Lester James Walsh

Published 4:41 pm Friday, January 20, 2017

Lester James Walsh, 92, of Athens, passed away Wednesday, January 18, 2017, at University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville.
He was born and raised in the old “Beech Mountain Community” now known as Elk Park, N.C., and was a former resident of Elizabethton, Tenn.
Mr. Walsh was a veteran of the United States Army, fought in World War II and was a recipient of the “Purple Heart.”
A resident of Athens since 1965, he was a member of the First Baptist Church of Athens for 51 years, sang in the choir and served as a deacon. He was employed by Beaunit Fibers, ExCello and Cherokee Hardware.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Judd Dewey Walsh and Flora Bernice Cook Walsh, and two brothers, Amos Lee Walsh and Bert Wayne Walsh.
He is survived by Ruth Alice Ward Walsh of Athens, his wife of 69 years; three sons and their wives, Randall and Rhonda Walsh of Cleveland, Roger and Gail Walsh of Athens, and Steve and Penny Walsh of Knoxville. He is also survived by two sisters and five brothers, Mary Ellen (Verlie) Peters of Elizabethton, Kate Braswell of Baltimore, Md., Jake “J.D.” Walsh of Elizabethton, Royce Walsh of Pickens, S.C., Phil Walsh of Kingston, and Glenn Walsh of Elk Park, N.C. His seven grandchildren are Aaron Walsh, Amanda Williams, Angee Rayburn, Holly Walsh, Nick Walsh, Megan Thomas and Caitlin Brock. There are also 17 great-grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.
The family would like to thank special neighbors, Fred and Jane Fraizer and Bill Sikes. Also, a special thank you to caregivers, Patsy Moses and Teja Curry.
Funeral services will be at 3:30 p.m. Saturday, January 21, at First Baptist Church of Athens with the Dr. Jason Clark and Rev. David Ward officiating. Interment will follow in Cedar Grove Cemetery with Military Honors. Active pallbearers will be Aaron Walsh, Nick Walsh, Travis Rayburn, Scout Rayburn, Justin Thomas and Hank Brock. Honorary pallbearers will be Shane Williams, Fred Fraizer and Bill Sikes. The family will receive friends from 2:30 until 3:30 p.m. Saturday at the church, prior to the service. Those unable to attend may send condolences at www.laycock-hobbs.com. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to “Cure For Our Friends” in honor of Mr. Walsh’s great-nephew, Dublin Walsh, of Murfreesboro, who was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis at birth. “Cure For Our Friends” is a not-for-profit foundation, that is dedicated to assisting families, impacted by cystic fibrosis. Donations can be mailed to: Dublins Dash, % Cure For Our Friends, P.O. Box 1385, Mt. Juliet, TN 37121 or via paypal: www.paypal.me/DublinsDash. Donations may also be made to the Building Fund of First Baptist Church of Athens, 305 Ingleside Avenue, Athens,TN 37303.
Laycock-Hobbs Funeral Home, Athens, is in charge of arrangements.

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