Billie Marie Bullard Chesney, 91, passed away Saturday, June 22, 2019, at Asbury Place at Baysmont, in Kingsport, following a brief illness.
She was born in Leavenworth, Kansas, and grew up in Lansing, Kansas. She was the daughter of Frank William and Martha Perry Bullard. Billie attended the University of Kansas and, later, East Tennessee State University. She met Dale Burton Chesney at the University of Kansas. They were married in 1948 at Bethel Baptist Church in Lansing, Kansas, and moved to Kingsport in 1949.
Billie had been an active member of First Broad Street United Methodist Church since 1950. She taught Sunday School to all age groups for many years, and was a Bible study leader for the United Methodist Women for more than forty years. She was active in PTA, Girl Scouts, and Cubs Scouts, and was a volunteer with Holston Valley Hospital Auxiliary for seventeen years.
An award-winning published author, Billie held memberships in The Tennessee Mountain Writers, Inc., and the Tennessee Writers Alliance. She was a charter member of the Kingsport Writers Guild and was inducted into the National League of American Pen Women in 1998.
Preceded in death by her husband Dale in 2008, her parents, and a sister, Vinita Ellen Zimmerman, she is survived by her daughter, Janet Marie Chesney Tate (Richard – deceased), Knoxville; two sons, Gary Dale Chesney (Sharon), Morristown; and James Frank Chesney (Sarah), Nashville. She also leaves seven grandchildren: Kasey Leigh Chesney Madden (Dwayne), Andrew Lamar Chesney (Anna), Susanne Elizabeth Chesney Pritchett (Craig), Erin Elizabeth Tate Keck (Daniel), Matthew Chesney Tate, Claire Coode Chesney Ivey (Paul), Joseph Burton Chesney, and two step-grandsons, Brandon Rhett Spencer, Nashville, and Matthew Austin Spencer (Liz), Harrisburg, NC. She also leaves five great-grandchildren: Braylon Lewis Pritchett, Chesney Elizabeth Pritchett, Lillian Marie Keck, Landen James Ivey, and Billie Magnolia Chesney. Billie is also survived by her sister Shirley Jean Bullard Collie, Oswego, IL, and eight nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be Wednesday, June 26, 2019, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Hamlett-Dobson Funeral Home, Kingsport.
A private graveside service on Thursday, June 27, 2019, will be followed by a memorial service at 11 a.m. at First Broad Street United Methodist Church, 100 E Church Cir, Kingsport, TN 37660.
Memorial donations may be made to First Broad Street United Methodist Church Carpenters Helper Ministry, 100 E Church Circle, Kingsport, TN 37660; Friends In Need, 1105 W Stone Dr # 5, Kingsport, TN 37660; or to the Early Reading Program at Kingsport City Schools, 400 Clinchfield Street, Ste. 200, Kingsport, TN 37660; or a charity of personal choice.
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