Denver Stoker

BRAMWELL — Denver “D.M.” Stoker, 77, of Bluestone Avenue, Bramwell, passed away at Bluefield Regional Medical Center Sunday evening, Nov. 11, 2007.

Born in Ashe County, N.C., Oct. 30, 1930, he was the son of Opal Holbrook Stoker of Beckley and the late Roy Stoker. He grew up in North Wilkesboro, N.C., and graduated from North Wilkesboro High School. He had been a resident of Bramwell for 56 years. A job with Ralph E. Mills Construction Co. brought him to West Virginia. From that job he went to work for U.S. Steel at Gary, where he operated the Marion power shovel and other heavy equipment. He retired in 1993. He was currently in his fourteenth year with Dunford Roofing Co., Tazewell, Va., serving as executive vice president. He was a veteran of the U.S. Navy.

Denver was an expert in many fields, including: the history of the Civil War, of World War II and of aircraft and military aviation. He handcrafted 100 dulcimers, was a playwright and artist. He was a self-taught bagpiper and served as piper for various functions for nearly 35 years. He had a lifelong interest in building and flying model airplanes and was a member of Princeton Area Radio Kontrol Society (P.A.R.K.S.).

Denver had a passion for life and learning. He served as a role model and father figure for family and friends throughout his life.

He is survived by his wife of 54 years and 10 months, Louise Dawson Stoker; two daughters: Dana Stoker Cochran of Bramwell, and Jonni Stoker and fiancé, Tom Dunford, of Burke's Garden, Va.; a treasured granddaughter, Amanda Cochran, of Bramwell; and a special niece who was like a daughter, Sarah “Bibbi” Sigmon and husband Larry of Sandlick. Two brothers, Roy D. Stoker of Hickory, N.C., and Bobby C. Stoker and wife Marianna Stoker of Brandon, Fla., survive him. He leaves two aunts, Jean Miller and husband Edgar of Laurel Springs, N.C., and Ila Davis of North Wilkesboro, N.C. He is also survived by sisters and brothers who were more than in-laws: James R. “Buzzy” and Pat Dawson of Richmond, Va., Norma (Mahood) and Elmer Bay of Bluefield, Va., William “Bill” Dawson of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., Curtis “Buddy” and Connie Dawson of Portsmouth, Ohio, and Betty and Ralph “Doc” Haskew of Tampa, Fla. Also surviving are nieces, nephews and cousins who feel a great loss in his passing.

Funeral services will be conducted at 11 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 15, 2007 at Cravens-Shires Funeral Home, Inc. in Bluewell. Burial will follow at Woodlawn Cemetery in Bluewell. The family will receive friends from 6 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2007 at Cravens-Shires Funeral Home in Bluewell. Pallbearers will be Ralph Thomas Haskew, Robbie Dawson, Michael Stoker, Kelly Goins, Pat Davis and members of P.A.R.K.S.

Memory donations may be made to the Bluefield, Va., branch of Tazewell County Public Library.

Cravens-Shires Funeral Home in Bluewell is serving the Stoker family.

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