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Howard Wallace Elvidge, age 85, of Mountain City, Tennessee, passed away peacefully at home, surrounded by his family, on Saturday, September 29, 2012.
Howard was born on July 10, 1927 in Detroit, Michigan, the son of the late Joseph Howard and Dorothy Kathleen Elvidge. He graduated from Hazel Park High School and attended Michigan State University before enlisting in the 9th Army Air Force and serving in Europe during World War II. Following his discharge from the Army, Howard worked briefly as an assistant chemist for a steel company in Detroit and then began a long career in the lumber business.
In 1960, Howard moved his family to Daytona Beach, Florida, where he designed and drew blueprints for custom homes, managed a local lumber company, and eventually began designing commercial and residential swimming pools.
He married his wife, Martha, on the day of the Daytona 500. Their minister, Hal Marchman, did the invocation for the race that day at the racetrack, then flew by helicopter to the church in order to arrive on time for their wedding. In January of 1990, Howard, Martha, and their two youngest daughters moved to her childhood hometown, Mountain City, Tennessee, where he began a very active retirement.
For almost two decades, Howard volunteered his time planning and/or supervising the renovations of community buildings and churches in and around Mountain City, including the Wellness Center, the press box at Ralph Stout Park, Dewey Christian Church and First Freewill Baptist Church. His most rewarding experience was working with the “Magnificent Seven” Oversight Committee of Heritage Hall where he designed and oversaw the entire renovation of the community theater project. He also served on the Town of Mountain City Planning Commission for many years and was recognized for his dedicated service in September of this year. In addition, Howard was a past treasurer of the Family Wellness and Recreation Committee. In 2000, he received the Chamber of Commerce Mac Wright Citizenship Award.
In addition to being a gourmet cook and talented artist, Howard also loved old westerns, gardening, dogs, cats and traveling.
Above all, Howard cherished his family and the love they gave him. He is survived by his loving wife, Martha; eight daughters and one son: Sarah Hernandez (Arturo), Louisville, KY; Jennifer Icenhour (Michael), Mountain City, TN, Shirley Stuhr (Don), Daytona Beach, FL, Sandra Graves (Dan), Cumming, GA, Sharon Woodfin (Wyc), Daytona Beach, FL, Susyn Bedford (Mike), Port Orange, FL, Sally Wagner (Mark), Port Orange, FL, Sheila Harlacher (Dan), Port Orange, FL, and Michal Elvidge (Nicole), Seattle, WA; seventeen grandchildren; sixteen great grandchildren; two sisters: Shirley Kistner, Daytona Beach, FL and Carolyn Willis (Rod), Tallahassee, FL and numerous nieces and nephews.
Howard was a member of State Line Baptist Church and to continue the legacy of his many years of service to his community, the family suggests that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the State Line Baptist Church Building Fund, 3409 Sugar Creek Road, Laurel Bloomery, TN 37680.
A Celebration of Life service will be held at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 from the State Line Baptist Church with pastor and son-in-law, Michael Icenhour to officiate. Graveside service and Interment with Military Honors, conducted by the Johnson County Honor Guard, will be held at 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, October 4, 2012 from the Sunset Memorial Park, Mountain City, TN. Pallbearers will be Howard’s son and sons-in-law. Honorary Pallbearers are grandsons: Kevin Graves, Matthew Graves, Aaron Wagner, Ryan Harlacher, Tyler Elvidge and Ethan Icenhour.
The family wishes to extend their appreciation and gratitude to Dr. Frances Collichio and Dr. Anna Sobol, Ivy Tester, Joseph Hunt, Kelly Roark and support staff of Mountain States Hospice for the wonderful compassion and care give to Howard during his sickness.
Condolences may be sent to the family through our website at The family of Howard W. Elvidge has entrusted his services to Mountain City Funeral Home, 224 S. Church Street, Mountain City, Tennessee 37683.