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James Franklin Widener Jr., age 72, 103 Highland Ave., Erwin, died Tuesday, July 31, 2012, at Johnson City Medical Center.
He was a lifelong resident of Unicoi County and was a son of the late James Franklin and Beulah Wilson Widener.
Mr. Widener was a member of Evergreen Free Will Baptist Church.
He was a Vietnam veteran, serving in the U.S. Air Force.
Mr. Widener was a deputy for the Unicoi County Sheriffs Department for over 18 years.
Other than his parents, he is preceded in death by two sons: Tony Hensley and Timothy Bennetti; great grandson: Thomas Franklin Young IV; and two brothers: Ronnie Widener and William Widener.
Survivors include his loving and devoted wife of 36 years: Doris Tipton Widener; four sons: Ronald Widener and wife Chastity, Erwin, Donald Widener, Louisiana, John Widener, Smyrna, Jeff Hensley and wife Lora, Greeneville; three daughters: Angela Widener, Smyrna, Karen Widener, Tennessee, Barbara Curtis and husband Andrew, Wartrace, Tennessee; 14 grandchildren: Amanda Burgeson, Kimberly Barlow, Joshua Barlow, Daniel Widener, Kevin Wilson, Calista Hensley, Kirsten Hensley, Mikayla Widener, Madison Widener, Lindsey Widener, John Issac Widener Jr., Megan Bennetti, Kayla Bennetti, and Jerrod Hensley; six great-grandchildren: Austin Hensley, Christian Burgeson, Ethan Burgeson, Charidy Burgeson, Deasean Rainey, and Arabella Ricardez-Rodriguez; two brothers: Jody Widener, Virginia, Michael Widener, Elizabethon; sisters: Faye Widener, Clarksville, Sharon Ahlson and husband Ron, Illinois, Janice Perry and husband Wayne, North Carolina; father-in-law: Mack Tipton, Erwin; sister-in-law: Karen Campbell, Erwin and several nieces and nephews.
Graveside service for Mr. Widener was held Thursday, August 2, at 1 p.m. in Mountain Home National Cemetery. The Rev. Terry Richardson officiated. Military honors were provided by The Tennessee Honor Guard consisting of VFW Post #4933 Boone’s Creek and the Tennessee Army National Guard.
In lieu of flowers, those wishing to make memorial contributions may do so to the Alzheimer’s Association Northeast Tennessee Chapter, 207 North Boone St., Suite 1500, Johnson City, TN 37604, or to the charity of your choice.
Online condolences, photos and memories may be shared with the Widener family through an interactive Book of Memories at
Robert Ledford Funeral Home And Chapel was in charge.