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Henderson, TN - Robert Fentress Casey, age 87, passed away Thursday evening, March 21st, 2013 at his home in Oak Ridge, TN.
Mr. Casey was born March 8, 1926 and reared in Alamo, TN, the son of the late Robert E. and Mary Dodson Casey. As the son of a funeral director, he worked from an early age with his father in the profession. He and his family lived in Evans and Lassiter Funeral Home in Alamo from 1931 to 1941. They moved to Henderson in 1941, where his father owned and operated Casey Funeral Home. He assumed the leadership of the business upon the death of his father in 1953. In 1991, the funeral home was purchased by the Shackelford family.
Mr. Casey is a graduate of Chester County High School and attended Freed-Hardeman University. He served in the U. S. Army during World War II aboard hospital ships Seminole and Algonquin as a surgical technician. He is a 1948 graduate of John A. Gupton College of Mortuary Science in Nashville, serving as president of his class. He is a past president of John A. Gupton Alumni Association and a longtime member of the Board of Trustees of the College. In 1993, he was awarded a 50 year service plaque from the Tennessee Funeral Directors Association, and in 2008 was recognized by the association as a "Legend in Funeral Service" and inducted to the TFDA's "Wall of Fame".
He married the former Martha Belle Reid in 1950. They have two sons, Dr. Robert Casey and wife Kathy, and Jeff Casey and wife Marthanne, all of Oak Ridge; four grandchildren, Katy Casey McCall and husband Andy of Newnan, GA, Reid Casey and wife Tara of Alpharetta, GA, and Jay and Will Casey of Oak Ridge, TN; two great-grandchildren Kyler McCall and Sloane Casey. He is also survived by two brothers, Ed Lynn Casey and wife Ann of Nashville, and Tommy Casey and wife Martha of Destin, FL.
Mr. Casey was preceded in death by his parents, and by his wife Martha, August 16, 2009.
He was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Henderson, the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars. He is a Mason and a Shriner. He received a twenty-five year Award of Merit from the American Cancer Society. He served as the first president of the Chester County Chamber of Commerce. In 1997, the Chamber recognized Casey as the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award. He had served on the Development Council at Freed-Hardeman, and had been a member of the Board of Directors of the Chester County Senior Citizens and the West Tennessee Hearing and Speech Center.
Funeral services will be 2 p.m. Sunday, at Shackelford Funeral Directors - Casey Chapel, with Tony Hysmith, Dr. Roger Penn and Dr. Billy R. Smith officiating. Burial will follow with military honors in the Henderson City Cemetery.
The family will receive friends at Casey Chapel from 4 p.m. until 8 p.m. Saturday.
Shackelford Funeral Directors - Casey Chapel, Henderson, TN (731) 989-2421.
Published in The Jackson Sun from Mar. 23 to Mar. 24, 2013