Friends, family, and a large crowd gather for a photo last week during the ceremony to dedicate and name the bridge located at the intersection of South Church Street and Mayberry Lane in Mountain City as the “Billy C. Brookshire Memorial Bridge.” The event was a fine testimony to the community’s love and respect for Brookshire and his accomplishments on behalf of Johnson County and Mountain City residents. Photo by Tamas Mondovics
By Tamas Mondovics
A sizable crowd, representing government officials and area residents attended a ceremony to dedicate and name the bridge located at the intersection of South Church Street and Mayberry Lane in Mountain City as the “Billy C. Brookshire Memorial Bridge.”
Known as Bill, throughout the community, and by his friends, Brookshire enjoyed supporting many community projects that included the 4-H Poultry, Little League Baseball, Heritage Hall, the Johnson County Center for the Arts, and the Johnson County Senior Heating Assistance to name a few.
“Bill was said to be the quintessential self-made man who achieved success in life with passion, courage, and dedication,” said Mountain City Mayor Kevin Parsons. “Because of his energy and ingenuity, he was able not only to live well but was known as a genuinely good, caring, and kind person.”
That such qualities played a significant role in Brookshire successfully becoming one of the founders of Johnson County Bank in 1975 and then becoming bank president in 1983, there is little doubt. He consistently served on the JCB Board of Directors through the years until his death on November 11, 2018. He was 85.
“He was a good friend and supporter to not only me and my family but also many others,” Parsons said. “Bill could make you feel important no matter who you were. “It is an honor to be able to dedicate this bridge in his memory.”
Parsons said that the large turnout at the event did not surprise him, adding that “Bill was loved and respected by everyone and he loved his community,” so “we needed to do something about a way to remember him.”
Brookshire was known to care about Johnson County and Mountain City, which was a major reason for the growth of the region on many levels. Of course, the bridge itself is significant, as Brookshire had crossed it every day on his way to work.
Overtaken by emotion, Brookshire’s daughter Bonnie Reece, shed some tears as she reflected on her love for her dad and the community’s great respect and love for the man who has done so much for so many in Johnson County.
“I am honored to see this memorial and the town doing this for my dad,” Reece said. “This community has been wonderful.”