Allen Atchley 'Cotton' Howard

Jan. 01, 2013 @ 11:40 PM

Allen Atchley “Cotton” Howard, age 87 of Sevierville, passed away Monday, December 31, 2012, at Ben Atchley State Veterans Home in Knoxville.

Allen was born in Philadelphia, TN, April 30, 1925. Although the namesake of his grandmother Delilah Allen and his mother Edith Atchley, from childhood he was called “Cotton” because of his cotton colored hair. Noted for his sparkling eyes and smile, infectious laugh, patriotism, and unapologetic opinions, he was a witty and charismatic master storyteller, whose stories were “mostly” true.

A long-time member of Bethel Baptist Church, he was a trustee and was in charge of the church cemetery for many years. He was a farmer and avid gardener and was retired from Automatic Retailers of America, a vending company.

A World War II veteran, he joined the U.S. Navy when he was 17 and followed 3 of his brothers into military service. He was placed on the Destroyer U.S.S. Marsh and afterwards fought in two theatres, including battles at the Azore Islands, Normandy, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa. He was in Tokyo Bay when the Peace Treaty was signed.

Cotton married his high school sweetheart, Juanita Ogle, on March 15, 1946. He loved and was loved.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Clarence P. Howard and Edith Atchley Howard; brothers Hazel, Bruce, Warren, Ray and Ben Howard; sisters Ruth Kerley, Ruby and Mary Howard.

Survivors include his wife of 66 years, Juanita Ogle Howard; daughters, Janet King and husband David of Sevierville, Joan Hensley and husband Jerry of Kodak, Alana Owens of Sevierville; grandchildren, Diana King of Los Angeles, CA, Shannon Covey and husband Josh of Kodak, Mark Hensley and wife Kinsey of Camarillo, CA, Lydia Huskey and husband Doran of Sevierville, Madelyn Owens of Sevierville; great-grandchildren, Haley and Landon Covey, Sienna and Layla Hensley, soon-to-be born great-granddaughter Quinn Huskey; sister-in-law: Fae Howard; many beloved nieces, nephews and friends.

The family wishes to thank the friends who helped take Cotton to and from the local stores “to get tomorrow’s news today,” the friends, neighbors, family, and church members who have been so kind to Cotton, Juanita and their daughters, and the staff of Ben Atchley State Veterans Home.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Bethel Baptist Church Cemetery Fund, c/o Alvin Davis, 2780 Jones Cove Road, Sevierville, TN 37876.

The family will receive friends 4-6:30 p.m. Wednesday, January 2, 2013, with funeral service to follow at 7 p.m. in the West Chapel of Atchley Funeral Home. Officiating will be Rev. Chris Kirby with Rev. Ken Stansberry and Rev. Melvin Carr.

Interment 10 a.m. Thursday, January 3, 2013, in Bethel Baptist Church Cemetery. Pallbearers will be: Jack Howard, Jack Kerley, Mark Hensley, Josh and Landon Covey, Doran Huskey, Chad Loveday and Alvin Davis. Honorary pallbearers will be Cotton’s Sunday School class, Trustees and Deacons of Bethel Baptist Church. Arrangements by Atchley Funeral Home, Sevierville.