Devoted husband, alderman, community asset, avid Tennessee fan, talented woodworker, call him what you will, Joe Heatherly will be dearly missed.
Heatherly passed away Saturday due to complications from his long-time battle against cancer.
“It was a shock and a blow; I lost a real good and dear friend and the town of Caryville lost a friend as well,” said Caryville Mayor Bobby Stooksbury.
Heatherly was a Caryville Alderman for the past six years. He was in charge of the industrial and financial divisions for the town for the last four of those years.
He was recently re-elected to the alderman seat for another term.
“The people’s vote of confidence really meant a lot to him,” said Stooksbury.
One of his biggest passions was trying to get more jobs into Caryville.
“He wanted to move the city forward; that’s why we all worked so well as a council together,” said Stooksbury.
“He’s been an asset to the community; a real go-getter when it came to anything we needed; he’ll be sorely missed,” said fellow alderman Wade Lawson.
Heatherly and his wife Vickie played an important role in the Louie Bluie Festival, according to Stooksbury.
“They were instrumental in getting the large amount of craft people to come for the festival,” said Stooksbury.
Heatherly was an avid UT fan and a talented woodworker, according to Stooksbury.
While incredibly passionate about helping his town, Heatherly’s greatest passion was his wife Vickie of 31 years.
“He was really in love with his wife; when you saw one of them, you always saw the other,” said Lawson.
“They were a great team, always together; I really hate it for her”, Stooksbury said sadly.
“It was a shock to all of us because he was such a fighter; he’d been fighting this for a while,” said Lawson.
“Joe had a great will to live, but I believe his body just wore out and couldn’t do it anymore,” Stooksbury said somberly.
Heatherly’s council seat will remain vacant till after the first of the year, according to Stooksbury.
“Out of respect for Joe I’m going to wait and honor him by leaving it open till after the first of the year,” said Stooksbury.
“He was just a hard worker and a good fellow to know, who cared about his community,” said Lawson solemnly.