Gerald Lamar Wilson - December 23, 1929 – August 25, 2021
On Wednesday, August 25, 2021, at the age of 91, our beloved husband, father, grandfather, and best friend, left to spend eternity with his heavenly Father. Lamar was preceded in death by parents William Hobert Wilson and Mary Gladys Wilson (Markum) and sister, Avalon Baldwin Little.
Lamar is survived by his beloved wife of 57 years, Donna, and sons Craig (Kim) of Atlanta, GA., David (Cheryl) and Michael (Karan) of Ringgold, GA., seven grandchildren Hunter, Kristen, Alex, Andrew, Avery, Lillian, and Eli, great granddaughter Carmen, nephew Ronald Baldwin, and niece Cheri Ashby.
Lamar graduated from Chattanooga Central High School in 1947 and the University of Chattanooga in 1957. At both schools he participated in the band as a coronet player and was a starting player on the University tennis team. Lamar served his country starting at the age of 15 as part of the Tennessee State Guard. He then served in the Navy Reserve, before joining the United States Air Force SAC during the Korean War where he was part of the USAF Band. He remembered his Air Force band days fondly, often recalling performances at parades, and for political figures. He was also selected to play taps at the funerals of numerous fallen soldiers around the nation. Lamar remained an avid tennis player late into life. He won countless tournaments in the Chattanooga area and southeast, but most enjoyed playing mixed doubles with his wife and their friends.
After leaving the Air Force, Lamar joined Combustion Engineering – Nuclear Contract Engineering, retiring after 27 years of service. He was proud of the fact that many of the United States Navy’s nuclear-powered warships and submarines were propelled by nuclear reactors that he and his coworkers helped build in Chattanooga. After retiring from Combustion, Lamar successfully completed a midlife career change and became a Personal Financial Planner with IDS American Express. He was passionate about his new career and enjoyed giving people investment advice to help them reach their financial goals.
Lamar was a lifelong believer in Jesus Christ and member of the Baptist faith. He lived his faith daily by being a friend to everyone. Lamar was known to strike up conversations with total strangers as if they were lifelong friends and cared deeply for his neighbors and coworkers. He was always ready to listen or give a helping hand, could light up any room with humor, and never hesitated to be silly and playful with children. Even during his last days in hospice care, he made his caregivers laugh and smile with his humor and compliments. He referred to his caregivers as beautiful angels. Lamar was a devoted husband and father. His survivors will be sustained by the many happy memories they have of him and the knowledge they will all be reunited in the future.
The family is grateful for the many doctors, nurses, and caregivers who cared for him at Memorial Hospital and at home with Hearth Hospice.
A graveside service will be held at 10:30 AM Tuesday at Chattanooga National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers the family requests you donate to the American Cancer Society or a charity of your choice.
Arrangements by Heritage Funeral Home & Crematory, Battlefield Parkway.