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R.J. Whitson, age 78, of 319 Sam Rogers Road, Erwin, died Monday, Feb. 28, 2011, at Erwin Health Care Center.
Mr. Whitson was a native of Unicoi County and a son of the late Richard and Annie Peterson Whitson.
He was a truck driver for 16 years and later retired as Erwin’s fire chief after 18 years of service. He assisted in organizing the Unicoi County Fireman’s Association.
Mr. Whitson served in the U.S. Navy during the Korean Conflict.
He attended Erwin First Pentecostal Holiness Church in Erwin.
Survivors include his wife, Roselee Hollifield Whitson of Erwin; son, Tracy Hollifield and wife, Tammy of Erwin; sisters, Irene Rice of Erwin, Loraine Casassa of St. Augustine, Fla.; brother, R.H. Whitson and wife, Lena of Erwin; granddaughter, Katie Hollifield; step-grandchildren, Justin Honeycutt and Jacob Williams; and several nieces and nephews.
Funeral services were held Wednesday, March 2, at 1 p.m. at the Valley Funeral Home Chapel. The Rev. Earl Ragland officiated. Interment followed at Evergreen Cemetery with military graveside honors. Members of the Erwin Fire Department served as pallbearers.
Valley Funeral Home was in charge.