May 16, 2015: ROBERT ERNIE JOHNSON passed away in Southaven, MS on May 16, 2015. Robert was a former employee of Humko Co. and was transferred to Buena Park, CA where he lived for many years. He returned to Southaven, Mississippi where he was living when he died. While attending Tech, Robert was on the wrestling team and was a Sgt. Major in ROTC. He is survived by his dear friend, Linda Henderson, a sister, Barbara Johnson Pope, a brother, Barry L. Johnson, and two sons.
March 27, 2015: BARBARA MARIE LEE (HARRELL) passed away in Collierville, TN on March 27, 2015 after a long illness.. Barbara was an excellent student all three years at Tech where she was chosen by the faculty to be initiated as a member of The National Honor Society; the 50 Club also recognized her as part of their group. Her home was in Olive Branch, MS, where she lived near her sister and best friend, Sue Lee (Johnson). Barbara held several positions with government jobs in Memphis at The Army Depot and The Internal Revenue Service. As a member of First Baptist Church in Olive Branch, MS, she was very active in her Sunday School class. Barbara is survived by her husband of 65 years, Earl Herbert Harrell III, two sons, Hunter Harrell and Jeffery Harrell, two grandchildren, three great-grandchildren, her sister, Sue, and her nephew, Barry Johnson.
March 12, 2015: BILL BEATY BLANKENSHIP died March 12, 2015 in Oxford, MS.
February 20, 2015: JOSEPH LEWIS CLOWER passed away on February 20, 2015 in Jackson, MS. As a student of Tech, he was a member of the Hi-Y basketball team, the Smith-Hughes Electric Shop, and the Safety Club. After high school graduation, Joe began his eleven year career with Gerber Baby Food Company. Later, he relocated to Jackson, MS where he created Humphrey Clower Food Brokerage Co. Over the next 30 years, his company grew regionally until his retirement in 1988. An avid golfer, he spent much of his time volunteering and serving others through various groups such as the Gleaners and the Gideons International. Joe is survived by his wife, Patricia, four children, several grandchildren and his goddaughter.
February 7, 2015: FRIEDA ANN MCKINNEY (BROWN) died on February 7, 2015 in Memphis, TN. As a Tech student, she was a member of the Y-Teens and the Bayou Girls' Club; she also participated in "The Spirit of Christmas Parade" and Memphis Cotton Carnival activities. Ann completed her secondary education in eleven years and graduated with the '50 class.
August 31, 2014: GARY DALE SMITH died in Senatobia, MS on August 31, 2014. After high school, he served in the U.S. Air Force where he was stationed in the Philippines. Gary pursued a number of careers, but worked the longest in the automotive parts business, retiring as a general manager from Parts Industries Corporation. He was preceded in death by his son, Gary Glynn Smith. Gary is survived by his wife, Suzanne E. Carter, his daughter, Dixie Lomax, one grandson and two great-grandchildren.
July 28, 2014: MABEL LUDENE SHRUM (ANDERSON) passed away peacefully in Southaven, MS on July 28, 2014. Preceded in death by her husband of 42 years, Joe Bob Anderson, she is survived by her son, Donald Anderson and her daughter, Faun Anderson Long, seven grandchildren and four great-children. As a student at Tech, she was a participant in many Home Economics and Home Room activities and an active member of the Commercial Club and the 50 Club.
June 24, 2014: EDWIN H. YAGER, JR. died in Hernando, MS on June 24, 2014. Edwin was a member of ROTC and an active member of the Non Com Club while at Tech. He enjoyed music and participated in several music programs all three years, including singing with the Tech men's quartet He was chosen to be a representative at the TN State Music Festival where he was listed in the state solo classification. Edwin also enjoyed singing in operettas produced on stage by the Memphis Open Air Theater in Overton Park. After high school, he joined the U.S. Air Force where he was recruited by the Army Security Agency to study the Korean language, ultimately serving as a translator in the war. He graduated from University of Memphis in 1958 and worked for the Social Security Administration until his retirement. Edwin is survived by his wife of 58 years, Jo Ann and four children: Tom Yager, Debra Yager Adams, Paul Yager, David Yager, Stephen Yager, six grandchildren and one great grandchild.
June 2, 2014: BETTY WELLS FINGER passed away in her sleep at home, on June 2, 2014. She was predeceased by her husband of 60 years, Gene, in 2013. Betty was a warm-hearted, loving wife and mother who made her family the center of her life. A proud graduate of Tech High School, she remained lifelong friends with many of her classmates. Her achievements were many in high school, including membership in the Commercial Club; winner of typing honors; and O.D., '49-''50, She is survived by two sons, Michael C. Finger of Memphis and John A. Finger of Hernando, MS; three sisters, Faustine Valdez of Texas, Frances Ricks of Florida and Virginia Northern of Memphis; and a brother, Dale Wells of Memphis. She also leaves four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
April 2, 2014: DR. WILLIAM R. NANCE. SR. passed away on April 3, 2014 in Jackson, TN. While at Tech, Bill was a member of ROTC, rifle squad, Saber Club, Non-Com Club, burial squad, and the T Club; he also competed on the wrestling team. He served in the U.S. Navy in the Pacific during the Korean War and he received his pharmacy degree from U.T. Center for Health Sciences in Memphis. He was later employed for 32 years as a representative of Eli Lilly Co. He is survived by his wife, Emma; 2 sons, Dr. William R. Nance, Jr. and Daniel C. Nance; 2 daughters, Mary Eyen and Elaine Sadosky; a brother, Felix Reaves, a sister, Mable Fields, 8 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren.
March 2, 2014: CLAUDE EUGENE RIPPEE died in Pacific Grove, CA. on Maech 2, 2014. Eugene was a 4 year math major in high school and served 4 years in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War. He leaves his wife, Eunice and 3 children.
December 31, 2013: MARY FRANKS MIDDLETON (GORDON) passed away in Germantown, TN. She was a member of the Commodore Perry Chapter of the DAR and a member of Fisherville First Baptist Church. Mary is survived by her husband of of 62 years, Devane Douglas Gordon; a son, Douglas Bryan Gordon and a daughter, Mary Wildmon, 5 grandchildren and 2 great-children.
October 17, 2013: ESTELL ELIZABETH COMBES (BRANCH) died in Port Angeles, WA. She is survived by her husband of 63 years, Bill Branch; a son, Steve Branch; daughters, Debbie Green, Sharon Ward and Beverly Wright; 10 grandchildren and 9 great-children. Bill pastored Baptist churches in Sitka and Kenai, AK.. Estelle loved to travel and while living in Alaska, she and her husband traveled the Alaska Highway at least 12 times. They retired in 2003 and moved to Sequim, WA.
July 18, 2013: FRANCES LUCILLE RAYBURN (COOK) died in Memphis. While in high school, she was a member of the Rainbow Girls and a member of the Tag Day team. She is survived by her children, Tim Cook, Danny Cook, Deborah Chambers, and Connie Cook, 8 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
April 11, 2013: RICHARD WILLIAM DICKENSON died in Dansville, NY. Richard was a US Air Force veteran, a Mason and an active member of The American Legion. He was employed by the former Foster Wheeler Energy Corp in Dansville for many years and he also worked at the Kennedy Space Center as an Industrial Engineer and machinist. While at Tech, he was a cheerleader '48 '49 '50 and he was a member of the ROTC, the Non-Com Club, the T-Club, Hi-Y, DeMolay, Young Life Club and the Key Club. He is survived by 3 daughters, Pam Claud, Marsha Scott, and Laura Scheible; 6 grandchildren, 6 great grandchildren and a brother, James Dickenson (Tech '52).
March 13, 2013: VIRGINIA ANN HOLLIS (RUNNELS) died at the Vero Beach VNA Hospice House. In high school, Virginia was in the Dramatic Club and Vice-President of the Sophomore Class. She was treasurer for the local chapter of the DAR and an active member of First Baptist Church in Vero Beach. Virginia leaves her husband of 62 years, Jim; a daughter, Pat; and 3 sons, Rick Runnels, Dave Runnels and Mike Runnels; 9 grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren.
January 28, 2013: Today, THOMAS EDMOND "ED" CRAIG, veteran News Anchor for WHBQ-TV Channel 13 passed away in Bartlett, TN at the home of his daughter, after suffering complications from COPD. Ed was born in Memphis and grew up singing and serving at Bellevue Baptist Church. He was a member of the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War, where he began a long career in radio and television news. Starting out as a weatherman at Channel 13 in 1963, he performed every job possible from anchoring to editing film in the days before the teleprompter. Most people in the Memphis area recognized his face and distinctive baritone voice and looked upon him as a friend who was their reliable source for news. In 1957, Ed married his late wife of nearly 50 years, Bonnie, who died in 2005. He is survived by 4 daughters: Deborah Craig of Millington, TN, Kathryn Brooks of Bartlett, TN, Patricia Lee of Arlington, TN and DeAnne McNeal of Atoka, TN; 9 grandchildren, 5 great-grandchildren and many faithful friends.
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