Garlin McAlpin

Garlin  McAlpin, 85, died Sunday, February 19, 2017 at his Residence.

Funeral services were held February 22, 2017, at Dryden Funeral Home Chapel with the Rev. Bobby Garner and Rev. Randall Skinner, officiating. Burial followed in Heflin Memorial Garden.

Dryden Funeral Home was in charge of the arrangements.

 Survivors include:

Wife - Betty Smith McAlpin; Sons - Mike (Teresa) McAlpin, Mark (Rena) McAlpin; Sisters - Faye McAlpin Bell and Eddie Jean Wilson; Grandchildren - Shane (Angie) McAlpin, Cody (Courtney) McAlpin, Maranda McAlpin, Mahala McAlpin, Tyler Pollard, Trevor Cook; Great Grandchidlren - Mavrick McAlpine, Haven Ward; Great Grand Child - Addison Pollard

Pallbearers were Shane McAlpin, Cody McAlpin, Tyler Pollard, Trevor Cook, Joe Wilson, and Joey Wilson.

Mr. McAlpin is a native and lifelong resident of Cleburne County. Garlin was a loving and devoted husband to his wife of 64 years, loving father and grandfather. Garlin was preceded in death by brother Houston McAlpin.


Horace Sellers Merrill

Horace Sellers Merrill of Heflin, Alabama died on February 17, 2017 at the age of 80.

Horace Merrill was born on October 15, 1936 in Micaville.  He was the son of Emory Joseph and Grace Allen Merrill.  Mr. Merrill graduated from Cleburne County High School in 1954, where he was a very competitive athlete, lettering in baseball and football. After graduating, he attended Southern Union Junior College in Wadley on an athletic scholarship until an automobile accident ended his athletic career in 1957.

Mr. Merrill then entered the workforce at Dixie Mines Mica Mining Company.

He married Mary Inez Thompson of Anniston, Alabama on June 1, 1963.  Like many other members of his family, Mr. Merrill always held a strong interest in politics.  After receiving encouragement from his father and wife, he entered the political arena in 1964 and was elected Circuit Clerk of Cleburne County.  He served as Circuit Clerk for 12 years, while also participating in various civic, professional, and social organizations including the Lions Club, Jaycees, and Athletic Boosters Club where he served as President of each.  He also assisted in the organization of the first youth baseball program in Heflin, where he officiated as well as coached in the 1960s and 1970s.  He also served as the public address

announcer for Little League Football and Jr. High Football games.    

After completing two terms as Circuit Clerk, Mr. Merrill was elected Probate Judge and Chairman of the Cleburne County Commission in 1976, a position he held for one six-year term.  While serving as Probate Judge, he led the effort to purchase land and develop plans for the construction of the State of Alabama Welcome Center and Rest Area on I-20.  He had a vision for a county-wide water system to service all citizens of Cleburne County through the Dyne Creek Watershed project that was supported by Congressman Bill Nichols and Senator Howell Heflin that he was not able to complete before the end of his term.  

In addition to his political career, Mr. Merrill was an active participant in the Cleburne Baptist Association, where he served as an officer and pastor of several churches.  His pastorates included Happy Hill, Cedar Creek, Pinetucky (Interim), Chulafinnee, and Edwardsville Baptist Churches.

As a member of Heflin Baptist for more than fifty years, Mr. Merrill served as a Deacon, Sunday School Superintendent, Sunday School Teacher, Church Training Director, and Sanctuary Choir member.  

He is survived by his loving wife and companion of 53 years, Mary Thompson Merrill; his son, Alabama Secretary of State John Harold Merrill (Cindy) of Tuscaloosa; his daughter, Audrey Merrill Gillis (Stephen) of Montgomery; his grandchildren Pelham Brooks Merrill of Tampa, Florida, Alexandra Grace Merrill of Queens, New York, Mary Kathryn Gillis, and Sarah Sellers Gillis of Montgomery; his sister Doris Sue Belcher of Vestavia Hills, and his brother Stanley Merrill (Sue) of Heflin and many other caring friends and family members.

Pallbearers were Pelham Brooks Merrill, Stanley Merrill, Tommy Merrill, David Belcher, Greg Belcher, Stephen Gillis, Winston Bryant, and Mayor Rudy Rooks.  

 Funeral services were held on Monday, February 20, 2017 at 2 pm at Dryden Funeral Home Chapel.

Dr. Larry Riddle presided over the services.  Interment followed the service at the Heflin City Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to Heflin Boy Scout Troop 206,

466 Evans Street, Heflin Al. 36264, Girl Scouts of America in Heflin, the Big Oak Ranch, P. O. Box 507, Springville Al. 35146, or Heflin Baptist Church, 155 Almon Street, Heflin Al. 36264.

Online condolences can may made on our website at


East Heflin

Bro. George Robinson opened to Rev. 3:1-6, ‘Are We Dead Yet?” Jesus is speaking to the angel of the church of Sardis and he was examining them that had the seven spirits of God. He saw the church was fully weighted and examined their holy character. If we love Jesus, serving, giving, and doing are not a problem. When he looked at their heavenly calling, he saw all the wrong things in the church and all that they were involved in. The church was found wanting because many were already ‘dead’ and more was about to ‘die’ a death of falling away from Christ.

The Lord engaged the church to recall the past, to recognize the present, and turn from sin in repentance. They were to turn to the Savior. We must be ready for the future because when he comes, it will be sudden – like a thief in the night. You cannot wait and then commit for it will be too late then.

The Lord encouraged the church because some were still virtuous. The walked in worthiness and some were victorious. Don’t turn away from His call to know Him as your personal Savior. You name is born in the Lamb’s Book but if you never come to the salvation of Jesus Christ your name will be blotted out of the Lamb’s Book of Life for He will not know you. Come now.

Heavenbound Church

Not sure what time you told me to have this sent to you...maybe I am not late....we would also like for our church to be listed in directory. Heavenbound Church 2869 County Road 10 Heflin, AL 36264 We are a Holiness/Pentecostal Church.

Sunday School Lesson taught by Bro Benny “The Singing Army” came from 2 Chronicles 20:1-4, 13-15, 17-18.and Psalms 100:2. This lesson teaches us to learn the importance of praising and worshiping God, even when our circumstances seem impossible.

Sunday Morning Preaching by Bro Barry “Word of God Written For A Purpose”  Romans 15:4-7. Every word in the Bible holds meaning. We must not change the word of God by adding to or taking away because this changes the meaning of the scripture. Do you remember the day you were saved? The Lord put a song in your heart, joy in your foot step. Your light will shine to every person you come into contact with. That is why we must read daily in the spirit and stay prayed up and ready to go so we can handle any given situation that comes our way. The word of God has the answers for ALL of our problems.

Sunday Night Preaching by Bro Barry “”You Must Be Fruitful To Stay Close To God” John 15:1-17. In order to stay close to God, we must be fruitful. If we are fruitful God will purge us and we will grow and be able to bear more fruit. But, if we are not fruitful we will die spiritually and begin to live for the world instead of God. So many people think today that it’s a one time experience and once saved you don’t have to do anything else but the word of God says that we must be fruitful- must work and live for God everyday. If we don’t, we will dry up and wither away and be cast into the fire and burnt. Until next week, God Bless You!

Mount Olive Church of God

 Brother Greg opened our services today with prayer requests! Our love and prayers are with everyone sick with the flu and everything else around! Jesus took the stripes for our healing (Isaiah 53:5,1 Peter 2:24).

Our adult Sunday school lesson today was “Expectations for everyday living”, Romans 12:1-13:7, James 2:19 “the devils also believe and tremble.” Our belief has to bring about life change, living for Christ is what counts! When we have the mind of Christ it’s not hard to do His will! Love has to spill over from the Church to the outside world!

Brother Ronnie’s message this morning was from Psalms 37:1-18, “Commitment”. A commitment obligates us to do something. We have to be faithful to do what we said not just when it’s easy or convenient. God will not forsake us if we commit our ways to Him. Hebrews 10:25 tells “not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is, but exhorting one another: and so much more as ye see the day approaching.” Be committed!

Brother Terry Richardson brought our message tonight from Exodus 24:12, “Modern Day Church “. We cannot worship the gods of this world, we have to look and act like the Children of God we are! Exodus 32:26 as Moses asked the children of Israel, “Who is on The Lords side?” We must each decide for ourselves to stand for God!

 Brother Ronnie’s number (256) 201-9444.

The Church at Pleasant Grove

We are excited about our second service at The Church at Pleasant Grove this Sunday, February 26th.  We will be gathering in a casual atmosphere with coffee fellowship at 10:00am. Our Worship Leader, Micah Dorroh, and his worship team will kick off at 10:30am then our pastor, Jason Bachus, will deliver to us a message that God has laid on his heart.  

In other news, The Church at Pleasant Grove attended its first Cleburne Baptist Association meeting and officially requested to be placed on watch care for one year in order to be accepted into the association.  We presented our letter and it was voted in.  As of February 13, 2017, TC@PG is officially under watch care!  It was so good to see so many friends from our local churches.   Jason and I look forward to working closely with our DOM, Larry Riddle and CBA Secretary, Vickie Weathers.  They have assured us they will come along side us and help us in any way they can.   

We heard lots of great plans in the making and cannot wait to get on board and plug in.  One of the ideas we heard presented at the meeting was the “Read the Bible Around the Clock” April 30th-May 4th at Ross Park.  Several churches have already signed up but there are some slots open.  Contact the Cleburne Baptist Association to join us in this event or call if you need more details.   

God is surely making things happen in Cleburne County and we are excited to see what’s next!  


February 23

American Legion Post 19 will meet on Feb. 23 at 6:30 p.m., all veterans are encouraged to attend.

February 28

Diabetes Education class will be held Feb. 28 at Heflin Methodist Church at 6:30 p.m. The topic will be: Diabetes and your eyes.

Heflin First United Methodist Church will be having their annual Fat Tuesday Pancake Supper on Tuesday, February 28, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. in the Wesley Center behind the church.  The meal is free and any donations received will benefit the American Cancer Society! Make plans to come join us for a good meal and great fellowship.

March 1

Heflin First United Methodist Church will be holding our Ash Wednesday service on Wednesday, March 01, 2017.  Please make plans to join us for this moving service.  It will begin in the sanctuary at 6 p.m.

March 11

Benefit for Glenn Skinner will be held March 11 from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at AI Baptist Church. Special singers will be New Reason, Tri-City and Almost Home. There will be hotdog plates and a cake auction. All proceeds will go to help Glenn wiht his medical bills for cancer treatments.

March 25

Spaghetti supper to benefit Scott Norton and family will be held March 25 from 4-6 p.m., at New Harmony Baptist Church. Plates are $6 for dine in or carry out. If you would like to purchase tickets in advance you can contact Kay Yancy at 256-282-0406 or Misty Pointer at 256-282-7867.


SWAT (Servants With A Testimony) meets at Macedonia Baptist Church each Thursday at 6p.m. If you have a stronghold of addiction in your life that you’re sick and tired of, SWAT may help.  Please call (256) 748- 4460 for more information.