Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1697 Ooltewah, Tennessee
Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1697               Ooltewah, Tennessee                                                                 

Dedicated to the memory of our departed Comrades.

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David C. Turner

           David Clyde Turner                             (1942-2023)                             Vietnam War Service        


   David Clyde Turner, 80, a resident of Apison, Tennessee, passed away Monday, November 6, 2023, surrounded by his family at CHI Memorial Hospital.
   He was a member of McDonald Road Seventh-day Adventist Church where he was very involved as an Elder, Sabbath School teacher, and in building projects, community outreach, and supported many ministries furthering the gospel.
   David served his country as a Green Beret and Army Medic in Vietnam, and he was an active member and former Post Commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 1697 and co-founding member of the American Legion Desmond T. Doss Post 257 in Collegedale, Tenn.
   He was an industrial arts teacher, licensed general contractor, master electrician, and master plumber. He and his wife Mary Anne owned and operated Turner Construction Specialists, LLC, a family-owned residential and commercial building company, until their retirement.

   He was preceded in death by his parents Clyde Edward Turner and Florence Hoyle Turner; and sister Marilyn Turner; Survivors include his wife Mary Anne Ouimette Turner; daughter Cathleen Mary Turner Still and son-in-law David K. Still of Cleveland, Tenn.; son Jeffrey David Turner, M.D. and daughter-in-law GingerTurner of Weaverville, N.C.; daughter Melissa Anne Turner of Apison, Tenn.; grandchildren Mary Still Colbaugh and Tyler Colbaugh; Samuel Still; Nathan Turner; and Nicholas Turner; brother Stephen Turner of Springfield, Mass.; and several cousins.
   A military graveside service will take place at the National Cemetery in Chattanooga, Tennessee, on Wednesday, November 15, 2023, at 11:00 a.m.
   A Memorial Service will take place at McDonald Road Seventh-day Adventist Church on Saturday, November 18, 2023, at 3:00 p.m.
   Honorary donations may be made to Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA).
   Covenant Funeral & Crematory is in charge of the arrangements. We invite you to send a message of condolence and view the Turner family guestbook at
   We invite you to send a message of condolence and view the Turner family guestbook at


2023-11-18 Memorial Service - David Clyde Turner:

Clarence Merritt

William Clarence Merritt Jr.               (1933-2023)                       Korean War Service          


On Sunday, June 25th, 2023, McDonald, Tennessee, resident William Clarence Merritt Jr. (90) passed away peacefully at home from natural causes. 


Clarence was born in Pennsylvania on March 17th, 1933, to William C. Merritt and Alice Marguerite (Flinn) Merritt, the youngest of 3 children.


Clarence enlisted in the U.S. Navy at 17 and first served on the USS Olmsted (APA 188) as a hospital corpsman during the Korean conflict. He retired after 31 years of active service as Steel Worker Chief Petty Officer (SWCPO) in the Seabees (Naval Construction Battalions).


Shortly after returning from overseas Clarence married the Love of his life Margaret Ann (Rafferty) Merritt. Together they faithfully served their Lord Jesus Christ as members of the Seventh-day Adventist Church and raised 4 children.


After retirement Clarence remained active in service to the Country he loved through various Veterans’ organizations including Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1697 where Chief Merritt filled many roles including Commander and Quartermaster. 


Clarence is survived by Margaret, his loving wife of 67 years, his children, Cheryl (Doug) Becker, Anchorage AK, Patti (Butch) Long, Jellico TN, Barbara (Garth) Keizer, Collegedale TN, and William Clarence Merritt III, Cleveland TN, and 5 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren. Clarence was preceded in death by his parents and 2 infant brothers.


In lieu of flowers the family requests any donations be directed to VFW Post 1697, PO Box 2103, Collegedale, TN 37315.


Interment with full military honors is at 1:00 PM on Wednesday, July 5, 2023, in the Chattanooga National Cemetery, 1200 Bailey Ave, Chattanooga, TN 37404.  All family, friends and fellow patriots are welcome to attend this final tribute to William Clarence Merritt Jr.


Johnny Arp

           Johnny Mark Arp                               (1944-2022)                           Vietnam War Service          




Johnny Mark Arp


(1944 - 2022)

    Johnny "Big Daddy" Mark Arp, 78, of Ooltewah passed away Wednesday, September 21, 2022, surrounded by his family. A native of McCaysville, Georgia, he has been a resident of Ooltewah since 1973, and was the last remaining Charter Member of VFW Post 1697 of Ooltewah. He helped start the Collegedale Veteran’s Memorial Park. Additionally, he was a founding member of the Ooltewah Cruisers in Cambridge Square in Ooltewah.

He was of the Methodist Faith. He was a veteran of the U.S. Army served in Vietnam. After serving his nation, Johnny worked as an Elevator Mechanic and was part of the Elevator Union, retiring in 1999.

He was the son of the late Joseph and Reba Isaac.

Survivors include his wife, Eve of 57 years; 4 legged child, Lucky Dog; his sons, Mark (Jennifer) Arp and Michael (Cheryl) Arp; daughter, Malanna (Jody) Massey; Big Daddy was blessed with 7 Grandchildren: Courtney Arp, Kayla Massey, Joseph Massey, Kristina Arp, Aniston Massey, Jacqlynne Arp, and Chloe Arp; siblings: Gary (Linda) Isaac, Shawna Isaac, and Scott (Barbara) Isaac; he has several nieces and nephews and several special cousins.

Pallbearers: David Orr, James (Uncle Jimmy) Nash, Todd Hamilton, Jason Cobb, Russell Bickle and Chad Pickering. Honorary Pallbearers: John Long, John McDaniel, Steve Rollins, Larry Bennett, and Bob McGinnis.

The family will receive friends from 4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. on Monday, September 26, 2022 and from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday, September 27, 2022 in the Valley View Chapel of Chattanooga Funeral Home.

Funeral services will be held at 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday, September 27, 2022 in the funeral home with son-in-law, Jody Massey officiating. Interment will follow at the Chattanooga National Cemetery.

The family would like to say a special thanks to Hospice of Chattanooga for all the love and care they gave to Big Daddy.

In lieu of flowers the family requests memorial contributions may be made to McKamey Animal Center at:, VFW Post 1697 of Ooltewah at: or Hospice of Chattanooga at:

Please share your thoughts and memories at:

Arrangements by Chattanooga Funeral Home, Crematory & Florist, Valley View Chapel, 7414 Old Lee Highway, Chattanooga, TN 37421.


Charles Whidden

   Charles "Chuck" Whidden          (1931-2021)

               Korean War Service



Charles "Chuck" Whidden


(1931 - 2021)

    Charles “Chuck” Whidden, 90, of Collegedale, passed away Friday, December 17, 2021. A native of Bowling Green, FL, he has been a resident of Collegedale 37 years, and was a former City Councilman for the City of Collegedale. He was a member and former Deacon of the Collegedale Seventh-day Adventist Church, and was a veteran of the U.S. Army serving in Korea. Chuck was a retired manager with Publix Food Stores in Tampa, FL and also served as the manager of the Village Market in Collegedale. He was also a long time member of the Ooltewah Collegedale Kiwanis Club, serving many years as the Interclub Chairman. He was also a member of the Collegedale VFW Post #1697, the American Legion #257. 

    He was the son of the late Jessie Lee and Elizabeth Dennis Whidden and was also preceded in death by a daughter, Brenda Callahan; granddaughter, Angela Ensley and a brother, Vernon Whidden. 

    Survivors include his wife, Jewel Whidden; daughter, Deborah (Owen) Maupin; son, Dennis James (Gale) Whidden and Bruce Edward (Christine) Whidden; sister, Mary (Tom) Duncan; brothers, LeeRoy (Barbara) Whidden, Tracy (Carol) Whidden and Michael (Marta) Whidden; 11 grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; several nieces and nephews. 

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions be made to the Samaritan Center in Ooltewah. 

    Funeral services will be held at 1 p.m. Thursday [December 23, 2021] at the Collegedale Seventh-day Adventist Church with Pastor David Smith officiating. 

    Interment will be in Collegedale Memorial Park. 

    The family will receive friends from 11 am to 1 pm Thursday at the church before the service. 

    Arrangements are by the Valley View Chapel of Chattanooga Funeral Home, 7414 Old Lee Highway. 


Please share your memories at:


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             Mitchell A. Thiel

Mitchell A. Thiel          (1926-2021)

             World War II Service

Michell A. Thiel (1926 - 2021)

Chemistry Department at Southern Adventist University


The Chemistry Department is saddened by the recent death of Professor Emeritus of Chemistry Mitchell Thiel. Dr. Thiel died on Monday, October 25 at the age of 96.

Professor Thiel began his work at Southern Missionary College in 1966, and continued teaching here at Southern until his retirement in 1993. He was the General Chemistry professor of current Chemistry Department faculty member Rhonda Scott and many other alumni of the Chemistry Department. During his retirement, he maintained a strong relationship with the Chemistry Department, and we will happily remember his excitement and enthusiasm for his fellow faculty members, his former students, and the field of chemistry.

We look forward to resuming our relationship with Dr. Thiel at the resurrection day. Until then, we will miss our colleague and friend.


              J. Vernon Herod

James Vernon Herod (1926-2021)

             World War II Service

James Vernon Herod (1926 - 2021)

Herod, James Vernon 

World War II Navy Veteran 

Monday, March 15, 2021
James Vernon Herod
James Vernon Herod

    James Vernon Herod, 94, of Collegdale, Tennessee, passed away on Saturday, March 13, 2021.

    James was a World War II Navy veteran, and a member of the Collegedale Seventh-day Adventist Church. 

    He was preceded in death by his loving wife of 68 years, Roberta Herod; parents, Bradford and Martha Herod; sisters, Marie Scronne, Margaret Cunningham, Mildred Gilwreath; and brothers, Edward, Jerry and Victor Herod. 

    He is survived by his children, Carolyn Shupe, Dwight (Janita) Herod, Douglas (Donna) Herod; brother, Gene Herod; sister, Ann Travis; grandchildren, Jodi Steele, Courtney Herod, Amanda Mason, Jason Herod, Lori Akins, Chris Cramer, Jeff Cramer; and 16 great-grandchildren. 

    The family will receive friends from 6-8 p.m. on Thursday, March 18, at Heritage Funeral Home, 7454 E. Brainerd Road.

A graveside service with military honors will be held at 11 a.m. on Friday, March 19, at Chattanooga National Cemetery with Pastors Fred Fuller and Dwight Herod officiating. 


Please visit to share words of comfort to the family.


    Arrangements are by Heritage Funeral Home, 7454 E. Brainerd Road. 


                Jack L. Rollins

      Jack Lee Rollins (1941 - 2020)

   Post WWII Occupation Germany

Jack Lee Rollins (1941 - 2020)

     Jack Lee Rollins, 79, of Ooltewah, passed away on Saturday, November 14, 2020.

   Mr. Rollins was born and raised in Greenback, Tennessee to the late Charlie and Ezarine Rollins. Jack retired as a Foreman from Moccassin Bend Wastewater Treatment Facility and was previously employed at C. F. Industries for 20 years. He was a member of Eastwood Baptist Church and the Ooltewah VFW Post # 1697. 

   Surviving are his wife of 57 years, Patricia Rollins; sons, Scott (Lin) Rollins and Steve (Beth) Rollins; grandchildren, Edward (Crystal) Rollins, Timothy (Katlin) Rollins and Lorraine (Stephen) Baker; and great-grandson, David. 

   There will not be any visitation at the funeral home. 

   A Memorial Service will be held at 2:30 PM on Thursday, November 19th at the funeral home. 

   Graveside services will be private at Chattanooga National Cemetery. 

   In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made to Hospice of Chattanooga, 4411 Oakwood Drive, Chattanooga, TN 37416 ( 

   We respectfully request that "social distancing", wearing masks, and all CDC measures be adhered to at the funeral home.


         Patrick G. Williams

  Patrick Williams (1938 - 2020)     Post-WW II Occupation Berlin

Patrick G. Williams (1938 - 2020)

Patrick Glenn Williams, 81, of Ooltewah, went to sleep in Jesus on Monday, July 13, 2020 at his home after a lengthy illness.


He leaves behind to cherish his memory his loving and devoted wife, Gloria A. Williams; children, Cheryl (Greg) Yeoman, Greg (Marie) Keller, Sheila (Jerry) Pogue, John P. Williams and James D. (Janet) Williams; siblings, Joanne (Ray) Catron, Jack (Ann) Williams, David (Phyllis) Williams, Buck (Ruth Ann) Williams and Melba (Gaines) Rogers; and grandchildren, Melodie Mamoulelis, Jason and Andrew Keizer, Bradley and Brian Yeoman, Megan Marquez, Jessica Williams and deceased grandson, Justin Williams.


The family will hold a private graveside service at Collegedale Memorial Park.


You are invited to share a personal memory of Patrick or your condolences with his family at his online memorial located at Companion Funeral and Cremation Service and the Cody family are honored to assist the Williams family with these arrangements.



                  Lerry Hobbs

  Lerry Hobbs  (1945 - 2019) . . . Vietnam War Service

Lerry Hobbs (1945 - 2019)

     Lerry Hobbs, 74, of Chattanooga, TN, formerly of Greenwood, FL and Dothan, AL, passed away 08/15/2019, after a courageous battle with cancer.
     His celebration of life service will be held at 11:00 AM at Glover Funeral Home Chapel, on Monday, 08/19/2019. Visitation will be preceding the service at 10:00 AM. Burial will follow in the Lovedale Baptist Cemetery, Greenwood, FL.
Lerry was born in Ashford, AL, on 05/07/1945 to Homer and Pam Hobbs. He was predeceased by his parents, and brothers, Carl and Jerome Hobbs.
     Survivors include his wife of 41 years, Wanda, sons, Randall (Nakina) Hobbs, of Dothan, AL, and Chad (Brittany)Hobbs, of Phenix City, AL, stepdaughter, Angela Bazzell, of Dallas, TX, granddaughters, Emily and Madison Hobbs of Dothan, AL, stepgranddaughter, Paisley, and stepgrandson, Trent, of Phenix City, AL, brother, Jerry Hobbs, of Dothan, AL, special sister-in-law, Eva L. Hobbs, of Dothan, AL, and a host of nieces, nephews, and cousins.
     Lerry was of the Seventh-day-Adventist faith. He graduated from Rehobeth High School in 1963, and served as a Sp4 Medic from 1965-67, including one year in Vietnam.
Lerry’s career as a carpenter spanned many years with Carl Hobbs Construction Co., of Dothan, AL. During his retirement, Lerry worked as a school bus driver for six years in Jackson County, FL.
     Lerry will best be remembered for his sense of humor, unlimited love, kindness, and hugs. He especially loved his family, dogs, nature, wildlife, being out-of-doors, and his team, the Atlanta Braves.



Service Details



Monday, August 19th, 2019 10:00am - 10:45am
Glover Funeral Home Chapel
1468 Hartford Hwy.
DOTHAN, AL 36301


Monday, August 19th, 2019 11:00am
Glover Funeral Home Chapel
1468 Hartford Hwy.
DOTHAN, AL 36301 
Monday, August 19th, 2019 12:30pm
Lovedale Baptist Church Cemetery
6593 Dale Circle
Greenwood, FL 32443                                             


                William Dean

  William Mack Dean  (1939 - 2019) . . . Korean War Service

William Mack Dean, Jr. (1939 - 2019)

William Mack Dean was born March 12, 1939 and died in Ooltewah, Tennessee, February 26, 2019. He is survived by his Wife Welcome Marie Dean, two of his three sons; Irwin Dean, Michael Dean, daughter-in-law Caroline Dean (surviving spouse of Kevin Dean) and their families. Please visit to share words of comfort to the family. Arrangements by Heritage Funeral Home, 7454 East Brainerd Road.


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *


William (Bill) Mack Dean, Jr. was born in Anson, TX. At a very young age his family left the farm life and moved when his father joined the Navy in 1942. They moved to Tuolumne, CA where he attended high school.  In 1955 he set the record for the ½ mile run in his league and that record still stands today.


July 11, 1956 he joined the Navy and served as a Radio Operator and received the Good Conduct Medal July 10, 1959.  He served in the Navy of the United States until he received an honorable discharge February 4, 1960.


In 1960 he went to work for Zody’s for a few months, then Bank of America for 6 months,  then spent 6 ½ years working for the Post Office, 7 ½ more years were spent working in the City of Riverside, CA working with underground electric. In 1974 he received his Bachelor’s Degree and he shifted towards what would be the career he loved, first as a staff accountant.  He continued to go to school, getting his Master’s Degree and finally his Doctorate at age 62.  He was a life long learner and loved reading.


He became a Seventh-Day Adventist in the early 70’s, which led him to the job he loved in 1985 and would stay in until 2005 as the Controller for Loma Linda University.  It was during this time that his 2nd wife passed away and he was given another chance at love when he married Welcome Marie Dean on October 11, 1993 in Loma Linda, CA.  They were given a wonderful life of 24 years together. After retiring they moved to Collegedale, TN where he taught classes in finance for 4 years. During their 24 years they went to China and on a mission trip to Honduras. They enjoyed church fellowship with the McDonald Road Church, and then their final years have been filled with friendship and involvement in the Apison SDA Church where Bill taught Sabbath School, worked in prison ministries, was an Elder, and spent time as Chair of the Finance Committee and on the Board.


Memorial Service was held at Apison Pike SDA Church, 11421 Bates Rd., Apison, TN 37302 on Saturday, March 30 at 4:00 p.m.

         Dr. James E. Erwin

  Dr. James E. Erwin  (1946 - 2018) . . .  Vietnam  Service

Dr. James Edward Erwin, 71, of Collegedale, went to sleep in Jesus on Tuesday, June 19, 2018, after a 14-year courageous battle with Alzheimer’s. Jim was born on June 24, 1946, in Greene County, near the town of Erwin, Tenn., (named after a relative). His dream was to be a professional baseball player. A doctor friend offered to pay his way through medical school but Jim felt called to be a Minister. After graduating from Fletcher Academy in North Carolina, in 1964, he attended Southern Missionary College, now Southern Adventist University, where he received his BA in Theology in 1968. He volunteered for the U.S. Army, training at Fort Campbell, KY and at Fort Sam Houston, TX. Jim married Andrea just 13 days before he left for Vietnam, serving as a Combat Medic (1-AO) with the 11th Armored Calvary Regiment, K- Troop. Jim returned home one year later and finished his duties at Fort Carson, Colo. Jim completed his Master of Divinity at Andrews University in 1975 and a Doctor of Ministry from Vanderbilt University in 1981. He was working on two other Doctorates simultaneously, one in Communication from UTK and in Leadership from Andrews, when he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2004. Jim was employed as a Minister with the Georgia-Cumberland Conference of Seventh-day Adventists for 32 years. He was also an Adjunct Professor at Southern Adventist University for 10 years, teaching Public Speaking. Jim also taught Dale Carnegie Courses. He loved watching people grow with confidence. Jim was a member of Toastmasters International, winning numerous awards and served as an officer and Area Governor. As a member of the International Christian Magicians, he did illusions for children’s sermons, keeping the wonderment of young and old. Jim was also a member of the National Fellowship of Storytellers, his storytelling was impeccable, always intriguing and everyone loved to hear him speak. He was brilliant and a member of the Mensa International, holding conversations with the most intelligent and yet turn right around and explain the same thing so a child could understand. Jim was preceded in death by his parents, Elmer and Waitsie Erwin and his sister, Sue Fahrney. He is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 49 years, Andrea; two daughters, Kristin (Bud) Emmer and Michelle Erwin (Lea Harlan); granddaughter, Abigail Emmer; two stepgrandsons, BJ (Lacey) Emmer and Sean (Amber) Emmer; three step-great-grandsons, Noah, Isaac and Luke. Jim is also survived by his “daughter”, Rebecca (Shawn) Benson and “granddaughters”, Ella and Sophia. A Celebration of Life service will be held at 11 a.m. Monday, June 25, in the funeral home chapel with John Swafford, Clifford Port, Bill Young and Lyle Petry speaking at the service. Interment will follow at 1 p.m. Monday at the Chattanooga National Cemetery. Jim’s family wishes to say thank you to Dr. Matthew Kodsi, MD, our caregivers and to Avalon Hospice, who helped us through this “long goodbye”. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that you make a memorial contribution in Jim’s honor to the VFW, Post 1697, P.O. Box 2103, Collegedale, TN 37315. Jim was a past Post Commander and they contribute to educational scholarships and help maintain the flags at the Collegedale Veteran’s Park. Education and patriotism were very important to Jim. You can also contribute to the Animal Medical Professionals Angel Fund, 5620 Main Street, Ooltewah, TN 37363, who helped us with our beloved dog, Cairo. Please visit to share words of comfort to the family. The family will receive friends from 4 to 8 p.m. Sunday, June 24, Jim’s 72nd birthday, at Heritage Funeral Home, 7454 East Brainerd Road, Chattanooga, TN 37421.



Samuel E. James

 Samuel E. James (1925 - 2018) . . .  World War II  Service

Samuel E. James, 93, of McDonald, Tenn., passed away Monday, March 12, 2018. A native of Huntsville, Ala., he has been a resident of the Chattanooga area for the past 10 years and was a retired Field Engineer from General Electric. He proudly served in W.W. II. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Frances James and his second wife, Blanche James; brother, Herbert and sister Elizabeth. Survivors include four children, Sharon Gale James, Samuel T. James, David C. James and Charlotte Crane; six grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren; brother, Leon James and sister, Frances McNeal; several nieces and nephews. The family will receive friends from 3 to 5 p.m. Saturday (March 17, 2018) before the 5 p.m. service at the Valley View Chapel of Chattanooga Funeral Home, Crematory & Florist, 7414 Old Lee Highway. Please share your memories at:

Handmade quilt presented to VFW MEMBER Samuel E. James during the 12 JAN 2017 meeting of Ooltewah (Tennessee) Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1697.

Charles M. Pendergraph

 Charles M. Pendergraph (1947 - 2017) . . . Vietnam War Service


Charles M. Pendergraph, 69, of Apison, passed away on Saturday, July 29, 2017. 

   Charles was born and raised in Chattanooga and graduated from Central High School Class of 1965. He was a Master Barber and retired as owner of American Barber Salon in the Suntrust Bank Building.
   He was a U.S. Army veteran serving in the Vietnam War and recipient of the Purple Heart. Charles was a member of the Collegedale VFW where he served on the committee to organize the development of Veteran’s Park in Collegedale.
   He was preceded in death by his parents. Laymond “Jiggs” and Mildred Pendergraph; brothers, Jack and John Pendergraph; and sister, Dorothy Byrd. Surviving are his wife of 38 years, Virginia “Ginger” Pendergraph; children, Penny Elise Pendergraph, Virginia Ann “Ginger” (John) Gillespie, Jesse Laymond Pendergraph, and Amanda Lynn (Michael) Braun; 11 grandchildren: Joshua, Sean, Victor, Brandon, Brianna, Henry, Briana, Steven, Spring, Skyler, and Joanna; brother, Darrell (Jennifer) Pendergraph; sister, Linda (Roy) Baker; sisters-in-law, Terry Pendergraph and Sylvia Beavers; and several nieces and nephews.
   Visitation will be today and Thursday from 4 to 7 p.m. at the funeral home. Funeral services will be at 1 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 4, 2017, at the funeral home and visitation one hour prior to the service. Rev. Mike Nolan will officiate. Burial will follow at Hamilton Memorial Gardens in Hixson, TN with military honors.
   Memorial donations may be made to Hospice of Chattanooga, 4411 Oakwood Drive, Chattanooga, TN 37416; St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105; or The Samaritan Center, 9231 Lee Hwy, Ooltewah, TN 37363.
   Arrangements are by the Valley View Chapel, Chattanooga Funeral Home, Crematory and Florist. 7414 Old Lee HWY, Chattanooga, TN 37421. Please share your condolences at

William Payson Nutt

     William P. Nutt (1925 - 2017) . . . World War II Service


World War II Navy Veteran Retired From McKee Foods


William Payson Nutt, 91, of Ooltewah, passed away on Monday, Jan. 2, 2016. William was a member of the Collegedale Seventh-Day Adventist Church, where he served as a deacon for many years, a retired supervisor from McKee Foods after 40 years, a member of the VFW Collegedale Chapter, and a Navy Veteran of WWII. He was preceded in death by his wife, Valerie Nutt; parents, Payson and Mable Nutt; and four sisters, Irene, Janette, Muriel, and Shirley, all of Maine. He is survived by his children, William Nutt, of Orlando, Fla., Bruce Nutt, of Loma Linda, Calif., Gary Nutt, of Collegedale, and Deborah Browne, of Orlando, Fla., six grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren, and several nieces and nephews. A memorial service will be held at a later date. Please visit to share words of comfort to the family. Arrangements by Heritage Funeral Home, 7454 E. Brainerd Rd.

Online photographs found in SERVICE STORIES  and INDEX OF NAMES.


Noble Barnes Vining

     Noble B. Vining (1918 - 2016)   World War II Service

Noble Barnes Vining, Jr. (1918-2016)

VINING, NOBLE BARNES, JR., 98, born September 2, 1918, in Atlanta, GA, died October 3, 2016, in Longwood, FL. After completing his education at Southern Junior College and Emmanuel Missionary College, and then serving for four years as a medic during WWII, he spent 40+ years in printing (Stanborough Press, Philippine Publishing House, AUC College Press, Southern Publishing Association, and SMC College Press).  Throughout his life, he was an active and faithful church member. During his years at SMC College Press, he was the managing editor of “The Southern Tidings”, a monthly journal that serves the Seventh-day Adventist church members in all of the southeastern states. During his 30+ years of retirement, he authored several books, The Bible Textionary, The Bible Textionary on Revelation, A 6 Day Creation Week?, The Result of an Old Man’s Dream, two sets of Bible studies entitled Bible Research and Bible Research II, plus a host of other smaller projects.  He was preceded in death by his parents, Noble Barnes Vining Sr. and Nancy Hatcher Vining; his first wife, Joan Lay Vining (m. 1943-1973), and his second wife, Katherine Whitman Stromberg Vining (m. 1973-2004); his younger brother, Briscoe Hatcher Vining.  He is survived by one son, David LeRoy Vining (Ann), two daughters, Judith Anne Vining Campbell (Kirk), and Elizabeth Stromberg Williams (Dallas), six  granddaughters, Tammy Williams Riegsecker (Gary), Jenny Williams Werner (Dan), Shelley Lynn Campbell Leonor  (Sam), Wendy Faye Campbell, Jessica Shane Vining Lower (Paul) Jacqueline Elizabeth Vining Draper (Malcolm);  two grandsons, Dallas Williams II (Kristine) and Hart Matthew Campbell (Julie); four great granddaughters, Alexandra Skye Leonor, Danica Pearl Draper, Abigail Elizabeth Draper, Lena Elaine Campbell and five great grandsons, Micah Samuel Leonor, Joshua Andrew Lower,   Adam David Lower, Dallas James Riegsecker, Daniel Werner. On October 15, 2016, a Celebration of Life Service was held at the Collegedale SDA Church Fellowship Hall, in the same location where his 90th birthday was celebrated eight years ago. Approximately 200 friends and family attended on both of these occasions.  --Judith Anne Vining Campbell 


Noble B. Vining's Celebration of Life held on 15 October 2016.

      Jack Edwin Phalen

Jack E. Phalen (1931 - 2016) . . . Korean War Service

Jack Edwin Phalen


Jack Edwin Phalen, 84, of Ooltewah passed away on January 17th in a local hospital. He was a veteran of the U.S. Air Force serving in the Korean War. He was also a member of the Collegedale Seventh-day Adventist Church.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 49 years, Ruby Phalen

He is survived by his daughters; Jackie (Jeff) Wait, Janice (Bill) Huggins, five grandchildren; Kara, Nathan, Abilgail, and Seth Wait and Sydney Huggin and a special friend Cari Gonzalez.

Funeral services will be held January 18th at 3pm in the funeral home chapel with Pastor Jeff Wait officiating. Interment will follow at the Collegedale Memorial Park. 

Please visit to share words of comfort to the family.


The family will receive friends from 12pm to 3pm on Monday at Heritage Funeral Home 7454 East Brainerd Road.

To send flowers or a memorial gift to the family of Jack Edwin Phalen please visit our Sympathy Store.

David A. Magoon (1920 - 2014) . . . World War II Service

David A. Magoon, 94, passed away Monday, June 2, 2014.  Known as “Doc” during World War II, he served in the 474th Fighter Group, 9th Army Air Corps as a Technical Sergeant. Following the war, David attended Southern Junior College, now known as Southern Adventist University.  He began his career as a public accountant in Atlanta, Georgia where he lived several times throughout his life.  David moved to Collegedale in 1965 where he was a member of the Collegedale Seventh-day Adventist Church and served as treasurer for over thirteen years.  A proud citizen of Collegedale, he served as both mayor and commissioner.  He was honored to be a lifetime member of both the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the American Legion. A private family service was held in Norcross, Georgia where he was buried next to his wife of 54 years, Sue Summerour Magoon.  He will be greatly missed by his family, friends, church, the City of Collegedale and his fellow veterans.  Tax deductible memorial donations may be made to Veterans Memorial Park of Collegedale Flag Fund, P.O. Box 2211, Collegedale, TN 37315.

Kenneth Burnham (1948 - 2013) . . . Vietnam War Service

Kenneth Burnham

Kenneth A. Burnham, 65, of Collegedale, passed away Sunday, Nov. 3, 2013, in a Harriman, Tenn., health care facility. He was the son of the late Lucius Albert Burnham and June Finch Burnham and was preceded in death by two sisters, Wendy and Sharon; and a niece, Millissa. Kenneth was a Vietnam veteran having served in the U.S. Army. He retired as a postal clerk with U.S. Postal Service working in the Collegedale community for 34 years. He was a member of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Purple Heart Association, Stamp Club and the Fifty Five Club. He was a member of Collegedale Seventh-day Adventist Church. Survivors include his sister, Judy Archambault, of Superior, Wis.; brother, Greg Burnham, of Brookfield, Mass. Graveside services will be held 1:30 p.m., Friday, Nov. 22, 2013, at Chattanooga National Cemetery with Dennis E. Smith and Chaplain James Duracheck officiating. Military rites will be conducted at the cemetery. Please share your thoughts and memories online at Arrangements by Chattanooga Funeral Home, Crematory & Florist, Valley View Chapel, 7414 Old Lee Highway, Chattanooga, TN 37421.

Joseph Hand (1921 - 2012) . . . WWII and Korean War Service

Obituary for Joe Hand


HAND, JOSEPH "JOE" MILTON, Ret. Lt. Col., U. S. Army, age 91 of Kissimmee, Florida, formerly of Collegedale, Tennessee, passed away December 31, 2012.

He was born in Atlanta, Georgia on January 31, 1921.  He was the fourth of 
five children born to his late parents, Claudius (Claude) Houston Hand, Sr. and Lillie Snow Hand.  He was educated in the public schools of Atlanta, GA, and attended the University of Georgia.  When World War II was declared, he was drafted to serve in the U. S. Army, as a medic in the Medical Corps.  During his service in the U.S.A. he was a surgical technician and promoted to Assistant to the Chief of Surgery in North Africa, Sicily and Italy, where he received a direct field commission to 2LT.  He also served in the Korean Conflict and continued his service in the Army Reserve until his retirement from service in 1981 having obtained the rank of Lt. Colonel.  After WWII, he  married Doris Jean (Marchant) Hand of Dyersburg, TN.  They were married for 61 years until her death in 2007.  Professionally he was a salesman in the food industry traveling throughout the South for various companies, including Borden's, National Oats and Abbott Labs.

He is preceded in death by his siblings, Blanche Morris, Claude Houston ("C.H.") Hand, Jr. and Benjamin Snow Hand.  

He is survived by his children, Ronald M. Hand (Ginny) Hand, Kissimmee, FL, Beverly J. Rambo (Jim), Collegedale, TN and J. Alan Hand (Loreen), Winter Park, FL; a sister, Cecile Barrett of Griffin, GA; nine grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren;

and several nieces and nephews.


Interment with full military honors on January 4, 2013, was at Chattanooga National Cemetery.!/Obituary!/TributeWall

James Lewis (1928 - 2012) . . . Korean War Service

James Lewis

Hamilton County

James H. Lewis, 84, of Ooltewah, died Thursday, Aug. 2, 2012, in a local healthcare facility.Mr. Lewis was retired from McKee Foods after 39 years of service as a truck driver.He is survived by his wife, Sherry Lewis; son, Mike Lewis, both of Ooltewah; sister-in-law, Donna Watson, Sevierville, Tenn.; special niece and nephews, Venda Callicott, Vernon Medlen and Carl Medlen; and several other nieces and nephews.Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday at Heritage Funeral Home Chapel, with Pastor Jeff Brown officiating.Burial to follow at Collegedale Cemetery.Visit to share words of comfort to the family and to view the memorial tribute.The family will receive friends from 4-8 p.m. today at Heritage Funeral Home, 7454 East Brainerd Road, Chattanooga, TN 37421.

John Leland (1924 - 2012) . . . World War II Service

John Leland

Hamilton County

John H. Leland, M.D. passed away July 30, 2012 at his residence in Ooltewah.He was born 1924 in San Diego, Calif.John served his country as a medic in the South Pacific during World War II. Upon returning he met and married Floreen Babienco in San Diego. He graduated from Loma Linda Medical University as an M.D. in 1953 and practiced family medicine as a missionary in Cambodia,Thailand, Mexico and Kentucky for 43 years before retiring to Ooltewah. During his remaining years he visited their four children and 10 grandchildren, landscaping and gardening, proudly serving with the Ooltewah VFW, visiting shut-ins, and serving in a local prison ministry.He is survived by his wife, Floreen Babienco Leland; children, Joleen Horine, James, John Jr. and Jennifer Huck; 10 grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.A Memorial service will be held at 5 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 4, 2012, at McDonald Road Seventh-day Adventist Church. Retired McDonald Road Church Pastor Don Gettys will be officiating.Visit to share words of comfort to the family and view the memorial tribute.In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in his memory to It Is Written, Amazing Facts or Voice of Prophecy.Arrangements are by Heritage Funeral Home, 7454 East Brainerd Road, Chattanooga, TN 37421.

Robert Schaeffer (1930 - 2012) . . Post-WW II Occupation Europe



Robert Amos Schaeffer


Cleveland Daily Banner

Robert Amos Schaeffer, 82, of Cleveland, passed away suddenly Sunday, July 1, 2012.

He was born April 2, 1930, in Baxter. He was married to the former Grace Sadler Schaeffer on Aug. 20, 1983.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Walter Amos Schaeffer and Edna Elizabeth Burns Schaeffer; his wife, Grace Schaeffer; stepson, Larry Wayne Saddler; and cousin, Thomas Nelson.

He graduated McMinnville High School at 16 and attended seminary for one year before enrolling at Tennessee Tech. Upon graduation in 1950, he joined the U.S. Army where he trained in cartography and charted various oceans including the Antarctic. After his military service, he worked for the U.S. Government and traveled the world extensively. He retired from government service in 1971, and returned to his childhood home of McMinnville, where he was a systems analyst for Carrier Corporation and owned his own nursery business. After briefly residing in Williston, Fla., he and Grace relocated to Cleveland, where he worked for the Tennessee Dept of Environmental Health and Safety until his retirement.

He was a Rotarian, Ruritan, VFW officer and had various other affiliations, both social and religious, in Cleveland.

He will be greatly missed by his sister, Mary Ada Mitchell of Hamden, Conn.; stepson, Jerry Sadler of Chattanooga; stepdaughters: Lisa Sadler of Cleveland and Donna (Randell) Doty of Gainesville, Fla.; stepgrandchildren: Jenniffer Saddler of Corrigan, Texas, Larry Saddler II and Megan Saddler of Norwalk, Iowa; special daughter, Tracie Phillips of Cleveland; special granddaughter, Bonnie Phillips, of Cleveland; as well as several cousins, nieces, nephews and many dear friends.

The family will hold a private memorial service. Interment will be at 2 p.m. Saturday, July 7, 2012, at New Union Cemetery in McMinnville.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that his friends honor his love of nature by making donations in his memory to the Arbor Day Foundation Plant Trees in Memory program, or plant a tree at your home in his honor.

The Wildwood Avenue Chapel of Jim Rush Funeral Homes is in charge of the cremation services.

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Visit the Veterans of Foreign Wars - Department of Tennessee at




Dave Turner







is a Poem dedicated to All Surviving Spouses of our Post . . . please scroll to the bottom of the page link.



Special Notice

regarding Hospice services for Veterans: please go to 09 JAN 2020 in 




A new excerpt, Pages 86-87, was added to Raymond C. Brown's SERVICE STORY from his book Hey, Got Time for a War Story? 


Please scroll down to the bottom of page



Announcing our

new Webmaster, Aidan Melton! 


After eight years it's time a new generation takes over.  In fact, sixty years separate him and me, but age--whether old or young--is no barrier to creativity and patriotism.  Aidan, you have lots of boosters, some you know and more you don't, yet.  Congratulations on your new assignment to oversee




--Lewis L. Szerecz



NEXT UP: 12 DEC 2019 for more from Wesley Crider.


Wesley Crider, the world-renowned guitar virtuoso, played Christmas favorites on December 14, 2017, for us.

View them

here and now!


Our new Facebook admin is Bryan K. Hardy - welcome aboard!


Announcing our Facebook page


formerly administered by Assistant Webmaster Marc Baker in friendly rivalry with this Webpage and its Webmaster in parallel but compatible tracks!  Thanks, Marc, for your outstanding effort.  We all applaud and appreciate you.

Marc, you did a fine job for us; we're sorry you moved away and wish you well, Comrade. We can't thank you enough!





For more on REBOOT COMBAT RECOVERY and FIRSTLINE RESPONDERS Trauma Recovery see 14 FEB 2019 in News and Events from 2017 on



J. VERNON HEROD, the first commander of our VFW Post 1697, shares his Service Story about World War II here.


Our thanks to the Scenic City Chorus who sang in their signature barbershop quartet style for a concert on 08 MAR 2018.  Hear and see them here in proudly featured five videos!


Amazing how the music keeps coming!  AMBERHOPE VELBIS is a performer extraordinaire who sings her original songs and arrangements while accompanying herself on the keyboard.  She graced our Post on 11 JAN 2018 sharing her inspiring skill.



See Alan Blankenship's photographs from Vietnam with the US Army's 5th Infantry Division 1/77 Armor Scouts during 1969 and 1970.

View the VIDEO from the 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War!

See the Purple Heart Mural dedicated

on 31 MAY 2016

in Collegedale, Tennessee!



Read a young Patriot’s Tribute to Our Military here.







Announcing a new page on our Web site, VETERANS MEMORIAL PARK, featuring news and views of this unique Collegedale, Tennessee, landmark.

Link here to our national organization!

Special link to our fellow Veterans in the local American Legion:

See OUR PROJECTS for highlights from the 2013 and 2016 Armed Forces Day Parades and 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 Armed Forces Day Luncheons.

View the updates on our Site under NEWS & EVENTS FROM 2020 ON.  Previous entries under NEWS & EVENTS 2017 TO 2020, NEWS & EVENTS 2014 TO 2016 and NEWS & EVENTS 2011 TO 2013 are tabbed at the top of each page.


Don’t miss MARTY MILLER’S MISSION! Also look under NEWS & EVENTS FROM 2014 ON for 09 JUL 2015.


City employees and Veterans teamed up to replace worn State flags in Collegedale (Tennessee) Veterans Memorial Park on Friday, 21 FEB 2014, Wednesday, 01 APR 2015, Friday, 07 APR 2017, and Friday, 14 JUN 2019.

Check out SERVICE STORIES from Veterans of our Post!  COMRADES Raymond C. Brown, Bill Nutt, Noble B. Vining and J. Vernon Herod start us out, followed by as many as will consent to share their SERVICE STORIES to encourage new generations to serve and defend our Beloved Land.

Look back
to the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1697


SPECIAL EVENT: Flag Retirement Ceremony was conducted by Ooltewah, Tennessee Boy Scouts of America Troop 147 at Collegedale VETERANS MEMORIAL PARK on Saturday, 03 DEC 2011.

Website last updated 

23 MAY 2024.


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