Clayton Wayne Rhodes, 70, of Ripley, WV passed from this earthly life and entered into his heavenly home on Monday, February 15, 2021, at home with family by his side. Just two weeks ago, Clayton lovingly held the hand of his beloved wife, Shirley Mae (Burgess) Rhodes, as she also passed at home on January 31, 2021. Now, they are together for eternity in their heavenly home.
He was also preceded in death by his parents, Haman Rhodes and Marjorie (Parsons) Rhodes Lanham; his sister, Norma Jean (Rhodes) Teel; two half brothers, Carl Wendell Rhodes, Sr., and Clark Rhodes; and half-sister, Karen (Rhodes) Dunlap. He is survived by his brother, Steve Rhodes and wife, Debbie, of Sissonville, WV; brother, Michael Rhodes of Sissonville, WV. Also remaining are his daughter, JuaNita Drennen and husband, Fred, of Ripley, WV; son, Robert and wife, Jenny, of Belleview, FL; granddaughter, Kayla Harmon and husband, Rex, Jr., of Leon, WV; granddaughter, Madi Casto and husband, JW, of Millwood, WV; great-granddaughter, Kayleigh Harmon; great-granddaughter, Aspen Casto and great-grandson, Declan Casto and numerous nieces, nephews and other family and friends.
Clayton was born on January 23, 1951 in Advent, Jackson County, WV. Clayton attended Ripley High School. Clayton and Shirley met at a church service, began “courting” and were married in Louisa, Kentucky on July 20, 1968. They shared over fifty-two and a half years together, living a simple life in the countryside of Jackson County, raising their two children on Middlefork and the past twenty years in their current home in Fairplain, near Ripley.
Clayton was a devoted husband, father and “pawpaw” who loved the outdoors and enjoyed fishing and hunting. He worked in the outdoors with jobs in road construction, timbering and tree trimming. Clayton was employed by Holloway Construction, Danis Construction, Shaffer Construction, Asplundh Tree Company, M&M Logging and Nelson Tree Service. Clayton was instrumental in helping to organize the Union with Asplundh Tree Company during the eighties. Clayton spent the later part of his career as the Operations Manager for Nelson Tree Service, traveling the state of Ohio managing and training crews for Nelson Tree Service and serving as a liaison to the Columbus Southern/Ohio Power Companies before his early retirement due to health issues.
After his early retirement, Clayton enjoyed his time at home with his wife, Shirley, and taking the granddaughters, Kayla & Madi, fishing and on trips to Noah’s Ark Petting Zoo, yard sales and other outdoor adventures. Clayton enjoyed mornings with his “McDonald’s buddies”, attending public auctions and listening to C98 Radio Station Swap and Shop. He loved country and bluegrass music and bought Shirley many guitars, banjos and other musical instruments over the years, as well as took her to The Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, TN. Clayton was a hard worker, good provider and was always ready to lend a helping hand to others. Clayton supported Shirley in her walk with Christ and her traveling and singing gospel music with The Family Gospel Singers for many years and Clayton recently accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior before Shirley passed, which was a long awaited answered prayer and gave Shirley and the family great joy and peace. Our loss of both Clayton and Shirley here on earth is heartbreaking, but it is truly Heaven’s gain and as their little great-granddaughter Kayleigh reminds us,”mawmaw and pawpaw are in their happy place with Jesus now”.
A memorial service will be held at 3:00pm on Saturday, February 27th at Waybright Funeral Home, Ripley with the Reverend Michael Shamblin officiating. At a later date, both Clayton and Shirley’s ashes will be buried together on the hillside behind their home.
Posted online on February 19, 2021