Longtime local educator and former Hamilton County Board of Education chairman Everett Rhea Fairchild, 89, died Monday, Dec. 10.
Fairchild, born and raised in Hixson, served the community for more than 60 years as an educator, administrator, coach and school board member.
After graduating from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, he began teaching at Dickenson Jr. High in 1951 until the school closed in 1959. In 1963, he returned to teaching at Red Bank Junior High and in 1967 he was appointed principal at Hixson Junior High School, where he remained until he retired in 1992.
"He was a pillar in the community," said Hamilton County school board member Kathy Lennon. "He was very dear to many people. I think he touched many, many lives in Hamilton County and he will be missed."
Fairchild served on both the city of Chattanooga school board and later the Hamilton County school board between 1993 and 2012. He was elected to the county school board after the systems merged in 1996, and was elected chairman in 2010. He stepped down in 2012 for health reasons.
Longtime county schools board member Rhonda Thurman remembers Fairchild's leadership and wisdom.
"What a gentleman he was," Thurman said. "He gave me a lot of good advice. He knew the school system inside and out and he was always a good board member. You always knew where he stood; he always did what he thought was right."
Fairchild was a lifetime member of the Hixson Kiwanis Club and the recipient of a number of community service honors including the Sertoma Club of Downtown Chattanooga's Service to Mankind award. He was a member of the Hixson High School Hall of Fame.
Fairchild is survived by his wife, Margaret Hixson, two children, 6 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
HONORING EVERETT FAIRCHILD
› Visitation will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. on Dec. 13 at Chattanooga Funeral Home, North Chapel, 5401 Highway 153, Hixson.
› Visitation also will be held from 1 to 2 p.m. on Dec. 14, funeral service to follow at Hixson First Baptist Church, 5800 Grubb Road, Hixson.
› Burial will be at Hamilton Memorial Gardens, 5351 Highway 153, Hixson.
› In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Friends of Hixson-Hixson High School Scholarship Fund in the name of Everett Fairchild. They can be sent to 2120 Northgate Park Lane, Suite 303, Chattanooga, TN 37415.