Elder Glenn Jr.
Elder Grifton Glenn, Jr., 86, blessed earthly life came to a peaceful end at home with family on Friday, April 11, 2014. Elder was born Feb. 12, 1928 in Chickamauga, Ga., the son of Elder Grifton Glenn and Katherine Elizabeth Archer Glenn. Elder was the middle child between younger brother, Archer Glenn and older sister, Olive Glenn Wright. Elder married the delightful Jo Ann Nash of Birmingham, Ala., on Feb. 18, 1956. He is survived by his wife and their three children, Grif Glenn, Tom Glenn (Darlene Durrance Glenn), and Jan Glenn Billingsley (Steve Billingsley), all of Chattanooga. Elder loved and cherished each of his grandchildren, Lauren Glenn, Garrett Glenn, Andrew Billingsley and Evan Billingsley. Referred to as "Uncle Bub", a derivative of his childhood nickname, Elder was especially fond of his nephews, Mike Wright, David Glenn; and nieces, Lynn Wright Campbell and Angela Glenn Ford. Prior to moving to Chattanooga, Elder was a member of the First Baptist Church of Chickamauga for 51 years where he was a Deacon, Sunday school teacher, and Chairman of the Deacons and Trustees. Most recently a member of Brainerd Baptist Church for the past 24 years, Elder served as a Deacon and on various committees including chairman of the Finance Committee. In total Elder served as a Deacon for over 50 years. He dearly loved the Friendship Sunday School class and until the last few weeks diligently made weekly calls to members who missed the prior Sundays class. Elder also served on the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary Foundation Board and on the local advisory board of the Salvation Army. Elder attended the Chickamauga School system in his hometown before departing to become a boarding student at the Darlington School in Rome, Ga., in the ninth grade. A self-professed average student at best, Elder always seemed to find his calling including becoming President of his Senior Class and member of the All Mid-South Football Team. At the young age of 17, Elder boarded the train for the long trip to V.P.I. (Virginia Tech) - a place he had never visited. Upon his arrival Elder learned that there was no dorm room for him, so he spent his first nights sleeping on the gym floor. There in the gym he met the football team and they prevailed upon him to join them, which he did and proudly wore the Hokie uniform his freshman year. At Virginia Tech Elder rose to the rank of Colonel and Regimental Commander his senior year with overall responsibility for the 700-member Corps of Cadets. Elder marched in President Harry Truman's inauguration parade in 1948 as a member of the regimental staff. Elder served for ten years in the National Guard attaining the rank of Captain and Commander of Tennessee's Battery A, 115th Field Artillery Battalion. After graduating from Virginia Tech with a degree in industrial engineering Elder went to work in his Uncle Cleo's timber business in Sparta, Georgia. Afterwards he moved to Savannah, Ga., to work for Georgia Pacific. Elder returned to Chickamauga in 1953 to work in the family business, Glenn Brothers Hardware Co. In 1969 he co-founded Ace Hardware of Chattanooga and served as its first President and Chairman. That year the company opened its first store on Highway 58 in Chattanooga. Since then the company has opened additional stores in Chattanooga, Cleveland, Knoxville and northwest Georgia. Elder admired every Ace manager and genuinely appreciated how all Ace associates embraced Ace's culture of helpfulness. Elder was a past president of the Southern Retail Hardware Association and was a member of the National Board of Directors of Ace Hardware Corporation from 1981 to 1987. Elder served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Bank of Chickamauga from 1953 to 2007 when the bank was sold. Elder was involved in many civic endeavors in his hometown of Chickamauga. He was a founder and organizer of the Chickamauga Little League Football program in 1968 and the Pine Forest Swim Club which became a focal point of summer recreation for young families and youth in the Chickamauga community. Elder humbly lived a life of faith and loved the reassurance found in Romans 8:38-39, "For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." And, so now Elder abides with Christ Jesus for eternity. Amen. The funeral service will be held at Brainerd Baptist Church on Tuesday, April 15, 2014, with visitation at 10 a.m. followed by the service at 11 a.m. with Dr. Robby Gallaty, officiating. The interment will follow in Chickamauga City Cemetery. The Brainerd Baptist Church Friendship Sunday School class will serve as honorary pallbearers. Contributions in honor of Elder may be made to Brainerd Baptist Church or Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Visit www.heritagefh.com to share words of comfort to the family and view the memorial tribute. Elders family will receive friends to celebrate his life on Monday, April 14, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Heritage Funeral Home, East Brainerd Chapel, 7454 East Brainerd Road.