eventually became president of Cline Manufacturing.

Anelia was past president of the Ladies of the Elks. She was also a past-president of the American Legion Auxiliary K Post-11, where she served for 35 years; as such, she formed and coached a women’s softball team. She headed up the Veterans Day poppy drive and started a poster contest for all school grades in DeSoto County. At every holiday gathering or dinner she could be found packing up meals for shut-ins and those who couldn’t be there.

Anelia loved her family and doted on her grandkids: Kelli Sullivan Crafton and Jonathan Sullivan, and her great-grandsons, RJ and Hunter Crafton. She also loved her grandpup, Rocky. Anelia was widowed on Jan. 29, 2012, and lived in their home until her death on Dec. 7, 2017.

A celebration of life will be held at 1 p.m. Dec. 16 at N. Hillsborough Baptist Church, 253 N. Hillsborough Ave., Arcadia. The Rev. Ellis Cross will officiate. Online condolences can be made at Ponger-Kays-Grady Funeral Homes have been entrusted with the arrangements.

Phala J. Bernhardt

Phala Jones Bernhardt, 85, entered eternal rest on Nov. 25, 2017 surrounded by her family after her courageous battle with cancer.

Phala was born in Arcadia, Florida, on July 16, 1932 to Louise Pearce Jones and Dana J. Jones. Phala was a beautiful and gracious Christian wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and friend. While her passing was not the outcome we were all praying for, it was God’s perfect plan fulfilled in a life well-lived and most importantly for His Glory.

Phala dedicated her life to the deaf communities and worked tirelessly as an interpreter and advocate for the deaf for many years in Florida, Taiwan and Kentucky before her retirement. She felt called to deaf ministry, establishing and serving as Minister for the Deaf at Palma Ceia Baptist Church in Tampa, Florida, Walnut Street Baptist Church, Louisville, Kentucky, and First Baptist Church of Orlando, Florida. While living in Taiwan, she assisted the deaf community in publishing a Chinese sign language book to be utilized in the training of Interpreters for the Deaf in Taiwan. She also was an interpreter for hearing impaired students at Boggy Creek Elementary School in Kissimmee and at the University of Central Florida, Orlando, before she retired.

Phala was a lifetime member of the Florida Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (FRID) and National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID). Over the many years of her commitment to the deaf, she served on several committees and as a board member with the Florida Baptist Convention for the Deaf and the Southern Baptist Convention for the Deaf. She always felt honored to be one of the first interpreter for the deaf to be utilized by the Billy Graham Crusades during the early years of his ministry.

Phala was a lifetime sustainer in the Junior League of Tampa and Orlando. She was inducted into the Distinguished Young Women of America.

She is survived by her children Frona L. Elkes of Tampa, Florida, Jeanee E. Byrd of Tallahassee, Florida, Revere Bernhardt (Tricia) of Larkspur, Colorado, Danatta Levine (David) of Louisville, Kentucky, Quin Bernhardt (Julie) of Louisville, Kentucky; grandchildren Whitley Byrd of Tallahassee, Florida, Trevor Bernhardt (Lauren) and Ryan Bernhardt of Colorado, Blake Levine (Amy) of Louisville, Kentucky, Austin Levine (Kara) and Harris Levine of Chicago Illinois, Brooke Bernhardt and Rachel Bernhardt of Louisville, Kentucky, Tate Correll (Michael) and Tanner VanWinkle of Colorado; great-granddaughter Tenley Levine of Louisville, Kentucky (“She made me great”); brother-in-law H. Crill Merryday of Tallahassee, Florida; niece Glenn Powell (Marvin) of Tallahassee, Florida; nephews Dana John Merryday (Amy) of Oregon and Crill Merryday (Jill) of Tallahassee, Florida; daughter-in-love Sherri Bernhardt; nine step-grandchildren; and many great-nieces and great-nephews and cousins in Florida.

Phala was preceded in death by her husband of 35 years, Dr. Donald J Bernhardt, DDS (Colonel USAF ret.).

A funeral was held Nov. 27, 2017, at Middletown Christian Church in Louisville, Kentucky.

Phala and her husband, Dr. Donald J. Bernhardt, will be interred together in a graveside service which will be held Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017, at 2 p.m., at Mt. Ephraim Baptist Church, Owens Cemetery in Arcadia.

In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to Deaf Affinity Group/International Mission Board,

Loretta J. Cummins

Loretta J. Cummins, 78, passed away in the comfort of her own home in Fort Ogden, Florida, Friday, Dec. 8, 2017.

Loretta was born on Sept. 14, 1939 in Venice, Florida, to Clarence and Bernice (née Boggess) Jones. Loretta has been a member of the First Baptist Church of Fort Ogden her whole life. She enjoyed sewing, shopping, gardening and spending time outdoors and loved cats.

Loretta is survived by her daughter, La Raye (Richard) Rowe; step-son, Jody (Lorri) Cummins; step-daughters, Ginger (Bucky) Whidden, Donna (Donnie) Ellis, Debbie Monk, Jackie Cummins, Stephanie (Roy) Bailey, and Missy (Doug) Empey; grandchildren, Kelli Wilder, Richie Rowe, and Macy Rowe; and many extended family and friends who will miss her dearly. Loretta was preceded in death by her parents; husband of 34 years, Jack Cummins; and her sister, Clarice Frierson.

A Memorial Service was held on Tuesday, Dec. 12, at the First Baptist Church of Fort Ogden.

In lieu of flowers, you may make a donation to the First Baptist Church of Fort Ogden Building Fund in memory of Loretta.

Cremation arrangements have been entrusted to Ponger-Kays-Grady Funeral Home, 50 N. Hillsborough Ave., Arcadia, FL 34266. Please visit to leave a condolence to Loretta’s family.

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