As of Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2022 

Cities without a state are in Missouri 


Max Drake

Dec. 12, 1945 – Dec. 13, 2022

Max Drake, age 77, of Joplin, passed away Tuesday, Dec. 13, following an illness.

He was born Dec. 12, 1945, in Southwest City, to Eugene and Audrey (Larkin) Drake.

Max worked as vice president for Tri-State Trucking and was terminal manager for Boyle Trucking. He served in the U.S. Army and was a member of Disable American Veterans. He was a member of First Baptist Church of Webb City and enjoyed working in his yard.

Max married Connie Dixon on July 3, 1975, and she survives. He is also survived by one son, Mark Drake; one daughter, Gina Marrs; two brothers, Roy Drake, and Richard Drake; and six grandchildren, Chase, Javis and spouse Maggie, Braden, Nathan and spouse Jade, Jolee and Silas.

Max was preceded in death by his parents and one sister, Carolyn Bennett.

A memorial visitation was held Saturday, Dec. 17, at the Wellspring Church. Arrangements were under the direction of Mason-Woodard Mortuary.


Todd Driskill

July 10, 1987 – Dec. 17, 2022

William “Todd” Driskill, age 35, of Webb City, passed away on Saturday, Dec. 17, from injuries sustained in a car accident.

Todd was born on July 10, 1987, in Bartlesville, Okla., the son of Bill Driskill and Michelle Price. He graduated from Frontenac (Kan.) High School in 2006. He received his electrical certification from Pittsburg State University in 2008. He worked at Joplin Supply Company as an electrical commercial quotations specialist. 

Todd loved being outdoors and was an avid deer hunter. Sitting in a tree stand was his favorite place to be. It’s where he was able to clear his mind and plan for his future. He loved doing DIY projects. There wasn’t a project he was afraid to tackle. He was, and always will be, proud to be a mama’s boy. 

He married Alexa Rose Keller, on Sept. 27, 2014, in Weir, Kan. They say that opposites attract, and that must be true because they couldn’t be much more different. But together they built a beautiful life and complimented one another perfectly. They have been season ticket holders for the Kansas City Chiefs for seven years. They recently bought their dream home, and they’ve been working hard to update and personalize their new home. Todd was so proud of the work he’s done. Together they were blessed with two beautiful children, and they both look just like their daddy. 

Todd was the most devoted father to his two children, Ella and Blake. They were his whole world. His favorite thing to do with them was tickle and wrestle with laughter radiating through the house. He was involved in all of their activities, and he loved being the coach of Ella’s t-ball and youth basketball teams. He also participated in the Webb City MUSCLE program as a school greeter. He loved involving Blake in all of his projects around the house, and Blake enjoyed being a “builder man” with his daddy. One thing he was most looking forward to was taking Blake hunting and teaching him to love the outdoors as much as he did. 

He loved his friends and family and was always willing to do anything he could to help them, whether it was helping take care of dogs and cattle, fixing things at their home, electrical work, or installing new floor in a whole house. If he loved you, he would do anything in his power to help you. 

Todd is survived by his loving wife, Alexa Driskill, Webb City; his children, Ella and Blake Driskill, of the home; his mother Michelle Price, Pittsburg, Kan.; his father Bill Driskill and step-mother Amy, Reeds; stepfather, David Spigarelli, Frontenac; one brother, Wesley Driskill and wife Danielle, Girard, Kan.; one sister, Lacee Merando, Pittsburg; a stepbrother, Alex Spigarelli, Frontenac; paternal grandparents, Galen and Joy Driskill, Disney, Okla.; maternal grandmother, Joyce O’Neal, Pittsburg; mother- and father-in-law, Jan and Rick Keller, Oronogo; sisters-in-law, Jennifer Berrouet, Kansas City, and Kristin Davila and husband Tony, Ft. Worth, Texas; brother-in-law Ricky Keller, Pittsburg; several nieces and nephews, James Merando (Godson), Maelee Merando, Breah Driskill, Keelyn Miller, Julian, Adrian, Derrick, Dominic and Nathaniel Berrouet. He was preceded in death by his maternal grandfather, Jim Price; and his nephew, Joeb Miller. 

Visitation will be from 5 to 6 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 22, at Mason-Woodard Mortuary. 

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, Dec. 23, at Christ’s Church of Oronogo. Cody Walker, minister, will officiate. Burial will be in Weaver Cemetery. Memorial contributions will be given to an education fund for the children of Todd Driskill in care of the mortuary.


Charlene Gretz

May 15, 1932 – Dec. 20, 2022

Charlene Gretz passed away peacefully into the arms of Jesus at Webb City Health and Rehabilitation on Tuesday, Dec. 20. 

She was born to Charles and Esther (Ervine) Mosena on May 15, 1932, in Joplin. Charlene was a 1949 graduate of Webb City High School. After graduation, she attended Joplin Junior College, where she majored in business. She worked for Empire District Electric Company until the spring of 1960. Afterward, she became a stay-at-home mom.

Charlene married her high school sweetheart, Melvin Gretz, on Oct. 21, 1955, at Webb City First Christian Church. They were married for 56 years until Melvin’s passing on Jan. 12, 2012. To this union was born a daughter, Sharon Kay.

Charlene was a member of Webb City First Christian Church and enjoyed helping in VBS, with the church newsletter, and various other opportunities at church.

Charlene enjoyed reading, crocheting, and working with her flowers.

She loved her family deeply and was so proud of her two grandsons, Jeffrey David Hollingshead and Joshua Franklin Hollingshead. She was a good listener and friend with a beautiful smile that would light up a room.

Charlene was preceded in death by her parents, husband, and a sister, Nancy Lou Hensley.

She is survived by her daughter, Sharon and husband John Peek, Webb City; grandsons, Jeffrey David Hollingshead, Paris, France, and Dr. Joshua Franklin Hollingshead, Wichita, Kan., and several nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 22, at Webb City First Christian Church. Memorial contributions may be made to Webb City First Christian Church. The family would like to express a very special thank you to Mom’s caregivers at Webb City Health and Rehab, Compassus Hospice, and to her roommate, Sharon Setser. Services are under the direction of Simpson Funeral Home.


Jack Stapleton

Nov. 20, 1952 – Dec. 17, 2022

Mr. Jack Wayne Stapleton, 70, of Saginaw, departed this life on Saturday, Dec. 17, at his son’s lake home in Shell Knob, after a recent battle with cancer.

Jack entered this life on Nov. 20, 1952, in Webb City,  born to the union of the late James Richard and Viola Mae (Ryan) Stapleton. He owned several rental properties in the area and was an electrician by trade. He worked for Bill’s Electric in Webb Cit for 14 years. He enjoyed shooting pool, listening to his police scanner and spending countless hours with his grandchildren. 

He was preceded in death by his parents; and four brothers, Jimmy, Jerry, Larry and Jim. 

Jack is survived by his wife, Linda Stapleton, of the home; two children, Jennifer Scarbough, Baldwin, and Jack Stapleton and wife Kim, Saginaw, ; nine grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; a brother, David Stapleton, Carl Junction; and three sisters, Blinda Asbell, Webb City, Cheryl Sparlin, Joplin, and Carroll Smith, Carl Junction; and a host of other family and friends. 

Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 22, in the Chapel of Hedge-Lewis-Goodwin Funeral Home, with Pastor Jim Bowles officiating. Entombment will follow at Ozark Memorial Park Cemetery. Pallbearers will be Jack Stapleton II, Jack Stapleton III, Shon Read, Glen Woolsey, John Moore and Walter Brand. The family will receive friends from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday in the funeral home chapel. Arrangements are under the direction of the Hedge-Lewis-Goodwin Funeral Home.


Marilyn Thornberry

Nov. 17, 1942 – Dec. 15, 2022

Mrs. Marilyn Sue Thornberry, 80, of Webb City, departed this life on Thursday, Dec. 15, at Mercy Hospital Springfield, after a brief illness.

Marilyn entered this life on Nov. 17, 1942, in Locust Grove, Okla., daughter of the late Lawrence and Goldie (Austin) Gore. She was raised in Locust Grove and was a 1960 graduate of Locust Grove High School. She received her undergraduate degree from Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Okla. and later her master’s degree in education from Pittsburg State University in Pittsburg, Kan. Her entire teaching career was with Joplin R-8 School District, where she taught high school English and served as the first girls high school basketball coach. She was a longtime member of Central United Methodist Church in Webb City. She enjoyed her family, especially her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, playing Bunco, singing in the church choir and visiting with her friends.

On Aug. 20, 1965, in Locust Grove, Okla., she was united in marriage to Charles A. “Chuck” Thornberry and to this union two sons were born, Ryan and Kyle.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband of 47 years, Chuck Thornberry, on Dec. 14, 2012; one son, Kyle Thornberry on Feb. 9, 2022; and two siblings, Jim Gore and Rena Jones.

Marilyn is survived by her son, Ryan Thornberry and wife Denise, Danville, Va.; five grandchildren, Callyn, Justin, Malachi, Amber and Mathew; 11 great-grandchildren; a sister, Norma Bendure and husband James, Chouteau, Okla.; her best friend, Donna Krudwig, Webb City; and a host of other family and friends.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, Jan. 9, at Central United Methodist Church in Webb City, with Pastor Chris Jackson officiating. Arrangements are under the direction of Hedge-Lewis-Goodwin Funeral Home.