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BRYANT, Alton F. Alton F. Bryant, age 103, passed away on Saturday, November 30, 2013, after a short illness. He spent his childhood in Winterville, GA just outside Athens, GA. He attended Winterville High School where he was valedictorian of the class of 1927. After graduating from the University of Georgia, he joined the W.T. Grant Company, a national retail chain. Affiliated with the company for forty years, he served in various capacities, including purchasing and store manager supervision in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois, Alabama and Georgia. When he transferred to Atlanta in 1951 he served on the Atlanta Retail Merchants Board for a number of years and helped shape the modern Atlanta retail environment. During World War II he joined the Air Corps with the rank of 2nd Lieutenant. He served at Langley Field, Virginia, Australia, New Guinea, Netherlands East Indies, and in the Philippines on the islands of Leyte and Luzon. He received the Philippine Liberation Ribbon with a bronze star. He was discharged in January 1946 with the rank of Major. While stationed at Langley Field, Virginia he met Mary Lou Mackie, who was assisting in the war effort by editing NASA engineering reports. They were married in 1946 after the end of the war. Alton and Mary Lou joined Second-Ponce De Leon Baptist Church in 1951. Alton was a life deacon. He was a member of the men's EEE Bible Study Class where he served as president. After his retirement in 1971, Alton became a member of SCORE (Service Corps of Retired Executives). SCORE is an independent voluntary non -profit association sponsored by the Small Business Administration. The primary purpose of SCORE is to render a community service by providing, without charge, the expert assistance of its volunteer counselors in solving problems encountered by small businesses. He served in SCORE over 25 years and at the date of his retirement he had the longest length of service in the Atlanta chapter. Alton was a member of the Downtown Atlanta Kiwanis Club for over 50 years. He celebrated his 100th birthday with the club on August 3, 2010 and stated it was "one of the most memorable events of my life". He was charter member of the Cherokee Town and Country Club. Over his life span he had many Cherokee friends and enjoyed playing golf with several foursomes. In recent years he enjoyed his Wednesday luncheons with the "Chiefs", a senior group at Cherokee. Alton is survived by his daughter, Marilyn Tanner, son-in-law, Stephen Tanner, granddaughter, Lyndsey Pearson and her husband, Richard Pearson, grandson, Brian Tanner and his fiancé, Brook Irving, and great grandchildren, Riley Pearson and Adelyn Pearson. His wife Mary Lou and son, Dr. Douglas A. Bryant, preceded him in death. The family would like to thank the numerous doctors, nurses, and home care professionals that loved and cared for Alton during his recent illness and provided him kindness above measure, especially his home care teams from McClinton Cares. Interment will be at Arlington Memorial Park, Sandy Springs, Georgia at a private family graveside service. A Memorial service will be held on Friday, December 6, 2013 at 12 o'clock at Second-Ponce De Leon Baptist Church, 2715 Peachtree Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30305 with reception following. The family would welcome all of Alton's friends and acquaintances to join us to share our memories of this long lived and remarkable person. In lieu of flowers, Alton would have wished Memorial gifts be made to his beloved church, Second-Ponce De Leon Baptist Church at the above address. ALTON F. BRYANT
Published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Dec. 3, 2013
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