Debbie Laws Burrell – obituary

by Jan 31, 2020OBITUARIES


Debbie Laws Burrell, 56, of Sylva, passed away Friday, Jan. 24, 2020, at her residence from health complications. A Bryson City native, she was born on March 29, 1963. She was a loving mother, grandmother, aunt, wife, and friend.  She is truly gone way early in life and will be missed by many.  

She was preceded in death by her mother, Iretha Proctor Laws; father, Walter Laws; brother, Larry Proctor; and sister, Brenda Davis.  

She is survived by ex-husband, Jeff Burrell; her son, Drew Burrell and his wife Stacie; daughter, April Bird; stepson, Rocky Burrell; grandchildren, Kasia Bird, Titan Burrell, Andrew Burrell, Alexas Burrell; step-grandson, Hunter Burrell; step-granddaughter, Trista Burrell; niece, Olivia Davis(husband Joel King); brother-in-law, Tommy Davis; sister-in-law, Dot Proctor; nephew, Jay Proctor (wife Dena) and their daughter Morgan. She is also survived by her spouse, Jonnie Ray Arch.

She wished to be cremated and for her son Drew to build her a memorial so people could visit her!  Debbie was in the nursing field for a very long time until her health would no longer allow her to work.  She had a kind heart and never knew a stranger.  She has many friends across the state, but her closest friends were where she grew up in Bryson City and in Sylva, where she lived for the last 10 years.  A member of Rock Creek Baptist Church, Debbie was a God fearing woman and a faithful Christian.  She loved her church and her church family.  She always let everyone know that when she died she was gaining her wings for a one-way ticket to Heaven!

Visitation will be held 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 2 at Rock Creek Baptist Church, 21 Dove Road, Bryson City. Services will begin immediately following the visitation around 3 p.m. with Rev. Justin Hunt and Rev. Terry Taylor officiating.

All are welcome who want to show their respects and to share stories and memories of her life.  All they ask is for everyone to be respectful.

An online registry is available at