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Everett Layne Hixson passed away on March 17, 2023, at the age of 93 in the presence of his family. Everett was the quintessential gentleman and a remarkably kind soul. The world is a harsher place without him. He deeply loved his immediate and extended family and friends who will greatly miss him. His family is most grateful for his special friends Cheri Harr and Patty Rocca with whom he shared many hours of love and affection. They made him happy in his later days.
Everett was born on March 4, 1930, in Dunlap, Tennessee. The family moved to Chattanooga where he attended Northside Junior High School and Chattanooga High School. He graduated from City in 1949 where he was an outstanding football player and two-year team captain. Everett received scholarships to play football at Middle Georgia College and Georgia Tech. At Tech, he played for Coach Bobby Dodd before graduating with a degree in Industrial Management in 1954 and a life-long love of Varsity chili dogs. With mustard.
While attending Middle Georgia College in Cochran, he met Shirley Griffin, the love of his life. During his Georgia Tech days, he burned up the highway between Atlanta and Athens until Mom graduated from UGA and married him in 1953. They celebrated 65 years of marriage until her death in 2018. They are reunited with each other with our Heavenly Father, with Mom no doubt speaking to him about taking so long to get there.
Following Everett’s service in the U.S. Army, Mom and Dad moved to Chattanooga where he worked for Combustion Engineering and Crane Manufacturing before joining Southern Champion Tray Company, from which he retired as Vice President. He was grateful for his many years and experiences with Southern Champion and three generations of the Zeiser family in Chattanooga and Ft. Worth, TX.
Everett and Shirley were life-long Methodists, and the children and grandchildren of Methodists. They were active members of First Centenary United Methodist Church in Chattanooga where they each served in various capacities and were members of the Morgan Sunday School class. They loved to travel throughout the US and Europe. They were Bridge players since their college days and involved in several Bridge groups with their friends in Chattanooga. Everett and Shirley were canoeists who paddled and camped on various rivers in the South with their friends. Mom ignored her UGA instincts and attended Georgia Tech football games with him for decades, sometimes cheering with him.
Dad’s sense of service to others was strong. He was active with church youth groups and Boy Scouts when his children were young. Everett was a long-time member of the downtown Kiwanis Club with many years of perfect attendance, and a Board Member and President of the Chattanooga Area Food Bank and the Continental Condominium Homeowners Association.
Everett was preceded in death by his beloved wife Shirley Griffin Hixson, his cherished daughter Sara Elayne (Laynie) Hixson, adored son-in-law Michael Hankins, devoted parents George and Loy Hixson, and companions and brothers-in-law William Harper and Kyle Smith.
Surviving Everett are his sons Everett L. (Bo) Hixson Jr. and George G. Hixson, grandchildren Everett L. (Rett) Hixson III (Rebecca), Samuel H. Hixson (Therese), and Virginia H. Cooke (Andrew), great-grandson Everett L. (Layne) Hixson IV, sisters Shirley Harper and Gaynell Smith, family members Carol Hixson and Peggie Hixson, and many nieces, nephews, and cousins in Tennessee, Georgia, and South Carolina.
From birth, Everett and Shirley instilled in their children and grandchildren a strong drive to succeed, with the understanding that family is the backbone to anyone’s success in life. Everett’s children and grandchildren will continue to honor his legacy by striving to be the best in whatever endeavors they choose.
Visitation will be Saturday, April 1, 2023, from 11:00 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. at First Centenary United Methodist Church in Chattanooga followed by a Celebration of Life Service at the church at 1:00 pm.
Interment with military honors will be on April 3, 2023, at 11:00 a.m. at National Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, and in keeping with Dad’s wishes, please make donations to the Chattanooga Area Food Bank, the St. Elmo United Methodist Church Food Pantry, or the First Centenary United Methodist Church homeless ministries.
You may share condolences with the family at www.heritagechattanooga.com
Arrangements are by Heritage Funeral Home, 7454 E. Brainerd Road.